Hosted by Susan

What happens when a self-identified non-shopper speaks with a zero waste activist in the midst of a season that celebrates consumption? In a word, magic. You might think this conversation would be peppered with head shaking shame and blame about how we are personally failing via our complicit participation in what Melissa calls the “Mother (Earth) Murder Program.” Turns out it’s this mental confusion that comes from being hooked up to a haste- and waste-generating “machine” that leads to pollution and its negative impact on nature, which our bodies are part of. Our bodies are sending us distress signals about the context that has us rushing around and doing harm. Melissa invites us to consider: How can we learn to listen to our body, and tap into the power of refusal? Can we hear our body’s truth more loudly than the falsehoods of a society predicated on oppression that can only survive by dividing us from ourselves, from one another, and from nature? What are some ways to reconnect? How might we turn away from fixating on trying to fix ourselves and instead scrutinize our context and “open our eyes to lies”? These inner shifts lead us to shifts in consciousness, perspective, and context from which we will organically transition, slowly and steadily, to actions with different meaning and impact. And for now, Melissa invites us to light a (paraffin- and synthetic scent-free!) candle on the Solstice to remind us that in the midst of uncertainty, we can light our own way toward liberation. 

Melissa Re is a former model and aerial performer turned public speaker, delivering workshops globally on mind/body and ecological well-being. She is also the founder of Go Zero Waste, helping people one-on-one to cut down on toxins, plastic, and waste within the home. A passionate minimal living advocate with a speciality in streamlining the transition to sustainable living, Melissa believes that going zero waste can not only save time, money, and improve physical health, but can also be liberating and emotionally healing, allowing people to permanently leave haste and waste behind and restore clarity and agency through deepened relationship to self and nature. A lifelong adventurer originally from the Hudson Valley, she also trained in Japan and India as a yoga instructor, in London as a clinical hypnotherapist and stress management specialist, and in Costa Rica and Tuscany as a priestess of ecofeminist goddess spirituality. In addition to her public speaking and zero waste activism, she runs women's circles and seasonal festival ceremonies in the Hudson Valley, helping others further embrace transformation through ritual reconnection to nature.