Posts Tagged ‘hope’

My Truth

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013


Any Organization or person which stands in an effort to accomplish something of merit or value, must predicate it’s existence on belief.

Some call this belief system: “Our Truth”.

Recently I watched as one of the companies I am a part of, had it’s leadership disappear and not only jeopardize the organization, but potentially engage in some actions which could cost a lot of lives and careers. The person is doing what I call¬† “Flailing”¬† which is sort of like beating the air with your arms as you head for the bottom of a fall which you embarked upon when you stepped off a cliff.

The process of deciding how to respond to another’s flailing and¬† hurtful, dangerous actions, had me examining what exactly my own Truth is. So I wrote it down, as much to be clear to myself, as I would want it to be known to my colleagues and friends . I have always held that we owe this to people, to be transparent in this way.


        My Truth

I know the following statement well. It is a vital part of my Truth.

Everything which we see begins in the unseen arena of energy and the arc of Time. All that exists has it’s foundation in a realm that the Religious call the Spiritual.

So when we look on something, we are seeing the physical manifestation and result of something which occurred (was authored) in the arc of time, in a different dimension from the one in which our physical selves reside within.

We came from somewhere, we are here, we head somewhere. So we have the ability to exercise what we are, spirit soul and body, as architects on this planet. We are that capable.

But our intrinsic nature, is to be corrupted by fear.

It really comes down to a clear understanding of Energy Theory.

We should be about Love, actually. Then we would be getting how all of this works. Sort of simple, really.

God is Love. If we belong to that, well then, we should be a source of that light here.

This is why I am a Photographer. I chose that with intent. It is my Truth.

Here is a fantastic piece about Courage, titled “The Science of Conquering Your Fears”

A nugget of Truth from Abraham Lincoln. “To sin by silence when they should protest, makes cowards of men.”

Truth from Sun Tzu, written¬† in “The Art of War” ¬†“Know yourself and your enemy and you will win every battle.”

Aloha Oe.




On Beauty

Friday, September 27th, 2013


I have a lot to say regarding Beauty and how it affects the Consciousness of our World. But rather than write on it and endeavor to go into the Science of the affects of Beauty, I am just going to share beauty with you as I have experienced it this week.

Here is a prescient piece of Music set to remarkable Cinematography. Nahko Bear’s “Aloha Ke Akua”.

People are amazing. In a culture that tends to dry humanity out, Beauty waters us. When we invest in that, what we are doing is improving our lot as a species. Why Beauty: matters.

I got to meet with Lynn Lawrence this week. She handed me a remarkable book entitled “On Beauty and Being Just” by Elaine Scarry. This is her, handing it to me, pictured below.¬† A beautiful act. Lynn had recently left my friend Brian Kasbar’s company and as she headed down coast thought to ring me so that we could meet in person for the first time after connecting on Brian’s project, which is an innovative system for educating Autistic children. A beautiful endeavor.


I swam and shot a bit this week. On a day that was surreal in it’s blue sanguine embrace I managed to capture some of the essence of that experience. The Ocean¬† amazes me. It is beautiful in ways that stretch my skill set to communicate.




And I got to speak with my friend and colleague Shawn Alladio, as she made her way back to California. She recounted some of the back story on the Never Quit Challenge. Here is a clip from the Today Show on it.

The image below was shared by Ginny Blevins-Feeks, the surviving spouse of SO1 Pat Feeks who perished a little over a year ago. Shawn is at the 9-11 Memorial at Ground Zero having just lead the NQC up the East Coast from Florida, and landing in NYC on 9-11. The deep significance of taking our people by water back to New York is incredibly profound.

Shawn is placing some rather interesting things on the Memorial. Among those, a Pocket Constitution, coins, patches, and very significantly, two US flags. One which Pat carried with him, and the second which was presented to Ginny by the US Govt. Shawn was presented these flags by Ginny, and carried them with her in much the same manner Pat had.

The Beauty in this Act by Shawn, Brian Lagarticha, David Pirate Tew, Eric Graff, and all my colleagues at K38 Rescue is heady in it’s graciousness. So were the other profound acts of generosity, by¬† people in all the branches of the Military, Foundations,¬† Emergency Response and Law Enforcement Agencies involved in the Challenge’s success.

Shawn Alladio-9-11 Memorial

Shawn Alladio-9-11 Memorial

As I studied the image, there was so much significance in what I saw that it really was sort of overwhelming, and I felt my eyes beginning to tear up. I knew how much sacrifice had occurred as symbolized by each item in the frame. Then I saw it. The Blue Marble Donna and I had given Shawn. She had carried that with her to ground zero.

So many of us are connected by water.

Beauty is the bucket that carries it. Water of course, is analogous to Spirit, that life force which flows through all that exists.

This is Hope. She springs eternally from the human heart. (Image is from an editorial project on a woman’s experiences surfing through pregnancy)


Beauty is Life amplified and focused. Without it, hope dies.


My friend and colleague, Wallace J Nichols, is the founder of the Blue Marble Movement, Blue Mind and much more. He ends his notes with the salutation: “I wish you water”.¬† I like that a lot.

In my life and work, all at it’s core is summed up in my own heart’s desire:

“I wish you Beauty.”

Aloha nui loa.


I wish you Beauty



Friday, March 4th, 2011
Walking Among Us

Walking Among Us

This is the sixth installment in the series on many loves. It is on Heroes.

The world seems to have  a real thirst for heroes. Artist Hilda Kilpatrick yesterday, asked me what the word hope meant to me. I told her that hope was seeing the future as the way you would like it to be.

Heroes inspire that in us.

Though I have lead a life that has had me in the company of champions, and people that always seemed to be the best in the world at what they do, I must admit that none would consider themselves to fit into that category. In fact, most would seek obscurity if given the chance. Sort of the opposite of our cultural world view, where we seek and desire to elevate these who believed, when few else would have thought to.

A hero does what needs doing, when no one is watching. They are a best case example of what happens when Faith comes to abide in the human heart. Hope opens the door to Faith. Faith in turn swings wide an entirely new realm of possibilities for the future. It will kick you down the right path when maybe, the true direction is not so clear to the rest of your world.

These days I continue to be surrounded by heroes. Some of the brightest examples are in my Community and exist in places and under cover of a disguise that is nearly impenetrable in it’s obscure and sublime design.

Though unrest exists as never before in this country and a huge dis satisfaction with Governance has arisen, sometimes rightfully so (It is within the regular process of maintaining a Republic), I see the tenets of heroism even in my town’s City Council and Mayor’s office, as they struggle to determine the correct direction for Ventura’s philosophy of leadership.

And within the cultural tableau of this town resides a true community of heroes, people who soldier on as the place groans with the weight of change. Many will never know what these people have invested and risked, so that this place will once more thrive and be a healthy, welcome, warm harbor for a world that has too few left on the California Coast.

Harbor Haven

Harbor Haven

If you ever want to see what a hero looks like, check your world for the one who serves you.

My colleague and friend, Shawn Alladio of K 38 Rescue, lectures repeatedly that we are to be like janitors. In rescue you come in, be un noticed, quietly and efficiently clean up any messes, do any repair that needs doing and leave. That is heroism in action: servitude. She leads a global community of janitors. I like that.

Shawn Alladio

Shawn Alladio

My friend Ed Brenegar, who fronts the Community of Leaders had this to say on the subject.

I have never been particularly fond of cops.¬† The thought of a black and white generally does not evoke the warm fuzzys. They are literally the ones who, when push comes to shove, must enforce the peace and be the face and hand of the Law. It has to be one of the single toughest jobs in the world today. It is a career which by it’s nature, affords great opportunity daily, to be society’s janitor, and at the same time, be scorned for it.

But in my lifetime some of my deepest inspiration has come through the examples set in the way some Law Enforcement people lead their lives.

I always say that no good deed goes unpunished. The crux of heroism is in the comprehension of that, and retaining both the willingness and skill, to do what needs doing without fanfare, because that is what matters to you.

I keep a list. I look at and see everything. That is my job, seeing. My hero’s list is incredibly long. I think that some people reading this blog would be very surprised to find their names on that list. But that is how I see it, and them.

Seth Godin, describing the scenario for heroism.

Peter Gabriel, in a sonnet for the people who challenge the reality in Haiti. Sent to me by Hilary Minias. Several very close friends of mine have been working quietly on the wreckage of Haiti. Alleviating suffering.

You have to love heros. Not many will.

USCG Stan Team, K38 Training, Astoria, Semper Paratus

USCG Stan Team, K38 Training, Astoria, Semper Paratus

Fear Anger Hope

Monday, June 21st, 2010


Fear, anger, hope.

These three things are very inter-related and part of the process of progress.

I find myself falling into fear, that entities which we have entrusted, like Government, Industry, and aspects of modern culture, such as certain Environmental PACS, have totally failed the Earth, as evidenced in the recent potential Global killer, that is the Platform Horizon Wellhead Blowout.

The fear generated by this realization leads to an intense burning anger.

That anger causes a hell of a lot of introspection of myself, what I stand for, and a VERY close look at the things I am able to affect in this world, that could contribute to a course change.

In my life, I have always been about social contribution through enlightenment, and understanding of Man’s role in this world via a relationship with God and Nature. In my experience, Science has always proved God, and vice versa. The entire world gives testimony to the glory and power which created it.

So out of all of this examination, there arises amidst the dark swirling clouds of a prior Eon’s birth and death throes, (which MADE the oil which may kill off a substantial portion of our planet) a glimmer of hope within a very serious message of impending doom.

Here is a very close look at the Gulf Disaster . Make sure to watch the News report at it’s end.¬† Yes, you should be scared, as well as angry. That is a righteous response.


Below are two links. They will make you sad, they will cause you to fear, you will get angry, feel sorrow, and at the end of it all, a small light will begin to flicker inside. Grab that. The other stuff, it just needs to be experienced, for you to find that little glimmer. We need informed hope.

Story One A beautifully done grand perspective on our struggle to exist.

Story Two is a piece that I shot while working under Cinematographer Greg Huglin. Edited by my friend and colleague Rob Dafoe. I WANT you to ponder the Gulf Sea. Consider also, that this was shot in the waters that I grew up in off of Santa Barbara and the Gaviota Coast. These pods have existed there for ages.

In 1969 I lived in Goleta. I saw the affects of the well head blowout that affected my beach, and gave rise to the modern day environmental movement. I swam, sailed, dove, fished and surfed in an oil soaked ocean, much as the Chumash who inhabited my home, generations before had done. But I am convinced what I experienced, was far worse in terms of oil contact. It went on for decades. (Think about that.)

The tale of the 1969 Union platform blowout is here.

A couple weeks ago, I was up working on the Gaviota Coast. Beaches once soaked in oil were now clean. For the first time in my 50 year long life, and possibly ever, they were pristine in appearance. I suspect that the Environmental movement had nothing to do with this, nor did the EPA. The steady pumping of the reserve simply lowered the pressure, and both the issues from the old wellhead blowout, and natural seeps, slowed to their lowest point.

I shot a few images to illustrate Man’s relationship with the coastline that has been my home. When I get angry, part of my process is to create something positive. Jeanette Ortiz, who is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and connected human beings that I know, collaborated with me. Donna Von Hoesslin helped style the work. The four images in this post, are part of a 24 image collection we created as an homage to the Gaviota Coastline.

Organic Relationship

Organic Relationship

Now ponder this. We have drilled a hole into the past, and unleashed a geologically based poison into the Gulf waters. All of what we know and have done in the past may now be ineffective. We could be wrong about everything. Our Govt. agencies are wrong, our environmental groups are wrong, we were wrong. Wrong about what?

Our choice to disconnect our culture from God and subvert our role in creation. We placed commerce and money in the position of being our God. We cut ourselves off from Wisdom and Truth. Wrong choice.



Reconnect. It is where the hope lies.

Here is a beautiful invitation to do that.



Here is a piece on Jacques Yves Cousteau , that is probably one of the more succinct and pertinent instructionals which I have read, with regard to Politics and the Earth.

Broken Bells. Good name. Sobering social commentary, exquisitely produced.

Steady on.


The Chase

Sunday, July 26th, 2009
Siren's Serenade

Siren's Serenade

Surfing is not a sport. Not in any conventional sense. It falls into the genre of life’s laundry list of activities,¬† better described as a life style. So broad in scope, it permeates all facets of a participant’s cognitive and subconscious thought processes, to the extent that you are surfing, even when not actually riding a wave.

One of the reasons for this life style moniker is The Chase. This facet of surfing dictates that the participants be die hard, or more accurately: die never, optimists. Finding waves, developing technique,  expanding performance range, and increasing the difficulty level of ocean conditions in which a surfer feels comfy, impregnates every nook and cranny of an ocean imbued life. So when not actually eying the hook, as cool, blue-green, salty deliciousness pulls at your arms, and  the shoreward rush lifts your board aloft,  you are still surfing.

The Chase requires a level of mastery in life skills that make the average rocket scientist’s skill set look rather short. Surfing involves a subconscious management of the variables.¬† The surfer develops an ability to put them self in a precise place and instant of time, that will occur, somewhere in the future. Being good at this requires¬† prescience, self knowledge, study and faith.

Yes, faith. Possibly one of the most miss understood terms in the Western world, it is often mistaken for hope. That gaffe can be an expensive one. Simply put, Faith is when one possesses a knowledge and in turn a confidence that cannot be swayed by anything. Not wind, wave, danger, death. It is when one knows in their heart of hearts what will occur.  It is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not yet seen. It positions you on the cosmic GPS.  Surfers have faith.

Great surfers exhibit faith when they show up at the right beach,  on the correct tide, with perfect wind and weather and have the best swell for the break pouring in. They paddle out, place themselves in the saddle, turn and glide into that chronological apex and moment of truth called the takeoff.  My photography career was not made by my ability as a Photographer, but by my exhibition of Faith which continually places me at various points in time to experience the take off. The Chase fulfilled, ad infinitum.

Some day it will place me in the precise cross hairs for a more grand take off. I have Faith. I know this.

This week had started out with the rumor of a swell arriving from out of the distant Southern Hemisphere.¬† On the Southern ice cap, a storm had howled out into the ocean and made it’s way past the reaches of New Zealand, where in what we call the “swell window” for the Northern Hemisphere, it generated a significant energy pulse.

When that pulse hits California beaches, the waves come to shore in sets that mirror the storm’s wind gusts. The better events have long periods of flat water, with sets containing a lot of waves in them when they arrive. This creates issues for the un initiated, who may have been lured to the ocean by News reports based on what surfers call the “rumor mill”. They see flat water and think: “Oh someone has made a mistake.” They had been unwittingly set up for a lemming call of sorts. It is sad hearing the news of their struggle or death later, that the news media had helped to create.

In surf culture some  surf forecasting concerns have a history of  crying wolf, that has grown legendary among the faithful. This process keeps lifeguards in business. It also fans The Chase, among the faithless.

This last swell forecast, was accompanied by news hysteria, doing what they do: fan fear and hysteria. (White shark sighting, dangerous waves coming) This caused my voice and e mail to fill with questions about what headed our way. Funny thing fear, it is energetically diametrically opposed to creativity.

My answer was : “I did not look at the storm or do the forecast, so I do not know. But the shark, that is sort of typical. They are always there.” I was faithless on the swell. I simply had no knowledge. But when I saw the swell begin to show on the near shore Southern California weather buoys, hope dawned, that something could happen.

After three successive days of lackluster waves, in spite of a decent pulse on the buoys, I began to think that maybe this was another failed event. But then things changed. I have a large number of indicators which I learned to examine in a lifetime of engaging The Chase and approximately 12 years of freelance swell and weather forecasting, that saw me mis-cast approximately  five percent of the time in my ocean history. So I am generally faith full when I head out.

So I set out under a set of variables that I remember gave me one of my first large usage surfing images which occurred in year two of my mentorship by Surfing magazine’s Larry “Flame Moore”. In my hand was the same focal length lens I had used then, but in modern form, the Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS and the revolutionary¬† 5D Mark 2.

Standing in the exact same spot as that first image occured, now 12 years older, I mimed the crabs which scuttled about the rocks in which I lingered, and stalked what I KNEW was going to occur. A few surfers which I had called, showed up as well.

Danny Moa, had hopped out into the lineup which was foreign to him, and caught two waves before the intimidation the break creates, sent him scampering to shore. All before what I knew would happen could occur. The other two surfers, well they had no faith either. This image above is a moment foretold captured. Faith knows where to stand, how to proceed and allows us to capture and not just chase, our vision.

Have Faith. Play that card. Start now.

I love U2. They have a habit of telling you just what you need to know in their music. But it requires faith to hear it.

Seth Godin writes about the application of Faith for business.

Below are a few images from what turned out to be a moderate to strong swell. It was three energy pulses actually, but in reading the telemetry from all three swell sources, I found a little Faith. Doesn’t take much. Someone great once said it could be as large as a mustard seed. They were right. The prospective faithful are Danny Moa and Lars and Hans Rathje, who I met while helping film the wonderful story Goofyfoot, by Jeff McElroy .








Power Surge

Power Surge

Lars: Hope

Lars: Hope

Hans: Faith

Hans: Faith

Lars, Hans: Hope Deferred



© 2009 David Pu'u. All rights reserved.