15 May

What is the Key to Sustainability?

WHAT IS THE KEY TO SUSTAINABILITY?

More and more people, companies, and cities are now using the words “sustainable” and “sustainability” to describe courses of action they wish to take.  Much of the conversation involves renewable energy, preserving resources,  and other environmental practices.  A google search yields commonly agreed upon pillars of sustainability that are environmental, social and economic:

Environmental sustainability involves reducing the impact of human activities on the natural systems that support the community. This includes everything from picking up litter and reducing pollution to wildlife and rainforest conservation.

• Social sustainability involves treating ourselves and each other with fairness and respect. This is as simple as letting someone merge into your lane during heavy traffic to respecting the views and opinions of people who disagree with you to working towards social justice in far away countries.

• Economic sustainability involves people, cities, states, and countries needing to live responsibly and within their means so that they are not a burden to others.

Picking up litter is often used as an example of an environmental component of sustainability.  Because I have been picking up litter for many years on my daily walks, I have been thinking about the litter problem in terms of sustainability.   Rules and laws are not the answers for most sustainable challenges because many will not choose to comply, and it is difficult to make the laws comprehensive enough to be effective.  For example, banning plastic bags is nowhere near a solution — almost all the plastic litter I find is not bags. 

The only way to get everyone on board with real solutions is for people to have a consciousness of sustainability, and thus make all choices in their lives reflect that consciousness.  If people hold the consciousness of the Highest Good For All, they will come up with the best possible solutions for all aspects of sustainability.  In the case of litter, that would mean people not only consciously refraining from littering, but also making ecological choices about the packaging of products.

Because Community Planet’s mission is to create a world that works for everyone via creating a model for the world to replicate, we must also recognize that the everyone-for-themselves model that has been in place and unquestioned for thousands of years is at the very core of the problem.  We can’t really talk about being sustainable without recognizing the incredible inefficiency of our current system.  To say we can’t do something because there is not enough money is an hallucination.  The reality is that it’s not a lack of money, which itself can do nothing, but a lack of cooperation.  Our Communities will demonstrate how cooperation can get things done.  Studies have shown that 85% of the current jobs only exist because of the lack of cooperation between people.  Think of all the resources, not to mention the manpower, that are squandered supporting these fundamentally unnecessary. jobs.  That could solve the sustainable energy problem right there. 

So, again, we assert that the key component to sustainability is accessing and holding the Consciousness of the Highest Good for All.  For us to be able to show a Community model of that to the rest of the planet, it is paramount that the Communities’ residents hold that consciousness.  A key to having people come in as permanent residents, would be to screen people to make sure they align with that consciousness.  To that end Community Planet has developed a unique consensus decision-making training that can be used for the screening.  I have talked with current and former members of intentional communities who tried to use consensus and have said it didn’t work.  Then I asked if the people had been both trained and screened, and the answer was always “no”. One or more people who did not have a maturity of consciousness were able to block the process of reaching a consensus.

Because the word sustainable has now been so compromised by using it in a Band-Aid a broken system, Community Planet has  come up with a new word: C-Sattainable (pronounced si’ es attainable) with this definition:

“Adds Common Sense to the concept of sustainable by addressing as the core issue the amazing wastefulness, inefficiency, and inequality of the Everyone-For-Themselves paradigm as opposed to one based on the Highest Good For All Life. Thus, through using Common Sense to create a world that works for everyone and for all life, sustainable is attainable through basing its essence on cooperation for the Highest Good For All.”

In Spanish “Si es attainable” translates as “Yes, it’s attainable”.  We can make this happen by opting for a Highest Good approach as opposed to putting Band-Aids on the current broken Everyone-For-Themselves social/economic/political system.

 

11 Jul

A Consciousness of Sustainability

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In our personal lives, crisis can give rise to the opportunity to expand spiritually in order to make meaning of experiences and garner the strength and wisdom to meet the challenge. In the similar way, the current crisis on the planet of such extra-ordinary proportions as global warming and environment toxicity can lead to disasters of monumental proportion if we don’t go to a higher level of consciousness to solve them. Like Einstein once said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”   Continue Reading

 

30 Dec

Wake Up! Wake Up!

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So many Americans are struggling to survive in the current money system. What most don’t realize is that it is not their own personal finances that need changing, but the economic system itself. In Running on Empty, Peter Peterson, former Secretary of Commerce and Chair of the Federal Reserve Bank, wrote that “America may well be headed for a financial meltdown. In Jan. 2004 … the IMF took direct aim at the U.S., warning the world that we are careening toward insolvency. They point to a huge and growing imbalance between what the federal government has promised to pay in future benefits and what it can reasonably expect to collect in future taxes. Its long-term deficit now exceeds 500% of GNP. Closing that gap, the IMF calculated, ‘would require an immediate and permanent 60% hike in the federal income tax or a 50% cut in Social Security and Medicare benefits.’” In his assessment, Paul Volcker, former chair of the Federal Reserve, warned that the U.S. faces a 75% chance of a crisis by 2009. Continue reading

30 Dec

Ecology

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Until we start applying some logic into ecological to resolve the world’s interconnected crises, we’ll never be able to remove the stain in sustainable. That stain is the legacy of the everyone-for-themselves system that has been in place unquestioned for thousands of years and is at the core of the environmental dilemma. Continue reading

30 Dec

Regarding Againstness

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“The time has come to break out of past patterns. Attempts to maintain social and ecological stability through old approaches to development and environmental protection will increase instability.  Security must be sought through change.  This Commission has noted a number of actions that must be taken to reduce risks to survival and to put future development on paths that are sustainable.  Yet we are aware that such a reorientation on a continuing basis is simply beyond the reach of present decision-making structures and institutional arrangements, both national and international.”1
—World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) Continue reading

30 Dec

Something More Than Changing Light Bulbs

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We are in the midst of a major environmental crisis, and the current solutions presented by the media are not enough to change the tides.  While it’s great that people and businesses are thinking and acting more “green”, small changes alone will not be enough to bail ourselves out.
Here are the steps that we need to take: Continue reading