Editor’s Note: The following is a statement by Stephanie Mines, PhD, delivered during COP26 proclaiming Code Red for Health Justice.
I refuse to accept the death sentence of COP26. I alchemize this grief into regenerative action. Mark this moment. It is the moment we move beyond trauma and break through to our birthright of wholeness, agency and collaboration.– Stephanie Mines, PhD
I have spent my entire life preparing for this moment. Alchemizing grief into action has been the story of my life, and that is precisely what this moment calls for. As an embryologist and a neuroscientist, I know that we are biologically programmed for evolution. Despite the abdication of this physiological truth by the so-called leaders of the world who are, as I speak, still dickering over whether or not to outlaw coal production, I continue to have faith in humanity and its resilient potential.
I reference Uncle Angaangaq Angakkorsuaq of Greenland who has been on a lifetime mission to melt the ice in the heart of man. He told us at Climate Change & Consciousness in 2019 that it was too late and no one was coming.
Yes, it is too late and no one is coming. This is the mantra I have lived with as a child from a violent home and here I am fighting for the future of humanity even after decades of it being too late and no one coming to meet the urgency of our climate crisis. So, the truth is that Humanity Rising is all that is left.
I stand with Rebecca Solnit and Osprey Orielle Leaf in arousing a groundswell, a paradise built in hell. What is the strategy? For me, it is a Global Regeneration Corps. It is the physical and mental health of our families and our communities. It is the youth and particularly the Indigenous youth and women who, as we speak, are regenerating their communities with their bare hands. As an Elder I must advocate for them
I know what it means to fight with nothing. That is exactly how I have survived. And that is the wisdom that will stand me, and all other trauma survivors, in good stead as we build this groundswell to meet accelerating climate disruption.
My offering is in the evolution of consciousness and how hidden populations step forward, like the parteras and curanderas of Puerto Rico when Hurricane Maria struck and no one came to help their people. The curanderas and parteras, the traditional healers of the land, like Uncle Angaangaq of the Far North, come forward with their wisdom and tend to those in need as they always have. That is the wisdom that we can and will regenerate.
I devote myself to these voices that have been hidden and strangled, and that are now prepared to voice their truth.
I am committed to a vision of Regenerative Health for a Climate Changing World that is within reach. I have designed a pathway to distribute effective, clinically and time-tested resources broadly, to everyone ready to receive this birthright. This is my response to the failure of COP26; a rededication of myself and my vision for the future of humanity and a thriving world for our children.
I know that our teachers are the young people such as those who are here with us today, Alpha Kargbo and Yusif Koroma of Sierra Leone, who invest every breath in regenerative agriculture, cultural regeneration, and saving their desertified, raped and colonized country from extinction. I advocate for them as I advocate for my own children. They, unlike those inside the halls of the COP, have the courage to get their hands dirty and do the hard work of regeneration, education and outreach to reverse the climate crisis.
In response to the failure of COP26 I invest in educating people to be practical, culturally sensitive Regenerative Health practitioners because the health consequences of the climate crisis may be our greatest threat. We are meant to meet this threat with the innovative intelligence which is innate in our nervous systems. We are, in this very moment, in this gathering, moving beyond trauma. We are, as a collective, breaking through to the wholeness of connection with the wisdom of the earth. We are doing this at the grassroots level, and this is what gives me hope.
I have been told by my own elders that health is wealth. That is why I have educated myself to identify the physiology of resilience. I refuse to accept the death sentence of COP26. I alchemize this grief into regenerative action. Mark this moment. It is the moment we move beyond trauma and break through to our birthright of wholeness, agency and collaboration.