Wednesday, April 13, 2011

What a Beautiful Tree...OR IS IT???

"Took all the trees, put 'em in a tree museum...
And charged the people a dollar and a half just to see 'em"

What you're looking at to the left is NOT a tree, but rather a giant cell phone tower.  Isn't it pretty?  Now, here's the good news (NOT)... they are planning to put one up right on the other side of our property. Yes, just a few hundred feet from Barnashram, the bastion of simplicity, spirituality, organic, natural anti-"civilization" living, they are planning to build a (get this!) "120 foot tall wireless communications tower - STEALTH MONOFIR DESIGN." (Their words, not mine!!!)

You see, there are only so many objections you can make to technology, and  since President Clinton signed into law the telecomunications act of 1996 (yes 15 years ago), it is illegal to bring up health issues when commenting on cell phone towers.  Of course, in that 15 years, hundreds, if not thousands of studies have been done showing the dangers of EMF and RF emissions with human and environmental health impacts, and hundreds of tumors, cancer clusters, and other miseries perpetrated, but we're not allowed to mention that. So, you're stuck with environmental impact, how they look (thus pretty green cell towers), and mostly, HOW THEY WILL IMPACT PEOPLE FINANCIALLY.  In other words, if we can prove that we will lose money (like we have any to lose), by that monstrosity being here, we might have a case.  (It's ALWAYS about money.  We're just trying to serve God and Mother Earth, but that don't matter in this culture, does it?)

So, I feel like I'm back in the 60's (1-2-3-4....We won't fight your F**KIN' WAR!)

We were sent this "14 Day Opportunity To Comment" on Saturday. We happened to go the mailbox on Sunday, and realized we were screwed.  So, I quickly called the Multnomah Land Use and Transportation Program to call Kevin Cook (503-988-3043 ext. 26782 hint hint) only to find out their offices are closed on Mondays.  I called them twice today, only to be told he was swamped and that I should leave a message, and that he would get back to me within 48 hours.  After the second call, I received a call back from the very nice receptionist promising that he would call me back tomorrow (Thursday). Remember now, we're less than 8 days from the end of the comment period.

Now, the instructions say, "Written comments regarding this application will be accepted if 4:00 pm, April 22nd, 2011"  So, in the meantime, I don't know if calling them or emailing them (  hint hint) will do any good, or if it has to be in writing to:

Kevin Cook
Multnomah County
Land Use and Transporation Program
1600 SE 190th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97233
   (and once again)
503-988-3043 ext. 26782

Case File:  T2-2011-1484

I might also mention that you could call the Site Acquisition Manager
Mr. Noah Grodzin with Cascadia PM  (psst... isn't that a nice GREEN name? Now go to this link  and look at their client list). He can be reached at:

Mr. Noah Grodzin

This whole thing is simply overwhelming.  I have talked to people at who have been wonderful!!! As well as folks who helped defeat a similar tree up near Mt. Hood, also connected to Mr. Grodzin (interesting that they claim to have a 100% success rate...Cascadiapm that is). The problem is they have given me a wealth of information, areas of research (environmental impact, historical, Native American, marshland etc.), and I don't even know where to begin. Others have suggested finding a lawyer to handle it pro-bono, canvassing the neighbors (yeah, me, who can barely walk up to the car), and a few suggestion I would of course NEVER do, like filling nice environmentally green garbage bags full of waste and leaving them in the yard of the owners of the land (who surprisingly DON'T live where the tower is going), or just waiting for them to build it, and then in a giant act of rebellion as Derrick Jensen would suggest, blow it up.  But again, I want to emphasize that I, nor any one on this property would EVER do that or propose it.  My best thought is that if anyone knows where I can find a 250 foot dog to pee on the tree.....

I did call the land owners, by the way, in hopes that they might have a conscience.  They didn't answer, but I did leave a cordial message.  (I do have their number if anyone wants it.)  You see, they tried to sell the land but couldn't, so they're growing christmas trees or something, (including a 120 foot metal one - I don't think you'd even have to plug in any lights that you hung on that tree...they'd just glow!). So, they opted to lease the land.  No one will tell me how much they'll get, but the people near Mt. Hood would have received, and a general average is around $1,500.00 per month for 30 years or something like that.  (Geez, if we made that much, we'd be well off...why didn't we sell out first!?)

So, time is short, and if we've helped you in any way, if you would like to see Barnashrram remain as free from EMF and  RF or whatever rays, for environmental, financial (you won't make donations ?), philosophical, spiritual, organic, or you're just plain fed up with their being NO PLACE where you feel you can get away from the MADNESS that is this 'civilization', THEN PLEASE HELP US!  Many of you I have spent countless hours talking  with, consoling, and yes, occasionally even cajoling into Awareness, (for no charge I might add).  So, maybe you could take a moment to send a letter or postcard to the above address, or make a quick phone call or email, or pray.... (maybe that it gets hit by lightning if it is built).

My other option is the one I have been working on...."Be at peace, and die well".  I guess I can put that off for another 8 days at least.  Oh, one more link if you want it... here is the 14 day comment sheet we got in the mail  (It's a 10 page PDF): 

(Imagine....someone trying to out-buzzkill Buzzkill Baba!!!)

And do try to remember... I love you madly and passionately, even if I sometimes don't seem to act like it.
In Holy Love,


ADDENDUM - A Proposed Letter of Opposition

Many of you have blessed us by writing letters of your own to Mr. Cook of Multnomah County expressing your opposition to the proposed tower.  Others, not sure what to write, have asked us for a letter or some kind of guidelines.  The letter that follows is VERY closely based on the letter I sent. Ideally, you might take some of the salient points, along with any others the occur to you, and write your own letter.  When I say letter, I HAVE confiirmed that any emails are considered letters, so you don't need to 'mail' them in, simply email them.  BUT they should be emailed before 4:00 pm Pacific Time, this coming Thursday. 
With Many Heartfelt Thanks and Deep Love & Gratitude,


Email your letter to:

Kevin Cook
Multnomah County
Land Use and Transporation Program
1600 SE 190th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97233

Re:  Case # T2-2011-1484, location: 10509 NW Cornelius Pass Rd

Dear Mr. Cook,

I'm writing on behalf of the Bhaktivedanta Society, Inc., a 501c3 religious non-profit organization that owns the land immediately adjacent (south) of the above property where an AT&T Cell Tower site has been proposed.  We are opposed to the construction of this cell phone tower.

For more than 20 years the people at Barnashram, the spiritual and farming community residing at that property have sought to create an escape from the myriad pollutants of the city (including the many radio, cell, telephone, gas, billboards, buildings, etc.), and to create a place for others to similarly escape and find a sanctuary from the insanity and stresses of daily life!

While it has become apparently "normal" for people to think they can live in such a polluted atmosphere, and to defend such lifestyles, nearly everyone will admit that they like to escape that atmosphere thick with stress and negativity and retreat to a place which represents the basic tenets of places like Barnashram - Simplicity, Spirituality, & Community.  I certainly do, and the construction of this cell phone tower would certainly have a negative impact on that positive lifestyle and the number of us that find solace there. While we may not be able to legally address health or energy issues with regard to the cell tower, it is obviously this kind of technological device is in direct opposition to the simplicity and purity that they have so lovingly tried to offer us.

While we can't directly say what the cell towers effects are on our living cells, our brains, and systems of the body, there are ever increasing studies both from the U.S. and abroad that show significant negative impact on human physiology as well as the lives and living patterns of non-human species as well - including reproductive and migratory patterns.

Recognizing that there are some who would like better cell phone coverage, I would suggest that it really isn't needed. Anyone who lives in this area can certainly get landline coverage at a fraction of the cost of cell phones. So, it would really only be helping those who are driving.  Cornelius Pass Road has already been dubbed "The Ribbon of Death" for good reason.  It is a treacherous road. The residents of Barnashram have personally had to discover two dead bodies feet from their front yard, numerous accidents through their property line and fences, and road closures in front of their home because of multi-car accidents.  Do you suppose we need MORE people talking and texting illegally on this road? 

And truly, in your hearts, which would you rather have for yourself or your children - a better ability to spend additional time plugged into their cell phones, texting, emailing, twittering, facebooking, under the shade of a giant electric stealth "tree", or sitting amidst real, living trees, healthy trees and eating fresh, organic produce, lovingly planted and harvested, free from as much negative EMF and RF emissions as possible, and the possible negative impact of an out of balance environment where the birds, bees, and other required components of a healthy world, are fully alive and present?

Please don't take this away from us, the many who currently need and appreciate it and those who will seek it out in the future; please don't take it away from yourselves and your children!

I would like to simply add a quote from Albert Einstein, one of the greatest and certainly most loved scientists of the last centuury, who I believe was not speaking only to nuclear devices, but all technology when he said,

"It has become appallingly clear that our technology has surpassed our humanity."

With Hope and with Love,

(Your name obviously)

A friend of Barnashram


  1. Received this in an email at the same time I was writing this:

    Jesse Ventura: Letter to the Ruling Class
    Reposted from:

    April 12, 2011 @ 9:47 pm

    You control our world. You’ve poisoned the air we breathe, contaminated the water we drink, and copyrighted the food we eat. We fight in your wars, die for your causes, and sacrifice our freedoms to protect you. You’ve liquidated our savings, destroyed our middle class, and used our tax dollars to bailout your unending greed. We are slaves to your corporations, zombies to your airwaves, servants to your decadence. You’ve stolen our elections, assassinated our leaders, and abolished our basic rights as human beings. You own our property, shipped away our jobs, and shredded our unions. You’ve profited off of disaster, destabilized our currencies, and raised our cost of living. You’ve monopolized our freedom, stripped away our education, and have almost extinguished our flame. We are hit… we are bleeding… but we ain’t got time to bleed. We will bring the giants to their knees and you will witness our revolution!

  2. Email Response from another friend (Thank you!)

    Try this.

    Imagine that your property and the surrounding area is filed with brilliant white light and state "In the name of the Light, only peaceful, healthy, loving and joyous energies may be in this place. This place is protected in the name of the light." See the light fill the whole place protectively. (I did this once where I was living, and the evil energy was gone that day and said it would never come back.)

    Also, surrender this to God. "Thank you God/Goddess for this experience." It's a strange technique but seems to be effective.

    Also, visualize the telecommunications people leaving and saying to themselves, "This isn't the right place to do this." And if they and the cell tower don't leave, then imagine that for some reason, the equipment will just never work and they won't know why!

    Also, ask your dreams for guidance and advice.

    (So, please feel free to help Barnashram in this way if that calls to you as well! Surround us with your Light and invoke the Light of the Divine to surround us - Aja)

  3. Aja -

    Can you do a survey of people who have attended events/functions at Barnashram of who would be unlikely to attend another event knowing there is a cell tower next to the property?

    That would allow you to not challenge the health aspects, but rather play-up that you have a new-agey, woo-woo clients and their perception means they won't attend and thus it's a financial impact to you?

  4. so they understand money, do they? well, i dandy to guess your property value would decrease with that monsterous cancer causing faux tree thing they want to put up. i also read: "the emission standards imposed by the Federal Communications Commission for cell towers is old and out of step with the rest of the industrialized world. The regulations date back to 1996. And the FCC is not equipped to make such critical health decisions.
    "Compared to emission maximums in the United States, other countries have as much as 1,000 times, and in one case, 10,000 times less allowable levels. NO COUNTRY IN THE INDUSTRIALIZED WORLD ALLOWS ANYWHERE NEAR THE EMISSIONS THAT THE U.S. ALLOWS." writing my email now....

  5. Aja,
    I took a sanskrit 1 class with you 5 years ago, never been to your property. nonetheless, I am so moved by this proposal, I sent this letter today, hope I made it within the deadline:

    Dear Sir,
    I am writing to express my opposition to the proposed AT$T cell phone tower (yes the dollar sign is intentional, after all, isn't this what AT$T really wants?) Case # T2-2011-1484, location: 10509 NW Cornelius Pass Rd.

    My name is David Thomas and I am a Portland resident who lives everyday about one block from a cell phone tower in Southeast portland. I can see the tower from my bedroom window and I wonder how this is effecting me, my wife, my young son and my baby gestating inside my wife. I am educated on the principals of how electromagnetic frequencies can effect living cells and tissues, and I am also aware that the France government has made it illegal for children under 12 to use cell phones because of the health risks associated with brain tumors. While much of the research may not be made public, I know in my heart that the cities are being inundated with electromagnetic and radio frequencies that are having detrimental effects on our population as a whole, especially children. My personal aim is to eventually be able to leave the city and live in a place where cell phone reception does not exist.

    For me, quality of life comes from health and vitality. I live in the Pacific Northwest for the nature, the culture, the people. For me to find respite in nature is essential to my health and well being. The convenience of cell phones and text messaging has little or nothing to do with my quality of life and health. I actually live in conflict knowing that I use a cell phone and text everyday. I do not want to support it, however, it seems that our societal situation has made it virtually a necessary evil.

    The Barnashram located next to the proposed cell phone tower installation is a haven for people to go to improve quality of life and to remember what is important in life. The idea of going there to meditate and renew and be in quietude, all the while, sitting next to an EMF blazing cell phone tower truly breaks my heart. I feel for the land owners, I feel for the entire community who utilize this essential life promoting land and facility.

    I ask of you, kind sir, to find a better solution. Find a different place far away from spiritual and natural retreats to build this tower...better yet, don't build another one at all. Please kind sir, stand up for the people, stand up for what you know is right in your heart and do not allow the power of AT$T to practically destroy this man's land and this community's retreat to keep a high quality of life....I leave you with this question, what if AT$T wanted to build a cell phone tower next to your house?

    Thank you for your deep consideration into your own heart and soul into this matter.
    And thank you in advance for doing everything you can and more to make sure that this cell phone tower does not get built.
    David M Thomas