In conjunction with International Buy Nothing Day (Nov. 28) La Maison Verte celebrates our eight-year anniversary! On Sunday, Nov. 30th 12 – 5 p.m. we commemorate our eco-existence with live music, activities for kids, and of course a big delicious CAKE. This year’s theme is SLOW & STEADY…
Don’t forget that the store will be CLOSED for regular purchases on this day.
*Do you have creative Buy Nothing Day ideas? Would you like to help out with this year’s events? To attend our next organizing meeting just email: email@example.com
This month the Look UP Gallery will feature a selection of Co-op worker Aimée van Drimmelen’s illustrations done on used drumskins.
Part of the series HIT THE PLAINS (exhibited in October 2008 for Art Pop), these works explore the majesty and mystery of the prairie landscape. For more info visit: www.fortpolio.net
Please phone or visit the Co-op to sign up for these events. For more information visit our website.
By Mike Nickerson
An alternative to panicking when GDP stops growing is to view it as a sign of maturity. As with individual maturity, there comes a time for societies to stop growing, recognize their power and take responsibly for their impacts.
For all its mystification, an economic system is a system of mutual provision. People have always done different things and traded with others. The sense that we can only provide for each other when we have access to internationally traded money is an illusion with serious consequences.
Social and environmental factors play at least as great a role in maintaining well-being as do economic factors. Socially, we need the skills to provide goods and services and we need social harmony so that we are willing and able to trade. Environmentally, we need to respect ecological reality.
There are two ecological "laws" that we have to obey. One is the law of the minimum, which implies that we cannot require resources in greater quantities than our planet offers; the second is the law of tolerance. How much of our wastes and by-products can we tolerate? How much can the environment that supports us tolerate?
Human activity has grown to fill the planet. Continued growth is at our peril.
When we stop growing as individuals, it is not the end of the world. Indeed, for most of us, life scarcely began before we reached physical maturity. Even with physical growth at a stand still, we became better informed, more comfortable in ourselves and we developed the skills and relationships that define our lives. The same can be true for civilization.
As our society matures, growing will cease to be a goal. By seeking, instead, to find satisfaction in the richness of being human, we could change the nature of our species from a potentially terminal blight spreading over the Earth, to something much more suiting to our position amongst other living things. We are able to reward three billion years of evolution by adding laughter, love, awe and wonder to a deep appreciation for the incredible accomplishments by which life has brought us to this point.
A first step toward achieving a mature, sustainable society is to account for the social and environmental factors that accompany the economic aspects of well-being. Such a "Genuine Progress Index" or GPI would provide a much more accurate picture of our world and better decisions would result.
As long as we measure progress solely in terms of money, we will be subject to illusions like the financial meltdown of 2008. Well-being is not so much about monetary expansion, as it is about knowledge, imagination, creativity, the quality of natural resources and good will. Would we not be better off to strive for satisfaction with life, rather than the perpetual expansion of production and consumption? We are, after all, human beings, not human havings.
We celebrate when our children grow. If an adult continues to grow like a child, however, it is cause for serious concern. Developing a healthy steady-state economy should be no more frightening than the prospect of becoming adult is for a teenager. The silver lining to the economic downturn is the opportunity it offers to recognize that, as a species, we have grow up. We can let go of the impossible task of repeatedly doubling economic activity. Our task would be to enjoy life and manage the material world as if the future matters.
Mike Nickerson is the author of Life, Money & Illusion; Living on Earth as if we want to stay www.SustainWellBeing.net
Extrait de: www.SustainWellBeing.net/silverlining.html
Also in Eco Logic this month:
New Access Energy program helps Montrealers form Energy Buying Groups...
Eco Logic is a place for members to write or suggest articles about environment or community-related subjects of all kinds. Email your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org
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