Saturday, December 09, 2006

You, Me...Us

I suppose most of the people have realized I am from the state of Mississippi. Now in all fairness to this state, I do need to state that I am not a native of the state of Mississippi but I've lived in Mississippi since 1985 and our roots run very deep! My children and their children were sprouted here and they have breathed the warm moist morning air, they have ate each other's dirt running down the gravel roads, and they have drank deeply of the sweetwater springs that abound. It's this connection of family that pushes me to do something. Even if I do nothing more than say how I feel about our destructive directions. It somehow makes me feel better knowing that I'm not entirely ignoring my responsibility as a human being.

It just came to me one day that I'd rather go out active and awake rather than lazy and delusional. My Mother was 95 the 8th of December, and she remains independent and still lives by herself. She is a warrior in her own right and she holds almost a century's worth of wisdom! The point being, she remains active even through the pain and contributes what she can to her family, friends, and community. I truly think it's that giving nature she has that has kept her mind so young and sharp. She seems to be doing her part! So I keep throwing these stories and opinions out there if for nothing else than to share with somebody a small piece of my life. Yeah, I know! And I agree that sharing pieces of my life sure isn't much of a contribution! And it's worth certainly wouldn't have much trade and barter value! But there is a value that applies to any contribution within a community regardless what form the contribution takes!

About the only value these words of mine have if any, lies in the foundation of the story. The foundation of anything we do is what we call ''time''! Any sort of contribution has to begin there and then we design and build according to the time we have allotted for this foundation. Our lives are composed of over 8,000 hours a year. Out of those 8,000 hours we spend about 6,000 on essentials such as sleep, work, travel, food, and hygiene. That gives us just 2,000 hours per year to do with as we choose. And I've not even taken into cosideration the social family duties we accomplish daily. Many of us have spouses, children, grandchildren, and neighbors who rely on us for support. So how much time do you think we have left after we total all the above? What it boils down to is ''time'' is a limited resource for all of us and it could well fall into the ''priceless'' category I'm thinking.

So any contribution toward social awareness, support groups, or building communities has value in my eyes. I have truly appreciated the welcomes, along with the acceptance, and support I've encountered at so many of our growing communities. And I have grown to understand the value of the contributors of these communities. I was once told that I had a marvelous writing style. Not that my ego doesn't appreciate a compliment every now and then, but I had to laugh when I read it! It was a show of support from one virtual neighbor to another. And it was appreciated and it made me feel welcome! It's just that I find it hilarious because I know I have no style! I don't format, outline, compose, or attempt to structure anything I write. I haven't had that much education and quite frankly, I would rather just talk as if you were sitting right here. Fitting within pre-ordained, pre-structured mainstream boxes has never been my strong suit I'm afraid.

In order to change it, we have to change the stories! I first came across the thoughts of David Korten when I wrote a piece on The Insurrection of Subjugated Knowledge. I immediately was impressed by Korten's views between the two contrasting models of civilization we are now facing. He termed the two models Empire and Earth Community. And this is basically his definition of what will constitute an Earth Community:
So let’s put this task in its larger perspective. We live in what is arguably the most exciting time in the whole of the human experience. Having reached the limits of domination and exploitation on a small planet, we are called as a species to make an intentional collective choice to bring to an end a 5,000 year era of Empire and take the Step to Earth Community, the creation of a new human civilization based on partnership, caring, and mindful responsibility.

This is the first time in the history of us human beings that we have had an opportunity to choose our future! As our world becomes more interdependent and very fragile, we can either accept the continued control of empirical ideals or we can recognize we are all one family...the human family! The Earth Charter says ''We must join together to bring forth a sustainable global society founded on respect for nature, universal human rights, economic justice, and a culture of peace.'' We are the very ones we've been anxiously awaiting to change our situations and create a better world. If our world can be saved, it will be due to the common people of our planet sharing their stories.

Communities have grown in response to Korten's book, The Great Turning, and many community intiatives have been built around the premise that the people must accept the responsibility of the turning towards a Earth Community. Once the realization hits us that we have been controlled by the stories given us by these empires, we should be mad enough to want ot make a difference. And changing the stories is where we start! In Korten's piece on Changing the Story, he states the need for new compelling stories.
We humans live by stories. Empire has maintained its hold on human societies for 5,000years in part by controlling the shared stories that define our cultural beliefs and values.
In so doing it induces a kind of cultural trance that obscures our ability see the consequences of Empire and the possibilities that Empire denies. Although it may seem absurdly simple, one key to turning the human course from Empire to Earth Community is to displace Empire’s favored stories with compelling stories of the possibilities of Earth Community.

I agree with Korten that we need to change the stories and it's up to each of us to participate. This blogging is merely a tool; a way to share my thoughts and views of the world from my unique little perspective. But as we share more and more of each other's stories, we continue to enhance our relationships, our understanding, and our respect for one another while empowering our communities. And just perhaps we won't let this opportunity escape us, and the idea of an Earth Community can be turned into a reality!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beauty AT, just what I needed this Sunday morning. Have you noticed that when there's a family crisis, making 'time' is more than doable. But we tend to forget or not have 'time' once the crisis passes. All of a sudden, 'time' is at a premium.

I wonder why that is. Perhaps we just need to re-define 'crisis' or give crisis status to at least one day a week. "I won't be in to work today, my family is in the middle of a very serious Sunday".

IS siggy

Sunday, 10 December, 2006  

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