We talk about ‘our world’ (I even use this expression a bit) but thinking about it. In what way is it ours? It is the world we live in, yes. But saying it is ours is subtle linguistic act of conquering it – claiming ownership of it. It is this imperialistic meaning that I am suddenly less comfortable with.
Today I discovered the existence of Jacque Fresco, the Venus Project and the Zeitgeist Movement. Kindred spirits in most ways and I greatly enjoyed reading about their respective philosophies of a sustainable future and a resource based economy. There are some subtle aspects of each that I differ slightly on (that I may explore later) but overall they are fantastically bang on what I am talking about. It’s funny to come up with an idea independently and then find others who have come upon it themselves – strange and reassuring. Perhaps likely in a world full of ‘morphic resonance’.
In one thing I saw, Jacque poses the question (in this shoddily shot & edited piece on Youtube): where did we get our countries? We took them by force, then afterwards put up a sign (made laws) saying though shall not steal.
As the French would never say, touché.
I liked this because he is amusingly and succinctly echoing my belief that the resources of this planet belong to all people on it.. That is – in so far as they belong to us they belong to all of us throughout time as well as space – future generations.
Personally, I might even go so far as to say they don’t belong to anyone, but they exist here naturally for their own sake. We are no more important than the rocks or the plants or anything else. Because we need resources to survive however, they – and us – will only continue to exist here (maintaining this survival of ours) as long we are able to manage them sustainably.
The concept that we can buy them or even own them at all is perhaps a psychological obstacle for us to overcome. It is not necessarily the most pressing one.. but it’s certainly there.
I can highly recommend this clip released by the Zeitgeist Movement, as it gives a good intro the topics I cover here in this blog and also goes into the basics that underpin the idea, something I have yet to cover in full in this blog to date. Watch it.
Further on this idea, one of the many things Jacque said on the Venus Project site that I liked in particular was:
“Earth is abundant with plentiful resources; today our practice of rationing resources through monetary methods is irrelevant and counter productive to our survival. Modern society has access to highly advanced technologies and can make available food, clothing, housing, medical care, a relevant educational system, and develop a limitless supply of renewable, non-contaminating energy such as geothermal, solar, wind, tidal, etc. It is now possible to have everyone enjoy a very high standard of living with all of the amenities that a prosperous civilization can provide.”
Exactly. If you follow (or choose to go forth and keep an eye out for) all the amazingly brilliant ideas that are emerging in the field of eco technology (both high and low tech) then it gives you tremendous optimism of what we are capable of when we put our minds to it. It proves the benefits of a gift/resource economy in the form of Science (a system that works for it’s own benefit not for profit or monetary gain, where discoveries are shared for the benefit of all), but moreover it shows that a sustainable future where we don’t have to sacrifice all the material advantages some of us enjoy, seems only more possible every day.
So what’s the hold up? Why can’t we have all these amazing things today, right now, solving the sustainability problem? Let’s build them all, let’s get on with it! These development are held back by money of course. The economics of what is cost effective, feasible in terms of profit potential for shareholders etc.. but imagine for a second all of that unleashed? We could do it.. we choose not to. The mobilisation however, of effort and talent towards physically beginning to life the many amazing ideas and technologies that are held back right now because no one can make a big enough profit from it, would be monumental and seriously pave the way to the future I believe we all need to survive and prosper.
This reminds us that it IS possible. This world may not belong to us in the sense of ownership we are familiar with, but it is the world upon which we live – the only one – and it’s important to remind ourselves that there does not exist any law of the universe that stop us from achieving this dream of a sustainable society, we just need to want it bad enough, believe in it, and then together, make it happen.