We cannot segregate the human heart from the environment outside us and say that once one of these is reformed everything will be improved. Man is organic with the world, his inner life molds the environment and is itself also deeply affected by it. The one acts upon the other and every abiding change in the life of man is the result of these mutual reactions.

– Shoghi Effendi

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My name is Kēphen Merancīs, I am a Mahayana Buddhist living in the heartland of America. This website is the online archive of my essays, articles and poetry made available to the public.  These writings can be shared or used by the general public for private or non-profit use, free of cost as long as copyright laws are followed and I am given full credit for the piece.*

I am the founder of The Ardent Axiom, a platform for mental health advocacy, as well as Mahayana Buddhist teachings. I am a behavioral health advocate and a follower of the Middle Way.  I read and write about various topics including Buddhism, suicide awareness and prevention, nature, astronomy, genealogy, behavioral health and psychology, environmentalism, as well as some fictional writing.

We all need a refuge in life, a non-self-destructive way to come to terms with things, to clear our minds and transcend our problems. Since the year 2000, writing has been my refuge. It has been the keeper of my deepest secrets and tragic memories, the listener to my every rant and rave. The recorder of my hopes, dreams and wishes. The pen-pal to my soul. It has consoled me and it has taught me things about myself I never could have learned any other way. It uplifts me and inspires me, it challenges me and humbles me. It is my love affair, my obsession, my sanctuary.

As a writer and a thinker, I am influenced by: Arthur Schopenhauer, Carl Sagan, Epictetus, Friedrich Nietzsche, Henry David Thoreau, Jane Goodall, John Muir, Kahlil Gibran, Lucius Annaeus Seneca, Marcus Aurelius, Rainer Maria Rilke, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Dawkins, Robert Frost, Sam Harris, Thich Nhat Hanh, Viktor Frankl, and Walt Whitman.

Their words have inspired, liberated and enlightened those of us who seek deeper meaning in not only the world, but in life and within ourselves. Of all the things I have learned from such people, the greatest is mindfulness. The awareness of ourselves and others, of all things within this undeniably interconnected existence. Through this perception of reality we attain the three quintessential gems for living meaningful everyday lives: knowledge, compassion, and action. You can learn more about me and what I do by visiting my advocacy page.

*{According to the Copyright Law of the United States, Title 17 of the United States Code, all written content provided by the author is the sole property of that author and any reproduction or otherwise plagiarism of that content is strictly prohibited and such violations will be prosecuted under U.S. federal law, regardless of the national origins of the violator.

The photos that appear in the header on the desktop version of this site were taken by me in Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone National Park, and Glacier National Park. Therefore, as my property through created content they also fall under the copyright law and cannot be used for profit without my consent.}

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If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health or substance use crisis, please access my immediate assistance resource page.  A comprehensive listing of online and phone resources and services is also available.

Disclaimer:  By navigating this website and utilizing the information and resources provided herein, you declare an understanding of and are acknowledging that I, Kephen Merancis, am not a licensed psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, counselor, therapist, or any other clinical behavioral health practitioner that can diagnose or treat a mental health condition or substance use disorder.  By navigating this website and utilizing the information and resources provided herein, you also declare an understanding that any resources, information, advice, recommendations, and support services provided are non-clinical in nature and are not a replacement or substitute for the mental health services such as therapy or medical advice, typically provided by a licensed behavioral health clinician or physician.