Entering The Wilderness Together: Being “In This World But Not Of It”

Entering The Wilderness Together: Being “In This World But Not Of It”To be “in this world but not of it” is the ultimate challenge. It's so much easier to withdraw from the craziness or get lost in it. Trauma specialists identify isolated incidents of extreme stress, but who considers the daily damage from living in this madhouse prison called civilization? Especially when...

7 Reasons The World Is Actually Becoming A Better Place

7 Reasons The World Is Actually Becoming A Better PlaceSwedish academic Hans Rosling has identified a worrying trend: not only do many people across advanced economies have no idea that the world is becoming a much better place, but they actually even think the opposite.

The World Peace Diet: Eating As A Political, Social, Spiritual Act

Eating As A Political, Social, Spiritual Act: The World Peace DietWe must believe that we are capable of creating “a place of love and mutual assistance and understanding.” This is how visionary Tim Berners-Lee described the utopianist John Perry Barlow at the time of his death, adding: “I don’t think he was naïve.”

What Damage Are We Doing To Our Children And Ourselves?

What Damage Are We Doing To Our Children And Ourselves
Sociologists understand experiences of violence and neglect in childhood are part of what’s known as a Toxic Socialization (TS) process. Put simply, TS is a socialization process characterized by violence and neglect. Violence includes emotional, psychological, spiritual and physical violence. Neglect includes neglect of our physical, emotional, psychological and cognitive needs.

Protesters Lose Public Support When They Get Violent

Protesters Lose Public Support When They Get Violent
Violent protests can undercut public support for popular causes, according to new research inspired by recent confrontations between white nationalist protesters and anti-racist counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Berkeley, California.

How Moral Outrage Can Turn Into Social Change

How Moral Outrage Can Turn Into Social Change
While outrage is generally considered a hurdle in the path to civil discourse, new research suggests outrage—specifically, moral outrage—may have beneficial outcomes, such as inspiring people to take part in long-term collective action.

A Time for Truth, A Time for Healing

A Time for Truth, A Time for Healing
There seems to be so many things going on these days that need to be addressed. I compare the situation to a "healing crisis". You may have had a weakness in your body for years, and then the situation becomes acute, obvious, and unacceptable. It is the same with the world around us...

5 Ways Small Actions Have Huge Power

5 Ways Small Actions Have Huge Power

To those who take the bus or refuse plastic toothbrushes: Don’t listen to the cynics. Research shows the little things matter.

Making Society Civil Again

Making Society Civil AgainThe United States media has been awash with debates about civility in recent months after a number of officials in Donald Trump’s administration have been heckled and shamed in public places.

Can You Change the World with Civil Disobedience?

Can Civil Disobedience Change The World?
It is not often that a neighbourhood squabble is remembered as a world-historical event. In the summer of 1846, Henry David Thoreau spent a single night in jail in Concord, Massachusetts after refusing to submit his poll tax to the local constable. This minor act of defiance would later be immortalised in Thoreau’s essay ‘On the Duty of Civil Disobedience’ (1849)

Why We Need To Rethink Our Moral Obligations To Create A Better World

Why We Need To Rethink Our Moral Obligations To Create A Better World
Antibiotic resistance is an example of a collective action problem. These are problems where what is individually rational leads to a collectively undesirable outcome. Small things that many of us do, often on a daily basis, can have disastrous consequences in aggregate. The most challenging problems humanity is facing are in one way or another collective action problems.

History Tells Us How Student Protests Can Work

History Tells Us How Student Protests Can Work
When 17 students and teachers were murdered on what should have been a peaceful school day, students across the US took to the streets to demand change.

Why We Need Radical Imagination

Why We Need Radical ImaginationImagination, as Hawaiian Native rights advocate Poka Laenui describes it, is more than an antidote to hopelessness. It is a source of power.

How to Become a Warrior of Light: A New Energy, A New Reality

How to Become a Warrior of Light: A New Energy, A New Reality
The stable concept of identifying ourselves as Hungarian, Dutch, Vietnamese, Maori, or whatever, is falling apart. A new energy is sweeping through the planet, an energy that is not local, not just planetary, but cosmic. Now you have to stand in the Light and fight for the whole planet. You now...

Meet The Theologian Who Helped MLK See The Value Of Nonviolence

Meet The Theologian Who Helped MLK See The Value Of Nonviolence
After this last tumultuous year of political rancor and racial animus, many people could well be asking what can sustain them over the next coming days: How do they make the space for self-care alongside a constant call to activism?

Connection and Cooperation: The Hundredth Monkey Resonance Field

Connection and Cooperation: The Hundredth Monkey Resonance FieldMargaret Mead is famous for noting, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." In many communities there are numerous groups for individuals to support one another's efforts to make changes in their lives and in the world.

I Don't Want To Waste This Life: It's Time to Act!

I Don't Want To Waste This Life: It's Time to Act!I need to remind myself not to waste time. Not to click on too many hyperlinks and certainly not to spend to much time on Facebook. Not to distract myself with too much retail therapy at the antique mall or on Amazon. Not to obsess over whether my...

Does Donald Trump Have A Passion For Cruelty?

trump 10 2Donald Trump seems addicted to violence. It shapes his language, politics and policies. He revels in a public discourse that threatens, humiliates and bullies.

The Power of Showing Up and Helping

The Power of Showing Up and HelpingI was listening to a news reporter in Texas listing all of the destruction, and then he started talking about all of the volunteers who have showed up to help, and he started to cry. Through tears, he said that he has never seen humanity show up in such beautiful ways to be of service and help others in need.

What Can You Do with Justified Anger?

Transforming Anger Into Nonviolent PowerAnger, rage and a desire for revenge are all reasonable and justified in the face of armed attacks, abuse and exploitation. What matters is what we do with these things.

5 Tips For Stretching Your Donation Dollars

5 Tips For Stretching Your Donation DollarsThere’s no shortage of media reports listing which groups are taking donations, often with scant guidance about what kinds of relief these organizations can offer.

For A Primer On How To Make Fun Of Nazis, Look To Charlie Chaplin

For A Primer On How To Make Fun Of Nazis, Look To Charlie ChaplinWhile many anti-fascists offered serious and potent arguments against Hitler, comedians like Charlie Chaplin responded to the mortal threat that the Nazis posed in a different way: They used humor to highlight the absurdity and hypocrisy of both the message and its notorious messenger.

Why Our Global ‘Age Of Rage’ Is Entering A New Phase

Why Our Global ‘Age Of Rage’ Is Entering A New PhaseProtesters have recently been out in force in Russia, Poland, Hungary, northern Morocco and Venezuela; sizeable democracy marches have mobilized to mark key moments in Hong Kong and Turkey

How Mainstream Media Can Still Effect Social Change

How Mainstream Media Can Still Effect Social ChangeWhile there is much to critique about the news media in this age of “post-truth” within a landscape dominated by a handful of media conglomerates, we need the press to hold our leaders and institutions accountable. Locally, when the occasion calls for it, we should laud the press.

Independents Day Message: A New Common Sense, A New Common Cause

 Independents Day Message: A New Common Sense, A New Common CauseI now call the 4th of July "Independents Day" as I've come to realize that the only way we the people can take our country back -- and forward -- is by declaring our independence from the two political parties, the two-party duopoly, and the two competing narratives that keep us divided ... and conquered.

Can We Predict Political Uprisings?

Can We Predict Political Uprisings?Forecasting political unrest is a challenging task, especially in this era of post-truth and opinion polls.

How My Tree-Planting Mother Turned Her Vision Into Reality

How My Tree-Planting Mother Turned Her Vision Into RealityWhen I was ten years old and attending an elementary school called Mountainview School, my mother decided to have a little chat with my school director about the lack of trees on the school property. She argued that although the view of the mountain was lovely, the boring grassy lawn was not.

How To Understand The Language Of Political Populism

How To Understand The Language Of Political PopulismIn a TV debate to mark the official start of the French presidential election campaign, far-right candidate Marine Le Pen was accused of “twisting the truth” by her centrist opponent Emmanuel Macron.

How Ayn Rand's Elitism Lives On

How Ayn Rand's Elitism Lives OnTrump’s secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, has said Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged” is his favorite book.

What Would Mark Twain Think Of This President?

What Would Mark Twain Think Of This President?Thanks to the criticisms they’ve leveled in articles, interviews, tweets and letters to the editor, we know that many contemporary authors, from Philip Roth to J.K. Rowling, have a dim view of Donald J. Trump. The Conversation

How Liberal Social Media Stars Are Fighting Back

How Liberal Social Media Stars Are Fighting BackIn the aftermath of the 2016 U.S. elections, numerous accounts surfaced of nefarious content creators profiting by posting fake content on social media.

How The Guerrilla Archivists Are Saving History

How The Guerrilla Archivists Are Saving HistoryOn Inauguration Day, a group of students, researchers and librarians gathered in a nondescript building on the north side of the University of California, Los Angeles campus, against a backdrop of pelting rain.

How Norway Avoided Becoming a Fascist State

How Norway Avoided Becoming a Fascist StateInstead of falling to the Nazi party, Norway broke through to a social democracy. Their history shows us polarization is nothing to despair over. The key to avoiding fascism? An organized left with a strong vision and broad support.

Why This Dutch City Offered Refugees a Permanent Home

Why This Dutch City Offered Refugees a Permanent HomeWhen 500 refugees arrived in their community, residents of Zaandam were wary. But by the time the newcomers could apply for residency status in Europe, neighbors didn’t want them to leave.

Creating Communities Together with Radical Love

Why We Need Radical Love To Create ChangeSince coming out as queer at 45, I've been coming to understand what that means. “Queer” is a reclaimed word that aims to reject oppressive cultural formations of sex and gender identity. But to me it also means a new perspective on radical love.

How To Take Baby Steps Towards A New Reality

How To Take Baby Steps Towards A New Reality
If we were able to remember how we felt as a child learning to crawl, we probably would remember looking on with amazement at the giants we saw around us. This memory might help us when we are learning a technical skill, or a behavioral skill such as unconditional love, patience...

4 Expert Tips on Launching a Community Organization

4 Expert Tips on Launching a Community OrganizationCommunity groups have the power to create long-lasting change. Ioby, an organization based in New York City, New York, that works on neighborhood mobilization, recently published its "Recipes for Change" toolkit.

How Brazil's Far Right Became A Dominant Political Force

How Brazil's Far Right Became A Dominant Political ForceRecent reports indicate that far-right groups from the Ukraine have come to Brazil to recruit neo-Nazis to fight against pro-Russian rebels. Western readers reacted with shock and fascination

How Progressives Can Still Make Change In The Political Climate

How Progressives Can Still Make Change In The Political ClimateDonald Trump, in his quest to “make America great again,” is poised to put in place many regressive policies that are fundamentally at odds with what are generally considered progressive values such as transparency, inclusiveness, equity, fairness and dignity for all

I Have A Dream (text & video)

I have a dream speech and video

The I Have A Dream speech is the crown jewel of the 20th century. Given before 250,000 souls on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, it  is called the defining moment of the US Civil Rights movement. It is the speech by which all other great speeches must be measured. Its haunting rhythm towards the end of the speech has an almost musical sound and feel.

What Shaped Martin Luther King's Prophetic Vision?

freedom for oppressed 1 16The name Martin Luther King Jr. is iconic in the United States. The outgoing 44th president, Barack Obama, spoke of King in both his Democratic National Convention nomination acceptance and victory speeches in 2008:

Franklin Delano Roosevelt - The Four Freedoms Speech

fdr 4 freedoms 1 16Roosevelt delivered this speech to Congress as a "State Of The Union" 11 months before the United States entered World War II. Memorably, in the second half of the speech, FDR lists the benefits of democracy. He lists these as Freedom Of Speech, Freedom Of Worship, Freedom From Want, and Freedom From Fear. The first two freedoms are guaranteed by the US Constitution and the last two are still in controversy to this day.

2016 Was The Year The Establishment Met Its Match

2016 Was The Year The Establishment Met Its MatchIf we didn’t realize that 2016 was the year of upheaval before November 8, we certainly do now. Brexit, which seemed hard enough to digest, was merely the amuse bouche prior to the red meat of Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election.

10 Things to Prepare For A President Trump

10 Things to Prepare For A President TrumpMany Americans would not be surprised if on Jan. 20 Vladimir Putin administers the oath of office to Donald Trump, the Ku Klux Klan youth choir regales the inaugural crowd with a stirring rendition of “Dixie,

Lessons For Our Time From Rachel Carson

Lessons For Our Time From Rachel Carson"For many years, public-spirited citizens throughout the country have been working for the conservation of the natural resources, realizing their vital importance to the nation."

Why Small Changes From Activism Matter

Why Small Changes From Activism MatterIn 2013, an online petition persuaded a national organization representing high school coaches to develop materials to educate coaches about sexual assault and how they could help reduce assaults by their athletes

Trump’s Seven Techniques to Control the Media

Trump’s Seven Techniques to Control the MediaDemocracy depends on a free and independent press, which is why all tyrants try to squelch it. They use seven techniques that, worryingly, President-elect Donald Trump already employs.

Warriors of the Light: We Are The Revolution

Warriors of the Light: We Are The RevolutionMy literature is totally committed with a new political attitude – human beings in search of their own identity. My books don’t talk about the old and used up process of the right/left but there is a revolution that is slowly rising up...

Understanding Trump By Watching The Apprentice

David/Flickr, CC BY-SADepending on your political persuasion, or, as some are now arguing, depending on the “engagement” metrics that condition your social media “echo chamber”, you will have met the election of Donald Trump to the US’s highest office with either shock or elation.

It's Time to See Clearly and Recommit to Core Values

It's Time to See Clearly and Recommit to Core ValuesFeeling anxious about life in a broken-down society on a stressed-out planet? While the dominant culture encourages dysfunctional denial — pop a pill, go shopping, find your bliss — there’s a more sensible approach: Accept the anxiety, embrace the deeper anguish, and then...

Breaking Through Power Is Easier Than You Think

Breaking Through Power Is Easier Than You Think When I was a student at Princeton University I learned from my anthropology studies that the concentration of power in the hands of the few is common to all cultures, societies, nations, tribes, cities, towns, and villages.

How We Can Choose the Greater Good on Election Day

 How We Can Choose the Greater Good on Election DayThose angry Bernie supporters who are so turned off by Hillary that they plan to vote for Jill Stein or Gary Johnson or even Darn Old Trump may be shooting themselves -- and indeed the entire body politic -- in the head...

What Are The Roots Of The New Corporate Activism?

When the Greensboro Four launched their sit-in protest, companies tended to stay neutral on social issues. Cewatkin via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SATarget recently staked out a position in the culture wars by announcing that it will build private bathrooms in all its locations, after earlier allowing transgender customers to use whichever room corresponds with their gender identity – both actions sparking anger from many conservatives.

What You Need to Know About the Dakota Access Pipeline Protest

What You Need to Know About the Dakota Access Pipeline ProtestOver the past month, thousands of protesters, including Native Americans from more than 100 tribes across the country, have traveled to North Dakota to help the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe block the Dakota Access Pipeline from being built.

Is The Internet A Help Or Hindrance To Democracy?

Is The Internet A Help Or Hindrance To Democracy?The internet has rewired civil society, propelling collective action into a radically new dimension. Democracy is now not only exercised at the ballot box, but lived and experienced online on a day-to-day basis.

Why Global Populism Is Here To Stay

Why Global Populism Is Here To StayWhen it comes to politics, 2016 has been a very strange year to say the least. Things that aren’t “supposed to happen” – well, they just keep happening.

Bernie Sanders' New Our Revolution Movement Marches On

our revolution 8 4Pramila Jayapal, one of the standard-bearers for Bernie Sanders' Our Revolution movement, won a decisive victory in the primary race for Washington's 7th Congressional District Tuesday night and will advance to the November general election.

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