Discuss: What Love Looks Like
Thank you Tim, thank you Terry, and thank you to all the commenters. This piece has really affected me too. I have read it several times, and it has prompted me to challenge and change my thinking on how I spend my time.
Some of you may also be interested in the story of another brave and inspiring young man I recently learned of, Enric Duran, who is challenging that world “where, in order to place a value on human beings, we monetize it” in a very direct way.
He took out loans totalling nearly half a million euros, and then simply donated the money to various social movements working to build alternatives to our unequal and suicidal economic-political system. His video explaining his thoughts behind this ‘financial civil disobedience’ is here, and I feel it sits well alongside Tim’s story:
What an odd interview. There is a huge contradiction going on with Tim that I can’t square. First, I was really disappointed that he says one of the only justified uses of “violence” (he doesn’t define it, no one ever does) is to prevent the collapse of civilization, going on to equate this collapse with the deaths of billions. There is a mental block here, as with most activists, maybe because they feel they are “citizen activists”, in seeing the downfall of civilization as a way of *saving* billions of lives, not only human lives but entire ecosystems which include humans as part of them. Then he goes on to agree that the collapse of Industrial Civilization is inevitable and that humanity can build a better world after (all the time as citizens rather than human beings?) So what is it to be: civilization or something better? Billions of deaths or billions of lives saved? I think Tim still has a bit of working out to do…
That, Keith, seems to me an important point. Thank you for highlighting it. Although I find much else to relish in the interview.
Do you have any thoughts on the Enric Duran video I linked to just above? Since we met at the first Dark Mountain festival I’ve always found you an interesting thinker, and Duran’s actions strike me as an important piece of ‘undermining’.
Ps Without undermining your point, I’d think that hastening ‘the collapse of industrial civilisation’ (which is also rarely defined) would quite likely result in both billions of deaths AND billions of lives saved, no?
Hi Shaun, I haven’t seen the video yet, but I will - thanks for the tip. I may have talked about hastening the collapse of industrial civilization at some point, but from what I can remember I’ve only detailed what is necessary to “bring down” or enable a “more managed” collapse - compared to the one we are currently facing. At the beginning of Underminers I use the phrase “reject the principles of Industrial Civilization and live as though we wish to have a future.” This is probably outside the scope of the article, but I do admire what Tim did, and was trying to persuade organisations like 350.org (big supporters, apparently) to act as a clearing house for upcoming auctions so that others could do the same leading to the undermining of the whole land sale industry - of course this was roundly rejected. :-(
Hi, Mike. Thank you for the encouragement. What you said brought to mind this quotation, from Eden Phillpotts: “The universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.” And I would add, “for our hearts to become more courageous, for us to test out the wings of our spirits.” One thing I think focus on spirit gives us is a willingness to die. I mean literally die, but the more important deaths are those that we live through…stepping out of what’s accepted. For us, perhaps, it’s the American (so-called) dream…which was never an attainable dream and should not be, because it’s so freakin’ isolating, depleting of energies, lonely, and angst-ridden.
When you realize your spirit is connected to something greater, that it may change forms, but never really leaves, that can pave the way for doing things like what DeChristopher or Enric Duran do, or even just the “small” things we can do in our own communities. I’ve not catalogued what I would like personally to bring forward into the next iteration of our development as a species. I suppose that would be a great homework assignment!
I appreciate a lot of what Charles Eisenstein proposes about “decaying currency” (if you see the Enric Duran video that Shaun Fleming posted above [thank you for sharing this, Shaun!], you can link to his blog via the blogroll there). As a new business owner, I’m tempted to try some of the things he’s done, because I think it would help to educate others, without being heavy handed, about the changes we need to make. I would love, too, to start a Transition Initiative here – tried last year and made one good connection out of it – but this area, 20 miles from D.C. feels still mired in things that cannot last.
So to your offer, Mike: Our wisdom circle is with people we know. A visioning circle is meant to be with anyone interested. Other than blogging about this – and I don’t think my blog reaches that many – and maybe offering something to the local papers, I’m not sure how to reach others. I don’t Facebook, so don’t have an electronic network of folks to call upon. So any ideas you have, I would love to hear! Thank you and love, Leigh
“Shaun Fleming”, heh! What an honour of a typo, assuming that you were thinking about my late friend David Fleming (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Fleming_(writer)) when you wrote it :)
“They call it the American dream because you have to be asleep to believe in it” - George Carlin
Sorry, Shaun! Jah…what can I say?
Meh, I’m actually oddly touched!