If Only Computers Were Paper Scraps

Hello Again! O.K. I know, I know, I am the absolute worst at posting blogs. I write all the time, the only problem is that when something is flowing through me, I grab whatever scrap of paper is around and write right then and there–otherwise, whatever is coming through me at the time flows on into the cosmos without record.

So, my challenge seems to be transferring my thoughts from scraps to keyboard. It’s not like it is all that difficult, but for some reason I have some wild block to it all.

Well, as it just so happens, right as I finish writing this blog and go to post it, as it turns out, I have timed out, and everything but the first three sentences are completely deleted. So here I go having to write it all over again and now it is two weeks longer since I went to post the first time. What a cosmic giggle if there ever was one! The technology gods are getting a BIG chuckle on me for sure! (Don’t worry, this time I am copying and saving it all just in case!)

O.K. on to what I was planning to post: my two mini tours this year seemed to be sourcing a lot of Jesus and God references. Not exactly what I was planning, but what was coming through nonetheless. While at Omega retreat center in NY, I was reading a book about Jesus but told through the perspective of Mary Magdelen. I could hear some of my Christian relatives in my head expressing their horror at the perceived blasphemy, but i found the book refreshing if a bit overdone and long. I found it refreshing because it allows for women to have a strong and rightful place at the conversation table around Christianity. As a woman, I have never felt truly represented in the Christian religion, nor many other religious traditions for that matter–including Buddhism which is also part of my life’s journey–because of how God and Enlightenment is always made manifest through the male form. Much of my life has been a spiritual journey and quest that allows for the Divine to be made manifest in ALL forms–male and FEMALE, human and other than human, plants, trees, mountains, rivers, oceans, sky, etc…

I understand that for some people, Christianity is a powerful force of goodness in their lives, and I have no desire to take that away from them. It is just that for me, the religion does not even come close to encompassing all that I feel and know about the Divine.

So, here is a poem that came through while I was at Omega.

“Jesus in a Berry”

Plump purple black berry

glistening with fresh-washed

summer rain


so ripe

it falls into my hand


Sweet and tangy

it bursts into a

kaleidescope of flavor

reminding me

that sometimes

Heaven is here on Earth

and the Garden of Eden

is not completely lost

and that if Jesus were

here today

his message would still be

to Love one another

live simply

trust in the Divine

Goodness and Godness of the Earth

that all of Creation

sings the Glory of God

only we have forgotten how to listen

And of course

we’d kill Jesus again

because the simple

yet profound message

is more relevant than ever

more challenging the ever

more important than ever

And there are those

who still do not want us to know

who still do not want us to remember

and so we’d kill him

just like we are killing

Creation in all of its

God and Goddessness Glory

with the impact

that less and less people

have the opportunity to taste

the Magic and Glory

of Creation

in a glistening berry

fresh washed by the warm summer rain.

julia butterfly hill July 2008

Published in: on August 27, 2008 at 9:09 pm  Comments (16)  

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  1. Please see Wordsofpeace.org for a free DVD about it. Also Contactinfo.net is an international website. There is an excellent bio. called Peace is Possible by Andre Cagan. It has 400 pgs. and 90 pictures of the last 50 yrs. of events and the most important things in Life. It is at The Mighty River Press. I received Knowledge in ’73 and it is about a feeling inside and not so much the words. Thank you. Byam

  2. Dear Julia,

    You probably don’t remember me, but I helped staff your tables when you came to Eugene, Oregon several years ago (I was the older guy who looked out of place)

    I see you are coming to Eugene on Sept 11. That’s great. I will be bringing several friends who appreciate your work.

    Your poem and blog entry about Jesus was excellent. You should have been a minister (perhaps you are!)

    Many of us were raised in Christianity but found traditional forms lacking. For the past several years I have been studying with Zoroastrian priests who go back much further than any Abrahamic faith.

    Here is a link to a historical website I’ve written called The Real Magi. You will learn more than you ever wanted to know about those three guys on the Xmas cards.

    bless you for all you do,

    Steve (& Karen) Williamson
    Eugene, Oregon

  3. Dear Julia,
    I’d never heard of you until I read that you were a hero of someone I care very much about (Sept. 2008.) I read of your history, your spirit, and your appreciation of the essence of a blackberry. I’m a fan, as I’ve eaten wild Washington State blackberries right off the shrub, and I know what you know, if only about blackberries. The world is a better place for me because you’re you.

  4. Hello Julia — You may remember I spoke very briefly with you after you gave a wonderful talk at The Farm in Tennessee (mid-July). I am the Canadian ecovillage activist who strongly shared your views and supported your message about reducing our human numbers through an intentional childfree lifestyle. I was attending The Farm’s Ecovillage Design Practicum… and your message was one of the highlights of the program for me personally. I am an associate member and resident at Whole Village Ecovillage in Ontario, Canada (www.wholevillage.org).

    I continue to be inspired as I reflect now on your challenges for our society… as it aligns very much with the eco-psychology paradigm that I have studied extensively… and I shared your story with Whole Village members last night in a presentation.

    Yesterday I learned that our potential primary funder for an Ontario Sustainable Communities Initiative has rejected our request for a grant. So we will be looking for other sources of financial help to pull off a significant program for outreach and education in ecovillage/sustainable community development in Ontario, with our eye to the rest of Canada as well. And I remember during your talk that one of the things you most enjoy doing is raising money for worthwhile projects. In fact you said that you “love, love, love, love, love giving ‘green’ energy” (haha)

    A couple of questions:
    Are you familiarized with the Ecovillage movement, in terms of the role it plays in what Joanna Macy and David Korten call “the great turning”? And do you support the Ecovillage vision?

    Would you be willing to come to Ontario to do some speaking engagements to help us raise some ‘green’ energy (dollars) for our sustainable communities initiative? I know traveling must not appeal to you, and perhaps you’ve already been out here previously, and I’m quite sure your schedule is hectic, but I felt it was good to try to connect with you.

    if you would like to respond, please feel welcome to contact me at shane@wholevillage.org or shadesofreason@hotmail.com

    Thanks so much for your time and consideration, and for the fantastic work that you do…


    Sustainable Communities Coordinator
    Whole Village

  5. Hello Julia!
    Today I began reading an old copy of “The Legacy of Luna” which I just purchased from my local library. It’s so inspirational and I wanted to thank you for being the activist I never was (but always wanted to be). As a midwestern teenager in the early 80’s, I tried to prevent a neighbor’s tree from being felled (sadly without success) which is the reason why I picked up your book in the first place. Yours is a brave and amazing story and the world really needs more people like you. Keep up the wonderful work – you have a new fan!

  6. Hi Julia

    I saw you in Northampton, MA a few years back and was quite inspired by your activism. We would love to help you spread your message if you would care to share about a half hour with us on our radio show! Please contact me through http://www.veganradio.com – We have an FM broadcast in Northampton, MA and our podcast is listened to all around the world! One of our listeners has been asking for us to interview you as well.

    Derek Goodwin

  7. Hi Julia, i’ve finished reading your book and i found it amazing.
    I’m from Argentina and 18 years old.
    I want to help the enviroment and to make a change, but i don’t know where to go or what to do. If someone can help me i’ll be glad =)

    Good luck Julia, we need more people like you doing RIGHT things for us and for the next generation.

    Bye =)


  8. Hello Julia,

    Greetings from Fayetteville, Arkansas! It would be a great honor to many of us here in “The Natural State” (would that it would be more true and less marketing slogan) if you were to come back for a visit. If you are planning a trip this way, please get in touch!


  9. I love the poem. I agree with you completely, if Jesus were here again, he would be shot on sight . Humans are the only confussed animal on Earth and the only one with the power to fool themselves… The Truth is too hard and boring to handle. We rather “live” with our eyes full of crap blocking the real good stuff.
    Anyway, thanks for been out there.

  10. PS
    Julia you need to have one of those pocket PC handy to write your thoughts…


    Lo mejor que puedes hacer es comenzar por mirar alrededor , estoy seguro que en tu propia comunidad hay problemas que resolver, ese es el mejor sitio para comenzar. Empieza por las siguientes preguntas, Esta el agua y el aire en mi comunidad limpia? En que esta basada la economia de mi comunidad? Follow the money to it’s source. And figure out how it’s driving decisions in your comunity and are those decisions beneficial and sustainable in the long term. I know this sound kind of boring but remmember, that the environmental problems we have today are driven by economic developement, once we learn to to create wealth out of sustainable practices we and future generations will have a better environment.
    Hope I this make sense to you or help you. The bottom line is Look around, think for your self, and question what you see until you are satisfied.



  11. Thank you for the excellent poem wherein you express some of my own thoughts…I saw you in Eugene, Sept.13 & M.Rosenberg. I studied NVC under Marshall. The song “Jenny Wren” by Paul McCartney is my story, also “Golden Earth Girl”. I have a sacred place in Alton Baker Park, Eugene, where I count fish in the sunbeams & eat blackberries. I protect the trees there & carry out trash. We planted a Douglas Fir “Doug” that my son brought home from Kindergarten.
    I just bought your book & am reading it & enjoying it.

  12. Hi Julia,
    Love your poem! I’ve always liked the way you connect with the Divine, and the way you trust your intuition and direct experience of it. I can appreciate your comments about Christianity, and thought I’d share with you some recent reading that expanded my understanding of things.

    One book is “The Gnostic Gospels” by Elaine Pagels. Another is “The Wisdom Jesus” by Cynthia Bourgeault. Both are scholarly women. Both books are about the discovery of other gospels that were circulating up until the 4th century. They have been published only relatively recently, after being discovered in Egypt in 1945. Basically, they were buried in clay jars by desert monks who disobeyed orders to destroy them given in 367 A.D. by a guy named Bishop Athanasius. The establishment that took over Christianity at that time decided certain books and beliefs were the only “correct” ones about Jesus, so they set out to eliminate the others to avoid “confusion.” This is the era that came up with the Nicene Creed, because it couldn’t tolerate diversity of opinion. Remarkably, these actions have narrowed Christianity for over 1,500 years since, and cut if off from dialogue with other faith traditions.

    There is quite an assortment of alternative gospels, and many of them focus more on spiritual principles and direct experience of God than a set of beliefs. They aren’t necessarily consistent, but show quite a diversity of understanding about Jesus’ teachings and life. Some, like the Gospel of Thomas (which was written before the gospels in the Bible), are about inner consciousness and transformation – more like the teachings or principles you find Jesus speaking of in the beatitudes and parables. It’s also about realization of the Divine within us — expanding on Jesus’ saying that “the kingdom of heaven within you.”

    By contrast, western institutionalized Christianity shifted the focus to beliefs “about Jesus” that were necessary in order to become “saved” from a God who somehow couldn’t forgive. There is a more eastern flavor to these other gospels. Some are also much more progressive, not only towards women but also the feminine aspects of the Divine sometimes called Sophia, which means wisdom. The Gospel of Mary Magdalene affirms a woman as Jesus’ most spiritually advanced follower. I think Jesus’ own treatment of women stands apart from the churches’ patriarchal system.

    These books provide an interesting start to imagining what Christianity might have become if it hadn’t been taken over by control freaks. There is a widespread liberal version of Christianity that sees all this, but it tends to be much quieter than the religious right.

  13. Julia,

    This summer you and Seane Corn spoke to a group of folks in Indianapolis. Your words and insight were beautiful and continue to move in me. Toward the end of the discussion, you read a poem you had recently written. If you feel called to do so, please consider posting it to your blog. I would love to read it again (and again). It brought me to tears.

    in peace and love.

  14. Hello Julia,

    I greatly enjoyed your poem and its introduction. I ended up here because I’m interested in Shane Snell’s research on ecovillages, and he wrote a note of appreciation above.
    Your intro brought to mind the remarkable life and ideas of Mary Baker Eddy, an American woman who also loved Jesus’ message. She thought women had at least an equal role in making his vision a reality: loving one another, living simply, and again showing how healing it is to trust more in the Divine. She walked her talk, as the hundred pages of stories from folks who experienced transformations in health and character show in her major work, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” What I loved, when I first came across this book in college, is that she referred to the Divine as Father-Mother; never punishing and always encouraging; the source of healing; and such simple, unconditional Love that no one would be forever left outside of its embrace. Our opportunities to do better never run out, and this makes the clear knowledge and appreciation of our brotherhood and sisterhood inevitable.

    Glad to see Mark Said’s comments above also. I think it’s significant that Mary Magdalene was the first one to see Jesus after he’d overcome the attempt to kill him and his influence. She was a strong and respected leader in that first little band of genuine Christians.

  15. Mary (Sophia) was turned into a whore and she been raped ever since. on this foundation has come to us the destruction of the planet. will Sophia return to the world and save us? yes i believe so. she is here, in you, in me, she is rising up. this is why we have seen this explosion in earth spirituality, gnosticism, mystical christiantiy, and individuals like yourself who have reclaimed their scared divine feminine. you/she/we are alive and well and expanding every day. let us not lament too much on all the darkness and focus on what is right Here in front of our face – this is the only thing we can change. and it is going to require a drastic shift in HOW we live on this planet. we HAVE to stop participating in things that deplete resources and kill life. all of it. we can;t pick and choose. it’s going to be hard, but this is why we came here.

    love ya!

  16. Don’t you like it when someone goes way back in your blog, to something you wrote in the past – perhaps something you’ve forgotten for a while – and finds, well, a “Plump purple black berry” in it?

    I did. I’ve seen this in the e-book of poetry on your website and like it very much. Was happy to find it here too.

    Thank you.

    Peace & Success.


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