When a tree wants to send its branches higher into the sky, it needs to send its roots deeper into the earth. When a person or society wants to move to the next level of development, we have to dig down into our past to release the energy held there by earlier traumas. Humanity’s current condition and deep desire to move towards a future that honours our interconnectedness is tied to a moment in our past where we split from an instinctive experience of being part of the Earth, and pushed away from that past without managing to re-integrate it into our identity – creating trauma and shadow. That is why we have been able to do what we have done to each other and the rest of life on Earth. It is also what is holding us back from accessing the next level of interconnectedness in the subtle realms. As Ken Wilber said in Up from Eden, “When the Great Mother is repressed, the Great Goddess is concealed”. This Merry Musing dives deep into this topic.
Embodying the Future – why the body is the key to the future.
In order to navigate successfully through these turbulent times of transition, we need to be able to access the information in the subtle fields. Energy can only be interpreted through the body. In order to reach up to higher dimensions we need to send our roots deeper. This session will explore the role of the body in working with subtle energies, and what we need to do individually and collectively to be able to unlock the promise that this work holds. You can access the recordings of all the other great speakers too at https://theembodimentconference.org/#PeterMerry
It has always puzzled me how we seem to accept our current economic system when it is clearly so fundamentally flawed. It only values those things that generate monetary exchange, diminishing the value of non-monetized activity carried out amongst family, friends or community. It externalises the negative impact of any of that monetized activity – such as the environmental or social cost of producing stuff – meaning that the real cost is not reflected in the actual price, and that other people and life on earth have to carry those costs. It has become such an abstract system – another part of the expertocracy – that people feel very little ownership of it. And in crises such as corona, it stops working.
The thing is, it is such a huge system, embedded in all kinds of governance and processes globally, that it feels impossible to change. That is why I think we need to build an alternative economy in parallel to the existing one that better meets our needs as people and planet, and will still function when the next crisis hits – which it will. It should be an economy that reflects true cost, which people have an understanding of and which is connected to our local needs and experiences.
When I wrote the Why Work book, I researched what the various parallel economic solutions were, and connected them up to provide a coherent picture of how each and every one of us could engage in creating an alternative on our doorstep. Here is the summary graphic. I will describe the different elements briefly below.
Currency: clearly there needs to be a means of exchange that enables more flexibility than direct barter (although that can of course play a role). What is important is that the money that is generated keeps circulating as much as possible locally, and isn’t siphoned off to companies elsewhere who have no interest in the community’s well-being. Examples already abound of systems that can be used for this: community banks, credit unions, local currencies and Local Exchange and Trading Systems (LETS). The Blockchain of course offers possibilities here too.
Business: for our resilience and sense of ownership, we need to meet as many of our core needs as locally as possible. Food, energy and housing would be good examples. All of these can be run through community businesses that make sure the interest of the community is at the heart of the business. The cooperative structure enables that to happen. There can be an overarching community cooperative to focus on the local interests. Community Supported Agriculture where people subscribe to a weekly package of locally grown food supports local farmers and makes us less dependent on decisions taken by large food corporations whose primary driver is to increase the financial return to their shareholders.
Land: who owns the land determines what can be done on the land and at what price. Often land is owned by speculators whose interest is to make as much money off it as possible. Community Land Trusts enable the community to own and govern the land in the interests of the community – be it for housing, recreation or agriculture.
As you can imagine, there are many other areas in which we can reclaim local ownership of currently outsourced domains – e.g. education, healthcare. The three main aspects outlined above and the graphic lay the foundations.
During Humanity Rising our team have become inspired by the Parallel Polity strategy, that emerged with Vaclav Havel and the Charter 77 movement in the transition of Czechoslovakia. The idea is to just get on and build the alternative in parallel to the current system, enabling people to choose which they want to adopt. Once mature enough, the old system that everyone knows is breaking anyway is able to let go. People can withdraw their consent from the old system and channel their resources and energy into the new. This gives us some ideas on how to do that with the economy. Proceed until apprehended!
The question of why there is so much suffering in major transitions is really quite simple. It is caused by a combination of people from the old order clinging on desperately to what is ready to be released and people from the new order passionately obsessed with forming the new without honoring the foundations of the past that the new has emerged from. When we hold on to what is ready to be released we are afraid of losing what we know. When we obsessively push ahead with the new we are afraid of being pulled back into the old. Both responses are based on a lack of wholeness ourselves. Both are running away from something, one the inevitability of renewal and the other the embrace of the good in the old.
So all we need to do is be ready to release that which is longer fit for purpose while honoring the past for what it has given us, and integrating the foundation stones of the path we have walked so far. This is the difference between an ecstatic birth and a traumatic birth. Which we choose is up to us.
I sit here my body shaking lightly, blurry eyed with tears that seem to contain both gratitude and sadness, both release and emergence, both pain and promise. The last week or so I have been feeling depressed, in the dark, not quite knowing what was happening but trusting that something was working its way through. Various events in my private and professional life showed up to reinforce the experience – thanks life!
We (Center for Human Emergence Netherlands Alignment Circle) just completed what should have been our holacratic operational call this morning. Of the nine souls in roles who should have showed up five cancelled last minute, one couldn’t get into the call, one had a poor connection and we decided to cancel it. I was left online with Leidje Witte, our Salons Co-ordinator. Just after we decided to end it, Lisette Schuitemaker, our Organisational Spaceholder, managed to get into the call. I ended up taking the opportunity of having these two wonderful women with me to unload my heart and tell them what I had been experiencing the last week. As I let it go, an insight began to emerge between us.
Leidje wanted to ask me about the salon coming Monday (16 April). I had forgotten about the theme, which was traumas and constellations (Hellinger-style), and had also forgotten that we would be marking the Center for Human Emergence Netherlands’ (CHE NL) seventh anniversary (formally on April 20). The very fact that it was our birthday had slipped to the back of my awareness in the depths of the last week. As all of this came back into my awareness, my whole body, heart and soul started to resonate. Funny how life organised our planned operational call to end up this way…
As the founder of the CHE NL, I have of course a certain energetic relationship to the system. In past transitions, I have also experienced the organisational transition in my own body. Now I realise that it is happening again. We and I are approaching our seventh birthday. Our physical body has completely renewed every cell after each seven years. The seven represents renewal as we enter the octave of the eighth that completes and heals the previous seven notes of existence to bring them into alignment and lay the foundations for the next step. So here we are.
No wonder that my experience this past week has been one of letting go of things that no longer fit with my vision of the next phase of my work, combined with energising glimpses of what it would be like for me to fully embody that work. Last Saturday, working with Dylan Newcomb, my new identity emerged: I am a writer, speaker and consultant who supports life-affirming leaders to understand and work with the energetic dimension of reality. Now I am being invited and challenged to fully step into that. Letting go, letting come, and the space in between – silly how one forgets that you actually have to go through it yourself… As I tweeted over Easter: you have to die to be re-born… The universe tweeting to itself…
The CHE NL is also growing into a new purpose (what we are jointly becoming): “a sacred partnership in evolution”. Exactly how that shapes up is what we are currently leaning into and playing with. At the same time, we are solidifying our expertise from the past seven years into clear products and services that can act as stepping stones for others to find their way, through CHE Synnervate.
I now feel relaxed, a little tired and deeply grateful. My system feels calm. I guess it is happy to have been seen for what it is. I am very curious about what will happen at our salon on Monday, when we constellate what the CHE NL has to release from the last seven years to be able to move freely forward into the next phase. I guess there will be implications in that for me too…That’s the work.
Watch this space.
I realised this morning that there is a very large group of people in the world who have maybe the highest potential to be the most effective world changers at this time. They are a group who do their work from a deep place for caring, from a love that is hard to transcend. They sacrifice many of their personal luxuries in devotion to their cause. They often end up leaving their warm beds at night to be of service, going without the accepted norms of sleep. They think deeply about every choice they make as they always want the best for those they work for. They organise their lives for the good of a higher purpose.
They know they are unlikely to receive much thanks for their work, even from those it will most benefit. In fact, they expect rebellion and rejection from those they are supporting, and yet continue to love them unconditionally. They draw boundaries even though they are likely to prove unpopular. They don’t shout about their successes nor do they moan about their failures. They just get on with the work. And because they care so much, this work brings them their greatest moments of joy as well as the deepest moments of pain and suffering. And yet all of those emotions are accepted as part of the work.
There is no financial reward, in fact it only costs them money. So if they expect neither thanks nor money, why do they do it? Their greatest reward is to witness the fruit of their devotion as it grows and ripens in the world, taking on its own unique beauty, and feeding in its turn the world it moves in. And in that witnessing, seeing the best of themselves and the worst of themselves expressed and refined on the whetstone of life.
So who are these incredible beings, that most of us would aspire to become? Well, you may well be one yourself. These are the parents of the world. The mothers and fathers who devote a large part of our lives to the raising of our children. Work that is neither valued by our monetized economy nor by the very children themselves until it is often too late to express their gratitude. So could we mobilise these qualities in ourselves and apply them to the raising of our immature society into an adulthood that takes full responsibility for the impact of its choices on all life on this beautiful planet of ours? With unwavering commitment, full surrender and an open heart? Maybe. I hope so. The potential is boundless.
I’ll be giving a short, creative and provocative talk at the Zeitgeist Z-Party in Rotterdam on the evening of Saturday August 27. Come along!
Peter is currently involved in developing the Global Transition Initiative with the State of the World Forum team. As part of the development, he is interviewing some people to ask them the question : “what would you do to facilitate global transition?”. John Petersen is the first person he asked, being one of the world’s foremost futurists (President of the Arlington Institute), with a deep understanding of the processes of non-linear change and epochal emergence. In this interview, John shares an understanding which is hard to deny and yet very challenging to accept. Peter is committed to contributing to the strategy that John describes. (When this was recorded, the system failed to pick up Peter’s questions and comments, which is why the sequence might sound a bit strange sometimes – with some non-linear leaps!).