The Unedited CoolTribe.com Eco-Hero Interview with Willi Paul, PlanetShifter.com Magazine - by David Metcalfe, The Eyeless Owl
By David Metcalfe, The Eyeless Owl
Willi Paul is the CoolTribe.com Director of Sustainable Business Development for USA/China and Owner of Planetshifter.com Magazine, an online magazine and multi-site client relations network that focuses on teaching sustainability practices through the use of art, mythology, music and Nature exploration. Planetshifer.com is where socially responsible businesses and consumers engage in thought provoking dialogue, take advantage of networking opportunities and meet to learn how to become better stewards for our planet. Planetshifter.com Magazine is a free, non-commercial and searchable innovation and sustainability database - open to anyone who is seeking a better world.
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How has interviewing over 200 people active in sustainability changed the way you look at the movement? How has it changed the way you look at mythology and alchemy?
There is no greater good or global movement per se anymore in my eyes. Spirits are scattered in silly ego pods without much care to the “quadruple bottom line.”What collective glue still exists can be found in isolated organizations like DailyActs.org. A movement requires selflessness, shared vision and implementation. Look at my inbox. I see productization, tripolar politics and splinter groups. I common thread in my work is how we care going to unite and evolve as homo sapiens. Some days I am not sure if I am more interested in saving the human race or the Planet! I movement needs hope.
Do you have hope? For your kids, for the ocean?
My spiritual vision is now focused on how alchemy and mythology can create new channels, themes and unifying myths. New myths you say? Yes. David Metcalfe and I published The Leatherneck Clan and the Black Sea Men: Building a Mythology Generator for the Sustainability Age and this first myth has received record breaking page views at PlanetShifter.com Magazine.
We can read the leaves and swim deep into the Lake. The new alchemic and mythic harmonies are here now for us.
But alas, I am at the end of my patience with the oil spotted man -- yet putting on my new metawings.
Do you think that children are better able to understand and adapt to mythology? Can children write myths, grow myths, teach myths, or do adults need to create them and teach them?
I cannot profess to understand children from the POV of an experienced teacher or sociologist. I nurture the child the in me. I try to ignore the “head in the sanders.” I experience the naive wisdom and love from kids and want to plant ideas for their consideration.
Too often we sell “stories” to adults that have no beginning or end. You know - sales pitches. The myth generator scheme that we developed in the “Leatherneck Clan” myth is set for youth. But I will also be releasing additional myths (and mythic elements) to pave the way.
Kids need new honest and courageous friends. This is one of my goals.
Do you see any examples of folks using the holistic alchemical creative formula (music, art, ambient sound, writing, etc.) you've outlined in Geo's Vision Machine - A novella for video, film and song, W Paul?
I think there is a spirit behind the sound. But we do not need a Frankenstein-lightning and thunder rock stage to elevate our awareness and communicate on new levels. Combining a few of the alchemical elements in mythology (lyrics + voice +drum) can do it! The key is to take the journey and find others to test new experiences with. Then come back and report. This is one key message from Campbell’s work.
Will Open Myth Source move along these lines?
I am not a preacher but a collector of seeds. I want kids to find these elements and test the truths as I have experienced them. Free access and use. Open Myth Source will also be a bank for me as the speed and breadth of my cognitions need this online idea storage.
You seem comfortable with both technology as well as mythology, do you think it's a mistake to think sustainability means ignoring change and moving away from technology?
There is way too much emphasis on profit + technology. To me, it’s all about appropriate technology in a community system. Grey water, roof gardens, less cars, gardens not lawns: Localization.
Technology will not save us, right? Right! Is my hybrid work in alchemy and mythology like a new technology? A good question.
Does a solar panel have a soul?!
I like the fact that the origin of the word "sacrifice" is in a word that means "to make sacred". Do you think that it's the loss of this feeling of sacredness that has lead to the place we are at? How do our acts of sacrifice bring back this feeling?
God, I ditched the Episcopal Church for the corner news stand back when I was five years old. Empty rhetoric, redundant pageantry. Soulless puffery.Too much of today’s “spiritual” ritual is better seen as robbery – hypocritical to say the least.
Self has replaced the act or practice of true sacrifice. Can we close down the Churches and gather instead to sing songs to Nature? Perhaps one can use this equation?
Myth + alchemy = new sacred?
What kind of souvenirs can we take from our environment that will serve as guides/reminders/paths to a more sustainable future? What souvenirs do you hold from your journey?
I love the idea of “emotional tokens!” Penny for your thoughts? Downloaded songs bolster a concert experience; digital photo archives are reminders of important milestones. All potential emotional elements in our alchemic journey or spiritual-human interface.
I have reduced my material collection to a minimum. My focus is to manifest other people’s ideas via PlanetShifter.com interviews. I haven’t fully created the new life space I want to gather any real souvenirs.
Have you seen a progression in Campbell's ideas being used more proactively over the years? Jim Henson's Dark Crystal used Campbell's mythological concepts to tell a new story about reunion with the sacred, outside of Avatar who are the creatives that are closest to Campbell today?
I listen to bands channel sonic + digital alchemy like R.E.M., The Church and Steve Tibbetts. Many songs link-up to build a global message in the CD. But ancient prophecy?! I collaborate for new mythologies.
I love the idea of the Hero, Shaman and the initiation. All three forces are waiting to be re-charged beyond the 50 sec brand sell.
What effect has your study of alchemy and mythology had on your business practices?
I am not sure that I distinguish any differences. My practice is expanding in exciting ways. Interestingly, some of the people that I have interviewed consider themselves “corporate story tellers,” or branding mythologists.
Do you consider yourself Arthur or Merlin, hero or sage, in your journey to sustainability? Do the roles changed over time? In different situations?
I just have to keep pushing myself out of the box I just created. I am working as far into the future as I can, past the green washing and compost scraps in the present sustainability soup. I want to be a hybrid human, with a huge Earth-friendly spiritual engine!
What is the first step an entrepreneur or local business can take to become an EcoHero?
Apply to become a green certified business. This will bring a community of support and many long-term rewards.