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ORGANIC BONDING
 

The other night the electric company scheduled a planned power outage in our neighborhood. I remember conversations with the neighbors prior to the blackout.  Some were agitated that their usual conveniences would be unavailable to entertain them. A friend of mine came over during the blackout, and we began a lively discussion about our apparent need for electrical power to pacify us.

For thousands of years, people have prospered from daily face-to-face interaction: laughing, singing, playing, talking, telling stories, being inspired, confiding, and simply being loved. Since the advent of radio, TV, internet, and cell phones -- all of this in only the last 100+ years -- one on one interaction has been gradually and unnaturally substituted by a technological intermediary.  Our tech devices either deliver one way messages to us through streaming entertainment, or have us sequestered behind our screens to interact. Our flourishing connections have grown scarce.  Again, this decline in genuine interaction began in just the past 100 years, (not a long time in human history). The decline in genuine interaction affects both: 1) Communicating effectively and 2) Learning to love deeply.  If you sense an interpersonal gap between your family and friends, this toll may be playing itself out in your circles.

While modernism and postmodernism have both created interfamilial and cultural barriers, its not surprising that some are preparing for a revival in the new millenium, thirsty and ready to rekindle our organic bonds with each other. Many want to go back to living "the old-fashion way," and it's understandable.  Below are some ideas to begin as "new-old" traditions. Try a few with family or friends, and let the endorphines flow, the synapes connect, and your overall well-being flourish, the way it is suppose to!  Life becomes more meaningful when we interact directly with each other. No tech needed -- and... it's all free!


Turn off, and tune in...


SING
Start a music tradition in your home. In the car, after dinner, at bedtime, before class. Pick songs you, your mate, your kids, your parents, or your friends know and love to sing. Sing with existing artists, karaoke, or better yet someone accompanying on piano or guitar. If you get good enough, maybe you might want to join a group. Renowned choral conductor/publisher Frank Pooler once said, "You are never the same after you've been a part of singing a perfectly tuned chord." There is something symbolic about singing in harmony with others. Most likely it is a model of what we all wish the world would be like: while everyone holds a different note, we strive for beautiful harmony.

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CHARADES
Turn the TV off and play! Charades... an underated organic entertainment.  Actually, they are what good actors lean toward, but with added dialogue. Here are some categories: Personal experiences with your friends/family, movies, television, books, home routines, outdoor activities, animals. Also consider Team Charades creating situational strategies such as school, work place, public places, travel. This interaction helps develop a powerful dimension of physical expression, -- independent from the voice -- and its fun. Another version of this is Pictionary -- drawing a concept to be guessed.

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THE UNGAME
A fun and powerful card game to connect with one another.  "What are the four most important things in your life?" and "What do you think life will be like in 100 years?" Questions go from light-hearted to introspective on personal views. Listeners respond in love and understanding -- without judging/criticizing. Originally a board game, but can be modified using just cards with your own customized / personal rewards. Click on the link below for some creative ideas to use the ungame beyond the board by its creator: Rhea Zakich http://rheazakich.com/wp/?page_id=17

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A WATER OUTING
Something happens when we get off our land, and together get into a not-so-made-for-man's-habitat, such as water.
From swimming to sun bathing, to skipping rocks, or even sailing, negotiating water is therapeutic and healthy, especially when doing it with someone you love. We were birthed out of it; we're made mostly of it; the earth is covered by two-thirds of it.  Bonding takes place in the water! Pick a pool, lake, river, beach, or ocean. The ideas are endless, especially when you bring along food and drink.  Be refreshed with the ones you love.

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STORY TIME
"Whatever we hear or see, it all filters through us and we start to speak it." - Pete Seeger. 

Story telling is an art form. Everyone has a story. Part of the art is knowing: when to tell the story; how to naturally segue into its impromptu delivery; and who to deliver it to. When alone, think through what makes a particular experience amusing or interesting to you. Then, consider how to interpret it for the right people you know you'll be around. When we consider our audience, no matter how close they are, they unwittingly appreciate timing and care you put into the share. Before you know it, the artform will catch on, and those closest to you will soon want to naturally share their story likewise.   Here is one good storytelling order: •Ha ha, •Ah-ha, •Ahhh, •Amen: 1st) Ha ha! - Letting other's guard down through a laugh 2nd) Ah-ha!: Stimulating their intellectual curiosity 3rd) Ah!: Appealing to their emotions 4th) Amen! A moral insight/charge we universally agree on for positive change.

Of course the best stories are the simple ones, from the heart.

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SNUGGLE UP AND READ
This is for those who are intimate, or those with children, wanting to spend quality time with your kids. Turn off your devices, and read allowed a good book together. Take time in the middle to discuss or talk about the story/character motivation or where it is leading. If you choose a book you mutually like, this allows for the imagination to picture what is going on, and puzzle where the story is headed. It can be a more powerful form of escape, because between the reader's delivery and the mutual affection for the story, you rely on each other for a virtual journey that both your minds manufacture. Again, the story should be a mutually appealing subject.

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HIKE/BIKE
Both require the exhilerating use of your own body's strength, carrying you to points of interest and beauty. You and yours together will enjoy the sensation of personal empowerment in negotiating the natural world.  Ensure a safe and fun outing researching trails/routes in advance.  Always do a dry run before taking others.

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PLAY BALL / FRISBEE
Ball /bl/ noun. A spherical object of various sizes, used for airborne play between people. May or may not be inflatable. Playing catch with a baseball, football, or nerf ball is never out of date. Can also be a frisbee or kite to share in the goal of sending an object airborne between people. A simple age old concept with unbelievable bonding properties! Keep equipment in your vehicle.  Impromptu "catch" can happen anywhere...anytime!

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COLLECT YOUR MEMORIES
When on your outings, develop a mutual collection that can be brought back home. My son and I use to collect walking sticks and rocks wherever we went. In Saving Private Ryan, Tom Hanks collected soil samples from his travels in WWII. Pictures for an "outing scrapbook" might be your collection. Make sure it doesn't cost anything, and that it is legal to take with you. Other collection ideas: coins, leaves, bottles, shells, finds with a metal detector. Imagination: thou art loosed!

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MASSAGE
Bonding for family or those you are closest: The human touch is extraordiarily healing. Learning your loved ones stress zones can do wonders for their whole well-being. When we know someone knows what our specific body needs for comfort, the human touch naturally fulfills a beautiful bond.

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MUSEUMS OR TOURS:  Admit it or not, every mind is thirsty to learn something.  Major cities have museums with a wide variety of interest, many with free admission. As well, many public institutions will announce tours of their facilities such as: manufacturing plants, fire departments, city hall, presidential libraries, wildlife parks and more can be found on local websites. Exploring what goes on behind the world we live in helps enrich our understanding of the bigger picture around us. And...understanding together brings us together.


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GROW A GARDEN
Before grocery stores, everyone knew how to grow and keep their own food. This powerful lesson in teaming together lowers people's defenses, particularly if those people choose to rely on working with each other for their main source of food. The satisfaction of raising fresh nutrient filled food (without hormones or pesticides) is not only good for one's body, it brings family and community into closer harmony. From a garden, a family or community can receive all of the necessary vitamins, carbs, and proteins to exist, without the need for buying food from the store.

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INVITE OTHERS TO COOK ALONG
We all need to eat. Why not prepare the food together. Preparing tasty dishes, can be as equally an important bond as eating it.  Naturally, cooking tasks will fall into those who enjoy and excel at those tasks.  A little conversation, wine, and fine music in the background always helps keep a warm ambiance in the kitchen. From prepping, mixing, chopping, seasoning, baking, or setting the table, there is a creative part of the meal for everyone.

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A BACKYARD FIREPIT. (For a porch: a fire kettle )
It's warming; it cooks our food; it feels good; it inspires. And...there is nothing like the smell of wood burning. An outdoor fire with the right wood, can do wonders for those you need to draw close to. Use the fire to prepare meals, have dessert by, tell stories by, confess, sing, or even fall asleep to the soft crackle.

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CAMPING
In the backyard or:  Load the tent, sleeping bags, ice chest of food ...and make memories under fresh tree-lined skies. From fun activities, to outdoor education, everyone's natural senses are stirred. The outdoors and it's beauty have a way of renewing us -- especially with each other. Connect without distractions in a local or national park. The outdoors: the perfect place to see how little materialism we need for happiness.

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DANCE-- fast, slow or in the middle...
Before 3rd party media (Radio, T.V. and internet), people knew how to dance. Some would square dance; ethnic dance; others -- a little light swing; some folks slow dance; still others well.. a prelude! Today almost any kind of dance can be a great source of physical activity releasing the pleasured endorphins with those you love. Play music that you; your friends; your family; or your mate connect with -- on any occasion and let yourselves go!

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MAKE LOVE -- Turn off the lamplight, and make supernatural electricity with your soulmate!  Proven for centuries to empower: relationships; ignite our bodies; align our emotions; and bring joy to the spirit.  Take plenty of time, and fall in love with each other...over and over again.

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AngelRecipient of 8 "Excellence in Media" Angel Awards

 

 

 

 
 
   
   
 
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