I met Samuel Petit (the third) at a training week in Treasure Beach, Jamaica where he was photographer as well as acroyogi. If you look him up you might find the things wizards, artists, faeries and woodsman speak of. He is a medicine man, circus monkey, yogi, organic gardener, herbalist, butterfly gardener, photographer, dancer, singer, actor, martial artist, builder and, now, he is a land owner. You see, recently Sam purchased a few acres that abuts acres upon acres of vacant land where he is creating a sanctuary called, “The Land”.
The motto of The Land is just “Do Right”. Freedom reigns as long as everyone is kind, generous and helpful to one another, which, he says, is not very difficult because he is surrounded by people who really care about others and work hard to take care of themselves. He believe like is attracting like in this situation and finds himself surrounded by people with similar views and desires. He doesn’t drink and has a variety of challenging exercises he practices regularly. His aim here is to create a community and he has invited people to share this vision of having a microvillage of artists and healers where “people don't have to struggle”.
When I caught up with Sam today he had finished a days work with friends and collaborators creating some new garden beds for the property. Currently, there is a chicken coop and seven houses on the property as well as electric lines that are all underground. His goal is to create at least three more tiny houses and expand the acreage for organic development. The houses that are on the property were created by a Hendrick’s college professor on a grant to test for earthquakes during fracking and are old shelters that have nine foot deep bunkers underneath.
“I never thought anything good would come out of fracking, but he retired and sold the land,” says Petit. “All the old machinery is now in my garage.”
Sam is a tiny house builder for the family company Petite Homes, Inc. Back in September, Tiny House Hunters reached out to Petit to see if it might be feasible to film a segment in Arkansas, where Petit lives.
“Conway is one of the biggest cities in Arkansas and is only fifteen minutes away. So even though it is perfectly peaceful and silent out here on the property, no one will be missing out on anything,” Petit says. “I know so many artists and yogis, healers and some amazing cooks. I want to build a community where everything is in one place. It will be a training space, a shala (Sanskrit for ‘home’), a retreat, a healing place and a place for yoga therapy,” he says. “We’re going to teach yoga here, but not just body postures. I’m interested in learning the ways of shaman. We’re going to focus on exploring the higher consciousness through yoga.”
by Richard Lonski
These days I generally find peace in mountains. The rock and the sweat generated by climbing them. The movement up the rock, the exertion of muscles, the focus of the mind. It is all very centering for me.
When my mind is in the right place, it is my Zen. I am reminded that peace can be found anywhere in nature. Sometimes its best to just sit quietly and be present, to let the calming sounds of wind and water keep you company. This can remind you that you are part of something much bigger.
Furthermore, you can find those moments of absolute silence when the wind and water stop momentarily and you can feel your soul expand into the vastness left behind and become one with it all.
Photo and caption cred: Richard Lonski (c) 2017
Want to learn more about climbing in Missouri?
Mo' Beta can be found at (http://www.mo-beta.com/). The author Jeremy Collins partnered with the Kansas City Climbing Community and proceeds help bolt and anchor replacement in MO as well as development of new areas.
by Diana Piedra
Today was a sunny day in Chicagoland.
We are lucky to have a sunny day filled with such vibrancy in the middle of the Winter season. Of course, the elephant in the room is laughing in his peanuts which have been warmed by ozone depletion. I take a deep sigh into my coffee cup, the steam warming my face, and I begin to wonder how the water protectors in North Dakota are faring today. They have been standing in peace for months against a government takeover of treaty land for the construction of an oil pipeline that will twist its venomous way through the country and rivers for the sake of money and greed. The enemy that has promised to protect the people and the land with liberty and justice for all, clutches their riot gear as they stare into the faces of native elders who are clinging to all they know, all they have left.
I take in a deep breath of java filled joy. I stare out of the window and pray for the safety of our bravest demographics. Heroes that may seem unlikely but heroes nonetheless. Our Mexican American friends who mow our lawns, pick our berries, attend school with our children, pray to the same God, and have dreams of college and beyond. Dreams. My eyes close. Deep sigh.
I think of the refugees from the African Congo, Syria, and Somalia- their pictures have been posted and shared more times than I can count. Their blood soaked clothes, their emaciated bodies and longing eyes flash in my mind. Yet somehow desensitization has permeated the global consciousness and I wonder when we will feel again?
I wonder when our children, who have been polarized by propaganda and partisan poison, will start to remember that everyone loves hop scotch and hugs. And that skin color makes someone special and different and that is beautiful. Our beauty is in our differences and we all want the same thing, to be accepted, happy, and loved.
The sound of the squeaky school bus brakes interrupts my morning sit. The silence is now the sound of children laughing and talking. I rush to the window to see my daughter run up the black corrugated steps, her ponytail and pink coat disappear as the doors close.
"Hey! Where's my kiss?" I say aloud.
Heading back to the computer I am overcome with emotion. It's all so beautiful and so scary at the same time. I look at the list of contributors to the free Peace event I am hosting in our community in a month. We have representatives from the local homeless shelter, World Relief advocates who assist refugees, a congressional candidate with a platform of peace and a fresh young approach, and the local animal shelter. I realize these heroes aren't stopping anytime soon. They aren't even close to giving up and neither am I.
I have always been a very spiritual person. Even at a young age, anytime I would be in a house of worship or in a spiritual setting, I was moved in a very deep way (often brought to tears). I became interested in learning about different religions at a young age and naturally found my way to teaching yoga (at 20 years old). I had a heart felt desire to connect with Source and found yoga to be my moving prayer. Yoga has been stabilizing, empowering, and nurturing to me all of my adult life. It is the most important thing I do. Feel feee to join me at Abhyaasa yoga in downtown Naperville on Sundays to practice and congregate.