OUR WORLD TODAY
"It will never rain roses; when we want 
To have more roses we must plant more trees."
---- George Eliot, The Spanish Gypsy

"In our present life or nature, in our externalized surface existence, it's the world that seems to create us;
 but in the turn to the spiritual life it is we who must create ourselves and our world.
 In this new formula of creation, the inner life becomes of the first importance
 and the rest can be only it's expression and outcome.--- Sri Aurobindo

and 

It had done me good to be somewhat parched by the heat and drenched by the rain of life. --- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

As many things as there are that are pleasant and hopeful, few would deny that there are problems of great magnitude that cry out for solution and healing in our world. Just one instance of which we are all aware, is that thousands of children starve and succumb to easily treated illnesses while we look in other directions. Our outer states of affairs are the end result of our accumulated inner states. Concluding conditions are hopeless will change nothing for the better, but if we can come up with purposeful activities and caring attitudes, day by day, we can make a difference, giving hope to many who really need it, including ourselves.

Simply stated, darkness is the lack of light. In this case, the light is good will, instead of hate, generosity instead of greed, understanding instead of ignorance. The assurance and joy that proceed from meaningful expression and work, in the physical, are fruits of the living spirit; not inactivity, despair, bitterness, or self-righteousness. A true spirituality requires of us and inspires us to good works; to feed the poor, to heal the sick.  But it is not enough to repeat, "the Spirit is all that is needed." If any kingdom of Heaven is to come through on earth, more than  intellectual concepts and pious feelings will be required. Following personal inspiration, determined energy of will and action is needed.

When a number of caring individuals act together, a powerful force for good can arise beyond the strength of the numbers. With the wisdom from enough individuals illuminating everyday decisions and common sense, the Earth could supply everyone's physical needs, and be a beautiful place to be. With channels of energy and communication opened, balance can be restored, and we can begin to work on the things we were born for, not just good paying jobs.

Our problems, from one point of view, can be seen as social problems. The course we are on will naturally remove some of the problems (perhaps even over-population) by deaths from war, famine, disease and natural calamities, some a direct result of those of us who have grasped for the good life, while ignoring the widening disparity between the haves and the have nots, and also the ecology of the planet. Those of us who have, still have, the chance for presence of mind, health and hope can direct the energies of our bodies and minds towards ameliorating the woes of those who have lost them, or are losing them by creating novel, worthwhile life styles and practices for both ourselves and our neighbors.

Our advertising, and the propagated assumptions taught in our schools and media, serve to the end of making money, and fitting humans into patterns laid down by industry and commerce. Other considerations are often ignored or actively played down. We buy into the sales pitches too easily, no questions asked. The simplest analysis should show how unwise we are to allow them to waste and destroy the lives of our very own children and our own bodies. Education can not be at the service of economics, and of government. Ideas and wisdom must grow from it's own sources and manifest through individual expression, developed and encouraged by absolute freedom to explore any idea. We must come to see we are too much products of our Corporations, and our State Governments.

As we devote our entire lives to jobs, and the acquirement of money for the items and pleasures we are taught to need, other very real and important aspirations can be forgotten.  Persons in "third world countries", or the poor in the second and first worlds, look enviously on the one-third who do not go hungry, and equate progress with industrialization, as the Western world has done. As fast-food diets and modern life-styles are adopted, for the first time, whole populations develop heart problems, cancers, and a host of degenerative diseases such as arthritis and diabetes. The giant pharmaceutical, medical, industries have such an investment in treating us, few look to the bodies own powers to heal itself when given the food and water it needs.

We might stop and ask about our culpability in exporting to the rest of the world what is proven to be harmful to ourselves. Economics has apparently usurped common sense and assumed domain over our heads and hearts. The truth is, the structuring of our social lives places tremendous influence on our lives. We must open ourselves to finding new ways of doing things and relating to one another. As our awareness and consciousness of where we are and what we really want and do not want increases, new directions can and will be found.

We are close to losing our minds and hearts to forces in the world that would have us purely mechanical beings. As economic and political power and the media are centralized into fewer and fewer hands, any one discovering and expressing live qualities, energies and feelings, can expect to be ignored, ridiculed or even ostracized by those who walk the paths laid down by the society and businesses of the day. Many will say it is too late, and that the monolithic, wasted structures must fall, but we do not have to be destroyed in the process. There is much that can alleviate the suffering that is occurring and will occur in the immediate days ahead.

WHAT CAN BE DONE?

The New Liberty Village graphic pictures some dire events occurring in the world,  just outside our village. We can expect the increase of disasters such as tidal waves, floods, windstorms, earthquakes, disease and drought predicted by the prophets and now the daily headlines in our media. They will occur not in just far away places, but outside, even inside our doors.  None of us are exempt. Because we see weather conditions and other natural occurrences becoming more erratic, and see world events ripe for wars and conflict, we can be motivated to prepare for the worse for our own families, and as many others as possible. New Liberty Village would like to further ways we can help each other Serv-vive if these things should continue to worsen, and to live better, and more fulfilling lives in the present if they do not.

The inhabitants of so called better-off countries are weak in self-sufficiency and intimate cooperation with neighbors. More primitive, agricultural cultures, without dependence on big business and government, and adjusted to doing without the things we take for granted, will often times be in better stead than we when cataclysmic disruptions do occur.  Hopefully, our "progress" has given us some tools that will help -- such as these computers we use -- and there may be new life-styles that can reap the great advantages of working closer to home and to nature, without the drudgery that subsistence living normally requires. Free and voluntary economic association with our neighbors is a very necessary and helpful concept and practice that New Liberty Village is trying to encourage. There are untried ways of working cooperatively with others that are only now being explored.

Perhaps the first thing we can individually and jointly do, is can ask, what is it I want? What is it I do not want? What do we want, what do we not want. As we discover that many of us are undergoing the same questioning process, coming up with similar answers, it makes sense that we can work together to bring them into reality, leaving behind what is no longer working.  We know our visitors have had thoughts and experiences that can add to the general enlightenment. Your ideas, methods, and examples of dealing with the nitty-gritty problems we all face are needed. Help us formulate the right questions.  General admonitions, inspiring speeches, or even in-depth analysis can only accomplish so much. There are things to be DONE. 
 

"Imagine a world in which war and abuse are only dimly remembered, in which there is no starvation, in which harmony among the species prevails and the rape of the earth has ceased. 

In order for such a condition to come about, we must believe that it is possible; then we will find the way to make it happen, for "faith is the substance of things hoped for." Our actions emerge out of our visions and ideals.  We humans, in our role as co-creators with the "Higher Power," have plenty of work to do.  

There is work to be done at the personal level, confronting our own fears and doubts and taking responsibility for resolving our dilemmas; at the community level, using inevitable conflicts as opportunities to transcend our petty selves and limited perceptions; and at the societal level, building new structures which support and nurture rather than coerce and brutalize."              Thomas H. Greco 



Your billfold, checkbook, and credit card are your most lethal weapons. Politicians are financed by corporations. Corporations are financed by consumers. If you buy the product of an unethical company, you are part of the problem. If you refuse to buy the product, you become part of the solution.       

I applaud the ethical companies, usually privately-, often family-owned. Paul Hawken, of Smith & Hawken, is an example of a modern businessman who maintained his ethics while getting rich. Ben & Jerry seem to be two others. Kohler, the Wisconsin company that makes bathroom fixtures, is employee-owned, a model of how a company can be successful, ethical, and a fine community asset. My current heartache is how the Monsantos are getting taxpayer-paid subsidies on the front end and taxpayer-paid follow-up on the back end--which is disease. The Monsantos reap the profits, taxpayers and the environment pay the cost. One can only hope that the recent tobacco industry lawsuit awards set sufficient precedence to one day make the Monsantos, Dows, and DuPonts pay the cost of the diseases they have created. (The rise of chemical company fortunes parallels the rise of the disease-care industry.) But how can the people be paid for their suffering? And it's no good to say that consumers are responsible for their purchases. Sure, we are, but on what do we base our decisions? The government is telling us what to eat. Often that is what mega-corporation lobbyists sell the USDA food panel.

With minimal research, one quickly comes to the conclusion that the FDA and Monsanto are in collusion--in fact have revolving door employees-- and have subverted food standards for profit. Conflict of interest at its worst. Criminal at its least. Who's gonna put the FDA in jail? E.F. Schumacher put into published words what we all innately know: beyond a certain size, all human creations become ugly monsters. Other than Dino the dinosaur, have you ever heard of a good monster?

Economic growth is not only unnecessary, but ruinous (Alexander I. Solzhenitsyn).

Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell (Edward Abbey).

"Development of character consists solely in moving toward self-sufficiency." (Quentin Crisp)

Gene Gerue author of How to Find Your Ideal Country Home http://www.ruralize.com/

 

 

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THE WORLD TODAY DISCUSSION GROUP

  Please feel free to enter the discussion of our present day world and what can be done to make it a better place to live!


April29, 1999
subject: Perspective

If we could shrink the Earth's population to a village of precisely 100 people with all existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look like this:

There would be:
57 Asians
21 Europeans
14 from the Western Hemisphere (North and South) and
8 Africans
51 would be female
49 would be male
70 would be non white
30 white
70 would be non Christian
30 Christian
50% of the entire world's wealth would be in the hands of only 6 people and all 6 would be citizens of the United States.
80 would live in substandard housing.
70 would be unable to read.
50 would suffer from malnutrition.
1 would be near death
1 would be near birth.
Only 1 would have a college education.
No one would own a computer.

When one considers our world from such an incredibly compressed perspective, the need for both tolerance and understanding becomes glaringly apparent.
   Author unknown      

January 30, 1998

subject: Killing is Killing

I believe that the world would be a better place if we didn't condone any kind of killing, be it abortion, the electrocution chair or bombing someone from afar. When we condone any kind of murder then we become de-sensitized to the tragedy of death. I believe that life is the most precious thing in the world and our efforts should be about making it a reality than making death more accessible.  lani 



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