This post provides the main text of the document “Tweet Series for ‘13 Steps for Long Term Culture Change’” (15 pages; March, 2018)--which is a series of short overviews of the 13 Steps highlighted in the paper “13 Steps for Long Term Culture Change” (78 pages; May, 2017).
The purpose of the “Tweet Series…” document--and this post--is to make the “13 Steps” more accessible to readers. The “Tweet Series” document also includes this writer’s critical challenge assessment “Unprecedented Challenges Ahead--February 2017” (2 pages), and “30 Propositions and Premises of The CPCS Initiative” (4 pages).
The “Unprecedented Challenges Ahead…” piece clearly spells out that what we have now is a convergence of critical challenges. In the most complex cultural landscapes ever created on Earth, we have both an urgent need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions--and--an urgent need to make unprecedented progress towards resolving timeless shortcomings of human nature—even though such shortcomings are perceived as so much a part of who we are that most of us accept such as inevitable. There should be no one who has any doubts: there is no culture or association of societies that ever existed on planet Earth which has had to resolve the kind of challenges the next few generations of people will have to resolve. In these kind of circumstances, we need collaborative problem solving, citizen peacebuilding, and community education on a scale most of us have never known before.
We also need to maximize citizen participation in solution-oriented activity. The key step for doing this is Step 6 “Community Visioning Initiatives”. The example this writer hopes every reader is aware of is the 13 minute video titled “Chattanooga: A Community with a Vision”. What this writer saw in the documentary was a way of revitalizing the sense of working together with our neighbors for the greater good. All the “13 Steps” (see below) have important contributions to make each specific communities’ understanding of what “the greater good” means in the context of their community.
Even further, the combination of “Community Visioning Initiatives” and “Neighborhood Learning Centers” (Step 7) can do much to illustrate that the investments of time, energy, money (the “votes”) each of us make in our everyday circumstances can result in countless ways of earning a living which contribute to--rather than impair--the efforts necessary to resolve challenges ahead.
1000 time-intensive Community Visioning Initiatives, in communities around the world, would create an exponential increase in solution-oriented investment, an exponential increase in solution-oriented employment, and an exponential increase in our collective capacity to overcome the challenges of our times.
Tweet Series for “13 Steps for Long Term Culture Change”
Step 1--“Community Good News Networks”
Step 1—“Community Good News Networks”: Elders from community encourage young people (ages 5-18) to collect and share good news articles, stories, etc., about inspiring role models in their community. (from “13 Steps for Long Term Culture Change” http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 )
Step 1 (continued)--Elders encourage young people to write letters of support to such inspiring role models, and invite them to visit a common gathering place for “inspirational sharing meetings”.
Step 1 (continued)--Truly inspiring contributions of genuine goodwill are being generated in variety of ways--by countless numbers of people in communities around the world. “Community Good News Networks” create, share the kind of news needed for constructive community building.
Step 2--“Community Faith Mentoring Networks”
Step 2—“Community Faith Mentoring Networks” (CFMN): “Faith Mentor”--“a person, who by word, action, and presence, models a meaningful lifestyle, clarifies important life issues, and provides guidance for deepening spirituality in a caring and accepting environment.”
Step 2 (continued)--“CFMN” would be a partnership among many different faith traditions, contributing to individual spiritual formation, inspiring role models, right livelihood, community service, interfaith peace vigils, socially engaged spirituality, spiritually responsible investing
Step 2 (continued)--The goals: more true and genuine representatives of the faith traditions in any given community, more people helping others in everyday circumstances of community life. We reap what we sow. (from “13 Steps for Long Term Culture Change” http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 )
Step 3--“Spiritual Friendships”
Step 3—“Spiritual Friendships”: People from similar, or possibly different, religious, spiritual, or moral traditions form small groups, in which participants declare an intention to take a specific step towards achieving a goal associated with their personal spiritual growth.
Step 3 (continued)-- All participants are provided with an opportunity, in a respectful and considerate small group environment, to speak about their efforts they made in the interval between meetings. (from “13 Steps for Long Term Culture Change” http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 )
Step 3 (continued)--Participants have the right to choose how they will benefit from small group process (they can choose to speak about their efforts, or choose not to speak about them; they can seek feedback, or prefer no response; they can remain silent and listen, etc).
Step 4--“Interfaith Peace Vigils”
Step 4—“Interfaith Peace Vigils”: Representatives from different religious, spiritual, and moral traditions within a given local community establish a once weekly Interfaith Peace Vigil, with the goal of having at least one member from each tradition participating at all times.
Step 4 (continued)--With an emphasis on silence, participants silently recite prayers for forgiveness, reconciliation, peace--and/or carry out any kind of silent practice or silent spiritual discipline which is appropriate for a sacred space dedicated to cultivating peace.
Step 4 (continued)--One inspiration for Step 4 is the 24/7 Prayer Vigil for World Peace at Kunzang Palyul Choling (KPC), a Tibetan Buddhist Temple in Poolesville, Maryland (USA). The KPC Prayer Vigil began in 1985--and has continued unbroken to the present time.
Step 5--“Recalibrating Our Moral Compasses” (ROMC) Surveys
Step 5—“Recalibrating Our Moral Compasses” (ROMC) Surveys: a very careful, conscientious approach to identifying critical challenges and solution-oriented activity, and comparing that input with working definitions for “right livelihood” and “moral compasses”.
Step 5 (continued)--Locally, universities (w/ students participating) and/or non-profit orgs could identify 150 key leaders from a significant variety of fields of activity in community as first responders, to establish thoughtful and responsible examples of survey responses.
Step 5 (continued)--Such surveys can provide key evidence for the need and benefits of Community Visioning Initiatives (Step 6), and provide key starting points for topics to cover in workshops at Neighborhood Learning Centers (Step 7) [“13 Steps”--78 p. http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 ]
Step 6--“Community Visioning Initiatives”
Step 6—“Community Visioning Initiatives” CVIs: series of community meetings designed to max citizen participation in identifying challenges, solution-oriented activity--which can help people discover for themselves how much we really need to be on same side, helping each other.
Step 6 (continued)--CVIs can begin cycles of volunteer assistance, workshops, solution-oriented action plans, careful and deliberate investment of time/money by local residents,and new employment opportunities which can maximize citizen employment in solution-oriented activity.
Step 6 (continued)--Many Colleges, Universities assisting w/ carrying out local Community Visioning Initiatives + many supporting Neighborhood Learning Centers (Step 7) = exponential increase in solution-oriented activity. [Ex Visioning 13 min video https://vimeo.com/9653090 ]
Step 7--“Neighborhood Learning Centers”
Step 7—“Neighborhood Learning Centers” (NLCs): can be a) multi-purpose support centers for implementing Community Visioning Initiatives b) neighborhood meeting places and workshop centers c) a critical part of a low cost lifelong learning education system
Step 7 (continued)--NLCs can provide places for discussion, information sharing, mutual support, encouragement, friendship--so that exchanging of information, resources also includes building close-knit communities of people with healthy appreciation for each other’s strengths.
Step 7 (continued)—Thru NLCs citizens can gain greater awareness of how all the “little events” in everyday community life have a positive and cumulative effect on the challenges-solutions-investment-training-employment sequence. [“13 Steps”--78 pages http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 ]
Step 8--“Spiritually Responsible Investing”
Step 8—Spiritually Responsible Investing: “A buyer hardly realizes he owes any duties in his everyday transactions.” And yet “every article in the bazaar has moral and spiritual values attached to it--hence it behooves us to enquire into the background of every article we buy.”
Step 8 (continued)--But in our complex cultural landscapes, inquiring into moral/spiritual history of every article we buy (the consequences of our “investments”) is, for most of us, simply beyond our capacity to accomplish. [“13 Steps”--78 pages http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 ]
Step 8 (continued)--Thus, we need circles of activity which are closer to the community we live in [“The smaller the circumference, the more accurately we can gauge the results of our actions, and (the) more conscientiously we can fulfil our obligations as trustees.”]
Step 9--“Ecological Sustainability/Permaculture/Ecovillages”
Step 9—“Ecological Sustainability/Permaculture/Ecovillages”: The energy of any particular thing, during its life from cradle to grave, is called the “embodied energy” of that object. By supporting items/processes with lower embodied energy, energy use can be greatly reduced.
Step 9 (continued)--If many people can find contentment and quality of life while consuming much less, this limiting of desires at the “root” will save many people from trouble of responding to the consequences of unrestrained or unexamined desires as they materialize worldwide.
Step 9 (continued)--“There is increasingly urgent need for positive models which demonstrate a viable, sustainable, human and planetary future. Ecovillages address this need, looking at sustainability not only in environmental but also in social, economic and spiritual terms.”
Step 10--“Appropriate Technology”
Step 10—“Appropriate Technology”: technology which, by preference, materials, and application is “small-scale, decentralized, labor-intensive, energy-efficient, environmentally sound, and locally autonomous.” Gandhi advocated for such to make India’s villages self-reliant.
Step 10 (continued)--“Village Earth offers an Appropriate Technology Library which “contains full text and images from over 1050 of best books dealing with all areas of do-it-yourself technology.” (available in one USB or two DVDs) [“13 Steps”--78 pages) http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 ]
Step 10 (continued)--Centre for Alternative Technology (“Zero Carbon Britain”): education and visitor centre demonstrating practical solutions for sustainability--environmental building, eco-sanitation, woodland management, renewable energy, energy efficiency, organic growing.
Step 11--“Food Sovereignty/Food Waste/Obesity/Local Food Councils/Community Supported Agriculture”
Step 11—“Food Sovereignty/FoodWaste/Obesity/Local Food Councils/Community Supported Agriculture: “Food Sovereignty--the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced thru sustainable methods, and the right to define their own food/agriculture systems.”
Step 11 (continued)—“Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year--approximately 1.3 billion tons--gets lost or wasted. Most food waste is thrown away in landfills, where it decomposes and emits methane, a potent greenhouse gas.”
Step 11 (continued)--Family farms, sustainable agricultural practices, and food processing by individuals, families and non-corporate entities offers stability to our rural way of life by enhancing economic, environmental, social wealth of our community. Sedgewick, Maine; 2011
Step 12--“Local Currency”
Step 12—“Local Currency”: “BerkShares are a local currency for the Berkshire region of Massachusetts, launched in 2006. People using the currency make a conscious commitment to buy locally produced items which are more environmentally sustainable.”
Step 12 (continued)--“Currently, more than four hundred businesses have signed up to accept Berkshares. Five different banks have partnered with BerkShares, making a total of thirteen branch offices now serving as exchange stations.” [“13 Steps”--78 p. http://bit.ly/2GFaVJ4 ]
Step 12 (continued)--“Schumacher Center for New Economics has been an innovator for over 30 years in the issuing of place-based non-profit currencies. Their Local Currency Archives contain a wide variety of materials gathered from over 50 different alternative currency projects.”
Step 13--“Neighbor to Neighbor Community Education (NTNCE) in Local Newspapers”
Step 13--“Neighbor to Neighbor Community Education (NTNCE) in Local Newspapers”: a new section in local newspapers used to highlight and accumulate stories and other forms of reader contributions which identify valuable resources, and reinforce important community goals.
Step 13 (continued)--An NTNCE Project is community service work that a) highlights what is valuable and important in everyday community life b) encourages positive neighbor to neighbor relations c) helps increase consensus for local specific definitions of “the greater good”.
Step 13 (continued)--There would be many opportunities for the NTNCE section of local newspapers to contribute very valuable community service in the planning, implementation, evaluation, and follow up stages associated with Community Visioning Initiatives (Step 6).