Gentle Rebellion Class 2.01
Where to start to make the Change Happen!
Many of us know the current dominant system is totally unsustainable. It’s slowly killing the planet and main stream media doesn’t give it more attention than some yearly numbers, while the impacts are all over the side lines of the news (climate change, draughts, water wars, wars, eco systems collapse, Fukushima after effects, etc). Many seek to make change happen, but, if you haven’t started already, often wonder where and how to begin with impact.
So how to make it happen? Here are some suggestions.
A: Start at the Bottom
Starting a Civil War is never a good idea. It’s much better to turn away and start over. In this age of misinformation and conscious lies on all sides, start with what and whom you know on a local level.
Level 1. Build Resilient Communities
This is about starting to be part of the solution. Build local resilience and community with community gardens. Make yourself and neighborhood as free from corporate dependency as possible. Some towns kept Walmart out, and just recently Indian farmers went back to indigenous seeds after breaking with Monsanto. The key lies in collaboration to make it work or even thrive together. And perhaps the best way is to start growing your own organic foods in groups. There’s a shitload of workshops, books and information about this on the net.
Level 2. Build Independent Communities
This is about developing communities of change. Start over outside the box of Corporate and Government. Reboot your own local economy on as many levels as possible. Redesign your own currency outside the banks. Make your neighborhood have it’s energy sources. It’s all possible. All the technology for it, is already here. Only the will still is missing. But hey, if it’s a choice between poverty and gang life and shootings, or an ignited self reliant people with a vision, then my choice is clear.
Level 3. Go Glocal: think Global, act Local.
This is about developing locally and globally. The book ‘Walk Out, Walk On’ features communities that stopped waiting for help, and started making it on their own, in a global network. By sharing learnings, tips, tools and methods they slowly may become a counter culture and move from there to an alternative culture, that is free from financial and material dependency of the current failing system. Initiatives are happening everywhere, and unlike businesses, they aren’t competition, but share the same path, many similar issues and many transferrable solutions. Learn from others, help others develop.
B: Aim at the top.
Action towards those at the top and especially those behind the scene’s that meddle with everything and their biggest cronies/agents in the field. The super rich live in bubble’s where their logic seems infallible; time to burst the bubble and let some light in.
Level 1. Sweet
This is about speaking to their hearts. Prayer circles, and soulful singing around the houses and offices of billionaires and their cronies to bring heart and soul back to their bodies. Spread posters with their faces and texts like: “These people can change the world for the better with all their money!” “Please Rich Guy, make the difference you can!”
Level 2. Reality on the lawn
This is about driving the message home. Bring the consequences of their actions inside their bubbles. When oil spills happen, leak oil barrels on their lawn. When health care is taken away, bring busloads of dying or dementing elderly to their front lawns and golf courses. When global warming hits, cut of their electricity so their airco’s stop working. Film how they respond. Because either they change their perspective, or we see police beating the poorest elderly from the rich peoples lawns. If so: next level.
Level 3. Pitchforks & Torches
This is about consequences for making others suffer. “When the poor don’t have bread to eat, why don’t they eat cake?” Remarks such as these made the French Revolution happen. Propaganda, lies, distortion of reality can only work as long as people have some kind of life. Fear of Islamic terrorists only works as long you don’t see a clear link between your poverty and a parasitic elite changing all the rules to their advantage. As long as the stories of outside threat make more sense than daily reality, the super rich can keep manipulating reality. But not for ever. While their arrogance grows anger is rising.
And how to hold large corporations accountable? Here’s a short video by the brilliant Robert Reich with just a start on that.
C: Start in the Middle
You can start with any size of organization. From singlehanded to global help fund they all seek to act where it matters. When you have leadership and or organizational capacities this is where to start.
Level 1: Start a NGO or Social Enterprise
This is about acting on where needs are. Many individuals or small groups have started up NGO’s (Non Governmental Organizations) or Social Enterprises. From building orphanages in developing countries, setting up dialogue circles in prisons, to Global NGO’s like War Child or Letsdoitworld.org individuals make differences by starting on what they feel is needed. And if your call for help resonates with others, you can become really big.
level 2: Self Empowerment for Everyone
This is about being part of the solution. To feed the needy, and house the homeless is the first, very important, step. To help them prevent it happens again is the second step. That means make your activity being involved in Education, Farming Support, Engineering Development, etc. Help find ways to let people help themselves in a sustainable way. Because most NGO leave after a while, while the people and their issues stay. So leave tools, methods and means to make it work into their future.
level 3: Closing the Tap.
This is about prevention at the root of the problem. There’s a Dutch expression: “Mopping the floor with the tap open.” Many NGO’s help but the damaging system isn’t changed, let alone disrupted or confronted. Thus year after year they need to help victims, like the Syrian refugees. But the war mongers, the ones that started the war, to advance their own interests at the cost of millions aren’t confronted enough. Find ways to change them.
“You take the blue pill, the story ends. You wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.”―Morpheus to Neo [src]
D: Upset the Status Quo
When you see things are wrong as they are, people need to know. How to offer them the Red Pill to break down bubbles and fences? How to reveal the inter connectedness of all life on this planet, and mirror people, that need to know, what lies behind the curtains they keep up?
Level 1. Artful Provocation.
This is about the Power of Art. Banksy’s art is world famous. Not only because of the distinctive style, also because of the content. Art can expose the deeper undercurrents of what’s wrong. It can help dream of alternatives or touch you with beauty you thought was lost. All these three approaches can help wake people up, to what really matters and needs more attention.
Level 2. Good Old Protest.
This is about showing the will of (a large chunk of) the people. I used to be very happy with young people just starting up a business providing a solution. But through modern media I found lack of open protest made governments never rethink unpopular politics. Large protests are needed. People in power need to be confronted by what makes much more sense to the populace in times of need.
Level 3. Disruptive Politics.
This is about playing it all the way to the top. Many people who enter politics to make a difference, end up being more of the same. The reality of parties, compromise, funding, corruption make it very hard to be the difference you seek. Thus anti politics can work. The people of Reykjavic enjoyed four years of an outsider clown as mayor. It’s all about entering politics on your own terms and never staying true to higher values, not to the daily swamp.
E: Help by Using Your Talents where you can.
Here are no levels. This is about seeing where you fit in, into the whole emergence all alternative movements. This is about letting your talents shine, where they give the most light. Change makers need the following kinds of people*:
You have money or space and can host groups and individuals who seek to make a difference. Your support or protection helps them develop applicable solutions and or spread them to larger networks.
You try out new ways of living, invent new currencies, new tech that helps resilience and local city farming. You combine ancient wisdom with modern needs. You may try and try and fail, but out of the many like you, solutions will rise.
You seek and find the pioneers and help them feel not alone. You help them find each other and combine ideas that will benefit from adding to each other. Because many pioneers together become a movement, and to make that happen is your work.
You help many others see. You are great with one or more forms of media. You may create documentaries, art, independent movies, novels, practical guides, workshops to experience what’s possible. You help the world see, change is coming and it’s great to be part of it.
You help the wounded of the ‘old system’. You take care of the depressed, people seeking meaning, burn outs, hopeless. But not only do you help them on a personal level; you also show them their pain is because of what’s wrong in all of society. You show them they aren’t the problem. You help them find their place in this list, to be part of the solution.
If you don’t know what to do, start helping someone who does. Build their website (who wants to build mine?), flyer their message, organize their meetings, etc. You show others there’s value in being a supporter and to help develop new paradigms. You help pioneers believe they matter and show the world it’s safe to follow.
As trainer of the Way of the Fool, I find that I would add the fool. The role of having no roles, no official function, but playing between the lines, acting outside the box, mirroring all other roles, where they fall prey to Ego or find gaps within the system to play with. And helping everyone taking it all not deadly serious. Hey guys. It’s okay to have fun.
*) The first four archetypes of change came from a model by Margaret Wheatley. First Followers became world famous as a TED presentation.
F: Final Say
I know there’s a lot more ways to start. (You can leave yours in the comments to enrich this Rebellion Class) Some are very undesirable, such as being struck by tragedy and than helping others prevent it happening to them (thank you terrible education years). Others seem fun, like create events to party or dine some funds together, but such events often end up as marketing yourself as a good person. No, real change often means willingness to cry, sweat, suffer trying to do the impossible (and being able to enjoy that part too). As an educational change maker one price to pay is not being taken seriously until you have had shining success. Here I find Gandhi’s words may help. “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”
Here’s the link to Gentle Rebellion Class 1.01. And here to Rebellion Class 3.01: Smarter & fun actions to convince others better.