The cowboys and cowgirls of our era are no longer riding horses in the dust, where the long arm of the law doesn’t reach. They’re undertaking the ego trips of entire nations, riding spaceships, leaving a massive trail of debris in a galaxy untouched by humans not so long ago.

The European Space Agency reported in January [2019] that the estimated number of garbage currently floating in the orbit of our planet, exceeds 128 million bits smaller than one centimeter, about 900,000 pieces of between 1–10 cm and around 34,000 of pieces larger than ten centimeters.

Our precious resources are wasted on taking sh*t into space, while we haven’t figured out how we can live in peace, harmony and abundance on this planet. (Which is actually possible). I heard that the latest “brilliant plan” is to take 3D-printers to the moon to try and create cities there for humans to live in. I beg your pardon?

Surely, your parents used to tell you to stay in your room until you’d tidied up, or else you weren’t allowed to go out and play? Surely, you are teaching your kids the same?

So, either our parenting is failing, or we abandon this principle as soon as we think we have “grown up”. How can we allow our species to leave this earth while it’s dying, without cleaning up our mess first and without eliminating the cause of the problems we’re facing on the only habitable, precious, unique and ever giving planet?

Stay in your room

In the past month [March 2019], the phrase ‘white supremacists’ was a much-used term in my adopted home country. It is understandable that a single event of shock and horror evokes a desire to explain and categorise. But our real disease is human supremacism, creating all kinds of subtle and more obvious violence towards other creatures, be it human animals or non-human animals.

The human is an overrated mammal, one that screams the loudest for its own survival and the one that makes the biggest mess on this earth. The one that has deemed itself intelligent. The one that takes excessively more than it needs. The one that asks the question: “Are other animals conscious?” The one that says, ‘I think, therefore I am’ instead of ‘I feel, therefore I am’. The one that has created a diagnosis of mental illness for people with severe depression yet treats greed as a completely normal quality of character. The human mammal has in fact normalised greed in a system called economic capitalism, which has now pervaded almost the entire world, regardless of countries’ creeds, religions or cultures. It has become the overriding principle of the human expression of life on earth. And space.

We do not seem to have the intelligence to recognise that, long before we came on the scene, everything was freely given. We seem compelled to take, to convert and to turn into money pretty much everything we can lay our hands on. And make a mess in the process. And not clean it up. Even if it means destroying other creatures’ habitats or depriving members of our own species of basic needs such as fresh water or land to grow their food on.

Perhaps it’s time to turn our human rights into human obligations. Such as the obligation to not harm others, be they human animal or non-human animal. The obligation to develop the little valued skill of feeling. All our problems can be traced back to our inability to understand the (human) system of emotion and our inability to tackle destructive emotion, in order to have peace with the fact that everything in this wondrous world is changing and finite, including ourselves.

I am sure that if we all learnt to feel (beyond our own narcissistic emotions and into the principles and wholeness of life itself, expressed through all creatures and phenomena), we would be able to collectively say: STOP. We would stop and first of all fulfill our obligation to finish all war (starting in ourselves and at home), to feed all mouths, to secure clean water and cure or deal with seemingly incurable diseases typical to the human species alone: private ownership, materialistic greed or the false belief that human intelligence is superior to the intelligence of nature. The obligation to clean up our mess before we can leave our room and party.

Sitara Morgenster

first published in Black & White Oman (April 2019)

Your body is yours to do with as you please. Nobody has the right to tell you what you can and cannot do with it. Your body is nobody else’s possession; not your parents’, teachers’, politicians’, employers’, leaders’, country’s, wives’, husbands’ or lovers’ possession. Your body is your temple and your laboratory. It’s your “rental property”, belonging to you from birth to death.

Your body is yours

Your body is occupied by your being-ness, only to be used with your permission, in ways that you consent to. It is your soul’s home and the vehicle of your life. Even when you consent to someone “using” (or perhaps helping) your body, you’re allowed to say no, to stop, or to strictly stay within the agreement that you have made with that person or others. Until you decide to change it. You have the right to walk away from anywhere, anything, anyone, at any moment. If you can. Hopefully you always have a safe place to retreat to. Hopefully you can always return if you change your mind.

Hopefully you have friends who selflessly support you for your own sake while you need inspiration and encouragement or perhaps a temporary shelter.

There will always be people in “power” who will tell you what you can and cannot do with your body. As if they know better. As if they know what’s good for you. They’ll forbid you to play with your genitals for pleasure. They forbid you to show certain body parts to the world. They forbid you to experiment with nature-given chemicals found in certain plants. (At the same time, they’ll allow you to poison yourself with others, such as alcohol or sugar or antidepressants). They may force you to be vaccinated, or to retain a foetus against your will. They may even forbid you to daydream for too long. This is all about controlling you for the sake of their agendas.
The controllers of other people’s bodies either have a country’s law on their side, or history, or some piece of knowledge, or the use of violence, religion, manipulation, or money. This is no justification.

You’re allowed to ignore them and listen to the wise voice of your inner wilderness instead. The younger you start, the better, but it’s never too late. Your instinctual intuition will guide you to know what route to take, what adventures to engage in, what subjects to choose, what purpose to serve. You will find the support of those with your best interest at heart. There is room for trial and error. There is room for mistakes and second chances. Yes, you will need to make informed choices as to not harm yourself or anyone else. 

Those who truly love either you as a person or you as a valued member of humanity will help you with this. They will freely help and encourage you. They will assist in drawing out of you what is true for you to do, to give and to express. They will give you the strength to make your own choices without involving their own interests. They will never judge you or threaten you with punishment.

You may want to enlist the knowledge of a doctor when your body needs healing, but the decision about whether or not to go with that knowledge rests with you. You have known your body your entire life and know it best. What is good for one body is not good for another. Only the body’s owner knows and can decide.

Your body is formed mysteriously through an awe-inspiring creative intelligence we do not know the origin of, then processed and disappeared by that same force, and de-compose to help continue new life. In the meantime, you’re not obliged to adhere to the made-up systems on this globe that you are born amongst. May your intention be to avoid them when needed, though you may not always be able to. Yes, you need to earn some money for food and shelter. But most of all, you need to cherish each moment in all the freedom you can muster and experience the pure joy of existence as a unique expression of the human species. How you do this, is your business and your business alone. You will then share your body (in work, attention, pleasure and service) where it is honoured and appreciated, adding your wonderful gifts to this world, whatever they are.

(c) Sitara Morgenster

Published in Black & White Oman Magazine (August ’19)

Dearest child,

Wherever you are appearing on this earth, you are a wonder.

We don’t know where you came from. Which is not to say we don’t know how babies are made; it means that the ultimate source of breath that gives you life until you draw your last, is a mystery to all of us, even to the wisest of the wise.

As a family, a society, a culture, a religion and even – these days – as an economy, we claim ownership of you as soon as you pop out of your mother’s womb. In most countries, we give you a tax-number straightaway, claiming this is for your benefit. With baby fashion-design, we set out to define and imprint your gender on you. Perhaps more sophisticated than when I was tiny – girl? Pink socks! Boy? Blue socks! – but nevertheless. We look at you with eyes filled with desire of all the things WE are hoping you will fulfill, for us or for yourself, in your lifetime.

Seldom do we look at you as a creature already complete, like a seed containing a tree, imprinted by nature (sourced by God, Allah, or whatever sacred designation you choose to indicate the mysterious divine, ultimate life force by). As Kahlil Gibran put it, you are “the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself”, only for us to nurture, feed, protect and love with open arms, open mind and open heart, while you show us, in your own time, what you have come here to express and gift to the world and others.

Dearest child, forgive us that at this point in time of the history of our species, we expect you to perform in a way already pre-ordained for you. A bit like slavery used to be. We want you to be a productive member of our society. Very, very soon, we will fill your life with things you must do or say and with ways to behave to please or appease others. We will forget to grow you emotionally strong, because most of us ourselves have not been grown emotionally strong and will not remember how to do this, how to live and “teach” with a profound capacity to feel and intuit this existence from the place prior to thinking and knowing, and thereby interact with others (human, animal or plant) and take action for the wellness of nature and the world. In this way we will rob you of your inherent happiness. As a result, you will develop an addictive reliance on other people, or acknowledgment and success, or objects, food, substances or activities, to get happy and okay. You will forget that you are already happy and okay and complete. That your mysterious, wonderous birth was IT, and that anything else in word or deed is simply a bonus, a free gift.

Photo:, Keith Levit

Dearest child, forgive us for interfering with you by teaching you swiftly that your behaviour and conduct must be based on outer authorities, be it parents or teachers or religions or governments or even science, as opposed to your own, unique for you, inborn, internal source of wellness and wisdom.

Like the seed containing the tree.

Nature has plans for you, even if that doesn’t fit the current systems, even if those plans are misunderstood or not economically viable.

Dearest child, there’s no doubt that most parents, extended families, teachers and even community, to the best of their abilities, understanding and experience, love you very much and have your best interest at heart. But for thousands of years, your species has been neglecting its obligation to, collectively, become intelligently active in all aspects of human development wherever on this earth. You will therefore inherit a crisis that will not be solved by more technology or economic growth. The natural world is dying and we are on the verge of human extinction, taking with us species from nature’s cornucopian basket of life. A self-created crisis that will fundamentally confront the minds, perceptions and values of all human beings very soon, if not already. Dearest child, may you find the strength to cling to your wise inherent knowledge, which feeds your love of life and guards you from all the forces of consumerism and culture that are trying to possess your attention; the realisation of free-feeling existence; the most honourable and most profound and most sacred of all teachings, which is already yours.

This is your nature-given birth right.

(Published in Black & White Oman magazine, February 2019)