AMHERST – RETURNING TO MY ROOTS

Amherst, MA. March 20, 2015. Every one always talks about planting seeds and watching them grow. If someone was to tell me that me attending UMASS Amherst back in the early 90s’ was going to change my life forever I never would have believed them. I do recall my graduation ceremony listening to John Updike speech about the “war times’ of our country and the perils that were leading our country down a path of destruction. I even thought about my own tree planting initiative, The Giving Tree if it really had any impact on my college campus and reading Al Gore book, Earth in Balance.

As I reflect thirty years later we still have the same problems. Our industrialized super power nation is even more complex ridden with Congress passing trillion dollars in our war chest coupled with a climate crisis unfathomable to even manage.

Returning back to UMASS Amherst to screen my new film was certainly well appreciated. The introductory speech given by ……led me to believe that my own academic school had taken to root the importance of the message of the film and how that little seed planted 30 years ago had merit in today’s world. I was welcomed for an evening dinner at the Amherst Manor to the likes of the Head of the History Dept, The Communications Department and the Film Department, and my fellow friend and collaborator Chris Kilham who was among the number of luminaries interviewed in the film. The Q&A was fascinating how the students were drawn to the same messages of meditation, consciousness and learning of this new guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who happened to also visit and speak in Amherst in the early 70’s. The part that really hit home for me was seeing firsthand the activism in the students face and the desire to be caretakers and stewards of the planet.