Listen to the podcast; join the follow-up teleconference at www.compression.org. This podcast topic is “Deep Changing Our Collective Behavior.” Learn how to address complex issues, think from alternate viewpoints, originate solutions, and dialog with others.
Teleconference: Of all our existential threats, our biggest is “psychic numbness” – blindness to our situation, reluctance to act, inability to Deep Change. (The psychologist Carl Jung might have called it a “psychic epidemic.”) The desire for convenience has dug deep habitual ruts into us until we think our present living is normal. Obviously, we need to localize economies in a 21st century sense. How do we wake up and re-orient?
Critics of the maladies and inequities of the present system are many. All of us gripe from our viewpoint — or our self interest. Many initiatives promote “environmental justice.” Activists do not see social inequities as independent of environmental degradation. It’s easy to stall out in protests without really doing much of anything differently. Environmental action is in at least three categories:
- Government policy (presuming that governments remain effective and that people will comply)
- Influence the thinking of critical numbers of people (what we are trying to do); otherwise demand public attention by demonstrating.
- Just do it. Many local projects are creating local economies as best they can.
Short of social collapse, we cannot expect those who benefit from the present system to give up easily. Expect disinformation campaigns, and perhaps much worse.
Alternatives to the present system have to be created: intentional communities; intentional local economies. They learn to dialog, and learn how to organize for learning.
Those really doing differently now are mostly small-scale local programs. They have to circumvent the rules of the present system with work-arounds like land trusts, etc. Navigating these is a learning process, but the critical issue is whether a project furthers environmental and ecological revitalization or stalls out. Questions:
What short-term goals should environmental pioneers set?
What measurements should we use, if any, to indicate that we are revitalizing nature?