Gary Cook: The Sound of Music in Plants and Trees. The Vegetable Kingdom Reveals its Sentience!

Interviewed by

Tim Lynch

Gary Cook: The Sound of Music in Plants and Trees. The Vegetable Kingdom Reveals its Sentience!

This cheerful interview is with a very engaging elder and researcher into Aotearoa’s ancient past, as well as forest lore and the unseen and hidden.

I have known Gary near on 20 years and he has shared startling information that unveils to us a secret land that stretches back many thousands of years to when other peoples roamed the seas and visited early New Zealand.

The Vegetable Kingdom is Actually Conscious

Recently I was at Gary’s home in Katikati where he played live music directly from trees, where he was able to connect up to the leaves and the roots, technology - for these trees to ’sing' various ’songs’ that were quite melodic and beautiful. That this new knowingness portends is that trees have a consciousness and that they can feel, see and even share beneath the ground with other trees including in various situations other species of tree.

Tree Blindness

Gary goes on to talk about ‘tree blindness’ and that it signifies a massive disconnect of the human species from nature and Papatuanuku - Gaia, the earth mother. To the degree that trees are just seen as a backdrop to society - just a background setting - that on a good day, may offer shade from a bright sun and on a bad day gets in the way of your enjoyment or view. Trees are not really seen as living entities in their own right, and to many are just a commodity to grow, as a mono culture and harvest for money and material reward.

However more of humanity are awakening to this lost connection

However the mighty kauri that have stood for 2000 years and are venerated as forest giants like the towering Sequoia Redwoods of America do - when we take the time to sit or lie down on the ground beneath to look up - inspire us of the greatness of these silent beings who have witnessed countless generations of humanity that have come and gone.

The music device that Gary has is put out by the Damanhur Community in Northern Italy - however this work goes back 50 odd years to Cleve Backster and using bio feedback - etc 

So the sound of music in plants has evolved over recent years. Place a contact on the leaf and another contact on the roots - that perfects a circuit and that is then run through a midi system - a computerised midi system and this converts what the tree ‘gives us’ which is static electricity - or something similar to static electricity. This is then converted into musical note, not raw static and it becomes something that we humans can listen to and that is melodic and enjoyable - there is a flow - the music changes from morning to night on the same plant -and will change its song at different times of the year as well. - Listen

Gary states that there are continuous little bursts of electricity going on inside all living things - from a blade of grass to an animal. That now there are many solo musicians, singers, jazz groups, and even small orchestras around our planet taking up this technology and integrating the sounds into their creative pieces.

Gary sees these collaborations with musicians and trees as a very enlightening way of opening up humanity to our connection to both the plant kingdom but to the natural world as a whole.

Gary then talks about plant consciousness and plant awareness and he uses the term ‘Tree Blindness’ in that modern society has in many ways forgotten that trees are living beings - sentient beings - and latter day humanity now only see trees as a back drop or part of the background - James Wanders and Elisabeth Schussler 1998 American biologists were the people who coined this unfortunate term.  

What is plant consciousness?

Gary talks to this and mentions:

The NZ law protecting mammals as sentient beings - was a world first… 

Back in the 1980’s the Japanese government passed law called Shinrin Yoku or Forest Bathing or Forest Therapy - so that people can feel rested and at ease among trees and the local vegetation - and has become a cornerstone in ‘preventive medicine' in Japan - they find that it improves ones immune system.

That the Japanese Government really wanted its citizens to make use of its generous wooded areas for healing is a milestone in itself.

ShinrinYoku.org - The translations is that just by walking through among the trees - you are bathing your whole body and being and also it is said - wiping your aura or energy field clean - as the greenery soaks up any energy that is holding you back and holding you down.

This is now been taken up in other countries as well …

Gary then talks about walking into the ‘bush’ - the forest - for a total immersion and the quietening of our mind and letting go of our thoughts - and then notice - what we hear, and see and observe what we feel and if possible stay for a good 2 hours and yet you will feel the effects even after a short 20 minutes - so forest bathing is in many ways available to everyone.

That music of the plants is a renewed doorway to the nature kingdom …

The interview then goes on to tell about trees talking and even seeing and recognising their offspring. Listen

This then follows on with the soil connection - the mycelium - a fungus a fine network of fibres finer than the hair on our head - and they can connect tree to tree and or plant to plant - which is a symbiotic relationship

Then we hear about how this all works … plant sugars and sharing between plant root hairs etc

Then introduces the term the ‘wood wide web’ see Avatar the movie and his Pandora is all interconnected.

Trees are a community - and we humans have lost our connection to this oxygen and life giving community.

Plant & Tree Blindness - is again seen with human housing developments - scraping the earth of its topsoil and cutting down local trees so as to make the subdivision more in keeping with so called 21st century progress.

Trees are seen as a cash crop in forestry to be logged or to be used for building etc etc

Yet trees are the bearers of fruit and nuts as well, but more so, are homes to multitudes of insects, birds etc.

Maori and their Reverence for Nature and the Forest

Maori - had/have a sacred connection - Karakia or prayer - if wanting a tree. A sacred tree selection for carving or to build a waka - canoe this officiated by a Tohunga - (medicine man) to do the selecting for the tree to be felled.

Papatuanuku Mother Earth - Maori are intuitively plugged in - they know of their connection … whakapapa - their lineage used to be sung to all babies whilst in the arms of their whanau and hapu (family and tribe) - they know about connection.

In The Garden In Nature

We learn that happiness induced inner chemicals in the human experience especially gardeners, uplift ones being. One doesn’t suffer from serious depression - because they are anchoring themselves in the soils and the richness of the earth with all its micro-organisms - the bacteria and fungi. Being barefooted is really good for you.

Getting our hands dirty and soil underneath our fingernails, plus fresh air and sunshine - increases out serotonin levels and joyfulness.

A soil bacteria - mycobaterium vaccae - triggers release of serotonin - and gardening becomes a natural antidepressant.

And Mike O’Donnell has always said - “we are not only gardeners of the soil - but we are gardeners of the soul as well”

Trees have a heart beat - as they pump water up the trunk and that trees can see and make out shape and colour that there are millions of cells on the external surfaces of that tree, leave, branches and trunks that - these cells are exactly the same as the human retina but smaller published in the Nature Journal — listen

Trees go to sleep at night …they have experiments with infrared time lapse cameras and it is noticeable. Shhhhh tip toe on your bush walks eh?

Kauri Dieback

Tanekaha tree the ‘communication tree’

In the interview the books ‘Super Nature’ - Lyall Watson

The Secret Life of Plants’ - by Peter Tompkin and Christopher Bird are mentioned

Secrets of the Soil:

Dorothy Retallack late 1970s - wrote the ‘Sound of music in plants.

Bach came out tops, but Led Zeppelin didn’t do so well.

Elisabet Sahtouris - and the big picture … She is mentioned in this interview

Gary Cooks website: www.secretland.co.nz


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Tim Lynch

Tim Lynch

Tim Lynch, is a New Zealander, who is fortunate in that he has whakapapa, or a bloodline that connects him to the Aotearoan Maori. He has been involved as an activist for over 40 years - within the ecological, educational, holistic, metaphysical, spiritual & nuclear free movements. He sees the urgency of the full spectrum challenges that are coming to meet us, and is putting his whole life into being an advocate for todays and tomorrows children. 'To Mobilise Consciousness.'

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