Milwaukee Edition
Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print

Letter from Publisher

Have you heard of the “Hundredth Monkey Effect”? It describes the phenomenon of a new behavior or idea spreading rapidly from a small number of social animals to other related groups once a critical mass is reached.

The theory stems from a 30-year research project involving monkeys on the Japanese island of Koshima. In the 1950s, scientists started to feed the monkeys sweet potatoes that they routinely dropped on the ground. The monkeys liked the taste of the new food but didn’t care for the dirt sticking to the vegetable’s skin. According to the story, one young monkey discovered she could solve the problem by washing the potatoes in water. She taught this newfound technique to her mother and others; they adopted the habit and in turn taught it to other monkeys.

The idea continued to spread. The most intriguing part of the story is that once a critical mass of an estimated 100 monkeys was reached, monkeys on other islands adopted the same method, even though there is no evidence that they had any direct contact with the Koshima monkeys. The new knowledge seemed to spread via what Carl G. Jung, the founder of analytical psychology, deemed the “Collective Unconscious.”

As I write this in the wake of the latest horrific attacks in Paris, Beirut, Jerusalem and elsewhere, I remind myself that we intrinsically know that we are all connected, even as fear in all of its manifestations tries to convince us we are separate. It only takes reaching a mental tipping point and acting on it for the uplifted thinking of a relatively modest number of people to change the world.

We cannot afford to be complacent in the face of evil. Good must prevail. As expressed recently by my friend Robyn Wright, life coach and owner of kalyANa organics: “Our peace-loving nature cannot imprison us or incapacitate us in the face of atrocity and genocide. Our collective love must be large enough to protect and defend humanity.” 

For each of us, the place to start is within, being daily mindful of our thoughts, emotions and actions. The individual, collective and universal power of applied love and truth is sufficient to fill hearts with love and compassion so that anything less is unthinkable. The effect multiplies.

As we enter this cherished season of joy and celebration, I pray that the healing love in our hearts goes forth to infiltrate every corner of the globe, shining the light that dispels darkness.

In love, light and peace,

Gabriella Buchnik, Publisher

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Letter from Publisher

For years, scientists and climatologists have been warning that the world will face severe water shortages resulting from a combination of climate change and the irresponsible overuse of precious water.

Letter from Publisher

Today Milwaukee has a diverse, sophisticated palate that includes vegetarian and vegan restaurants and a range of international cuisines that were difficult to find in the area a decade ago.

Letter from Publisher

We may expand and grow by giving, practicing gratitude and forgiveness, taking responsibility for our own lives, creating strong social networks, and having a sense of purpose.

Letter from Publisher

Read this issue to become inspired about reducing plastic waste, walking to improve physical and mental health, and keeping pets healthy and happy through responsible feeding.

Letter from Publisher

Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive. ~Dalai Lama

Letter from Publisher

As Thanksgiving arrives, may we remember to be grateful for all that we have—especially those things that can’t be bought or destroyed.

Letter from Publisher

Whatever our reason for vacationing, travel can open our souls and transform us in unexpected ways.

Letter from Publisher

Inside these pages, readers will find practical reminders that self-care, common-sense eating habits, exercise, positive attitudes and spending time with loved ones are the everyday magical ingredients for defying old age, both mentally and physically.

Letter from Publisher

Getting a cancer diagnosis is certainly a terrifying experience, and the conventional medical route may not hold all the answers.

Letter from Publisher

Recently, I was honored to be interviewed, along with 23 other wellness entrepreneurs, for the Wellness Business Success Secrets online summit; I'm happy to be able to share my perspective with you.

Letter from Publisher

In 2011, when I decided to quit my corporate job and start my own business as the publisher of Natural Awakenings magazine, most of the people in my life thought I was crazy.

Letter from Publisher

Milwaukee has grown into a hub ripe with resources for nonprofits and businesses owned and operated by women.