Preparing to leave Italy

We are in the last week of the term here in Italy. In fact this time next week I will be in Portland. I am preparing myself for reverse culture shock…having become adjusted to life and balance here in Italy. I feel the healthiest physically that I have ever felt. The non gmo, additive free, pesticide free food here is enviable. I will miss it the most. The way here is about healthy living and sustaining a lifestyle that nurtures the environment and resources. I will miss it so much. So I am already devising ways to maintain this lifestyle in the U.S. I know it can be done!!

My walks through the city now have a hint of melancholy as I realize they will be staying while I leave. I will return though to my Siena, already planning a return trip. We took Denise, my friend who is visiting, to the cathedral and it was like visiting an old friend. Wine tasting later this week, a good bye dinner and then Chad and I are off to Dublin to catch our flight back to the States.

I am changed forever. Thank you Siena, Italy.

The End of the Private Era

The Oak KingToday is the 21st of December 2012. It marks the winter solstice, the longest night of the year and the promise of the returning sun, warmth and prosperity that comes with light in the dark. It also marks the end of the Mayan calendar. There have been many interpretations about the ending of the Mayan calendar on today’s date. The one that I like is the one that describes a new era for human evolution. We have ended a time of preparation and stage setting for what is to come next. The last 5000 years have seen vast amounts of growth in technology, agriculture and development for the safety of humans to sustain the race. As we have developed as a race we have come to a place of us vs. them or privatization and exclusion.  This type of thinking may have been necessary to reach the place we are now. It has been beneficial in some ways, for establishing that we can provide for ourselves in many adverse circumstances.  Production of food for instance, we have plenty to feed the population of the world, it is the distribution that is the problem now.  This stage of development comes to a close today, winter solstice, a fitting day for moving from darkness into light.

We are indeed in a dark time. Food production is at an all time high to the detriment of our natural resources and many still starve world wide because of private accumulation.  Accumulation of money, power and rights.  A small private few. It is not just food production. Technology gave us the wonderful world wide web, a place that connects us to people across the world in seconds, where information sharing is lightening fast and education is at each and every person’s fingertips. It is a remarkable experience to have that much individual power at your disposal. Social networks have revolutionized our revolutions.  People are coming together in masses to support globalization of conscious thought. Privatization is being assaulted on all fronts due to the public knowledge base growing on previous privately held information.  There is literally nowhere to hide information anymore.

A shift is taking place now, today.  One of the definitions of private is ” intended for or restricted to the use of a particular person, group, or class.”  We are now moving into a time where the private will be no longer. This can be good and bad. Exclusion means maintaining a boundary between one and another.  Historically the boundaries have been drawn with wealth.  We have more than you do and so we are better than you.  We  form groups with  people that have the wealth, power and beliefs that we do so we  feel comfortable being around those that are like us.  It is normal to feel this way and want to be with others of like mind, sociologists have studied it for decades. What takes place though with this type of “private” is that power struggles begin to happen and accumulation of more and more power means more and more accumulation of wealth, more and more accumulation of wealth means more production and distribution, more production and distribution means more natural resources being consumed…to the point that we are killing off  the future.  Because no more natural resources means no one gets to be “private” or public for that matter. No one gets to be anything.

Shift from the dark to the light…today.  Think about a world where there are not private groups or classes.  Where no one is wealthier or has a higher status than anyone else. A world where everyone has enough to eat. Where there are no “ism’s” because everyone has the same rights. Inclusion is inherently good. I support inclusion over exclusion. We must begin to change our world view  because this is the future for us. We have finished the “patriarchal” part of our education and are now moving into a more connected and tribal view of a functioning society based on the “Earth Mother” as our center of life.  We will protect and preserve the earth, our bodies, and each other over all, over money, over power. The power will come from our connection to earth and each other.  Wealth will be seen as something to be shared with others by healing each other and sharing our surplus of gifts.  Food will be a public commodity and good health care will be shared by all. Commonwealth will truly be the new definition for our new era.