For some reason my youngest son and I get in conversations - too many that is probably normal about zombies, forthcoming zombie apocalypses, how we would survive, where we would find gas. Much of this is brought on by one of two things...one, the heinous video games he chooses to play or the intrigue of the plethora of Zombie movies that seems to have made it onto our screen in the last five to ten years. (Although we both admit we mute much of the movies and cover our eyes for most of it just so we can see how it ends).
But I digress...back to this zombie apocalypse. The idea for this post has been sitting with me for a while, but it what solidified my intent was a simple yet hilarious jeep tire cover I saw at my local co-op, it read "Zombie Outbreak Response Team."
Hilarious. RIGHT! I made sure to compliment the fellow on the humor, and the jeep.
Unfortunately, I'm here to break the sad news to you all that I fear the Zombie apocalypse is already here. Especially when you consider the variety of definitions.
When we look at it from this perspective there are zombie walking around us all the time.
Politicians turn a blind eye to the wants and needs of the people in this country. The rich feed off the poor. The middle class is getting smaller and smaller. We spend billions of dollars on movies and video games but we can't even feed all our children or make sure they have textbooks. We are turning a blind eye to the quality of food in this country, letting our soils be destroyed by big companies, the deplorable food we consume leads to even more deplorable health problems which makes pharmaceutical companies and plastic surgeons rich because nobody wants to actually DO ANYTHING about their health.
Bad diet = bad health = good drugs all at the highest drug costs and highest health insurance costs in the world.
Am I making my point yet? Let me continue my rant.
Social media is training us to respond like rats in a lab to their notifications, red dots, snapstreaks - I'm sure there are dozens of others I don't know of and don't want to know of. As you look around society you see people addicted to their phones at the dinner table, when they are out with friends, walking down the streets.
We are "completely unresponsive" and "controlled by another person."
As I write this I'm equally dreading and looking forward to the social media share. On the one hand, I feel its a message that needs to get out but at the same time, I wish I could be in a room full of people to share this message not having to cross my fingers, and hope my post matches the "sharing algorithm" of Facebook or Instagram!
One of my favorite artists on this matter is Steve Cutts, one example of his graphic art can be seen below, but you MUST Check out his other work here . It is raw, it is graphic, if you are offended, ask the question WHY.
So why do I say all this. I'm a yogi. I practice radical acceptance. I try to look at life through a lense of love and compassion. Yes, yes, I know. I bring attention to this "zombie" epidemic because many of us don't know how to escape. We remain in the trenches, locked in our homes, glued to our phones, or our televisions. People spend hours locked in a lifestyle - get up, go to work, come home, dinner, go to bed. Insert any variety of tasks at any point in the process.
There are dozens of ways in which we are zombies to our lifestyle. We are letting other people call the shots, sometimes our EGO is the one in charge. It says "I"m bored" so we go out drinking, overindulge on food, listen to music. It all seems so "simple" and yet it brings up the important questions why if I didn't have those things. Could I sit with the quiet, could I let the ego go a little crazy, can I go a whole day without checking my phone - you get the idea...I hope.
So I come back, why do I share this. I share this because I know that the work I do has the power to change people's lives. It continues to change my life. I went on a business trip recently to make arrangements for a Retreat in Ubud, Bali. It was glorious. I had very little access to technology and it literally felt like my crown chakra was blown wide open. When I got home I took my television out of my house. I never listen to music in the car, if I do its sanskrit mantra. When I crave movies I know its because I need something to turn off my brain. When I crave sugar I know its because I am feeling stressed.
Awareness, attention, intention, discomfort... that is where the cure for our "zombie apocalypse" lies.
As a yoga teacher, meditation teacher, mindfulness coach, wellness advocate, I have been through the trenches. I have come to terms with the triggers that set my fear based alarms off. I have learned to BREATHE. It is in our breathe when we use the entirety of our brain to think, act, speak, and behave logically and mindfully.
I offer you this as an alternative, and invite you to join me in a workshop, a yoga class, or perhaps a week long retreat. It is here you can learn, experience, and begin to incorporate transformational change into your life.
After all, no one wants to be a zombie, I'd rather use my brain than eat one.
Namaste and thanks for reading.