True Passion in Paradise

From a very young age we are taught about passion. We are taught that we all have different unique passions and that we must take time to find our own. However long it may take, the majority of us will eventually pin something down. But what is this passion? Or what is this passion based on, rather? We like to say we base our passions on what we enjoy and what makes us the most happy. But what about it makes us happy? Is it something we are good at? Is it our therapy? Our release? Is it convenient? Does it give us the most acceptance? Most praise? Does it pay well? For most of us, our passions depend on what gives us the most reward; that is what makes us happy. However, we have deviated from the root of our happiness and have managed to convince ourselves and others that we are truly passionate about the hobbies or careers we have erected. This needs to be corrected.

“My passion is music.” “My passion is food.” “My passion is business.” “My passion is art.” These are synthetic passions. We are not actually passionate about these things; we are passionate about their rewards. Whether it be the feeling of accomplishment, being understood, released, accepted, praised, its convenience, money, etc., these things are what make us happy.

But these rewards alone have no true value. At the root of all happiness is love, health, and wellness; that is what we are truly longing for; those are the real rewards. However, in this society, the closest we can get to this is attention, wealth, and stimulation, so those are the indulgent rewards. These rewards will not only get us nowhere, but are actually detrimental. Not only because they will lead us on an everlasting journey of dissatisfaction and ultimate mystery, but it is this indulgence that is the active agent for most of our world’s suffering; this indulgence in a society that supports the industries and their destruction of humans, animals, and our planet.

At the root of all happiness is love, health and wellness; that is what we are truly longing for; those are the real rewards.

Indulgence supports the all-mighty industries—industries that promote slaughter, poison, deception, pollution, and disease, which in turn leads to confusion, addiction, emptiness, jealousy, depression, hatred, and more: our suffering.

It is important to grasp this truth, simply that it is in our best interest to attain love, health, and wellness—our ultimate goal—and all we should be passionate about. We must recognize this and not get distracted.

I use my art to attain happiness. Art does not make me happy because I am good at it, because it’s convenient, because I feel understood, accepted, nor because I am praised. These rewards have no true value on their own, but these rewards are the tools that I use on my journey to happiness. By sharing my skills, my art, be it visual or performing art, I am connecting with others, I am proving myself valuable in their eyes, I am gaining their attention; I am building my platform.

We are all working to build our platform; we are constantly building and building, climbing and climbing to get to the top so that all eyes are on us, but once all eyes are on us, what do we have to say? What do we have to offer? What will move us forward? Most of us don’t have anything! All people have to offer is their beauty, their talent, their humor, their style. These things have no real value and won’t get us anywhere. People will continue to die, animals will continue to die, and the planet will continue to die. This world will continue to suffer. The most you can offer is inspiration for others to be like you, but if that doesn’t move us forward, then what good is that? I am breaking this sorry trend and am using my platform to spread TRUTH.

Whether you recognize it or not, we are suffering: humans, animals, and Planet Earth. No matter if you are religious or spiritual or neither, it is undeniable that this universe is a miraculous reality with such detailed and divine components so beyond any of us. It is undeniable that there is a natural self-sustaining and self-replenishing way of living designed for this planet, and that we, as a species, have constructed a system that deliberately disregards and disrespects it completely. This is the reason we are suffering. We must rediscover the divine potential and lifestyle of this planet and break the system that oppresses us. Our one duty on this planet is to live in harmony with it. We must rediscover this utopia.

What does it mean to live in harmony with Planet Earth? A UN meet on Sustainable Development states that “earth is a living system. It is an indivisible, interdependent and interrelated community comprised of human beings, nature, the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, and the geosphere.” Within this community, we are made up of millions of symbiotic relationships: relationships between living organisms to help benefit one another and keep this planet running. Symbiosis is the mutual giving and taking to help sustain life. Everything is by design, from the placement of our planets to our flowers and bees; everything is in divine order. To live by this order is to live in harmony with the earth. Except we have completely neglected this: “Human activity is altering the dynamics and functioning of the Earth system to a degree never before seen” (Representatives of Bolivia). This quotation continues:

We have exceeded the limits of our system. We have broken harmony with nature. We are living through a series of rising crises that could cause the collapse of the system. It is essential to restore, affirm and guarantee the existence, integrity, interrelation, interaction and regeneration of the Earth system as a whole and of all of its components. (U.N.)

The solution will not be found within this system. We need to change our ways. The first step is to break this system we’ve built.

The biggest threat to the system is the union of its people. In his 1963 “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. explains that “freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” We have been deprived of everything pure and society has replaced it with toxicity. Replacing our home in nature with brick walls and polluted air, replacing our food with murder, disease, and dead corpses, replacing admiration with greed, happiness with stimulation, and health with wealth. We have gone from living simply, healthy, and free to complicated, sickly, and enslaved. We have not evolved. We have descended from the divinity of our past. And it is our responsibility to return back. Recreate our utopia.

Even if you yourself are not slaughtering, deforesting, deceiving, and killing, you are paying others to do it for you. Every item you purchase, consume or support, you are telling the industry to keep supplying.

What does this utopia look like? What does this lifestyle entail and what is the potential of this planet? We must return to where we came from. Hue-mans are tropical creatures, meaning we were designed to live on equatorial land, where we are nourished by the abundant sun, soil, air, plants, and fruits. Where we are not dominating, raping our land, nor torturing animals; where we are cherishing, loving, and caring for our land and animals. Where we are eating only from our land. Where our food is medicinal, free and plentiful! Where we live amongst the most divine, fascinating, and magnificent creations gifted to us by this universe, these being the brilliant stars that embellish the sky, the everlasting forests, hills, valleys, and oceans that embody all hues and embrace all creatures, the exquisite plants and flowers that exhilarate our ambiance, and the enchanting melodies sung by all forms of life. Where we live in a fine balance of mutual support, nourishment, and regeneration. This planet has the potential to be heavenly, where we are living in paradise. This is the key to our happiness.

The truth is, we will not heal our earth and reach our paradise within this generation, not even our next. But there are stages to healing. We are in the Information Age. In this stage, we are connected in a degree never before seen, where knowledge and wisdom are at our fingertips, and we each have opportunity to create and share our voice. Here, our platforms have the potential to reach hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. We are connected! But we are not united. We must unite for this common cause: our existence and livelihood. We must use our platforms to share our wisdom and spread our truth. We must recognize that we are the ones continuing this toxic system and that the power is within us to change. Even if you yourself are not slaughtering, deforesting, deceiving, and killing, you are paying others to do it for you. Every item you purchase, consume, or support, you are telling the industry to keep supplying.

American actor, comedian, and playwright, Woody Harrelson illustrates:

If the company pollutes the environment or uses bad business practices, if you don’t buy their stuff, they will change. If you don’t want food with chemicals or GMOs in it, then don’t buy it. The minute we start taking responsibly and spending our money wisely, every politician, every corporation, and leader around the world is going to know we have woken up. (Harrelson)

In other words: Vote wisely! Stop buying and supporting products that are detrimental to our health, animals, and planet. Stop supporting abuse, disease, and hate. Start demanding change. What you display in your everyday practices that will promote change. It is how you treat others as well as yourself, and how you treat your body as well as the environment. Change comes from finding yourself, discovering your value, and how you apply that respect. Change comes from deciding not to ingest toxins for your release. It comes from how you display your priorities, ideals, and morals, from becoming aware of your purpose and goals here on earth and sticking to them, deciding not to succumb to social pressures and temptations. Change comes from your understanding and empathy for others, your ability to show love instead of hate, admiration instead of greed, valuing health over wealth, and finding true happiness instead of stimulation. Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

The minute we start taking responsibility for our lives, people will begin to see us, people will begin to wake up, and people will start to change. We can all get there, but it will take time. “We must look at time at the magnitude of human evolution” (McGonial). That is, we must use our lifetime to do all that we can to move us forward. No matter at what rate we are moving, as long as we keep moving forward, we will eventually get there; we will eventually reach our paradise. Paradise is the grand reward that I seek, the only reward I am passionate about. Paradise is where we will find our true happiness. The power is simply in the people.

Works Cited

Harrelson, Woodrow. “The Entire World Needs to Hear This.” Youtube. Video. 2016.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovrKGP22L38

King, Martin Luther, Jr. “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” Received by Alabama clergymen,
United States, 16 Apr. 1963, Birmingham, Alabama.

McGonial, Jane. “Gaming Can Make a Better World.” TED Talk. TED Talk, 17 Mar. 2010,
Web. 21 Feb. 2019, Vancouver, Canada,
www.ted.com/talks/jane_mcgonigal_gaming_can_make_a_better_world.

Representatives of Bolivia. “Preliminary Proposal of the Plurinational State of Bolivia for the
United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development.” www.csasisters.org, United Nations,
20 June 2012, Web. 20, March 2019
www.csasisters.org/pdfs/justice/Bolivia%20Rio%20Proposal%20.pdf.

United Nations, Conference on Sustainable Development (2011). Report of the Latin American
and Caribbean Regional Meeting Preparatory to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable
Development, 2011. Retrieved from
https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/content/documents/8076eclacRio+20-Report.pdf

Sumayah Chappelle is a 16-year-old self-taught stylized artist. She currently attends Yellow Springs High School (Yellow Springs, OH) as a junior and hopes to pursue her path not only as an artist, but also as an actress, writer, director, vegan nutritionist, and activist/public figure. One major influence for her work is Austrian painter Gustav Klimt—along with the Art Nouveau and Modern art periods in general. While much of her work is open to interpretation, some central themes rooted in her expressions are society, natural essence, hope, and frustration. Sumayah is a mixed media artist who combines ink, watercolor, marker, paper collage, and more—There are no limits! This is the motto she follows even beyond the canvas.