Journal of Organic Psychology and Natural Attraction Ecology (OP/NAE)

Project NatureConnect  Akamai University Institute of Applied Ecopsychology
VOLUME 1,  NUMBER 2011-2012                                                      Dr.  Michael J. Cohen, Editor

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A Remedy for the Economic and Social Woes That Our Prejudice Against Nature Produces

- Course Essay by an Anonymous Participant  
Applied Ecopsychology education, counseling and healing article. 

When I was a child in the park while playing on the see-saw with a friend, as a stupid joke my buddy jumped off his end of the see-saw. That imbalance caused me to land with a hard and painful bump on the rump.  This came to mind today as I read the Project NatureConnect web page about Prejudice Against Nature.  The page is written by Dr. Michael J. Cohen and it reflects the findings he shared in his amazing 1982 book "Prejudice Against Nature," published by Cobblesmith.

I am a great respecter of age and wisdom. I see profound truth in what Cohen brings to life and shares with the world.  He is a facilitator on one of my online Applied Ecopsychology courses and his dancing eyes and love of life and music are what life is about.

Slogans and media aren't important, people are. When I watched the DVD Cohen so graciously sent me, all I know is I started to make sense of so much that has happened to me in my life. It has been an incredible journey so far but suddenly I saw in him what I have always hoped was in me and thought was in me. He had words to explain so much of what I couldn't.

Cohen notes that due to the frightening depth of our prejudice against nature, we have neither addressed nor significantly reduced our unreasonable exploitation of nature as it flows through our mind, body and spirit as well as the environment.  We hold an unwarranted prejudice against nature that is hidden in the psyche of contemporary society.  Because the bias of this prejudice removes nature's powers from the natural balance of our consciousness, like hurtfully unbalancing my childhood see-saw, it unbalances our most important decisions and relationships. This prejudice is responsible for our most challenging economic, social and environmental dilemmas.

The balancing powers of nature are the universal source of personal, social and environmental well-being. Cohen has demonstrated how contemporary society indoctrinates us with a deep prejudice against the balanced and pure way that nature works. This bias painfully frustrates the inherent fulfillment in nature of over 45 of our natural senses. It causes them to want.......and when we want there is never enough.

We have yet to see our conquer-nature attitude as detrimental discrimination, no less remedy it as such. Cohen indicates that Industrial Society is aware enough to be deeply ashamed of the results of its irresponsible prejudice against nature in people and places, just as we are ashamed of the holocaust or the internment of Japanese during World War Two.  That shame puts us in denial of our prejudice so we seldom recognize or address it.

The unabated stress and disorders that we presently suffer directly result from our indoctrination that makes us disconnect our thoughts and feelings from nature. The disconnect separates our senses and sensibilities from their nurturing roots in nature's universal self-correcting ways.  Our dilemmas result because this profound disconnection warps our psyche.

If we don't reverse our prejudice against nature, most of the unsolvable personal, social and environmental problems that we presently endure will intensify.

I am going to keep learning and growing and I hope some day I will have made a difference in this world. A positive difference to encourage new growth in any and all that want to make a difference. Cohen has a playful heart.  Without it he would not have opened as many doors in young people's minds as he has.

Cohen demonstrates that since the creation of our Universe, natural attraction has been the prime source of nature's balanced perfection across the eons.  It is natural attraction that, individually and collectively, holds atoms, mountains and our planet together in equilibrium, along with the solar system and beyond.

As natural attraction energy flows through and around us, it registers in our consciousness as 53 natural senses.  Each sense is a different expression of love. For example, our sense of thirst is our inherent natural attraction/love for water.

We suffer our disturbances because we prejudicially learn to spend over 99 percent of our time, thinking and feeling while disconnected from, and out of tune with, the regenerative ways of natural attraction in natural areas.   In frightening contrast, people who have good experiences in nature benefit from healthy stress-reduction, clear thinking and spiritual enhancement.

I am a nature professional with a passion for healing. Nature does it so well and Cohen's work has helped me make sense of it all.  He notes that we suffer our disturbances because we prejudicially learn to spend over 99 percent of our time, thinking and feeling while disconnected from, and out of tune with, the regenerative ways of natural attraction in natural areas.   In contrast, people who have good experiences in nature benefit from healthy stress-reduction, clear thinking and spiritual enhancement.

Rather than appreciate the power of natural attraction and its vital contribution to personal and global wellness, our prejudice biases us to conquer or exploit natural attraction for money or prestige.  This discrimination addicts us to the belief that today's excessive technologies and economics are the prime requirement for our survival. This nature-disconnected notion is the source of our salaries, it pays us to believe it.  Its side effect is that it produces our unbalanced economics and deteriorates personal, social and environmental well being.

Our shame prevents us from admitting that we continue to practice our stupid prejudice and further deteriorate nature. Instead, we believe nature is dangerous or a "resource." As such it needs to be conquered and exploited. As we do, we push it off the see-saw and all form of life on earth suffer a bump for they are held together as one by natural attraction.

Cohen is the only person I've run across who explains the source of our prejudice as being "Tropicmaking." He describes it on his Homepage: when our ancestors migrated from the tropics into colder climates, nature's seasonal fluctuations replaced the consistent womb-like support we enjoyed in the tropics.  This harsh change for us unbalanced our thinking. It became prejudiced against nature and its fluctuations. In its place, it favored its own creation of an artificial, tropic-imitating, temperature-controlled, agriculturally-fed, food-preserving, technology-medicine, indoor world. In the process, unfortunately, our thinking also created self-aggrandizing stories about its ability to create this artificial world.  As our psyche bonded with the immediate security and sensory fulfillment of the artificial indoor ways it produced, it applauded itself and became unreasonably biased against the fluctuations and diversity of nature that create and sustain the totality of life.

We may not have known at that time that nature's fluctuations and diversity were part of the natural attraction essence of life that supported long-term, whole-life survival in balance.  We do know that now.  However, our deep-seated, nature-disconnected indoctrination, attitudes and behavior have not significantly changed.

Cohen says "Standard and Poor's would give us their lowest rating if it was based on the viability and sanity of our relationship with Mother Earth. Our unseen prejudice against nature addicts us to consume 50 percent more of Earth's whole-life integrity than our planet produces.  Until that unwarranted problem is addressed, most other measures are band-aids."  He says he identified this problem and its sensory solution three decades ago but our prejudice considers the solution to be like an illicit affair."

At Project NatureConnect, Cohen has developed the sensory science of Natural Attraction Ecology as a preventative and remedy for our excessive separation from the natural world.  Its simple educating, counseling and healing with nature process enables anyone to help our mentality continually enjoy building conscious healing bonds with nature's restorative ways, backyard or backcountry. This authentic unification recycles the bigoted pollutants in our mentality and transforms them into balanced ways of thinking, feeling and relating.  The heart of Cohen's organic learning process is found in the accredited online course I just completed, "Psychological Elements of Global Citizenship," and its textbook "The Web of Life Imperative."  As they testify, many others besides myself have found it to be a lifesaver.


Birthing a Remedy for Prejudice Against Nature:
Trust the attraction essence of nature to attract you to what you need to learn and follow

- Journal of an Anonymous Participant

"It is very early in the morning before first light.  I was attracted to the sounds of the  pond water as I woke from sleep.  A cool breeze coming across my bed through the windows, felt as if it were inviting me, calling to me to attend.  Out the door I go, breathing in all that I could of the feel. 

I asked permission to learn and know and felt acceptance as if a bubble of air pressure was all around me.  I thanked nature's essence for this acceptance and trusted that I would learn what I was to learn.

The moonlight shown the path, I followed the attraction of the air, light, weight around me guiding me in the direction I needed to be.  It was as if a radar in me attracted me to a certain direction, while  the other areas around me were null.  Down the path and around the trees, then at the pond but not the pond. Attraction was past the pond, a smell that I was unsure of, but strong.  This smell did not bring fear or flight, it was I need to know or be there feel.  So on I went, then as I passed a flowering vine climbing high into a tree, around the side, I felt as if I need to slow my pace and be quiet.  So I did, a caution, I could hear my heart beat but not fear, excitement maybe, then I stopped, for there was a wild pig in the clearing, giving birth to piglets,  and I watched in peace.  This was where I needed to be. To watch, not disturb, caution to be quiet.  The energy around me was quiet and almost air silent. After a few minutes of watching the process and seeing the care of mother and 4 little pigs,  I thought that this was unusual for 4.  At this point I felt a need to return to the pond, and did, feeling all the life around me and sounds of the night returned around me. 

At this writing I am unsure what the lesson was to be. I am sure it will come to me soon.  I feel the need/ attraction was done for the moment and I was attracted to return to sleep.  I thanked all around me for the journey and sight.  I felt peace and happy.  I returned to bed for sleep.  Upon awakening I write this, and feel the need to share what happened. I learned to trust the attraction essence of nature to attract me to what I need to learn and to follow what I call the feel to where I need to be. I may not always understand what it is that I need to learn but I'm attracted explore what is being taught. I see that I get good feeling from following attractions to knowledge, from the air around me and from sharing my life with nature.

This activity increased the value of the knowledge of my self-worth.  I am part of nature and nature has no garbage, therefore I am valued by nature and myself."


"I work in a system that easily separates me from nature's attraction essence with intense pulls and unreasonable demands in so many directions at once. I go outside and walk in search of the relief and peace that my friends the trees, birds and grasses can share with me. Yet I keep pushing through the pressures because each piece I make part of my attention and decision making will have a huge impact upon the children in my community.

I met the state's mentor for me in the grant that has been given to the school. We had an opportunity to sit outside and learn a little bit about each other. I talked to her about PNC and bringing natural attraction into the school, describing the garden I use for discipline. Her response was, "Hmm. Each child needs a plant. Maybe we can give each child their very own plant." I wasn't expecting her openness. It gives me great pleasure to think that this journey could bring major changes into the school in terms of acknowledging the worthwhile efforts of including the respect of nature into the school programs and curriculum.

I have to believe that putting all the time and effort into this grant will be worthwhile -- that it will strengthen natural attraction awareness instead of diminishing nature...  although right now it feels like an inner authority that is separating my centeredness.  It is hard to see the sun outside and know it will be gone when I next step out the door. But then I remember that the darkness is natural attraction, too. I can sit outside and breathe in the restful dark, listening to the quiet. I thought of the trees around me, existing among their webstrings in joy and pleasure. They refuse to allow wrangling to warp the call of their DNA to live and exist wrapped in nature's healing ways. Take a deep breath... breathe in and out... Nature's purifying power is only a thought away."


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