Diana Beresford Kroeger ~ How Trees Can Heal Us
Clare: Welcome everyone. Thank you so much for joining us for the second of our Wild Hope for Humanity series. And today is a very special day because I get to introduce somebody who holds one of the greatest threads of what I would call integrated knowledge of the living world: profound science, profound botany, but also held within a deeply spiritual elemental awareness of all that is. This is a, this is a woman who has, she is a warrior woman. She is an Irish woman, a recognized author, medical biochemist and botanist with a unique combination of western scientific knowledge and traditional concepts of the ancient world.
Diana Beresford Kroeger, how would you describe yourself?
Diana: Well, I am a member of a very ancient family in Ireland. And my family is O'Donoghue and they were the kings of Munster. Munster is the Southern, they're called Cúige Muna they're counties of Ireland. It's a huge area encompassing Killarney. And I'm the last child of that family. And we had been the teachers of the great kings of Ireland, the great kings of Europe when, before the birth of Christ. And so I carry a very long pedigree of about 3,500 years' worth of learning.
And when my family were wiped out when I was 11 years old, I was brought into the South of Ireland. And the ancient laws of Ireland are called the Brehon Laws. They're pre-Magna Carta. And I was brought into the South of Ireland and I was taught all of the old cures, the philosophies, in Gaelic they're called them piseoga, the magic charms, the telepathy, the linear thinking of telepathy, all of the Laws of the Trees and the alphabets of the trees. And I was given this knowledge in a three year ward ship. And I took that and then that made my mind very unusual in a way because then I was taken by an uncle, a bachelor uncle who lived alone, and he had a houseful of books. I'm talking thousands and thousands of books. And he and I every day, spent the day after day reading these books in all kinds of languages.
And so I went to the best of schools. I went to the best of universities. I had the best of scholarships. And I understood from the time that I was that 11 year old child that I was carrying a sacred Trust. And I was told at that time by these 80 and 90 year old relatives that I would be the last voice of the ancient Celtic world. I was told there would be no more after me. And that I had to speak to what they called the New World. And the New World is the great world of America. And that at the time that I was speaking the wisdom that I had collected would be needed. And I am very, very conscious of that.
Clare: Gosh. I mean, knowing the smallest bit of your story I'm trying to feel my way into the texture of your upbringing, and the texture of what you carry in your genes, what you carry in your blood. And therefore, what you are a living transmission of.
When you talk about the three year ward ship, if your, so your immediate family were taken from you, and deeply young.
Clare: Were they aware of their lineage? Like how did it come that if they were gone, who was it that held you through this ward ship?
Diana: I think it was the cloth that I was cut from. The genetic cloth that I was cut from. Because now I can look back and I think, what did hold me together? It was solitude. And also as well as solitude it was that annealing of knowledge that I was given and its purpose to be handed out to other people.
I was essentially the messenger. And I as a messenger had to prepare myself. And it was with this extraordinary solitude which I had to bear as a child, it's very difficult for a child to be always alone. And I then greeted nature. I understood nature in a special kind of way. And nature spoke to me. In old Gaelic it's the song of the land. The song of people on talamh (the earth), the ground on talamh that speaks to you. And I was able to do those things.
And in my scientific world I've done some fairly extraordinary things. I've made stroma-free hemoglobin, I've made the hemoglobin that's used for tissue transplanting. I've made the hemoglobin that's also used for the delivery of cancer drugs. So my interest in cancer, my interest in diseases is a real thing because in the lab I've done that.
And so I carried all of the knowledge of that with me and I delivered it into the lab. And I demanded that some of these things be paid attention to. And that's why I had a lot of success in my own experimentation. Because it is the triad of humanity – the mind, the body and the soul - that we deal with. And in the world of today the body is somewhat looked after, but the soul and the mind are going astray. Those things kind of interest me.
Clare: Mm. Just slightly...
Diana: Sorry, the forest is the answer to the mind and the soul.
Clare: Oh, take us there. Take us there.
Diana: Yes. You see, you see, you and I could hold hands and we could walk into the cathedral of a canopy. We could walk into the forest and there is no doubt there is a call of God or a divine person in there. And you and I could walk in and the silence it kisses you, and it encloses you, in a giant grasp of something that is beyond silence. And you know you're in a sacred place.
You could go into a cathedral and the same feeling is there. There's a wall of prayers around you. And it doesn't matter what kind of religion those prayers come from. It doesn't really matter. But when you go into the forest the wall of prayer is the wall of the trees.
Clare: And I spend much of my time these days talking about the forest floor. Talking about the intricacies, the generosity, the unconditionalism, the example that the trees give us. And before I learnt about the forest floor I still felt that the trees are our teachers. Teaching us everything, from patience, to togetherness, to unity, to generosity, to totallness, to letting go, to being complete, to being the home of so many, to providing. I mean they are extraordinary. That was before I understood any of the science whatsoever.
But you and I, I think, have a very similar longing for the world. It's your bio plan to mend the holes in the fabric of creation. To weave us back together. And I feel as you say, yes we're talking the weaving back together of our fractured minds and our dissociated souls. But also our awareness of our indivisibility from nature. And I don't think anybody else out there can talk to this as completely or broadly or multi-dimensionally as you. So take us into the forest floor and take us into the miracle of trees.
Diana: Ok. Well let me take all of the listeners, everybody who is going to listen to this and intends to listen to this. I'm going to take you into the forest to do a forest bathe. To do forest bathing. This can happen in Seattle. It can happen on the west coast. It can happen on the east coast. It can happen in China. It can happen oh most especially in Japan. It can happen in Ireland.
Now, what you do, let us use a rule of thumb. What you do when you go into the forest is you seek out, wherever you are, you seek out the Evergreen. And it would be the Evergreen needled trees. So, they would be probably of the Pine, Pinaceae family. So, you would go in and find these needled trees.
And I'm asking you to walk very slowly around these trees and find the tallest and the best that you can, and lollygag. Just take it easy on yourself. Just maybe be by yourself. Maybe have some friends with you, a husband, some of your family, it doesn't really matter.
You go in, and slow down. You straighten up your shoulders and you hold your head high. And in that form of breathing you'll get breath going into the lower regions of your lungs which is very important to do a cleansing in there. So you breathe in the chemistry from the plants that are the Evergreens around you. And what you will get from those trees you will have alpha and beta pining going into your system.
The alpha and the beta pining are fat soluble chemicals that are aerosols. They float in the air and they are released from the trees at temperatures above 70-degrees. The greater the temperature listing 70, 80, into maybe 90, the more chemistry, the more smell, the more fragrance you will get through your nose and through your mouth. And it dissolves into your body because they are in an aerosol form, a lacto form that can be connected up into the body and latched into your immune system.
And in your immune system there is an immune identifier for this particular chemistry. Another chemical that comes in with it is called limonene. Limonene is an ability to have like wings on a chemical and comes into your body too. So alpha and beta pining will boost your immune system. Will give your immune system a 30 day full boost for a 15 minute walk under these trees.
Diana: You will come out from that area healthier, far, far healthier than when you went in. And if you happen to be a child with some learning problems, learning disorder, an inability or maybe some inability to do math or maybe even to read, what the alpha and beta pining does to you child, what it does is it stabilizes your myelin sheath. And that means it stabilizes your ability to concentrate. And what it does is it's like a very, very, very mild anesthetic of the whole of your entire communication system. And you come out of that area and you have a greater IQ.
Clare: Oh my goodness! Ha-ha.
Clare: And who knows this stuff apart from you? Where is this learned?
Diana: The clinical studies were done in Japan. The ability to run chemistry, organic chemistry into plant physiology and human physiology into quantum mechanics, not too many people have all of those disciplines under their belt. And I do. And if they were to have those things it would be, you know, it would be a no-brainer.
But what you do have is you have in our ordinary world outside of the scientific world you have people like foresters, you have people like farmers, you have ordinary people who go in and they notice there's a change. They notice that there's even a change in their dogs for heaven's sake. But they don't exactly know where the chemistry is. Well I'm pinpointing that today. You know?
Diana: And it's something that is difficult to measure because a lot of fat solubles are difficult to measure. And you need gastro topography. You need very expensive equipment to do this. But it is possible. And it is there and such things are there.
But you know the thing is that's so extraordinary is one tree, in one forest, in any part of the world can pull water out of the soil and the forest floor that you were talking about, the aquafer underneath there, right up the plumbing of the tree, the xylem and the floame, right up to the top of the tree and then in some cases its almost 400 feet, right up, bang up to the top. We do not know how that happens. We do not understand the physics of flow up streams. That means it's going against gravity. That is a huge thing to happen. If any kid, any person, anybody, any scientist out there can understand that and put it together they will get a Nobel Prize lickety split. No scientist understands that.
Clare: Now you have, and I don't know because I haven't heard it, all I've heard is that you are very excited about the relationship between whether it's the aerosols or particulates or whatever it is that trees are missing beyond water vapor and oxygen that can contribute to cloud, was it cloud development? I mean I understand that in terms of respiration, but it was...
Clare: Cloud-seeding, yes, will you talk about that?
Diana: Yeah, I mean this is extraordinary. This is just amazing and this is so important for the west coast of America into California all the way up the line of California. I mean this is just an extraordinary thing.
The tree itself, a little tree or a big tree, and of course if you have a big tree, the more aerosols are produced. And they have alcohol groups. They have O-H, the hydroxyl groups attached onto and onto all of the chemistry and all of the methyl groups attached onto all of the chemistry. The tree just kind of wizzes along and grows. I mean the tree is not an ordinary creature. A tree has got the same kind of DNA that we have. And they produce...
Diana: All of the chemistry that we do as a human. Yeah. The only difference between a tree and us are two bases. Just two baselines on the ladder. That's all. And the baselines...
Clare: Oh my god!
Diana: ...yeah, are darn similar to us. They produce serotonin they produce tryptophol, tryptamine, all the compounds for neural transmission. They have all of that and then some.
And so in a tree, when you consider a tree, you're looking at a tree, you're looking at a life form. And it's a very, very solid life form. So, going into that life form it produces, you know, carbon dioxide, and it produces water vapors and it produces just like we do! I mean it just does the reverse of us. But the tree can do something extraordinary in its ability to grow and in its ability to attract insects and flying creatures and everything. What it does is it produces these kind of aerosols that have really the ability to spin up into the sky and to attract moisture and water vapor out of the sky. And that formality of doing that is with that, it is within particulate systems, it is within you know, the pollen that is produced by a tree is an extraordinary whole world on its own. And the pollen going up into the air actually can cloud-seed too.
And the cloud seeding effect, it means that it actually from a functional point of view it regulates the weather patterns. And on the west coast of America what has happened up to maybe about 400 years ago, you have these Sequoias, the Redwoods, all these fabulous species and the giant, all those giant Redwoods all up and down the coast, and what they did was they pulled in the morning mist. They pulled it in and then they super saturated the mist acting as condenser units taking that mist as potable water down to its roots. And then they used the hydrological cycle bang up through the tree and back down again. And it's the cycle at the top of the tree that causes the tree to replicate. It's that tiny little area, the same in the human body, where a man puts a sperm into the oviduct of a woman, and you need moisture for that. In a tree it's the same thing! I mean it's the same blinking thing. In a tree.
So, here we are thinking we're the kings of the world, looking at a tree and thinking, oh well it's just a tree and it's 2x4. No. Actually, if you were to understand what was going on in the tree, they do the same thing that you do.
So the hydroxyl group is, if you think of a dog and a dog's got a big long floppy tail, it's the same thing going up into the air in a molecular form. The floppy tail attracts moisture vapor and that's what keeps or regulates all of our agriculture. It's what regulates the growth of the tree. The tree is smart enough to look up into the sky and to know there's moisture vapor there. And to use that moisture vapor for its own life, its own life form, its own replication, and its own fertilization. I mean it's a whole package all by itself.
Clare: Wow. So I've been learning a little bit, and we'll hear later in the week from Lynne and Atossa who are talking about the Amazon and the hydrological cycle in the Amazon, and the sort of the heartbeat, the pulsing that comes from the respiration: the rising of the mist, the falling of the rain, and the rising of the mist and the falling of the rain.
Clare: What I hadn't known about are the pollens, now, when I learn about global dimming and the reality that different particulates attract or create different sized water particles around them which in turn create clouds that either reflect light back out which is causing global dimming because they're smaller particulates and they're more reflective clouds. Verses the bigger water molecules or droplets that create softer clouds that the light actually comes through.
So, I'm looking at that and I'm going, oh my god, people are saying if we stop flying basically, there's not enough pollution in the sky, the clouds are going to become more transparent, the light is going to come through and global warming is going to accelerate.
Then we've got colossal forest fires. We've got the fact that the forests all up and down the Rocky Mountains and the west coast of America are dying. And they're gonna burn and they are burning. Which is putting up another blanket of the sort of particulates that cause the cooling. Um, and we're getting rid of the Redwoods, and we're getting rid of the forest that we need. And we're slashing the Amazon and blah, blah, blah, and all this completely nightmarish stuff. In the face of the amount of pollution particulates that we're getting up in the atmosphere, how are the pollens able to do their thing?
Diana: Yeah. Well let me talk about one particular pollution factor first before I hit the pollen.
Um, there is a pollution factor that comes from war. And it comes from the running of engines and so on and so forth. And it's a pollution factor of 2.5 microns. That's very, very small. Because it changes the blood pressure of the human body. It increases the blood pressure by about 9 units in the human body. It's actually very dangerous for people who are aging. And it's very, very bad for people who have asthma and who have breathing problems.
But. The thing is that that particulate, 2.5 microns, has all kinds of metals and heavy metals hitchhiking on it. Pesticides can hitchhike. And all kinds of pesticides, all kinds of things like that can hitchhike on that particular molecule and travel all over the world. So it's going into your lungs, it's going into your breathing system.
But what the trees do, the trees have a unique system of architecture and anatomy on the tree itself. And all the leaves have got kind of little valleys and points and mid-veins and mid-leaves and trunk systems for expressing water so that the tree acts as a comb. Like you know, a comb that you comb your hair with. A brush that you brush your hair with. It combs the atmosphere free of this 2.5 micron because of the electrical charge of the tree, and the electrical charge on the 2.5 micron.
It gets attracted to the tree, lands on the tree, and gets washed into the soil where bacteria flanges eat the blazes out of them.
Clare: Wow! So. Help me understand, just go back to the 2.5 micron. You're saying that is a particular, uh, particulate of what initially?
Diana: It comes from wars. It comes from explosions and wars. It comes from volcanos. It comes from all the explosive engines we have like diesel and gasoline and you know, we run on engines. We run on gasoline. We run on the gas products in the world. That's what we run our systems on. That's our main energy.
And so that kind of explosive situation like your car, I mean it's a combustion engine, that is an explosive combustion engine, will produce these. But the tree actually washes them out of the air. The trees and the forests have done that for all of the millennia.
Clare: So, when, because I've been trying to do research, not doing very well actually so you're the perfect person to talk about it, you know people say, oh well yes trees absorb carbon dioxide but as far as I can make out they actually absorb a colossal amount more different gasses than that. They actually do extraordinary amount of good in cleaning up after us, which again nobody knows. So you're, so this is part of that. But I've got a feeling there's more to it than that.
Diana: Yeah. Well let's go to the other part of what you had said, is that the tree farms the sun. The tree has a unique plainer molecule within the green of the leaf. All trees. All trees everywhere across the whole planet have this genome to produce this plainer molecule called chlorophyll. And chlorophyll has got an extraordinary ability to actually attract the photons from the sun, and change them into quantum energy. The photon goes into an electron. And the electron changes the metal at the center of this plainer molecule like a clock. And it goes tick-tock. When you go tick it's receiving. When it goes tock it goes into the tree. And that's the energy of the world.
The photon reduction is the energy of the world. And it's that energy that allows the tree to pluck carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere in the presence of a little bit of water in the atmosphere. It breaks the carbon into carbon plus oxygen. The oxygen goes bang out into the atmosphere. And that's what we breathe. The trees produce the oxygen that we breathe. But it sucks the carbon for itself.
It keeps the carbon because what it does it joins all the carbon together into all the molecular structure of the anatomy of the tree. It produces wood. It produces all of the unique medicines. It produces all of the unique life forms within the cells, within all of the structure of the wood itself.
The tree has to have carbon. It banks the carbon into its body. And the longer the tree grows, the bigger the body, the better it is. The more it can work. The more efficient it can be at taking the carbon out of the atmosphere.
I mean, this is a grand cycle that is a carbon cycle. It runs the whole planet. That's what we have. That is what's unique on this planet Earth. That is why we're green. That is why we're an extraordinary planet. We're an extraordinary life form even within ourselves. I mean it's just magnificent. And when you look at it you can't deny there's a God. You can't deny there is a Superb Brain who has planned this. The parallel systems of a genome of a leaf of grass is equivalent to a tree, is equivalent to you and me, and indeed is equivalent to Einstein.
Clare: I'm sitting here with my mouth hanging open like, wahaaa!
Diana: If we're talking about Einstein, Einstein was very interested in life. And I am very interested in life also. Of course women are women you know what I mean. So I'm very interested in life. He knew that life came from the sun in a straight line, a straight line vector he called it. But he also knew it travelled in a sine wave. A lot of energy travels in the form of a sine wave. And that's a wiggly wave just like the waves of the ocean.
And he never figured out why in the name of heavens are there two forms of light? One bang down and it's reflective of refractors and the whole blinking thing which we all know through microscopy, sun and light and polarizing light. But the other one comes down and boing-a-boing-a-boing it bounces off things.
Now we know that that light sine wave light of photons lands on all the leaves of the trees. And the trees have, all the great forests have all their leaves angled towards the sun just like a solar plate. And it picks up the dance of light which is dancing on the surface of the leaf in a form called plasmonics. And that light does an extraordinary thing. It has a very short wave length. And it can fire up all the chlorophyll.
That's what our whole life, you and me and all of the people listening to this depends on that action. That's where our food comes from. That's where the planet comes from. That's where all the life forms come from. I mean it's extraordinary. It's really a fabulous world that we have. It's just, it's just brilliant.
Clare: It is.
Diana: And I do get excited about it.
Clare: Well, and it's miraculous. That's the thing. And we don't know. We don't know. And that's why to me it is vital that we get the word out. You know I was sitting at the Bioneers conference 2 days ago and this extraordinary woman was talking about the Great Bear Rainforest in Canada, which is now called the Great Bear Rainforest in Canada, but it used to be called this particular stand of standing timber. You know just this region of trees that were waiting to be cut.
And when I hear the world calling our forests standing timber, the complete absence, not just of any respect for life even whilst we're ignorant about it. You know we're ignorant about the complexities of it. But the radical lack of understanding about the nature of trees. I mean, you know, learning how the different species of trees feed each other in a forest depending on who's photosynthesizing the most, and they swap carbon and they swap nutrients and they, you know. When you really start to get the fragility, the complexity, the intelligence, it's mind blowing! Which I think is why, you know, this new film that you've created, remind me of the name, I'm sitting here now with my head in six different places.
Diana: Call of the Forest, the Forgotten Wisdom of Trees. Yeah.
Clare: Call of the Forests. I think people are longing for this information. Longing for it. Because we're sitting in a deficit, like we're sitting in a gap where the truth is the miracle that's going on in the forests and we're part of that miracle. And so we're acting like there is no miracle, and yet there's a miracle that threads all of these different components together, of which we're part. And we're longing for it.
Diana: I think, calling a forest "timber," you know, a source of timber, is like calling the Sistine Chapel a source of rubble...
Clare: Yeah! Ohh, god.
Diana: Same thing. Or the Mona Lisa. The Mona Lisa's just a piece of canvas. I don't think so. No, behind that there's a whole lot of art. No, no, no, absolutely...the forest is the Mona Lisa for me, it is. I'm very interested in art too, but you're absolutely right. And why I say that the internet has put people into a cell, has put the mind of man into a cell, because the internet trains the system of thinking, trains your mind into a form of thinking that may not be the best for the human family. You need to get away from that screen. You need to get out and to touch things, and be part of the real world. Because we are part of the real world, we need to do that. We have this longing, and there is the nature deficit phenomenon that's there. You take an Orangutan, and stick an Orangutan in a cage and you're not going to get a very happy animal. You take a human being and stick them in the cage, you're not going to have a very happy animal. But the human being will...stick the soul or the mind of somebody into a cage in the form of internet, and you're not going to have a very complete person out of that. So we need to pay attention to some of the things that we're doing mindlessly. We're following the pied piper. We need to pull back a little bit, and examine what is good for us? What is good for our health? What is good for our children? We need to do that I think.
Clare: I've been having some very interesting discussions with people who are futurists, and who are just heralding these technological advancements. I have to be very careful with myself because I get hugely critical. I get hugely judgemental. Whenever I'm judgemental about anything it bites me in the arse five minutes later, and I'm basically told, you know, don't polarise against anything. Just hold awareness. But I'm sitting there, I watch my own life which is almost consistently sitting on screens now. When I first was given TreesSisters one of the main reasons I said no was because I knew it would mean I'd be on social media, and I'd be on the computer, and I didn't want to be. Because it makes me physically ill.
Diana: Yeah, yeah.
Clare: The Internet it's like, well... technology full stop. The reason to me why we are in great danger is because I see the healing of humanity and nature through intimacy with nature. Through intimacy with each other. Through the ability to be fully present to something, to the degree that you can start to receive information through your own beingness from it. We can't...yes we can sit there and hook into the Internet, and we can learn what's on Wikipedia...we can do all of that but it doesn't transform your felt experience of reality in the way that if you can learn to go and sit in a forest, and sit in a forest with enough humility before these beings, I'm still in shock that they have the same DNA as us more or less, that there is an intelligence here that it is so extraordinary we can't get our heads around it. I mean you're getting your head around it, and you're beginning to transmit it to the rest of us. But the humility that we need to adopt, humility, reverence, respect, is the new currency to me, it has to be the new currency to bring us back into relationship with life. It's like get off the computer, go outside, get off the computer, go outside. Go outside and read one of Diana's books. I want to tell you how many she's written here. Including "The Sweetness of a Simple Life", "The Global Forest", "Arboretum Borealis"...
Diana: I have to tell you a story about "The Sweetness of a Simple Life", a very quick one. I was down in Kingston and somebody gave me the books to sign for them, and I said of course I'll sign the book. The book was absolutely filthy, it was totally filthy. I looked at the book, signed it, and I said can you tell me why the book is so filthy. And they said well all the farmer communities all around Kingston are passing the book from mailbox to mailbox to mailbox to mailbox...
Clare: Ohhh, how beautiful...
Diana: And I said, I don't care if it's filthy, you just keep doing that, that's marvellous.
Clare: I'm so glad. I mean I do, I think we are starving for this. Here is what everybody needs to know. One of the things everybody needs to know. Write down somewhere, calloftheforest.ca, as in California- calloftheforest.ca
Now I believe, and you will correct me Diana, but they will find the film there. You will find access to an app. Now tell us about this app, I am fascinated by this.
Diana: Well the app, for instance, the app is keyed into medicine. All the trees of North America, and I'll give you the selections for planting the rare and the common trees from East to West, North to South going in every growing zone of North America. You can grow all the northern trees down into the South, remember that. You can't transplant the Southern trees up into the North. If you look at the app you'll see specifically what I've done.
Now for instance, I'm just giving you a little example. If you have cancers, or if you have viruses in your family. Or if you have children that are sick right now-I'm just throwing out an example of the app- you should plant some Eastern white cedar; that's, Thuja occidentalis, and that goes up into zone maybe four and five, ahh, three, four, five, all the way down the continent. And on the West coast, there's Thuja Plicata- the Western Redwood; the Western red-cedar, out on the other coast. Both those species produce thujaplic acid when the temperatures are in the 80s. This compound in the air, in some senses, I'm just using the word roughly, sterilizes the air for viral components. And your children will be a whole lot healthier.
Clare: So amazing. So you're basically giving us the secrets of trees. You know you're giving us what they naturally do that we don't know that can help us respect them, can help us understand what we need to have around us, can help people understand we have got to stop cutting down our trees. We have got to stop cutting down our trees. It's going to be difficult to get that into the mentality of the loggers, who I refuse to call foresters. But we are...whatever it takes... we are going to have to stop because were losing them so damn fast. Also on this app are 20 videos around how to plant trees.
Diana: Yes, that's right and how to look after them. You know when we look at our forests, I mean we have taken down too much forest, that's all. So the forest we have there...and the Great Bear forest is under threat too for some cutting. And I don't really approve of that. While I have my voice going for the West Coast, keep your hands off the whole of the Great Bear forest-leave it intact. Leave it as one unit, so that maybe the owls and the salmon going out into their forays out into the great ocean and coming back again, maybe they have a chance of replicating too because they also depend on the forest. And the larger species depend on the forest. Who wants to cut that part of that forest down? Leave your paws off that forest! And as a matter of fact, when you're thinking about the Northern areas let the Boreal forest alone! Let it alone, and leave it as a crown of the planet, and leave it as a heritage place for the whole of the planet to keep us all alive. Why don't we think that way? Why do we all have to attend the church of the holy dollar? Where the holy dollar governs our world. No, as a matter of fact it does not. What governs our world is our heart and our life, and the living creatures we have around us. Because if we don't have our friends, and we don't have our family, we don't have very much to live for.
Clare: Yeah, absolutely. So, if there are questions, I know that 85% of the Great Bear forest is now protected, which is a huge, huge triumph for them. And I'm like you, it's like, we need to get to the stage where any old-growth forests, it's just not appropriate. We need new laws. I'm just hoping that everybody understands this isn't just information, this is stuff to act upon. We don't just get to go, "Oh that was really interesting", and then get on and carry on with our lives. It's up to us. It's up to us as TreeSisters, it's up to us as activists, it's up to us as people who can actually get in front of politicians, write stuff, transmit it, to say okay, what can I do? What am I buying that is taking from these forests? How do we start boycotting the companies that are taking from these forests? There are huge actions going on, just get into all of these conservation organisations, and make it part of your life. I am offering a course in the next six weeks Diana, which we're calling the Inner Journey of Awakening, which is our version of a consciousness shift campaign...
Diana: Oh, that's good.
Clare: ... to help move us around the sacred geometry of what we're calling the blueprint of a restorer species. Because my work, the TreeSisters work, is all about helping us shift from a consumer species, to a restorer species. And one of the first things we have to do is realise that our way of life actually is fundamentally abnormal. It may have been normalised. But it is actually abnormal. And so the first step of that is allowing ourselves to have revealed to us a different way of being in relationship with life. A different way of being in relationship with ourselves, and a different way of being in relationship with each other as in, what we are is not it. What we have been taught that we are, and how we've been taught to think, is not it. And so you speak this transmission of a different consciousness because part of your awareness, part of what's been encoded into your DNA, is our indivisibility from the natural world. And so you speak from that place. Which is extraordinary.
Diana: Yeah, and remember that the politicians are not made of the best of people. And in North America they are mostly lawyers. And in China, they are mostly scientists...
Clare: Oh, how interesting.
Diana:... and that's why [inaudible] understand the functioning of nature far better than the Western world. They have the hands up on us.
Clare: Wow. Before we end Diana you wanted to talk about forest and sea scrubbing.
Diana: Ah yes, yes. I am going to be doing a series of workshops up in Hollyhock, which is up on the West coast near Vancouver Island in June. And I am doing some ancient techniques to actually improve your immune system, and to improve all of the main functioning of your body using the sea; using the species from the sea; and then going from there into the forest, to help you to realign your health. And realign ageing, and all of those things in the body. So I'm going to have a lot of fun actually in June.
Prior to that I'm afraid I'm signing another contract for another book with Random House and it's on the Celtic connections. And that's on the ancient wisdom of the Celts. And that'll be out in I think, 2019, in March 2019. And that's all of the ancient thinking and the philosophy around the trees, tied in around the first great alphabet in the Western world. It was based on the alphabet of the forest, the alphabet of the trees. You didn't call the letter A "A", you called it Airn, and Airn in the ancient Celtic word, was the word for the Scot's Pine. And that was a sacred tree, all of them were sacred trees. So there's a whole philosophy that guided people in a kind of a taboo system towards having a richer, better, finer life, with the concept of the Commons-where we share the atmosphere, we share the ground, we share the food, we share the great carbon cycle. All of those things, and the fish in the sea, all of those things were shared in a commonage. And it's a commonage of thinking of sharing between people. So anyway I've put that into a book. Another one.
Clare: What's the book going to be called?
Diana: The working title right now is "Celtic Connections." It's kind of trying to connect the Celtic world, the ancient Celtic world, into our modern world. And using the laws of the Brehon laws... trying to instate them into some of our laws right now to protect nature. Because they had a finer, better protection for the forest 2000 years ago than what they have, than what we have now. Believe it or not.
Clare: Wow, how extraordinary. Well that sounds awesome. It sounds amazing. It sounds right on time. And I want to celebrate it because this is a shifting from the deeply scientific into what feels like the marriage of your elemental DNA, and all of the deeper, deeper knowledge that you've been carrying finally being brought forward, and may be on time. And may it be perfectly received.
Before we close I just want to invite everyone that's here to understand why we're doing these interviews. We're doing these to give you insight, to give you inspiration, to lift you up, to give you hope. But also to help you understand that one of the ways that we can immediately start to do something here is to reallocate funds towards the forests. That we really need to start giving back, giving back, and making that ecological restoration fundamental to our lives. So again please become a TreeSister. Please step in and start giving back. Help these miraculous beings come into being. This is in your power. We can stop taking and start regenerating life through the trees. Just go to billion trees.me, billion trees.me and sign up. To grow your own forest, which you can do for so little, and it makes such a profound difference. And also the Inner Journey of Awakening, this consciousness shift journey that we are taking this is for all of us. This is a way to unleash our life force on behalf of life. It's free, it's for everybody it's starting next week. Again you'll find it at billion trees.me. Please come, please join, please spread the word. Bring your friends along so that you can have a shared journey.
Diana I wanted to just end by inviting you, first of all thanking you so much for your journey, for your miraculous knowledge, for just so much that you hold in your body. Thank you so much for getting it out on books, getting it out into an app, getting it out into a film. I want to put a call out to philanthropists who want to help Diana make her dream come true, which is to create a seed...actually I'll just hand over for you to say.
Diana: Yeah, I would like a global seed bank. We do not have a global seed bank, believe it or not. This is for the medicines. 60% of all of our medicines in the world come from forests. We can actually cure HIV, if we had enough species of trees from Papua New Guinea. We have forests that have got to be saved. And if we super freeze them, and hold them as a cloning specimen, and do a haploid clone is what I would suggest-we could hold the seeds of all the forests in the world on and in and under the same volume as your kitchen table. It is very necessary that we do that. If I can't do it in my lifetime, oh my God please have somebody listen to me and do it in the next lifetime, very, very, very soon. Because we're losing our biodiversity. As my darling friend E.O. Wilson says- we are losing it minute by minute, we can't, we have to stop this. The greatest biodiversity on the planet is the tree, is the forest, the great forests of this planet. Please help me to save them, thank you.
Clare: So if people can, if people want to get in touch to be able to link you with those who might be able to help fund your seed bank, how do they find you Diana?
Diana: I'm afraid they'll have to find me through my agent. And that's Stuart at stuartbernstein.com
Clare: Stuart at stuartbernstein.com and just spell Bernstein..well actually spell all of it for us so that people can write this down.
Diana: S t u a r t Stuart at s t u a r t b e r n s t e i n .com.
Clare: Fabulous. May it be so. May it be so, and the deepest bow to you Diana. Thank you so much for giving your time. None of you know this but Diana is as sick as a dog right now, having picked up a bug in Ireland, so she has been transmitting her genius and her joy to us through a thick veil of snot, which is extraordinary. So Diana thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you so much.
Diana: You're welcome.
Clare: And oh, last thing- I just need to let you know tomorrow's interview is another extraordinary woman; Sister Zeph in Pakistan. Her talk is called The Lioness Rises. We are talking, very similar actually to Diana here, an activist who decided aged 13, having experienced sufficient brutality against women in her country, that she would start a school at 13 years old, to start the re-education of women, to understand that we do not deserve to be treated the way that they are in Pakistan. Her story is extraordinary. She is another complete inspiration, and I wholeheartedly invite you to come and make time to listen to this activist extraordinaire Sister Zeph. So to all of you thank you so much for being with us, and thank you for being part of the billion trees journey, thank you.
Transcript by TreeSisters Heartwood Volunteers Alexa and Michelle
With a special THANK YOU to Diana for help on the Gaelic words!
Photos of Diana Beresford Kroger and her books courtesy of Diana Bereford Kroger and the calloftheforest.caPhoto of Thuja Occidentalis Eastern White Cedar (left side) by J.H. Young
Photo of Thuja plicata Western Cedar (right side) by Jacob Werther