By Jack Adam Weber L.Ac., Dipl. C.H.
Contributing Writer for Wake Up World
To my mind, Revolution is not black and white, or symmetrical. Some argue that each of us is part of the problem, for we each contribute to environmental degradation. On one level this is true. On another level, it’s not true.
Why? Because we are embedded in a system largely beyond our control, a pervasive matrix built upon and functioning on unsustainable technology and deceit. Many of us would gladly switch to sustainable technology if it were more affordable (i.e. subsidized like the toxic commercial goods) and if it were mandated. Also, you and I are not the ones lying to each other about the safety of our fuels and pesticides, for example. Though you and I may use them, we are not lying and cheating to sell and consume more of them.
This is a big difference between “us” and “them,” then, a distinction often dismissed as untrue. Not all shadows are equally dark. Further, for any of us to drop out of the matrix as we know it would render us largely ineffective contributors to society, given that one person’s small carbon footprint won’t make enough difference for the whole, unless a bunch of us quit … a whole bunch. If you want to set that example, however, hats off to you. But, I think it needs to be a massive cooperative effort, which I’m up for. And we need to keep fighting for it, to whatever degree we are moved.
Here’s the iconic Alan Watts on all this:
Indeed, we have to keep finding ways to exit the matrix and to fight it back. But to do this, ironically, we have to be in it to a degree, if we are fighting for more than our own personal stake in enjoyment. Of late I encapsulate this paradoxical position as, “being in the rat race to beat it.” It’s about intent and knowing our mission.
But for you or me to give up basic technological conveniences would severely impact our social relations, ability to make a living, and participate meaningfully in the global dialogue and our revolution—unless perhaps, we all did it together, which doesn’t appear to be happening anytime soon. So, in a sense we are bound to one another, who are in turn bound to the deeply entrenched, industry-driven, capitalistic complex which humans have built up especially vigorously in the last couple hundred of years.
In other words, it’s not your fault, or my fault. Well, maybe just an incy, wincy bit. So, please don’t take on the blame, and at the same time, do your part to bring in the love, every day, which love is both resistance (fierce love) and creating real organic abundance in body, soil, and heart among us.
Now, per Part I of this series, ReVOLUTION: When Enough is Enough, the best way I can see to dent Big Business is to boycott their products and rally against their efforts of takeover. There is really no better grassroots effort I can come up with. It’s in our hands, truly, and we simply have to keep spreading the word and resisting every chance we get. The corporatocracy is ruthless and we need to fight with fierce love (Yang) while not giving up the tenderness of our hearts (Yin), which is our seed for a new world, which world begins anew each day. So, we fight back the demons while simultaneously building the righteous new community of Earth-revering fertility. Both are necessary. My friend and fellow activist here on the Big Island, Blake Watson, describes this as one hand (the Yang hand) holding itself out saying “halt!” and the other hand (the Yin hand) creating the “new” world.
‘Many people are only supportive for a portion of the solution (the creating a “new” healthy world part), but not the other vital one as well (standing up for justice). I think of the “body of change” having two hands: one hand is up and is saying “no” to the ongoing damage, and acts as a protector and stop sign, while the other hand is coming from the center and through creative action is bringing about the “new” healthier world we want to see.
Sometimes people get hung up on one hand to the detriment of the other. They are both needed and are connected — as one body. As a movement for positive change, we need to accept and support both hands in this body — no matter what our particular role in it. It’s good to remember that many of those people in communities that have been harmed the most by chemical pollution, for example, are not in a position to do anything other than fight back. Many are in poor “minority” areas or workplaces, making it all the worse. It’s a history of haughty Caucasian environmentalism that seems to influence “just look at the positive” types of activism as “the only kind” that is vital and helpful.’
Some of you also contributed your ideas after the last article in this series, so please see the end of this article for encapsulations of some of those comments. If you have other ideas you’d like to share, please do so in the comments!
One way to view our actions of resistance is on a spectrum. These days I don’t fight the machine to save the world, per se (though this would be wonderful), so much as because it’s the right thing to do, in a relative sense — to save and protect the quality of life that I can at this time, for now. This brings up the notion of “relative revolution,” which is doing what’s right for the sake of what’s right and to make a difference, no matter how seemingly minor. Carolanne Wright speaks to this notion as well in the first comment at the end of this article.
Relative revolution is therefore not black and white, or linear. It’s based on assessing reality and acting in accord with what is most likely happening in the world. Each of us will have a different sense of this and a different response, and together our heartfelt actions are the change. So, one form of Revolution is to save the planet and our species from the threat of collapse and from toxifying ourselves to oblivion through all the poisonous practices we engage in. This is Revolution in the global sense, with a capital “R,” where we act with the intent to save the whole in one fell swoop. And then there is local revolution, with a small “r”, which might look more like doing our part to save a little of what we love and to make the ride a little easier for those we live with, including the innocent animals and plants that have no say in the matter.
Humanity has chipped away for millennia at those who abuse power. Time is running out for us. In the last article, and just previously, I mentioned how I think the best way that we can destabilize the powers that be is to boycott buying their stuff. Again, this is possible to a certain degree and it’s going to take a lot of us. I don’t honestly see enough people boycotting the big corporations to topple the system, and because many of us are not giving up our laptops, iphones, cars, or grid-tie anytime soon. What’s more, these devices and conveniences usually include unsustainable mining and drilling practices, as well as sweat labor.
This takes us to the concept of relative revolution, which is that any bit that we can deprive Big Business of our hard-earned currency — maybe by boycotting the companies for which the sacrifice is not so severe and that doesn’t terribly diminish our participation in the global dialogue — is the best we can do today. In this sense, however, our intent is not to topple them, per se, though this would be a great result! We simply do what we can to contribute to the resistance, for relative gain and sanity. This more realistic approach (while holding as a lesser possibility that anything is possible) can save us frustration and energy.
Now, part of the time limit I refer to with regard to relative revolution is because of climate change. Regardless of what your beliefs about the causes of, or reasons for, climate change, the situation seems to be getting worse. And worse than mainstream media and science report. The last time there was this much CO2 in the atmosphere human beings did not exist on Earth. Whether humans are merely contributing to these high levels, or largely responsible, we need to reduce our contribution to the problem, fast. Yet, it’s not happening fast enough, and in some of the most important ways, not at all. Add to this the harsh reality that we have not even experienced the effects of carbon emissions from the last forty or so years, due to the lag-time between cause and effect of when emissions are released and when they contribute to warming. That’s right. The warming effects we are experiencing now are from emissions released decades ago, and our emissions today won’t be felt until decades into the future.
Due to the lag-time in emissions effects, this means that we are in for a minimum .6 degrees C global temperature rise over pre-industrial temperature levels. This is in addition to the current modest assessment of .85 degrees C level over pre-industrial temperature levels we are at now, even if we stopped all toxic emissions today. So, a .6 degrees C increase is “baked in” to warming at this point, yielding a bare minimum rise of 1.45 degrees C above pre-industrial levels over the next few decades. But the situation is worse than this, due to other sources of emissions and positive feedback loops.
Two degrees C above baseline is widely considered by some scientists to be the threshold we can’t pass in order to avoid runaway greenhouse effect … which means we won’t be able to reverse climate change, barring a miracle we currently have no solution for. Below is a short video of activist Kevin Hester from New Zealand presenting to the Ministry of the Environment, citing an article by The Guardian that 4 degrees C rise has been admitted by Shell Oil in internal documents, which certainly puts a hypocritical spin on their latest Arctic mission:
What’s more, there is now a methane release problem, referred to as the “clathrate gun,” alluding to the clathrate deposits of methane bubbling up from the Earth due to warming oceans and melting permafrost that previously held these deposits in frozen check. A clathrate is defined as, “a compound in which molecules of one component are physically trapped within the crystal structure of another.” Methane is a hundred times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and regardless of what you attribute climate change to, large amounts of methane, with more threatening, are currently escaping from the Earth’s mantle into the atmosphere. Many believe that this clathrate gun — the releasing of the methane into the atmosphere — is more worrisome than carbon emissions and any natural cycles the Earth is passing through. Here’s Dahr Jamail from truthout.org:
Civilization as we know it might be in for a collapse. This may not be the worst thing, seeing that transformation necessarily involves the death of one thing for the next. In this case, we have a diseased system in place with deeply entrenched corrupt, immoral, and powerful policies. All this needs to die, and some part of humanity might have to go with it, since at this point we inextricably tied to it. How we prepare for collapse is crucial. This is a tough position to arrive at, but it’s what I think might be the most likely scenario unless we can turn all this around in a New York minute.
This brings me back to local, relative revolution, whose express purpose is not to topple all the powers that be, nor to preserve the proliferation of humans at the current rate, though it would be great if it turned out that way. Now, this doesn’t mean that we need to give up. Far from it. It does, however, put our own morality and shadow self on the chopping block.
Why? Well, I’ve always said that people show their true colors when they no longer need anything from you. Similarly, if we no longer can save the whole from collapse (and we don’t know this for sure, we can only go with what seems likely), and if our species is in the deep trouble it appears to be, how do we act? Do we trash the planet even more and just party our brains out? Or, do we act with dignity, more compassion, and more love especially because our world as we know it is falling part?
To boil this down to a more concrete example, how do you behave when your pet or loved one is dying? Personally, I love animals and humans even more in these situations; my heart breaks open to them. How about you? This love is liberating and quite frankly enlightening. So, this love, from our broken-open hearts, can allow us to participate in transformation by collapse in style, as the generation that has inherited, and can perhaps offer a modicum of consolation to, the legacy of humanity.
For me, this means I continue to do what’s right. I continue to resist GMOs, pesticide spraying, oil drilling in the arctic, fracking, mountain top removal mining, animal abuses, corrupt politics and war, and all the other acts of insult to our world.
So, where do you stand? What is your perspective of the world situation and where does this place you in your revolutionary intent? Do you think and feel the fate of humanity can be saved? Do you even think it’s the best idea? Please share any thoughts with me and the other readers.
Getting clear on this, especially by looking at some of the facts, while upholding intellectual and emotional honesty, can help determine your focus, and perhaps just as importantly, your intent. It can determine where you stand in the face of what reality you believe, and thereby save you some suffering and help you channel your energy most effectively.
With that in mind — thank you to all who posted suggestions and comments on Part I of this article. I expected to write this article sooner, but the scope of it took some time to become clear. So, as promised, I have encapsulated the comments that came in from readers on the past article. Your effort and comments have stoked my heart!
Without further ado, then, here for your consideration are the comments that came in from the last article, which might help you in light of where you stand with your view on revolution and how to contribute most meaningfully to the biosphere at this very strange and poignant time in history. Note, these views do not necessarily represent my own; I am merely sharing them back into the flow.
Please share any new ideas in the comments because you never know who will be influenced by your input; we need to keep each other creatively inspired! Peace out y’all, and thank you.
From Fellow Reader/Revolutionaries:
1) By Carolanne Wright
I think many times we are conditioned to go out and change the world in a larger than life way, to make an impact with a big bang. Then we become frustrated and disempowered when we don’t get the results we had envisioned. But I realized many years ago that it’s the small acts, over time, that really shift the world towards the positive.
Grassroots movements are a prime example. Just keep on chipping away at the foundations of these corrupt systems, through petitions, protests, boycotts and educating people. Eventually they will topple (hopefully before we completely destroy the planet). It takes a multi-pronged approach on many levels. Here are some examples of how I try to “walk the talk” in my daily life:
- Bicycle/walk as much as possible for errands.
- Very little meat consumption.
- Utilizing reusable bags for grocery shopping and bulk items.
- Hand-wash laundry to save on electricity and water.
- Grow vegetables in the summer.
- Buy locally made products and food.
- Purchase very little packaged food.
- Daily spiritual practice.
- Buy up-cycled household goods/furniture from thrift stores. Not only a good deal, but it reduces waste, supports a worthy non-profit and diverts money from rampant consumerism.
- Recycle like crazy.
- Support businesses like Etsy, where the profits go directly to the small, independent business, instead of a large corporation. Many of the items are made by hand in the U.S./Canada.
I also believe community gardens can solve a large portion of our troubles by:
- Providing affordable, organic food locally.
- Significantly reducing the pollution created by the transport of food.
- Building a sense of community.
- Teaching kids about the cycle of growing food, which helps to instill respect for nature and encourages healthy eating habits.
Moreover, I don’t think we should underestimate the power of kindness, generosity and paying it forward in creating a better world. Anger is a formidable motivating force, but love, in the end, is stronger. This site has a range of ideas on how we can create a more kind, just and sane world by beginning with ourselves: www.kindspring.org/ideas
Lastly, I think we need to support sustainable technology with hard cash. There are wonderful Indiegogo and Kickstarter campaigns for truly amazing technology that would solve our environmental and economic troubles. We cannot rely on the government to fund these solutions — as it’s too entwined with fossil fuels — so it’s up to us.
The beauty of crowd-funding is that every bit counts, even small donations. But we have to go without the latte for a day, and instead take five minutes to donate that cash in order for the campaign to really take off.
Four of my favorite projects are listed (and linked) in this article: A Green Revolution: Eco-Friendly Technologies That Can Solve Our Energy Crisis
2) Thom Foote suggests:
A sci-fi novel by Asimov titled, Foundation Trilogy. It’s central precept is “Social Engineering as a mathematical tool that describes how to change mass society’s “direction” in order to achieve a desired goal consistent with revolution.
3) Mary Batson says:
Good article. Get angry – and realize that isn’t enough. Allow the grief and deep inner sadness that hides below that anger to surface, to bring your heart to the harshness, standing in the center, dancing with the tension of both/and. Let those you reach out to know you feel love as well as anger – for love is what will guide your anger-turned-action, will sustain it, will sustain *you when your back is against the wall, when you’re told it isn’t worth it, that nothing you’re doing works.
As I was told yesterday, “You keep trying to do things that can’t be done.” May I go to my grave trying – at least then, I’ll rest there peacefully. My response at the time? Sure it can. It happens one person at a time, with one person at a time, and it starts within. Start small, start “close in,” as the poem goes. That may not make headlines, but I assure you, it DOES make change. My two cents’ – your two cents’ – at a time.
4) Caleb Hock says:
I have been working to start the revolution through waking up those around me. Not by standing on a soap box and screaming at the top of my lungs, this is a quick way to be ignored. By talking to people, asking questions to get them to realize what is nestled deep within, and the personal power they hold. By giving them access to the tools of their own spirit, I see a revolution I call “the gentle waterfall” beginning. It may be silent, it is surely not violent, and by awakening people to the truth within themselves, I’ve already seen a massive change in the lives of those I’ve come in contact with.
Always remember, violence will not get us what we are striving for, it will only replace them with us, and keep many who would stand on our side from standing up at all.
5) Castley recommends:
The “Ascension Movement.” It is based on all of us raising our vibration and moving into the 4th density as a whole. In that density, there is no “self” to look out for. We are all a whole. Goodness will manifest. Darkness will then have nothing to feed on, and leave. From what I read, we are getting there, and we have HELP! The Galactic Federation of Light is a great site to read about the movement and our entrance into the Age of Aquarius.
6) Solange says:
I have to disagree on so called “climate change,” at least on the point that it has been completely caused by humans.
We are in NORMAL cycles of the sun, which goes through cooling and warming cycles. Now, we are in a cooling phase, having just left the warming phase. There is no doubt the climate is changing and will continue to change. However, its main cause is not humans, although, I am sure we are not helping. Some evidence of this is that all of what is happening here on Earth is also happening on all the other planets in our system that have no humans. Yes, we need to take action, but we also need to get the reasons straight. Those who drudged up “global warming” in the first place, realizing and hijacking what is natural, have done so in order to profit from it. Thank you for the great article. Yes, we need a revolution, a peaceful revolution and an evolution. It’s evolve or die time.
7) Loraine mentions:
Thank you for speaking your passion. I have wondered where the anger and grief are, and felt as though I’m one of a few… though I know there are many of us experiencing these emotions as we witness the poisoning and destruction of every mineral, plant, animal, molecule on this beautiful, living planet – reducing it to one giant trash heap. I hope to see many ideas posted as, outside of traditional methods, I have been at a loss for effective and possibly new ways to make a difference.
8) Will J. Peterman says:
Self sustainability is the revolution. We can’t rely on the Government to support us. We must work together in each environment, or community to make sure everyone is taken care of. Food should be grown locally, there’s no reason to import things and waste resources. The Government outlaws growing food and even feeding the homeless. They’re slowly killing us and our freedom.
There are many technologies today that could free humanity and make life abundant, beautiful and connected. These tools are suppressed and kept from us to keep us in line. We could have skyscrapers of agriculture, we no longer need large space to grow food. But first we focus on community gardens, recreate Eden. In the meantime let’s build an army of ripped angry protesters all holding “TAX THE 1%” Signs. Universal basic income would be a huge milestone. When the common man is finally supported he will use his gratitude to create many great things for the world. On a side note, I think you’re wrong about fear and love, and I also believe all anger comes from fear. But some anger might be necessary.
9) Tristan Beck La Favor comments:
My solution is to start training and practice martial arts, not only will this increase our physical health but our spiritual, mental and emotional health as well. I am trying to get more people informed on the whole matrix they are living in and free their mind thru training martial arts. But if I can get students who already know about the system and its corruption and have the same pure hearted super sane rage that I do then that’s ten times better.
10) And last but not least:
For the sake of our health and environment, boycott Monsanto! Do it, please.
About the author:
Jack Adam Weber, L.Ac. is a Chinese medicine physician, author, celebrated poet, organic farmer, and activist for body-centered spirituality. He is also the creator of The Nourish Practice, an Earth-based rejuvenation meditation. Weber is available by phone for medical consultations and life-coaching. His books, artwork, and provocative poems can be found at his website PoeticHealing.com.
You can connect with Jack at:
The Nourish Practice
Jack Adam Weber’s “The Nourish Practice” is an easy, guided meditation-Qi Gong practice in radical gratitude and self-love. It is an Earth-based, body-centered practice — at once physiological and mythological — that is deeply relaxing and replenishing, especially for modern-day burn-out syndrome, and requires little physical effort.
The Nourish Practice “resets your nervous system” and fosters a rich inner life.
You can purchase The Nourish Practice as a CD or Digital Download here.