"It's time to face the elephant - and donkey - in the living room, and activate the uncommon wisdom of common folks to weave a web of mass-construction." -- Swami Beyondananda
We are living in what
Tom Paine would have called "soul-trying" times.
In the face of multiplying
crises - economic, ecologic, political and spiritual - it's becoming more
apparent that fundamental change is required. The good news is, what is
needed isn't revolution, but evolution. The other news is, this
evolutionary alternative must be clearly expressed, carefully developed, and
made tangible to the millions and millions of Americans who see that something
is profoundly wrong, but don't know what to do about it.
Many of us have spent time and resources over the years supporting causes we believe will create a better world. Until now, the vast majority of well-meaning organizations have either worked within the system, or worked around it. It is now time to confront the elephant - and the donkey - in the living room. The bipolar insanity of a fiercely divided body politic has largely paralyzed us in the face of huge problems, as we have devolved into an orgy of impotent blame and dogmatic positioning.
There is now a unique opportunity to seize the time, and take advantage of what we are playfully - yet seriously - calling "an evolutionary upwising." All across America and all across the political spectrum, people are waking up and wising up to recognize that neither political party truly represents them. And as people are awakening from the partisan trance, there is a growing Transpartisan movement, not to be confused with "bipartisanism."
Transpartisan and bipartisan are two different things. The corporatist elitist element at the "center" of both parties - Brad Blanton calls them "Dempublicrats" - are now scrambling to channel the discontent with partisanship into a "bipartisan" rule that will further narrow the scope of conversation and increasingly enforce top down rules "for our own good." Or, as conservative activist Grover Norquist puts it: "Bipartisan means the Democrats and Republicans getting together to screw the American people."
We the people of America - and indeed the world - are at a crossroads now. There is disheartenment in the heartland. In the past, a discontented populace would rise up to overthrow its government in a revolution. Today we are called upon to wise up and overgrow the corporate-state in an evolution. And there is very good news in this regard. Thanks to the work of pioneers like Tom Atlee and Jim Rough, and the very recent work done in Seattle through the Transpartisan Alliance, we now have the tools to use the existent polarities to activate the collective intelligence and wisdom in any community. In other words, We, the people, are finding that we have access to something "the system" lacks, wisdom.
For the past eight months, we have been convening a bi-weekly prototype Transpartisan meet-up in Seattle that began with 4 people and now has 71 from all "tribes." This meet-up has served as a focus group to refine a meeting format that will keep people from all political stripes engaged on a sustained basis (allowing the group to move, month by month, through stages of empowerment from problem identification to "choice creating"). Over the course of the months, we have expressed our differences loudly and clearly - on everything from guns to health care to the role of government - but inside the container of a mutual desire to have a happier, healthier community. In Native American circles, they say, "we just speak until there is nothing left but the obvious truth." And so it has been in our circle. After exhausting ideological positions, having expressed every emotion, and having soberly recognized that we all agree the current system is unworkable, one question emerged:
"So what? So what can we do about it?"
With this key question came the spark of evolution. Political "children" and "adolescents" (relying on "parental corporate-government" to take care of them, rebelling when it doesn't) began to evolve into political adults. Together we came to the same realization: "It's up to us."
We are at a pivotal moment now, at the beginning of a movement to reunite America - but not around worn out cliche's masking the same old same old. We have the opportunity to reunite America around its true heart and soul - the "heart virtues" and values that the vast majority of us, regardless of political affiliation, agree on.
As an example of the kind of wisdom that can be generated using the energy of opposing polarities, here are some of the things that ordinary citizens - right, left and center - have agreed upon:
* We don't support corporate or government structures that encourage predatory behavior
* The democratic system is no longer representing us
* We don't want taxation without equal, full representation
* We agree that a local response is most empowering