Hi, my name is Magenta. I call myself an Imagination Healer to describe what I do. Image, magic and imagination all come from the same root, -magh, which means to make and be able. I’ve been an event producer, community organizer and political arts activist for 15 years. My portfolio is on my website: http://imaginationhealer.com.
I grew up on a farm in Montana, and by way of sundry misadventures find myself at the helm of a global organization for transforming consciousness toward right relation with ecology and spirit.
I am currently the executive director of the Evolver Network (TEN), the in-person community of Evolver. We have 60 local groups around the world, called Evolver Spores. We work on a civic scale to share the practices that cultivate healthy society in balance with bioregional ecosystems. Each solstice and equinox we host a theme and produce events and media around it to synchronize community wisdom about the theme, in partnership with other organizations and companies. It’s essentially a global mass media and action campaign. Together with Reality Sandwich and Evolver.net, it’s a powerful cultural distribution network. You can learn more about TEN and how to get involved on our website: http://evolvernetwork.org
“Ten Principles of TEN” 1. Educate Minds 2. Build Community 3. Restore the Environment 4. Promote Permaculture 5. Celebrate Art & Creativity 6. Advocate Social Justice 7. Highlight Holistic Healing 8. Design Better Systems 9. Transform Economy 10. Dream Big
It’s a huge honor to work with the global network of Sporeganizers. I sometimes describe them as team genius telepath. In 2014 we revamped our whole organizing model, and will be relaunching the network this spring. For the past three years I’ve been designing a set of sustainable business models for the Evolver Spores, as part of a prayer for right livelihood for myself and my Earth family.
My first exposure to Evolver was at a Spore on shamanism, in San Francisco in 2009. I had been working a lot with psychedelic mushrooms, so I thought I would go learn more the traditions associated with them. I was immediately pitched into a 5-year initiation of working through what I needed to to be able to hold the role I’m in now with Evolver.
My whole life I’ve been open to “other realms” or “extrasensory” perception, and through psychedelic community I’ve begun to find how to describe my everyday experience and share it with others. Evolver is where I can bring together my nature as a seer, my ferocious intellect, and my background in political arts organizing.
I was a classical pianist from age 12 to 24, until I realized millions of other people play dead white guys’ music, and my creativity would better be used practicing visual art. After a botched attempt to go to art school, I ended up in San Francisco to explore underground art and music. My anarchist metalhead boyfriend at the time got me interested in radical politics, and I got involved with a socialist feminist group called Radical Women, that trains women leaders in the movements. There I started a workshop called Art as Propaganda, which taught art skills to activists and got artists involved in activist projects. Each month an artist would teach a technique via a specific movement’s history of arts expression.
In 2008 we had a gathering of the activist graphic design community in the Bay Area, where we discussed doing global graphics action campaigns by agreeing on an issue, creating a few poster designs, and having relationships with printers so we could wheat paste them and so forth. The new quarterly theme strategy we have for the Evolver Network is going to be like some version of that!! We’ll be creating rad flyers and meme graphics, and partnering with organizations and sponsors on the topic, in a global coordinated action and education. Our first theme this year is Plant Medicine, Planet Medicine.
Ultimately I disagreed with Radical Women’s political approach, but the organizing methods I learned there, and the grounding in communities of color and queers, are foundational to my understanding of the fracture points and wounds wrought by global capitalism and the obliteration of Native traditions. I think Reality Sandwich and Evolver the corporation need to do a much better job of being in integrity with how they talk about consciousness, evolution and spirituality. There is a Facebook group the Evolver Network runs called Decolonize Consciousness that I recommend anyone interested in class, race and Indigenous issues join. My criticisms apply to the white psychedelic community as a whole, which tends to be male dominated and overly mental in its written discourse. In its iteration as rave culture via transformational cultures, it also tends to present as a commercialized container for spiritual exploration, without providing seekers the grounding in connection with nature, stewardship, and intergenerational wisdom that comes with an integrated medicine community traditionally.
I also used to help curate a magazine for female and trans-identified radical political artists, called Aorta. One of the hottest things I’ve ever seen is the brilliant queer ladies from that project standing around the magazine spread all over the floor, laying it out together. I love art. It’s such a beautiful language and way to transmit and share awareness. (Here’s a tumblr of visionary art I manage: http://artandspirituality.tumblr.com/ )
For a couple years I worked for an independent clothing and event production company called Medium Reality. We made mens clothes entirely out of recycled materials, and produced local maker events that showcased theater performers and clothing designers. The performances were usually about the clothing industry and freedom. I learned so much from that job about the textile industry. It was a window for me to understand global industrial production across the board - how labor issues, environmental impact, laws, and marketing or consumer culture fit together. And I met many small business owners who were crafting a bigger and bigger niche for local handmade goods, whether that was clothes, food or even alternative currencies.
Part of the leadership training Evolver Network is offering this year includes how to create local cooperatives and other sustainable business models. By connecting activism, transformational culture, and social entrepreneurship we can provide on-ramps to sustainable lifestyles and off-ramps from extractive industries.
My work with the clothing company brought me to my first transformational festival. After Radical Women I ping ponged to the other end of the spectrum and started attending festies, where people were creating a culture of love and celebration. I became the local San Francisco Evolver Spore director because I noticed many folks in the visionary community who had amazing ideas for healing centers and other transformative businesses, but lacked the business background to make them happen. Rather than everyone backtracking and inventing the wheel on their own, I thought it would be helpful to get them all together to collaborate and share skills. I partnered with Evolver to do that, and here I am. It took time to figure out the right niche in SF, since on any given night there are 300 events that could be Evolver events. I designed a festival called Evolver Faire that can cross-pollinate all of Evolver’s subject areas, with the help of Torie Beedle, an ex-marine. It includes a community think tank called HiveMind. Stay tuned for podcasts of the panel discussions we’ve hosted there. Other Spore Cities are replicating the event as well.
I like making parties :). I think we should have a Party Party on the ballot. I've basically been producing art parties since I was 20, of increasing scale and impact.
As part of figuring out the focus for Evolver Bay Area, I also spent two years designing an online video series to spread the practices Evolver represents: the content, business model, and tech design. We’re fundraising now to get the basic new Spores infrastructure up and running, but I suspect we’ll begin doing Evolver Network newscasts within the year. We have about six local organizers around the world who have offered to be anchors.
Here are a couple images from my sketchbook for the video series.
I feel like I've been getting a real-world MBA from mushrooms and Ayahuasca. I've been developing what I call collective marketing, and I believe that's going to be a key aspect of the transformational business community in the coming years. I've made business models for Evolver Network as a whole, Evolver Faire, an Evolver Lounge that will travel to festivals, and a leadership training program for the local Spores and our allies. In the process of revamping our organizing model at TEN, we came up with the infrastructure we need to hold us through the next 10 years of what we expect will be rapid, if not hyper-rapid, growth. If you're curious I'm happy to share more of the long-term plan with you. We estimate we will be releasing 2-3 new programs per year as we provide more strength and value to the greater transformational community.
If you want to support the work we are doing as a collective, you can donate online here http://www.evolvernetwork.org/support/, or by check to Evolver Network, P.O. Box 150692, San Rafael, CA 94915. It’s tax deductible. It’s also possible to sponsor specific programs or our quarterly theme.
So.... that's my Evolver brain.
Something interesting to know about me is that I’m synesthetic. I see colors and shapes when I hear music, and I feel written words and images as if they are shapes moving in my mouth and as if my body is moving as their forms. Another way of describing this is that I perceive the world via direct vibration and not the way people tell you you hear with your ears and see with your eyes, etc.
I have experiences of directly communicating with and through light. I’m still learning how to articulate that. I shy away from it because it gets freaky for me…. For example I was recently on my way to NYC and my friend sent me this art installation:
It looks like an NYC magazine opening up into a magenta-colored DMT land. The installation is about synesthesia and the built environment. Here’s me and Ken Jordan, the publisher of Reality Sandwich, inside of it! It had little speakers in it that played bird and water sounds.
I’ve had experiences at festivals and airports where I’ll say or think I’d like to see something specific on the video screens instead of what’s playing, and it will instantly change to that. I’ll sometimes find myself falling into trance states doing geomancy on some other place on the planet. For a few years I intentionally shut all that down so I could just cope with societal reality, but once I started working with Ayahuasca that plant told me she needed me to be as aware and tapped in as I’m capable of. She/it opened me back up so far so fast, all the way to literally planetary consciousness. I was feeling the planetary being as my own body and I couldn’t tell what was me and what was everything going on in this time of massive freakout of biological ecosystems. It sucked. It still sucks to feel what’s going on right now, but all I can do is do what I can about it.
I’d rather be weaving rainbow blankets made of alpaca fur and dyed with plants, and traveling the planet building healing temples. But if I want team global treehouse empire to be able to exist, the first step is making sure we reverse destructive environmental practices ASAP. Permaculture and regenerative living practices are clutch for as many people to glom onto as possible right now, even if it’s just replacing your lawn with edible plants to start. My instruction from Ayahuasca is to use media to share these types of practices as quickly as possible at this time. Related to environment: one of the areas I’m interested in researching is reversing ocean acidification. If you can point me to resources for that, please do. A final note on where I’m coming from… I have studied many esoteric subjects, to the point where I sometimes get called an esoteric encyclopedia. Lately I’ve been nerding out about permaculture finance, but I’ve research topics like neuroscience and artificial intelligence, linguistics, comparative aesthetics (why different cultures make art and what it’s about), 20th century art history, postmodern literary theory, semiotics, philosophy of language and ancient mystical traditions. I consider myself more of an atheist interdimensional scientist than anything, but also an animist. It is really hard for me to work for a group that has so many new age people in it. I cope by listening to techie death metal.
In particular with AI I have studied knowledge representation, which is computer science modeling of how our brains process language. One of the forms of synesthesia I seem to have involves feeling AI algorithms on the internet as if they’re my own body – I can “see” them sort of. I can also see how marketing language moves through people and advertising, literally puppeting our body movements and words. It’s been great learning marketing in the process of working on the new PR guidelines for Evolver Network. I thought I would hate it but it’s useful to understand, for culture jamming but also for effective communication.
Oh! I also want to show you the mood board for the new Evolver Network branding, because it's pretty. We'll be updating our website soon.
It took everything I had to get the systems that Evolver Network needed in place. I’ve basically been working at a laptop by myself for three years straight, living on gift economy and in odd housing situations because it's been my spiritual imperative to design the appropriate structure for TEN. I’m overdue for attending to my physical body. I’m saving up money to do a set of sessions with Anna Stid who is a network chiropractic practicitioner. It’s a type of spinal healing where the person taps your spine at specific resonant points and it sends waves through your spine to realign it to your natural rhythms and work out physical and emotional traumas stored in your body. She also has a set of crystals from John of God that are programmed to be portals to the healing spirits he works with. And she does breathwork and essential oils. I’ve had a few major impact injuries to my head and neck that I’ve never done physical therapy for. My body is super out of alignment and I need some help to work these things out so I can channel clearly again. I’m always transducing the amounts of energy that people run when they’re high, and I haven’t figured out how to keep my body clear so I’m comfortable. I think Anna is someone who can see what I’m working with and help me learn how to stay… harmonized.
While TEN takes up most of my time, I continue to expand my medicine toolbelt. There are three trainings I want to do:
I imagine landing in a living space where I have a backyard and can build a small wooden pyramid to pray and do healing work in. That would help me balance the work I do with TEN. It’s a lot of mental and online communications work, and I need to be able to ground out and work directly with the spirit world on my own terms as well. I have a beautiful collection of visionary art and healing instruments to put in it.
I still do music performance, as an experimental vocalist. I've been listening to indigenous ceremonial vocal music from all over the world, tuning into old melodies and rhythms. Making music is my favorite thing in the world to do. Here’s a song I made with my friend Wobbly (Jon Leidecker). The lyrics are: “We awaken to the ancient braid of ancestors, to weave is to sing, to sing is to heal.”
I painted the cover art (below) – it’s all the animals singing, and a cosmic beetle. Wobbly sometimes does a performance where he collages together samples from 100 different CD’s of animal sounds, into a total otherworldly creaturescape… He plays with Negativland and taught me much about copyright activism. If you’re interested, he made a documentary on the history of sample art and appropriative collage through the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary art: http://rwm.macba.cat/en/variations_tag/
About Reality Sandwich. I look forward to getting to know the writers more and I appreciate the gnostic consciousness here. I also look forward to sharing the grounded perspective of the local Evolver groups and our allies more here. I don’t feel like this website in its current state is evolving consciousness bite by bite. I think it would serve most people here to receive some anti-oppression training. What percentage of contributors to this site are not white? What percentage of contributors to the evolution of consciousness are not white? What does it mean to be a highly literate person who has the free time to write about your psychedelic trips to a primarily white audience? Start there. And possibly reconsider what you are writing about, to whom, and why. Decolonize consciousness. If you want to learn more what I mean by that, TEN has created a Facebook group on the topic: https://www.facebook.com/groups/DecolonizeConsciousness/
Here are some of my personal heroes in the conscious activist space, the cultural thought leaders that I follow: Konda Mason, HUB Oakland. Malika Nair, Growing Together Neighborhood Orchard Project Alixa and Naima of Climbing Poetree
The most marginalized peoples usually have the deepest understanding of how to shift society. To me, that is consciousness.
To some extent, I question the percentage of writing on this site about channeling and aliens and bla bla bla. Yawn, next, planet is still fucked up bro and your neighbors are slaughtering each other. Knock knock, channel me some brotherhood.
Here's a blueprint to set up a walipini greenhouse so you can grow tropical plants in your backyard anywhere, along with where to buy the seeds. Mushrooms will teach you an awful lot about your ecosystem if you listen to and learn from them. I don’t think as many people need to be flying to reconnect with nature.
Alrighty that is all I have to say for now.
Have fun Fora-ing and it’s nice to join this creative dialogue space! Magenta, Imagination Healer
"So please, walk with me in the caverns of God, where your heart speaks jewels and your mind knows peace, because I like it when you hold my hand as you heal your own imagination."