Saturday, March 15, 2008

Earth Day No. 38 - The Summer of Love, Two.

The real Earth Day, the one that takes place on the Spring Equinox, carefully planned by a small group of true and stalwart environmentalists in 1969, continues. On Thursday, March 20, 2008 at 1:48 a. m. EDT (Equinox) a figure will step up to the Peace Bell at the United Nations and a sweet chime will ring out into the night, lingering for all gathered to hear. At the same moment across the world other bells will ring, a symphony of sounds that speak a long and patient dedication to “Peace, Justice, and Care of the Earth.”

The real Earth Day has been kept for 38 years without fail. The faux event, Oil Day, is surrounded by far more noise but more people every day are coming to understand the true meaning of that day in April. If that day had a motto it would be, “Profit, Power, and Exploitation of Earth.”

There was a time when caring about clean air and water united all of us. In 1967 when the Summer of Love bloomed in Berkeley, California, all Americans believed that they stood on the cusp of a time when we would naturally assure that the rivers to flow clean, all shared a common vision for unpolluted air, and war was obviously a problem to be ended. It was a future fervently hoped for by nearly all of us.

It did not happen. The appearance of controversy was carefully manufactured by the same people who now collude to assert ownership of the air we breathe and the water we drink; given the starkness of our future today the words that divide us fade in significance.

Liberal – Conservative – Republican – Democrat – Man – Woman – Black – White. They are just words.

All Americans need to examine how we arrived at this juncture in time. Each of us needs to take immediate action to get off the grids. It is the grids, installed by that ugly concatenation of government and corporations, that caused the problems and divided us. The people of greed need our lives and money to survive; you can stop them by climbing off the grids.

Take this simple yes – no test to find out just how entrenched you are in the grids.

• Do you pay a mortgage every month?

• Do you pay an electric bill every month?

• Do you pay to put gas in your automobile?

• Do you have car payments to make every month?

• Do you pay every month for cable television?

• Do you pay for your Internet access?

• Do you pay for your phone service?

• Do you pay taxes, not fees for essential services?

• Do you pay every month for the water you drink? Use to wash?

• Have you ever paid a traffic ticket?

• Do you pay for tags on your car?

• Do you believe politicians are telling you the truth?

• Do you believe that the media is unbiased and reports honestly and completely?

• Do you think that elections accurately reflect the votes cast?

• Do you know where the food in your refrigerator was grown?

• Was your food grown within just a few miles of your home?

• Do you know, for sure, that Monsanto had nothing to do with producing the food you eat?

• Do you take dietary supplements in hopes of being healthier?

• When you become ill, do you go to a physician?

• Do you take prescription drugs?

• Do you have investments in the stock market that you depend on for income?

• Are you dependent on a pension that is invested in the stock market?

• Do you have a credit card with an unpaid balance?

Count up your “YES” answers. If you answered 1 - 4 questions in the affirmative, you are on a grid, but you are close to being free; good for you. With 5--11, you are Grid Challenged; time to exit. If you scored 12--18, you are Grid Entrenched: you need serious help to extract yourself. Anywhere above 18, you are totally Grid Locked.

Doubtless, you think living this way is normal. Add up the amounts you pay every month just to survive: you will see that mere survival is consuming the bulk of your earnings. You probably have moments when you wonder if there is an exit. There is.

There are two things you need to know right now:

Your situation is not ‘normal.’ Throughout human history, most people have not had to pay money just to continue to live.

And you can change your situation, for yourself and for your children. At the same time, you can build a life that is filled with the things that bring solid community, real happiness, and the leisure to enjoy them. You can get off the Grids and be free to enjoy your life, to find those things you never had time for and which, on your current path, will never be yours.

Most of us work ceaselessly to have the time to do what we love. If you reduce the cost of just surviving, your life is effectively longer because you are spending it in ways that make you happy.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness...”

Happiness is getting off the Grids. Happiness is greeting your neighbors with delight and knowing you matter to them, that you are respected. Happiness is knowing you and your family are safe. Happiness is caring for others and feeling your own life extended through strengthened relationships. Happiness is having the time to make each moment worth remembering.

This can be your future.

You can wake up in a home that you know will be there for your great-grandchildren. It keeps you cool in the summer, warm in the winter, without effort or cost: it is designed right. This technology is available today. You get up and go out to your garden to pick berries for breakfast. They are natural anti-oxidants, the kind of food your ancestors took for granted, that kept your great-grandparents healthy. Much of your food you grow yourself or get from local sources. You can see it growing, so you know it is being done right. The food is delicious, it makes your mouth water and satisfies you: you do not hunger for sweets.

Once, you worked in an office building. Now, you own your own business, which you run out of your own home. You could have chosen any of a dozen things to do, but you picked the one that you find most satisfying. You earn less in money, and much more in satisfaction. Your kids are doing the same; the whole world is their school now. They mastered physics by the time they were 14 or so, and now they are taking time to decide what they want to do. No one you know is worried about money.

All the money is local. Your local ‘bank’ is something you can visit online, but you don’t have to give it much thought. You know who runs it, the woman who used to be your son’s 4th grade teacher. She handles that part time, when she is not teaching weaving. The Board meets occasionally, and you were on it for a while before you cycled off. It is simple, transparent, and therefore impossible to steal.

There is little theft now. Honesty is reinforced by practices, all common law, that make stealing unprofitable. There are no big concentrations of money, no easy way to use power to steal. Those who thought otherwise have found out that it would not work and that trying was not a good idea.

There are not many elections: your community handles matters in your local town meetings. There are no standing armies: the rest of the world has followed the example of the Second American Revolution. Everyone you know can explain the principles contained in the Constitution.

You are healthy; you stopped taking supplements years ago, after the Change. You have discovered the ways of healing that the Grids had worked to keep from you. Physicians earn less, but they now feel better about their craft because they are now assisting people to actually become healthy.

For you, the moment of change might have been when you discovered that the cancer that was killing your wife, could be cured. Or it may have been when they turned off your electricity. Or when your 19-year-old daughter came home from Iraq, the victim of rape that was ignored. She hanged herself from the tree where you had built her tree house back when she was 7. We all had that moment, one when we saw what was really happening.

None of us looked back.

Today, you love your life; you love waking up every morning because life today is exactly what nourishes your spirit and brings joy.

You are looking forward to being a grandfather. Your automobile uses no gasoline, and you know it is guaranteed to last a lifetime. That is what you expect from the world, quality in all things. The furniture in your home will last for generations. The former attorney down the street built that furniture in the shop you helped him set up. We all changed, and it was a good thing.

Welcome to the real America – Celebrate Earth Day and remember what matters.

It only sounds impossible. The means exist; individuals have solved all the problems and individuals are coming together to share. You will find those answers for yourself at the Summer of Love Two this coming Solstice in Berkeley, California.

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