I grew up in a valley, on a mountain, in a jungle, in New Guinea.
Fresh out of high school my first ‘career’ choice was rock-climbing, because looking out into the yawning world everything else to me looked pretty pointless and superficial. I went full-on with the climbing for about five years, before the ass of that search fell out the seat of its pants. Then I drifted in through tossing salad, looking for something to grab hold of. I couldn’t latch onto anything much, so finally my great friend and teacher, Adi Da Samraj, brought me across the Pacific to take care of his tiny Fear-No-More Zoo. In New Guinea, as a kid, I’d been involved with all kinds of animals, but not much since then until arriving in California with Adi Da now as my mentor.
In the early years Adi Da worked steadily to undo in me all the things I’d learned about animals so that I’d be available to receive what he wanted to teach me. It was hard, amazing and sometimes quite shocking. It was life and death stuff a lot of the time.
That all started 22 years ago and this blog is where I’m now freely writing it all down (the important stuff anyhow), as honestly and simply as I can. I’ll try to keep the humor in here as well, but be prepared for direct, sometimes difficult, stories of how it was, and is.
I’ve read far and wide, and looked at many things and met all kinds of people, and Adi Da is, though unknown and unsung, in my estimation, the preeminent conservationst not just of this time but of all human time. And I don’t say this because he’s my teacher. No. But because I just haven’t yet come across a wisdom so direct and simple and all-encompassing… and so I want to pass this on now. After 22 years I feel ready.
I’m also working on these other websites as part of the same conversation…
My name is “Stuart Camps”. It means “Caretaker of the Open Field”, hence the name of this blog-site. One day out in the pasture with the camels I realized that Adi Da had me doing what what name means. He knew all along, I’m sure. But I’m also just a shmuck who didn’t fit into the conventional modern western world, so I ended up here doing this to pass some time…