Kirkpatrick Sale is an independent scholar and author who has written prolifically about environmentalism, luddism, technology and political decentralism. This is a speech at UNCA on April 9th, 2010. His website is MiddleburyInstitute.org. This video was created by the Grassroots Activist Guild.
The 6 Elements of Living in Bioregional Harmony
by Kenny Palurintano
I came up with this idea over the past couple of months, and wrote this on my bus ride to work about a month ago. This is very much a working draft, so please feel free to give feedback so I can flesh it out more. Also feel free to re-post it and such, it’s just something that I want to get out into the consciousness!
SOVEREIGNTY is acknowledging that you are a free, infinite being; completely responsible for everything you do, say, and experience. Sovereignty is also acknowledging that every other person is also a free, infinite being, and just as no one else has the right to initiate violence against or impose their beliefs on you, you don’t have the right to initiate violence against anyone else. This is extremely crucial to any advancement of your consciousness or vision for the world.
UNITY is acknowledging that we are all one. Every man is your brother, every woman is your sister, every animal is your cousin, every plant is your uncle, and every rock is your uncle. Just as every cell in your body seems to be a separate entity under a microscope, WE only look separate from our point of view, but we are actually just cells in the organism that is the Earth (and the organ we make up is our bioregion).
CLARITY is doing your best to see the world as it truly is, and how you want it to be. In watching what happens around you and what other do, this means not having assumptions, and not applying your own beliefs & expectations to other people. Equally, if not more, important, this means not letting others impose their beliefs & expectations onto your reality. In the way you talk & think, this means not using euphemisms created by people trying to oppress you; war is mass murder; arresting is kidnapping; taxation is theft. Watching television, listening to the radio, reading the newspaper, or taking in any other forms of fear-mongering & hypnosis lessens your life experience and restricts your SOVEREIGNTY. What you’re thinking about & giving your focus to creates your reality, so focus on the positive changes, the things that bring you joy, and the things that you want more of in your life.
VITALITY is the love of and care for your physical body. We are energy beings temporarily inhabiting these physical vessels we call the human body, but as long as we are in them, we should take care of them. It’s important to our happiness & growth to keep our bodies healthy, fit, flexible, and purified. Remember, the healthier you are, the healthier the world is. There are many aspects to this, the most important of which I think are:
-Physical practices like yoga or martial arts to keep your body in shape and you in your body.
-Diet: Eating food free of GMOs, pesticides & herbicides, eating mostly raw fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts, and drinking tons of fluoride-free water every day.
-Vibrational intake: Listening to music that makes you feel good, having as few electronics around you as possible, not living near power lines, cell towers, or radio towers. The entire world is vibration, what you see, what you hear, what you feel are all just different frequencies & wavelengths.
CREATIVITY comes from listening to your true self, to the voice of god, source, collective conscious, or the universe, however you refer to it. This creativity can be seen in a musician’s song, a painter’s canvass, a wire-wrap, a book, and many things you may not immediately think of as art. The engineer designing a new water filter, the farming making the perfect soil blend for his crops, and the protester coming up with the catchiest, deepest quote for a sign are all artists practicing their creativity. By picturing ourselves as artists, and the world as our canvass, we can open our minds to that source energy and let new systems & solutions flow through us to create the world we want to live in.
THRIVEABILITY[RESILIENCY] is simply living in balance & nurturing respect with the rest of the Earth. For most people now, life is as far from balanced as it can be, and while we can’t expect to convert immediately to a holistic, sustainable lifestyle, you can certainly keep that vision in mind and consciously take steps towards it every day. Only buying local organic food reduces petroleum use, growing your own even more-so. An electric car is an improvement over gas, public transport is even better, and your feet or a bicycle is better yet. There’s no reason to buy a new product if you can find a used, un-needed one from Craigslist or friends that will suit your needs. Get to know your bioregion, love it, and support it!
I understand that this is a whole lot to take in. I suggest you seriously evaluate where you’re at in life, choose something to improve, and make a commitment to do so. Once that improvement is habit, choose another step and a make a commitment to that one. If you’re 1000 steps from your goal, it may seem like a long, difficult walk. That first step is easy though, and not only does it get you that much closer to your goal, but once you get moving, momentum takes over. Each improvement is another victory, gets you closer to the life you want, and moves the world forward. Celebrate these little changes as you make them. What you focus on is what you experience; when you focus on the positive changes you’re making and other people making positive changes, guess what you’re going to experience more of.
Another Cascadian and I have joined our local Grange Hall last night. Several other self identified Cascadians have explored the Granges and we have concluded that together the Grange Movement and the Cascadian Movement could revive our local economies and create a new socioeconomic system that is resilient and very much embracing bioregionalism. Whether it’s the Cascadian Movement or the Grange Movement the essential core focus is actually community. In an age of corporatism and neo-liberal economics where food and materials of need are transported planetary distances just, because of cheap labor and cheap fossil fuels, creating networks of communities focused on resiliency
I want to add a suggestion that people look up the history and socioeconomic and even agronomic function of the Grange movement that dates back to the 1860s. Grange Halls are almost established in every Cascadian community under the yoke of the US American Empire. The Grange Movement was a farming movement (actually a rural revolution) against both the Banking Establishment and the Railroad Companies. Today most Grange Halls still rent their halls and provide space for rural communities. Their focus is obviously farming. I have posted for years that Cascadianism is about localization, community empowerment and the 3Fs (Food! Fiber! & Fuel) which in essence for Cascadians is a route for autonomy while staying under the Police State radar. So my advice is that in every self identified Cascadian within the US seek either membership with the local Grange Hall or work with them to provide classes and community. Classes could be permaculture, canning (actually jarring), education of textiles (nettle and hemp could create a new cottage industry), cooperatives (the Grange movement was link arm in arm with the Farmer–Labor Party that had a direct connection to Co-operative Commonwealth Federation parties in Canada), food preparation and food preservation, bio diesel (from how to make it to converting engines), providing for the needs of our local communities, trade circles and a host of other possibilities.
To me (as has been suggested by other Cascadians) the connecting with the remains of the Grange movement is a natural and very sensible idea. As many have pointed out who know of the Grange movement they seem to be just waiting for a revival of localization and back to basics movement (which is the Cascadian movement). – Alexander Baretich
List of state Granges
As a bioregionalist my goal is NOT to create another nation-state or another series of political boundaries on a map for cartographers to make a living. My goal as a bioregionalist is to end the nation-state and empire by shifting the dominating mindset of anthropocentrism (human-centricism) and “domination over” to a biocentric, ecocentric, kin-centric and /or Gaia-centric worldview that embraces the landscape (Earth) as a complex living place of dynamic interconnected living communities that depend on each other. My goal is not simply to create a “new country” with State trappings of pomp and circumstances but to birth World Revolution!
~ Alexander Baretich