Member Spotlight: Todd Lejnieks

Todd LejnieksWhere do you currently live?

Johor, Malaysia. Just across the border from Singapore.

I like the community I have found here. There is a small, but quickly growing, number of people interested in sustainability and land regeneration projects. Malaysia has a history of colonization and extractive resource pillaging from other countries and corporations. The recent election for Prime Minister saw 70% voter turnout and threw out a corrupt Prime Minister who had been ruling, along with certain Sultans, by selling land and rainforests to the highest bidders. Now, there is hope coming alive.

What are some ways you like to spend your time?

I’m part of the Pachamama Alliance Writers Group and Podcasters Group and also have my own blog and do a fair amount of journaling. I host and produce two podcasts. I am a member of FOLO (Feed Our Loved Ones) Farms, a local organic, sustainable farm. I help with promoting them and spreading their message of “know your farmer, know your food.” I also help with admin support for my partner, Rachelle’s, job as a medical device trainer. I teach English to Korean students and am just starting a camp counselor job at Raffles American School. Recently, I enrolled in Charles Eisenstein’s Living in the Gift online course. It’s phenomenal! I believe Lynne Twist will also be a part of it. I meditate, swim and have a fairly serious podcast addiction.

How did you first connect with Pachamama Alliance?

Rachelle and I did a Soul of Money online course with Lynne while we were living in Petaluma, California in 2016 Lynne talked about her work with The Hunger Project and Pachamama Alliance. All of a sudden, I started seeing Pachamama Alliance everywhere. A Game Changer Intensive invitation popped up on Facebook, and I immediately enrolled. I found out that the Awakening the Dreamer symposium was a prerequisite and the deadline to complete it was THAT NIGHT! I think I finished it a few hours before midnight and it blew my mind! Mostly, I saw how cynical I had been and how I had been carrying the attitude of “That’s just the way it is” with regard to predatory capitalism and environmental devastation. I had lost hope and this work has restored it.

What is a memory or experience with Pachamama Alliance that stands out for you?

Being fortunate to attend the Global Gathering in May 2018. Meeting so many deeply committed and beautiful “Pacha People”, seeing Charles Eisenstein, Brian Swimme, Rev. D, Drew Dellinger, Paul Hawken and of course Lynne, Bill and John. Oh my! All my thought-leading inspirations in one place. As amazing as all that was, the most impactful thing was to sit out in nature and listen to the earth speak to me, saying “I grew you.” I’m not even so sure what that message means, but it somehow sustains me.

What is something you are proud to be doing in service of an environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfilling, socially just human presence on this planet?

Being able to open up the possibility of having Awakening the Dreamer symposiums in Malaysia and Singapore. I’ve facilitated four here and plan many more. Most of the people who have come are already committed to one cause or another, but it’s great to bring them together to see and feel how they are part of a worldwide movement. I am hoping to help train other facilitators and grow Pachamama Alliance in Southeast Asia, as in the United States.

What is something that you would to see change in the world in the next 10 years?

I would like to see the polarity between people and within themselves change. Right vs. Wrong, Us vs. Them and all that nonsense has got to go. Constructive discussion about a proper, useful course of action is great, but identifying ourselves as “better than” or smarter has to be replaced with “inter-being” and becoming more giving and understanding. The most useful approach I have experienced in order to do this is to ask Charles Eisenstein’s question, “What’s it like to be you?” about everyone. Equally, and I think this goes hand in hand with the above, preserve our living Earth in sacred harmony with all life and consciousness. As Brian Swimme says, “We are the universe looking back at itself.” Should we be so quick to insult one another?

Is there anything else that you would like to share?

Listen to Edgetalkers! edgetalkers.com