Garbage, Toilets and Cars – My Normal, My Religion

by Priscila Azeredo de Souza, London, UK 


I clearly remember when, as a kid, I made a decision not to throw any rubbish on the streets. It feels surreal for me to even mention it today, but when I was a kid the streets in Brazil were very dirty and it just seemed ‘normal’.

I realised that if there were things I didn’t like in this world, I had a responsibility to not contribute to them. I also remember that once I made that decision, I found my first obstacle – very often I could not find bins – but that didn’t stop me. I was so firm in my decision that I would carry garbage in my pockets, bag, or wrap an apple core in  paper or plastic until I could find a bin – this became ‘my normal’.  


Around that same time, I was at the toilet at my parent’s house and the toilet paper was just about to finish. I knew I should replace it, but I was too lazy to get another toilet roll from the cupboard and I thought that ‘someone else’ would replace it. And something very interesting happened… guess who was the next person to use the toilet? Me!!!!

So I learned a big lesson that day: what you do to another you do to yourself! From that day on I decided I would replace toilet papers or leave a spare one whenever they were about to finish.

And again, a little obstacle – like when I am running late and think I shouldn’t bother with replacing the toilet paper… but no; on these moments I would only stop and laugh and honour my commitment to replace the toilet paper, no matter what. Another ‘my normal way’ established.

Toilets also taught me that no matter how dirty a public toilet, I will not contribute to its dirtiness, if not clean a little bit ­– like using the paper towel to quick clean around the tap. I do it on airplanes too and this is ‘my normal’.

Toilets are awesome schools, I learn a lot with them!


It was about 6 years ago, when I was living in a very small city in Brazil that I made another decision that would change the normal to ‘my normal’. It’s very common in Brazil for people to simply quick stop in the middle of a road to drop someone or pick up something from a shop – ‘it’s only a quick stop, it won’t take a minute’.

While I was living in this city I used to quick park in the middle of the road just to drop off some dvds at the video centre (‘it takes me 30 seconds max…’). But NO!, I realised that was not right – that simple act could affect someone else who would have to wait for me to leave…

I so clearly remember the day I questioned the fact that I was contributing to the exact situations I would complain about.

In Brazil, for example, people complain a lot about the culture of ‘taking advantage of others and situations’… but was I not acting exactly the same in this example with the car? And even worse, contributing to it?

So, from that day on, no more quick stops in the middle of the road whenever I liked. And of course, the next time I went to drop off the dvds, there were no places to park nearby the dvd place, and so I had to park a bit far away from it. But it didn’t affect me – I had already committed to the decision and would not back off, no matter what.

I was often criticised for doing such things and I would hear common discouraging sentences as:

  • ‘What you are doing is so tiny and will not make any difference, this is not going to change the way people behave’
  • ‘You are a fool… the only one doing that…’

It didn’t matter because I MATTER and I MAKE A DIFFERENCE. This is my normal, the way I do things; the way I feel deep within is the way to live…


This is my RELIGION. And it’s a great fun doing it!

When I attended my first Universal Medicine workshop about 3 years ago and Serge Benhayon mentioned ‘Energetic Integrity’ and ‘Energetic Responsibility’ and how we affect everyone else with everything that we do, it was already my experience. The reflection of Serge’s integrity is very powerful and it forever inspires me to deepen my own, in everything that I do in my life.

I recently took part in an amazing group discussion on ‘Esoteric Philosophy’ with Serge. In the group we had the opportunity to discuss (in very practical and detailed examples) how the way we behave in our homes, streets, and supermarkets affects everyone. A new horizon opened up for me after that. What amazed me the most was the fact that although what others shared was not exactly my personal experience, it was something that deep within I had already considered and knew to be true.

I left the discussion feeling very inspired; since then I’ve deepened enormously my understanding of Energetic Integrity and Energetic Responsibility. They are forever expanding, encompassing of everyone. Everything matters and everyone matters.

This is my religion; this is my way. THE WAY OF THE LIVINGNESS.

356 thoughts on “Garbage, Toilets and Cars – My Normal, My Religion

  1. To me this is all about acknowledging that we live in brotherhood and that everything we do has an effect on others, and being in harmony with others means our contribution to the whole is unimposing.

  2. It’s very interesting to read this about you Priscila. I guess we all have these memories of deciding to do something regardless of whether it matches the social norms or not only to find that the social norm is actually a bit crazy and really not normal at all.

  3. “I MATTER and I MAKE A DIFFERENCE.” This is such an emphatic statement and one that every single child ought to be introduced to from a very early age. The change in the world that we all want to see will not come about by just talking about it, but by one person choosing to make a change, and then another and another. But someone needs to make that first choice, so what not let it be us.

  4. ‘What you do to another you do to yourself’ is absolutely true and very evident in the practical example you gave Priscila.

  5. I work in a shop 2 days a week and on those days I collect any paper or burnables in a bag, plastic bags go in there too and hard plastics – they are all things that we cannot sell ( we do sell broken china, metal electrics) I take the burnables to burn on my wood burner and the other things I take to the household waste when I go to deposit the glass jars and bottles I have used. I have been given a very large bag to put these recyclable objects in and everyone uses the bag when I am there. As I write I am wondering if the fact that we are selling broken china etc is down to my influence as it is a relatively new thing and came after several talks with management about what to do about the huge amount that was ending up in skips outside the shop. It’s not really important but it is great to see how much more clarity there is now by organising the disposability of these items.

  6. I love that you have made these small things in your life that need attending to, your normal Priscila. Because as you say we just don’t know who is going to be the next person that will come along and benefit from your commitment – and indeed it could be you!

  7. Priscilla, I love your commitment to standards that are not considered the ‘norm’ by the majority of people.
    I remember bumping into you by the hand basins in a ladies restroom in London and being totally inspired by your cleaning of the basin after washing your hands – something I adopted as my own standard since that moment.

  8. Priscilla, I love reading about how responsibly you live and from my own experience of caring and taking responsibility I can feel how this affects all those that I come into contact with.

  9. I love this; ‘This is my RELIGION. And it’s a great fun doing it!’ I really enjoyed reading that you did what felt true for you, not what everyone else was doing, this is really beautiful and you show that there is another way.

  10. I love that you had a discussion on this ‘how the way we behave in our homes, streets, and supermarkets affects everyone.’ because it is true how we live does have an impact on our environment and everyone else so it is completely irresponsible, not to mention very belittling, to think that how we live is insignificant and that any positive changes we make in our life, choosing to take responsibility, will not make a difference. Thank absolute goodness there are people in the world that do not think like this, like yourself, and so make the changes when they feel they are needed, because if we did not have people in the world like you we would be in even a worse mess than what we are in now!

  11. Lightness and responsibility in one package, why not, being loving is light and being loving is our responsibility. Thank you for sharing your experiences.

  12. “This is my religion; this is my way. THE WAY OF THE LIVINGNESS.” agreed Priscilla this is my way as well and with each day that passes by I am deeply blessed to have chosen this religion and way of living as it is what supports everything that I do and the quality of which I am.

  13. The normal you are talking about is your standards. If we don’t uphold them, then all of society slides downhill. It may seem pointless to take a stand and refuse to be careless when no one else seems to be but it takes one person at a time to set our standards in society.

    1. I agree Fiona, and seeing what is unfolding in the world on a daily basis it is obvious to see that, in general, our standards are definitely sliding from what they ought to be. Maybe that is because many struggles to understand their responsibility to themselves, to those around them and to the world, and so choose to live in a way that disregards everyone, including themselves.

  14. Beautiful to feel your commitment to taking care of the environment in so many different ways which all come back to choosing to be responsible for the way you are living, and how this affects yourself and others.

  15. An inspiring presentation that highlights precisely how we each have the power to raise the standards of living by how we are with the everyday ‘seemingly’ small activities in our day to day lives with the quality we bring, the degree of honor, respect, decency and truth that we are willing to stand for and not allow ourselves to drop below. This is how we bring the true and lasting change to raise the standards that we all live by and represent the truth of us all.

  16. I love reading your dedication to responsibility and how loving it is to make sure there is toilet paper for the next person, and to clean up after ourselves, our responsibility to the rest of humanity, simple choices we can make that make a real difference.

  17. Pricilla it is very inspiring to read of your commitment, from a young age, to changing things that you felt were not honouring of others. Living with an awareness that all our actions affect every one, brings with it a responsibility to ensure that all our expressions come from a loving heart, and for you to be practicing this from young has been a blessing for us all.

  18. Great read, and of course we affect everything around us. I think the people around you that reacted about you taking more responsibility was just reacting because the knew also that they should do the same but were a bit too lazy to get on with that.

  19. So many settle for less and have dropped standards and consider this normal, it is powerful when we choose a different way and reflect to others a way to live and move in this world that is responsible and respectful of everyone.

  20. I totally get what you are saying here about toilets being great schools or markers about human life. They are really obvious places where we can see the attitudes we are living with, everywhere else in life – are we irresponsibly making a mess of things and refusing to admit it is our mess or clean it up? Or are we taking care of our lives and therefore not adding to the mess but instead clearing the collective mess as we go along?

  21. This is such a beautiful and deeply practical sharing of how we impact on life and what responsibility is truly … for if we add to something that we complain of, then we are part of the problem, and our first responsibility is to look at our part and take care of that.

  22. Not contributing to what we do not like in this world is something very noble. Being aware of how we feed things we do not like from this world in obvious and very subtle ways is crucial. There is more than meets the eye in this regard.

  23. I love you how you shared that you didn’t waver with your choices, even when at times it asked more from you to do things, because you were committed. And that is the key, commitment.

  24. What I have to watch is judgement, when another chooses to not behave in the same way as I do eg. when something is not put back in its place and I am looking for it! I find this most annoying! Ummm…. could I be avoiding something here! – a lack of responsibility on my part! What is it I am to learn here? A respect and a deeper level of love? Could it be I am to step up in my authority so that there is a greater love for self and hence around me? No rules but simply love?

    1. Great observation because the judgement is always felt and we need to read why others around us are not honouring themselves and others. Ruled by love not judgement sounds like a great recipe for life.

  25. A great tale of realisations and renunciations. If we listen to our inner self there are always prompts to move on from behaviours that harm us and at the same time everyone else. And when we do we offer others a reflection that they can either choose to learn from or not.

    1. So true Doug, and I loved the way Priscila stayed strong with her convictions to consider other people with the way she wouldn’t double park anymore, even under the criticism or teasing of others (which is nothing short of them attacking the reflection of truth that Priscila was providing which they don’t want to admit they should be doing themselves). It only takes one person to stand up for what is right to make a huge difference in the world.

      1. I love it Michael. Yes every tiny thing makes a huge difference in the world. This is known by many but not lived by almost all. We have become for the most part the couldn’t care less, what’s in it for me society.

  26. I so relate to this!! That niggling feeling when you want to let something slide, but you know if you do, you’re sending a much bigger message than it would appear. It can be annoying, but it’s definitely worth setting the bar at a level that actually supports everybody.

    1. Beautifully said Elodie – I agree. It sure feels so much greater all round when you honor that sense of disturbance in your body of what is not true and follow through with what you know feels true for all.

  27. Haha and I love this article. Especially the title, as this is what got me interested in what was being said. This article is so, so true and how little things we do, that we commit to, may appear as though they have no impact, but truly are hitting big marks in the wider view of things. As has been said in this article, we only think these little things don’t matter and yet when we truly look at things, we are adding to something we have already seen isn’t a great way for us to be. I love the responsibility and stand taken throughout this article and had a smile on my face at every turn. It’s like every sentence backed up what I already knew and did.

  28. Priscila what I love is the fact that despite the criticisms you had something speaking louder within you and you continued to make those changes. Energetic integrity and energetic responsibility and consistency also goes hand in hand. With this in mind a new rhythm is formed and if one day this rhythm is broken something certainly feels not normal then.

    It is those small changes that make a difference – less is worth more…..

  29. The ripple effect of energetic integrity and energetic responsibility flows through everyone as we all live in the same pool of energy.

  30. There are plenty of ‘life schools’ available to us if we’re willing to see these opportunities as such. The potential to practice and develop our energetic integrity and responsibility abounds, each and every day. We’re in God’s school – and how beautiful is that.

  31. It somewhat feels abnormal at first to have an impulse to do something through the counter of my mind or other’s ideals, but when I act on it the space I fill rejuvenates more of who I already am. I fill more of me. If there is opposition to what I have already felt I know there is truth there to be claimed.

  32. What reflection do we offer another if we allow the standards to drop in society? To be more energetically responsible in the world doesn’t really take any effort or time and it confirms to others the power and strength felt when we live and move in this ‘normal’ way.

  33. I felt the same when I first attended a Universal Medicine presentation…that I already knew this respect and decency was missing in the world, I knew something just wasn’t right in the world simply by the feeling I had when I witnessed all the abuse that went on around me. It’s awesome to know that there are others out there who feel the same and are committed to not conforming.

  34. How tempting is to simply do as others do? How justifiable is to do what everybody else do even if this has negative consequences on us from time to time? And, yet, we can choose not to do as others do based on the awareness of what feels natural for us in our bodies and what does not.

  35. We all do indeed have an inner-sense of knowing of what is true and what is not, a quality that we are all born with, one which never really leaves. It is only that we learn to over-ride this sense through our desire to fit in and be part the ‘deemed’ normalities of society. However, it is our natural way of being to be guided by our inner-truth, an inner-quality that represents our equalness, who we are, and as such when we honor the truth we feel we then live in honor of the truth of us all.

  36. I love your degree of commitment Priscila, it is in the little things that all add up to making a strong foundation in our life and our relationship with everyone and everything. I love the responsibility and self love in these words” I MATTER and I MAKE A DIFFERENCE.”

  37. Everything matters, now that is not something I hear very often. You hear everything in moderation but you don’t hear everything matters. What I love about Universal Medicine is that it likens us all to bright, vibrant, pure babies, it says, if we treat babies with such divine care, then why do we change that level of love the older we get? Why do we keep a babies room one way but then litter on the street? Its a beautiful way to look at life, that everyone and everything is important.

  38. It says much about the state of humanity when we are having to have a notice/reminder, or even a rule, about how we behave around others and that is treated as ‘shoulds’ rather than our normal to be respectful and considerate.

  39. I have a big smile on my face in reading this Priscila – which only brightened all the more with your mention of Esoteric Philosophy. I have also heard Serge Benhayon present on this subject in just the terms you have described so well here – i.e. that everything we do impacts upon the whole.
    So, if I park my car too close to another’s, and they then are ‘squeezed’ to open their own car door, I have not been an Esoteric Philosopher one iota – I have only considered ‘me’ in the equation.
    I love that you brought such awareness and responsibility to your actions and choices from a young age – even in an environment which did not reflect to you that this way of such consideration of others was deeply valued. And yes, that it will all come back to bite us karmically, in both senses – by our holding of others in the highest regard, or not.

    1. I relate to having a smile reading this article the whole way through as well and in particular as you say the fact of someone so young in life seeing what was needed from their experience and going for it and not waiting for the world to change. This is significant for us all in that often we look for a ‘perfect storm’ scenario as a time and place ‘we will do that’ and yet here we have a situation where it’s clearly not something to wait for. It is always time for us to honour deeply what we feel and see is needed, no matter what “garbage” is lying in the streets around us.

  40. How we act affects us and the quality of our lives so to commit to these things even when others ridicule it is important because it is all the small details in our lives that make up the quality of our lives.

  41. Thank you Priscila, since I last read your blog I’ve realised I don’t feel resentful to always be the one to change the toilet roll (!) anymore, but instead I just feel the quality of my movements and the opportunity to express my love, care and tenderness into every task. It feels very joyful because it’s about the quality of my being and not the task itself. It’s a beautiful opportunity to bring more love into the world through my movements.

  42. When one person changes one thing it is observed by everyone there, and if another is inspired by what they see, change eventually happens.

  43. ‘In the group we had the opportunity to discuss (in very practical and detailed examples) how the way we behave in our homes, streets, and supermarkets affects everyone.’ The more we behave in a manner that lovingly supports society, slowly society will be willing to also lead by the same example.

  44. I like the reference here, that a decision made in energetic responsibility and claimed becomes “my normal”. So simple and also significant, for if others react, what you are doing has been seen and clocked. A clear path for another to follow.

  45. I love the attention to detail you pay and do not waiver from despite the world being ignorant of the fact how much every little deed counts and contributes to the all, either to true change or to repeating all that what is not working.

  46. It was once suggested to me to leave a place more beautiful than I found it. An example of this is a workplace staff room. The work surface often has coffe stains, water, dirty teaspoons on it. It doesn’t take a moment to have a quick tidy up so it is cleaner for the next person to use.

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