Thursday, March 19, 2009

Time is of the essence

We are indeed living in a changed world. For one thing time is of the essence in responding to the crisis in global environment. Most of us remain in denial about many aspects of our current times such as the diminishing returns on mining all sorts of fuels, metals and material glory that we have been robbing from the Earth, including iron, copper, oil, coal, forests, water, glaciers, and clean air. The act of changing one's own conscience is more difficult than any other human endeavor.

Some of us live in poverty. In fact the economic experience of poverty is enriching to the soul. The persons who have been hoarding what is loosely known as money are actually poverty stricken in terms of character and loving. They have built moats around their castles by using lobbyists to commit criminal influence against the heart and soul of democracy, which is a form of governance intended to be all inclusive. The consequences to them will be long and harrowing. While they are going through the crisis of examing their own responsibilities in contributing to the present economic shambles, which they've left for all of us together to manage, we must be merciful to them and recognize that we let them get away with it. We almost all have participated in this consumerist culture. Righteous anger can move us to act to change the roles and responsibilities of our government. Vengeance is a waste of time though, and justice cannot prevail in the presence of hatred.

So if you are cursing AIG or any other corporate entity remember that the rest of us let go of the essential citizen duty of vigilance. Journalists are probably swimming in this soup of regret far more than the rest of us because it has so impacted their lives' work directly. However, the growth of a democratic internet has enabled all of us to participate in revealing truth from our individual experiences in ways never before possible.

We are now in the spring of the year when we are all more aware of hope blooming in the gardens of our yards and neighborhoods. In the long run, even the short run, we will have to work cooperatively to replant the forests, clean the rivers and streams, restore oceans-- if that is any longer possible. When we change our way of living to a sustainable one it will be inclusive and will establish new values into the democratic process. This may indeed flower into a new era of creative expression, art and innovation, and that is where we must place our focus to move forward rather than sinking into the bog of dead consumerist capitalism. Many of our children have greater challenges ahead than even our own parents and grandparents faced.

If we collectively believe that this is do-able, that life after oil will continue, the economy will recover in whatever new form it is necessary for it to take. Acting in the present to help each other prepare for difficult climatic and resource depleted times, which were the brought on by collective ignorance and wrong action, is what will bring our global traditions, cultures and values into alignment to reveal a more cohesive sense of personhood shared throughout the world.

Boundaries are shared responsibilities which protect us, our traditions and identities as separate groups and beings. We will not want to elimate them altogether, but if we are able to stay on the correct path, we will be learning from now on how to share them without arrogance. Diversity is a richness which ought to be respected and preserved. In this context diplomacy must always be the highest rule of our world. "Doing unto others" is the main focus of healthy collective governance within our own state and without our own borders. No act of violence should ever be mistaken by us as anything other than the work of impoverished minds.