There are eleven instead of ten because 1) I want to avoid any hint of religiosity and 2) I like the number 11; I think it is auspicious. So here, in random order, are my Eleven Imperatives:
1. Show gratitude and give thanks to the Great Source of All/God/the Great Spirit/the Great Energy for life and all that is good.
2. Be compassionate and kind to all living beings.
3. Thank a tree (for oxygen, shade, beauty). Save a tree. Hug a tree if you’d like to. Trees like hugs and they are good listeners if you need someone to talk to.
4. Be loyal and kind to that special human with whom you are in love.
5. Become an environmental activist—Save honeybees, bumblebees, crickets, praying mantises, stink bugs (friendly), cicadas (friendly and attractive), beneficial lady bugs, and necessary earth worms (after a heavy rain, I often rescue those who get stranded on pavement and put them back in the grass). Do not let insecticide companies spray your yard with poison. Pick up and properly dispose of litter.
6. Become a humane activist—Save domestic animals (dogs, cats, horses) in our country where they are often neglected and intentionally hurt and in other parts of the world where they are raised in brutal circumstances to be eaten or otherwise exploited by humans. Appreciate and re-establish predator animals such as the majestic wolf to restore what humans have destroyed in Nature’s balance. Leave wild animals such as bears, horses, deer undisturbed in their natural habitat and do not harm or mistreat them. Help legislate for cows, pigs, sheep, chickens who are victims of a brutal industry and are not protected from cruelty by any laws. Consider switching to a diet that is largely plant-based.
7. Send vibes of civility out into the world. Love is the only way to conquer hate. Love is the ONLY antidote for hate.
8. Celebrate music, the true universal language. Even the planets sing as they spin and rotate in the heavens. Join in and play a musical instrument. Drum on a hand drum. Sing and give it your best effort. Tap your foot.
9. Speak out for peace for our planet. Peace instead of war should be the motto.
10. Do aerobic dancing every day. Dance, dance, dance!
11. Meditate. Breathe deeply … inhale, exhale. Do it unhurriedly. Meditation can involve spoken prayer, silence, surrender to the will of the Universe, gratitude.