From a ten minute talk that I gave at Mark Schecter’s “Grateful Living Day” in Morro Bay at the Green Lotus Center… 9/12/15… Photo taken by Abe Perlstein…

“Hippies” Evolving through time…
by Bob Banner

Some movements throughout recent time were against the norm, against the established regime. We had the Surrealists, that happened before the hippies, the Beats were before the hippies and we had all sorts of hippies in the sense that some were pranksters, some experimented with shattering the nuclear family, some wrote novels and painted and made music, some experimented with strange drugs, some became political activists, some became researchers, some became pioneers in discovering the edges, discovering what was better, how to become more alive and free. I’m reminded of the Chicago-8 trial where the movement was defined and expressive of the people on trial. Tom Hayden, the intellectual left leader who tried (and still does) to use the system to make changes; Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman were the prankster rebels who fought the system with fun and humor.


All of it was essential ingredients to do what they needed to do at that time. Often was the case that they had no strong historical/ancient lineage, no strong foundation from which to move in. Now we have many traditional influences that touch people’s core. We have engaged Buddhists like Thich Nhat Hanh who has influenced activists who include the sacred and the spiritual. We have the peace and harmony of the East as betrayed by people’s love and interest in yoga, Kirtan,  meditation and artistic festivals like Burning Man and Lucidity festivals. We have such movements as the ManKindProject that can “initiate” boys into men using the “technologies” of indigenous wisdom and knowledge. We now have deep profound appreciation for new spiritualities that cross over all the traditional religions to gain a deeper understanding of health, awakening and well-being for all people.

We’re very lucky to have a plethora of people who are awakening in myriad of ways who wish to share their no longer held firm deep secrets. All the secrets are being released it seems. What a time to be alive!

One major secret is that accumulating stuff doesn’t make us happy and by developing our own inner wisdom toward what we truly are meant to do on this precious planet at this particular time gives us more peace, happiness, spaciousness and less feeling of separation and more connectedness.

The world is changing in its own time just as we are because we are the world. For example, one of the things I’m working on these days is that how can there be anything wrong or bad if everything is being birthed by the same creative force and energy? When I give up my condemnation of the world, or the 1%, or the current singled out terrorists that emerge on the scene from time to time… then perhaps I can give up my own self-condemnation and non-acceptance.

I sense that what’s beyond hippies is what’s beyond labels and/or judgments and to acknowledge who and how we are And When. “When” seems to be an important factor that we have either ignored or simply not been aware of in terms of an evolutionary continuum. And we are at a critical juncture between ego and essence, between judging and acceptance of what is… and hopefully our own lives become way stations for a more elevated landing, as it were.

With more focus on tribes, on health, on midwifery, compassionate communication, and becoming our own leaders, and growing and eating our own food, on understanding how animal agriculture needs to be included in the discussion of climate change… and understanding how our thoughts are manifesters and understanding how we need to discover our gifts of purpose and destiny, which is basically humanity’s recipe for genuine happiness.

As publisher of HopeDance (in print) it seemed to be my innate desire (my passion) to find people on the edges and give them a voice, a platform, to speak after a film screening, or to have a column in the paper.

What were my edges 15 years ago have become popular now so now I’ve moved on to other edges: the inner edges of self acceptance, of alien contact, of channeling, practicing the muscle of love and acceptance, of discovering the consciousness behind the people who have had near-death experiences. I’m intrigued about the incredible and radical changes often time people experience after coming back from a near death experience. It makes me wonder is this what’s happening to the planet? Does the earth need to experience a near death experience before it too shifts consciousness to ways that we possibly can’t even fathom? Or if things get more challenging would we get shaken awake to do what we need to be doing and being?

As for some things to do (that perhaps the younger generation will take on) … after watching the current film Planetary (see trailer above) that featured a number of highly inspirational and deep people and researchers (as well as an eerie and original sound track)… the film encompassed a new depth and a new profound feeling of what we are losing on a global scale (thousands of species are becoming extinct every year)… I found myself being nudged to write down three radical solutions that I want to share with you:

1. A global debt moratorium, so rather than use debt as a way to stop us or to use it as an excuse that we really can’t help out with any kind of planetary changes… it might be able to give us a base where we can start cleaning out globally in a more profound way;

2. A Reverse Peace Corps where ancient wisdom (and indigenous peoples) can spread the planet since they have learned the ways of living to live WITH nature, not against her. Just like the very popular Peace Corps that was initiated by the United States in the mid-60s which was full of idealism, but which was also perhaps was used to open more markets globally for more exploitation;

3. To create loving groups of people who are qualified as well as de-conditioned to walk into hot zones to quell the violence.

The new so-called hippies (or call them whatever they want to be called) need both inner and outer support and be the change they want to see in the world…. as well as changing the world you and I want to see.

For one such group calling themselves THE YES MEN whos pranksterism has been remarkably effective by getting important messages out into the mainstream media. I invite you to come to the film in about an hour… here.. and we can continue the conversation after the film….

Check out other days and time for this film to be presented (I purchased the rights to show it 5 times):

NEXT screening is the 15th of September: