Guest Columnist #62 - Alien Invasion

Alien Invasion
     "Back to the beginning, back to the womb, if the people refuse then the people are doomed" —Initial State
     Each day we grow farther and farther apart from the Earth, as our relationship with the man made world grows closer and closer and becomes ever more a part of our lives, both mentally and physically. It is a relationship more intimate then the one we hold with the very planet which has shaped our existence through thousands of years of evolution and interaction with what has become, "the other world", the natural world. We are constantly isolating ourselves from the Earth in every possible way, whether it be construction of suburbs where nature is physically eradicated and replaced, or construction of false worlds through television sitcoms and video games, or the attempt conquer and alter the very foundation of nature through genetic engineering. We are so far disconnected from our roots, so far removed that we have become aliens on our own planet.
     Just take a look at the science fiction movies of colonies on Mars where everyone lives trapped inside giant "life support bubbles" where everyone is safe from what they view as the harsh uninhabitable outside world. We have created the same situation on our own planet. What the he]] do you think cities and suburbs are, they are no different then the science fiction Mars colonies. We rely on them just as much to sustain us, and they cut us off from the natural world just as much too. The man made world is simply our life support bubbles. The only difference is that we don't need them, the natural world is not a hostile, uninhabitable environment, which is impossible to live in. Yet through our isolation we have come to believe that this is so. As long as we view our world in this way and live our lives accordingly, we are aliens to our planet. I strongly believe that the lives we live, go very much against the lives we were evolved to live. For the sake of the Earth's continual living, as well as our ability to live truly free lives where we are truly human, we need to come back to a nature based way of living.
     This belief has grown stronger than ever within me while I was hiking the southern half of the Appalachian Trail this fall. I lived in the woods for three months and traveled solely by foot (except for the occasional hitch into a town for food). While I was by no means "living off the land", I still feel like I gained a strong relationship with the natural world, I felt that I was truly a part of it. I came to realize what all we have left behind, and the vast contrast between the natural world and "our world". I've never experienced so much peace, calmness, and absolute freedom as I did during those days on the trail. It is unparalleled to anything that humans have created. Everything in the natural world is in harmony, some way or another everything works out, and the wind keeps rustling the leaves, the birds keep flying and the cicadas keep singing their serenades to the night sky. Show me a modem society that can produce this kind of harmony, that gives you a feeling of complete freedom, that creates that much happiness. I for one have not found anything that comes close to matching this.
     The contrast between the two worlds is unbelievable. I could literally feel the difference as my foot left the dirt and touched the cement, as the shade of the trees gave way to the stagnant air of the sun hitting hot asphalt, where cars noisily rushed to and fro. Of course there is a contrast between the two worlds, the natural world is made of the living, it is a world of life, of flowing streams and warm breezes, of ferns and the worms that live beneath them, enriching the soil. Then there is our world, a lifeless expanse of concrete and plastic, where there is constant chaos, and the air is stagnant, the scenery standardized,
monotonous.
     There wasn't one time while I was hiking that I didn't leave a town completely drained, tensed up, almost sick. I'd always be siked to go into town to restock on food for the week (hiking 15-20 miles a day with 40 pounds on your back creates this unexplainable desire for inhuman amounts of really shitty food) and always leave frustrated, wanting to get back to the peace and calm of the woods. Its just amazing, almost frightening, the effect that entering back into the man made world had on me. Frightening because I and billions of others continue to put ourselves through such miserable existences without realizing it. I know I didn't fully realize what all I had missed by turning my back to the natural world. But what can you expect when we are living in a lifeless world. How can one truly live, living meaning more than simply surviving, when we wrap ourselves into a world where life hardly exists. A world where each building looks more and more alike, where the sound of engines deafens you while its exhaust chokes you, where it is nearly impossible to find inspiration from in the world because everything is standardized, the monotony
laying its dull curtain over the landscape.
     'Me natural world is the antithesis of our world, and no matter how far we try to distance ourselves from it we will always belong to it. It is a place of peace and serenity, of wildness and freedom, a world of inspiration where no two feet of land is the same, it is all unique. Well I'm sorry if I just kind of stated the obvious in this essay but I felt compelled to write it so I went ahead and did so. Anyways, screw the land of concrete and corporations, I'm going back to the beginning.
     Feel free to write me, I love getting mail, hearing other people's ideas, criticisms, etc. I'll be out in the wild mountains of Montana this winter trying to stop the Department of livestock from killing the last wild herd of buffalo, ya’ll should come on out, lots of fun. My address is Matt Wallace c/o, Buffalo Field Campaign, PO Box 95 7, West Yellowstone, MT, 59758