This time of year is always great for perspective and introspection. I so appreciate the Native perspective on cycles that every day, month and year is the start of a new cycle. It is so important that we look at every cycle as a chance to learn, a chance to forgive the past and to start a new beginning.
I have always been a student of how humanity changes and how quickly we adapt and adopt new ways, and yet we carry on as if significant changes are not happening. I looked up the root meaning of the word “change” and to my surprise part of the root was “crooked.” That helped me understand how change happens; it is never straightforward, and as a society, it is rarely a conscious act.
Being born in 1952, I am amazed how much change I have experienced and how much change I still believe is yet to come. I have to be humble as I know that every generation thinks they are smarter than the one before, and that they think they are unique. To me, this is part of the ever-hopeful foundation of the human family.
The trends that represent the leading edge being adapted today have so many roots. Looking back on the idealism of the 60’s, one can now see how those visions are becoming reality today. Really though, the roots of change are deeper and reflect humanity’s eternal hope to do better. I love how Prince Charles says that organic farming is a revival of traditional wisdom. Part of what we see today is re-member-ing that there are answers from the past.
Part of my generation has been driven to rediscover and recover the wisdom of the past, which was quickly being swept aside by narrow science and a materialistic society. These many fibers of recovered wisdom are now weaving a fabric of a new human society and lifestyle that combines traditional wisdom with modern awareness. This fabric/movement of a new human society is still lacking a name, and I, of course, prefer the name Organic.
I recently heard Michael Pollan (who has been under attack for his advocacy) speak at the Bioneers annual conference. He quoted Mohandas Gandhi, who showed the deepness of faith in the following saying: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” We are part of a movement that will win even if we don’t have a clear name!!
The recent debates in Congress and Copenhagen have been very disappointing, as they should not be debates. Instead, we should be talking about how to encourage an ethos of personal action and responsibility. We need to be thrifty and caring of the environment as a reflection of our values, not because of some debate over threats of shortages. In the health discussions, we need to be talking about prevention through education and services, not just insurance plans. So many subjects can be answered by adopting a life perspective of serving the community versus a self-centered world view. We owe it to each other.
Looking forward to 2050, the reality that our children and grandchildren will face is a very serious challenge for us. We don’t need to debate the need to be responsible for the future as it is our duty, and the future of humanity is dependent on our wise steps today. We should be thankful that we all have the opportunity to live meaningful lives and really make a difference. I love the saying “Lend a hand,” and I always add “where you can.”
I appreciate the opportunity to share my thoughts and hope that they resonate with yours as we all move forward together. Blessings to all.