“I would resent people and think they would be living very unconsciously. I had a very judgmental state of mind for quite a while. Eventually I came out of that and I started to realize that permaculture, gardening, wild food and eating healthy was the answer to all of that. It wasn’t about protesting or being angry at things. It was about creating a better world first for yourself and your loved ones and then for the community at large. It was more about putting your energy into positive stuff, and that was really exciting for me.”
Anthony Anderson, originally of Rawmodel.com, found himself becoming a fashion model in 2003, and while working for companies like Loreal, Macy’s, Target, and Paul Mitchell, he developed a deep passion for green living and nutrition. As he dove deeper into the holistic lifestyle, he discovered the joys of gardening and realized that it just may be the panacea that could heal humanity and planet Earth. Hoping to help inspire others to start creating these paradise gardens as well. He created www.GrowParadise.com to spread awareness about green living and growing their own food…literally, paradise creation. I am leaning towards the same dreams and goals so it’s truly an honor to feature Anthony today on Soulspeak.
WHO IS ANTHONY ANDERSON?
He is a 32 year old American guy who was originally from the state of Minnesota. It’s a very quiet area where I’m from. Very nice people. It’s a nice life up there. It’s definitely shaped me. I am a more kind and easygoing person because of growing up there. I finished my University in 2003 and after that I pursued modeling work. I always had the potential to do it and I did it a little during my university time. Doing it on the side in Minneapolis. I was studying to do financial consulting or selling mutual funds. I had a business marketing degree. I really didn’t know what I was doing with my life. I thought I maybe knew who I was but my goals were a little bit skewed because of me wanting to make my family happy and just do well as far as what success meant. I was leading the white collar path.
I really wanted to make money in the corporate world, and I started to get in this modeling stuff a little bit. Because of that I started reading a lot of books. I read a book by Henry David Thoreau called “Walden” . It’s an old book in the late 1840′s. A story of a young man who spent some time out in the forest. He built himself a cabin. He journaled often and I felt he really came into some good conclusions about living life simply, living life with a sense of adventure and excitement, but keepin things simple. Not bogging ourselves down with all these modern trappings that can just totally distract us and keep us off of our goals. This was a big book for me.
For the first time in my life I had no television, I had no real job. I was just doing castings in Europe. I was reading books and I was journaling and meeting new friends from other parts of the world. It was like this huge awakening for me to get out of the United States and to start reading these books.
What happened at first was that some of these information was a little difficult to accept at first. The environmental things. A lot of it was very depressing. I became sort of angry. I would resent people and think they would be living very unconsciously. I had a very judgmental state of mind for quite a while. Eventually I came out of that and I started to realize that permaculture, gardening, wild food and eating healthy was the answer to all of that. It wasn’t about protesting or being angry at things. It was about creating a better world first for yourself and your loved ones and then for the community at large. It was more about putting your energy into positive stuff, and that was really exciting for me.
Another thing that happened with this modeling stuff was that I began to eat much more healthy because I wanted to do well and I wanted to be successful and make more money. I had a college degree and I felt like if I was gonna do it I need to be serious. I took it very seriously with the diet and the exercise. Because of that I ended up getting into raw veganism for about 5 years. I took it very strictly very early on. I was doing green juice and salads and fruit. Very very low fat. For a while I felt really good but I was also very unbalanced where I would crash maybe once a month and it kinda led to a small eating disorder. I had these images in my mind of what was a perfect diet but I would still succumb to cravings because I was an emotional eater, and I was missing people in my life. I felt alone because of my strange diet at that time. Looking at it from today I see that it was good because I had a lot of time to myself. To study and learn and teach myself stuff from the internet and I was learning Spanish, learning about permaculture, gardening and raw food and nutrition. It was this really excellent time for me to grow as an individual. I was in a long distance relationship at that time so I was still able to be with someone but I was also able to go on my path and take that further.
I wanted to create these landscapes. I wanted to take flat fields and create ponds and hills and just make it totally beautiful. Fill it with fruit trees and nut trees and make little eco villages. Let people live there and just experience the divine through nature. Create babies and just have beautiful lives. I think that’s really what we could be doing.
WHO ARE YOUR GREATEST MENTORS?
I could probably list five. I would say the man Sepp Holzer. He’s an Austrian farmer and he’s creating these landscapes and traveling and showing people how to do it.
There’s a man named Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and he is the host of the show called “River Cottage” in the UK. You can find this show on Youtube. It’s a cooking show but it’s also a gardening, green lifestyle show. He just makes it so fun and approachable. He is just so smart and so witty. I love him so much. I have so much respect for him. His approach is so accessible and so fun. They go out and pick berries and make jelly or beverage out of it. It’s just like hanging out. It’s fun. It’s not heavy into the Science. It’s just all very light, and exactly what people need to be doing. He’s also a hero.
Daniel Vitalis is a huge hero of mine. His re-wilding stuff and his approach with water greatly changed my life. And he can get a lot of flack from some people for maybe his diet choices or whatever people would say but I really have a lot of respect for him. I feel that the stuff that he talks about is very pertinent to this day and age. If people were to take some of his ideas into practice, even just a couple like the barefoot stuff or the spring water, it would really change a lot of lives. Daniel Vitalis is a genius. He speaks so well and lives very authentically. I really appreciate him.
I would feel bad not to mention some people…
Jeff Lawton is another one. He is a big permaculturist.
There’s just a lo of very cool permacultuists out there who are just kicking butt. I guess my heroes are the group of people that are just doing this paradise stuff. They’re doing the permaculture. They’re on Facebook. We’re becoming like an orchestra of voices.
Of course there’s Jake and Patricia, I love how they love to be in the garden together and make fermented foods together. It’s like they’re best friends but they ‘re totally attracted to each other. That’s what I want everyone to have. I was very impressed. They’re my heroes.
The list is endless. It’s like a team of this big positive army of people that are just doing this lifestyle and making it so fun and they’re not being nerdy or preachy about it. It’s like “Yeah this is what we do, this is what we eat” I love it. I am super optimistic about where things are going. People are waking up really fast about the food. People who go by nature , they’re going for the quality and because they want quality food they want to start gardening. and it’s just spreading so fast. Once these ideas are absorbed into someone it’s really hard to go back. And once you hear these ideas like paradise creation , growing your own and basically ‘abundance’, total abundance — it’s really hard to ignore that. It’s really up to us to keep singing that song with big smiles on our faces and everything will keep working out.
More farmers markets than ever. Go to the health food store and there’s so many cool things to check out. All these major companies are switching to organic because they know that people want that. It’s a beautiful thing.
We have to take action. We have to build these ideas in our heart and in our mind. We really have to be serious and start physially creating this.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST GRATEFUL FOR?
What I’m super grateful for is that I started my garden in 2008 and I started planting all my trees 5 years ago. Now when I go in there the trees are really nice and big. I was really serious about it and in a way, concerned about the future so I acted. I planted everything and made it happen. It was a lot of hard work at first but now I really get to enjoy it. I really thank my former self for having the motivation to just go for it.
I think it would be trying to force people to start eating better and taking care of themselves and I wasn’t respecting their opinion in other matters because they had not yet figured out their diets yet. I think I missed out on a lot of beautiful experiences with people. I was just very judgmental. I’m really moving past that. There are probably still some remnants of that where I wished people would maybe open up to the more positive stuff and get out of the negative thinking. That will all happen naturally but I really have let go of a lot in the past 5 years. A lot of that came from my diet changing. Where I was so dogmatic and so judgmental about people who weren’t vegan and now here I was eating grass fed beef, deer liver and all these different animal products. They were very beneficial for me and I felt like I had really been a jerk to people and was isolating myself in this strange bubble. Because of that I didn’t have friends outside of that bubble. No one wanted to eat around people like me that were raw vegan. Not it’s about letting that go and just being friends with everyone, and being more flexible with my diet even , not to the point that I know I’m eating stuff that’s bad. But maybe going out and having some french fries, I would want it cooked in peanut oil or palm oil instead of soy bean oil. In France, they use a lot of sunflower oil and sunflowers are okay but it’s a high Omega 6 fatty acid ratio. It’s not like coconut or palm. Those things are better and much more stable. It’s a little more expensive to make them so you don’t see them a lot, but you can make them at home. In Paris I was doing a lot of French fries actually like organic french fries with sunflower oil. My diet has changed a little. In the past I never would have done that. Now I do that. I’m staying just as thin wthout as much exercise because I’m not binging later on. I’m not on this crazy roller coaster of snacking and snacking. It was a bad situation but probably since 2010 it’s been okay.
I also regret once doing self sabotage.
WHAT IS LOVE?
Love… I’ve experienced all different kinds.Even just this feeling of total connection. Sitting in the forest. Stuff like that where your heart just wants to explode and you love everything. You’re walking through and you hear the insects and see the stars and you feel that pulse of the universe. So then there’s that and there’s also this self-love which has to really come first. That stuff started to come to me maybe when I was 25 or 26. Even with the raw food, it was kinda helping. It was cleaning myself out. I was getting to learn who I was and respect myself more and really just love myself. And I think once you love yourself and know that you’re an awesome angelic person then your cup is full and you can then start to have constructive relationships, whether it’s romantic or business. There’s got to be self love, because if a person loves himself there can still be hurt , but maybe it’s not the same. If someone is eating poorly and treating themselves poorly you’ll see a lot of hurt coming from them. There’s that and there’s also this romantic partner love , that deep partnership. I think it’s probably the most beautiful thing. When you find that person and you just feel intoxicated or something and you feel your head vibrating. You’re thinking about all these things that you never thought before. You want to create life with them, and create a beautiful space. You feel like you’re best friends but you’re also so much deeper than that. Maybe that’s like a crystallized version that we spend with another person or partner. Maybe more people than that but I do believe there are those very special souls out there that are meant to meet again. I believe in reincarnation. I don’t really believe in death. I believe we leave the body when we feel like it and it’s time to move on to a new adventure. Go for the spirit realm. To come back and have more fun on planet earth and learn more lessons. I see it all as chapters. One life would be a chapter. Not the whole book so it makes me see a more broader picture and it makes me look a little more deeper in relationships. I’m starting to wonder, have we met in the past? All these things… Is there a deeper connection involved? Obviously there always is.
People always meet for a reason. This world is so magical. There’s a lot of incredible things happening that don’t really get noticed, but there is a lot. It’s all about tuning in to that magic and keeping a smile on your face and loving yourself. It’s that angelic feeling . It’s just like giving that love to people and whether you direct a lot of it on one person or you just spread it around or you’re just super nice to everybody or both. Just living that paradise lifestyle from the inside out. Cultivating that love and just letting it shine. Not being scared of being hurt. Where you can love someone unconditionally and for some reason they might not return that love but you still love them, you still care about them and you’re happy that you know the truth. You’re happy that you can move on because now you have clarity.
YOUR NEXT STEPS
I am looking to do a lot more talks and talking in Washington DC this weekend . I’m gonna be doing a lot more classes and projects. If anyone wants to do a project I’m always happy to come and buy ten trees. Plant them and film it and make a fun video on Youtube. I’m really just going for that now. No more regrets definitely. Moving on full speed really happy with how everything is going. Now we’re just crystallizing. Everything is clear, clarified, sharpened. We know exactly what we want, and we just start creating that.
ONE MESSAGE TO ALL
You are responsible. This is your reality. Your creation. And you have to realize that you are God and you have to create that self realization
For more on Anthony visit his
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