Yesterday was EARTH DAY
Yesterday was Earth Day. The 50th Earth Day.
Yesterday I was honored to host a panel at the Pachamama Alliance Voices for the Earth Summit. This was one of hundreds (maybe thousands?) of events around the world. Check out Earthday.org to see the amazing map of all the registered events. I bet there were hundreds of events that weren't registered too!
Yesterday must have been amazing! So how come I don’t feel amazed by it? I loved the event we did at the Pachamama Alliance, and if you didn’t see it live, you should totally check out the recording on the FB page. But that was just one event.
Yesterday I’ll bet at every one of those hundreds (thousands?) of events at least one speaker said something like, “The Covid 19 virus, and humanity’s response makes it absolutely undeniable that we are all in this together. We are all connected, connected with each other, connected with nature, connected with the Earth. And how we come out of the current disruption depends completely on whether we acknowledge and embody that interconnectedness, and actually take care of each other or we attempt to continue living out the myth that we are separate.”
So yesterday there were hundreds of people saying essentially the same thing to thousands (millions?) of people, each speaker in their own little bubble. Zoom room after Zoom room, Facebook feed after Facebook feed - one event, (mostly) one organization, separate and disconnected from the others, crafting their own message, making their own call to action, delivering their own funding appeal.
Wait… What was that about being interconnected? Needing to recognize and embody that interconnectedness? What was that about the fate of future generations depending on us to wake up and connect? In the middle of the most profound, foundation-shaking, norm-shattering disruption of business as usual that has been felt in my lifetime (70 years!) we, the so-called movement, reverted to normal. And we KNOW we cannot afford normal. We KNOW It’s unsustainable. By definition that means it will not last. Not that it should not last (true, it really shouldn’t), but that it simply will not.
So what came up today in our meditation? (something always comes up in our meditation.)
“Let’s do Earth Day 2021 completely differently!”
Let’s connect, collaborate, cooperate. Let’s form a complex adaptive network raising the possibility of unpredictable emergent properties. Let’s become aware of the network so the network knows itself. Let’s become a self-reflective, self-generating entity with emerging new types of causality. Let’s become a force for transformation. Let’s travel together to the bottom of Otto Sharmer’s U, be present together and come up the other side generating creative, innovative, unexpected action at every level of society. Let us believe in ourselves metaphorically as the imaginal cells in the chrysalis that was a caterpillar and is now melting into a nutritive soup of rich resources. Unmoored from our business as usual roots, let’s become the genetic directors of the new butterfly world that is emerging. Let's actually create (as Charles Eisenstein says,) “the More Beautiful World We Know is Possible!”
But maybe Earth Day 2021 is too late. What about June 13th: Global Wellness Day? September 21: World Peace Day? Or the 11 Days of Unity from September 11- 25? Let’s pick a Day and “just do it!”
How do we do that? How do we break the barriers of organizational identity and allow ourselves to actually co-create the beginnings of a new world? A whole blueprint came to me in a virtual instant.
When Satya and I meditate we call on the guidance and support of a whole host of spirit guides, including guidance from teachers, mahatmas, and shamans present on Earth today. One of those is Arkan Lushwala, a peruvian teacher and dear friend of the Pachamama Alliance. From him we have learned to always 1) do our best to know how to ask for help 2) learn how to recognize help when it shows up (which is not always easy or obvious!) 3) prepare ourselves to actually receive that help, and 4) extend our deepest gratitude for the help that we have received.
I have noticed over time that the help that arrives in meditation is always something to pay attention to. Sometimes it’s just pure bliss. Sometimes it’s spirit images that I struggle to interpret, and sometimes it’s these instantaneous downloads of visions,vivid possibilities, connections.
Yesterday it was how to create a truly collaborative Earth Day. Or Imaginal Cells Day, or Earth People’s Day, or Global Day of Transformation.
It’s actually not that hard. It just requires every organization that sponsored an Earth Day event in 2020 to dissolve its organizational ego, the deep felt need to attract more funders, prove its worth, show results to its funders or shareholders, fulfill its own so important mission. For one day. Give up organizational survival thinking for a whole day. OK, I exaggerate. To plan this event you’ve got to give it up for a whole year, but only when you are in the planning conversations, and not everyone in the organization even needs to know it's going on!
It’s amazing what can come through in a few seconds of meditation, when it’s ready to flow. To give you the whole plan would take more time than you’ve got. Just the essence, ma’am:
Obviously inspired by the shelter in place, lock down and quarantine orders of the moment, this event would be online. Every hour for the 24 hours of Earth Day everyone who is participating in one time-slot goes to one site (really it’s mirror sites around the world, so the traffic doesn’t break the bandwidth.) This could be thousands or millions of people at one time! Choosing a path to an issue that we are passionate about, we sort ourselves into groups 10 (plus or minus 2) that are subgroups of groups of 100 - 200 people coalesced around a common theme. A process of ideation, problem solving, creative synergy, discernment and prioritization leads us back to the whole with an entire narrative of what we will do the transform the world. In one version of this download there are a few billionaires, millionaires, executives and leaders who are ready to be known as the ones who actually saved human civilization ready to fund and carry out the key ideas.
It’s a global unconference, world cafe and Bucky Fuller’s World Game, merged with the Clinton Global Initiative, meets a eco-driven Shark Tank.
The download included a lot more detail about dealing with process, hosting conversations, language, technology, etc. And I'm happy to share it with anyone who is serious about making it happen.
One issue that I have with these downloads is that it is really hard for me to tell whether they are for me to actually do, seeds to be sewn to see if they grow, or just wild ideas that may lead to something more concrete and doable at a later date.
This one feels like more than a seed. It’s already a sprout. But it’s one Satya and I can’t take care of on our own. Certainly if this were to happen, or even begin to be explored, we are all in to make it happen. It needs a place to to grow, and someone to feed it, water it, protect it from the cold winds of skepticism, and gather around it the ecosystem in which it can flourish. It needs a champion, a home and a sponsor. Are you listening, Denis Hayes? Or maybe Mike Brune? Annie Leonard? Richard Branson? Leonardo? Bill Gates? Or maybe it’s someone I’ve never heard of with the same crazy “It can be done” unstoppable spirit that Denis Hayes has 50 years ago when the first Earth Day drew 20 million people out of their homes into the streets, gardens, rivers and forests of the world to proclaim a new direction for humanity. We will become a species that has consciously created what environmentalist philosopher Thomas Berry called “a mutually enhancing human-earth relationship.”