Inspired living

How to detox your world

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Broadly we can define “toxin” as something that hinders life, vitality, health or wellbeing, meaning toxins are everywhere. Once people start to identify the toxins in their world, it’s like inviting overwhelm and despair for dinner. It’s not pleasant. However, this discomfort is valid, if not even vital for survival. It alerts us that something is threatening our lives.

Over the past year, I have run six Detox Your World workshops at a range of festivals and events, and have collected many people’s ideas, opinions and knowledge and generated some fresh thinking on how to detox our world. It’s worthwhile to share it around, and illustrates how all of us hold part of the solution.

There might be one or more [questions] that might resonate with you, that you can use to make the decisions that detox your world.

Each workshop is based on considering the deeper ways of thinking and living that require us to detox. While taking chlorella tablets and dry skin brushing are great detox aids, they are not resolving the systemic issues that generate the toxicity in the first place.

A Detox Your World workshop divides the world into four realms, namely the physical, environmental, social and inner realms. We recognise that these realms are interwoven systems, all affecting each other. We then brainstorm to identify the toxins that are commonly found in each realm.

There are many.

The next step of the workshop is to consider what alternatives exist to replace these toxins. Then the final step is to generate powerful questions that support us to make changes to our way of life. Fresh ways to incorporate and be open to the solutions that are available and emerging now, and to reduce the toxic burden we face.

Over 100 human brains have mulled over these questions. A wide variety of people have contributed, from bankers to permaculturists, yogis to retailers, mums to hipsters. Many excellent discussions, solutions and some inspiring powerful questions have been generated. New thinking is often palpable. People have been stumped, struggled and applied effort to come to see things from new perspectives, using their intelligences to break out of the conditioning that continues the toxic quagmire. They’ve found fresh eyes to see with. If you would like to see the breadth, depth and scope of what’s been generated, I have posted the outcomes of the workshops on my soundmedicine.com.au blog.

The most transformative aspect of these workshops is the powerful questions. Questions we can use to help us to adopt the alternatives and to be open to emerging solutions. These questions help us to break out of our patterning. There might be one or more that might resonate with you, which you can use to make the decisions that detox your world.

Does this make life more wonderful?

Who does this serve? Does it serve life or destroy it? Is this part of the solution or part of the problem? How can we nurture the bees? Does it serve me or some other force? Does it serve the Earth or some illusionary construct (like a corporation)? Does this (choice) feel really good to me?

Do I really need or want this?

Is this just well marketed to me? Can I co-own it? Is it even necessary? Do we need to do so much? Am I being true to my ancestral instinct or conforming to social norms? Do I need to sit with this before I action it?

What impact is this having?

Will this juice me or zap me? Is this money supporting wholesome and ethical practices? Does my action put me closer or further away from life? What is the end consequence of my actions? What will this be in 20 years from now? How is this affecting my body/the waterways/the air/the soil? What are the real costs of this decision?

Am I living my truth?

What is my truest heart’s desire? How can I be a good role model? How do I define success? What’s a healthy idea of success? Will this thought/action head me in the direction of my core/our communal values? Am I valuing myself? What’s my motivation?

How can I be more inclusive?

How can my/all voice/s be heard? What are the different ways of listening? What is emerging? How can I be present and open to that?

At the end of each workshop, I retold the Tibetan Shambala warrior legend, as told by John Seed and Joanna Macy. It foretells of a time when barbarians rule the world in perpetual war (ie NOW). The barbarians use powerful weapons made by the human mind, and which can be unmade by the human mind. At this time, the Shambala kingdom emerges. The Shambala warriors are not recognisable. They wear no uniforms. They do not come from any specific lineage or land, but wander among the barbarians. Each one trains in the use of weapons that, when used together, can dissolve the barbarians’ mind-made ones. The Shambala weapons are insight of interconnectedness and holding compassion in the heart. Ultimately, these weapons allow us to see there are no good people/bad people, but only choices and relationships that bring consequences we cannot measure or see.

There is no foretold conclusion to the legend. No one knows how things will unfold. With so many systems in flux, the possibilities sit within each one of us. We may well be creating it as we go but, from what I’ve witnessed, the Shambala have great odds.


Sally Mathrick

Naturopath and yoga teacher Sally Mathrick offers health courses, workshops, detox retreats and individual consultations that support fresh thinking and whole health. With her third university degree underway, Sally is passionate about sharing effective, wellness wisdom that makes life more wonderful.