What have you done today to lower your impact?

We are washing away the foundations of our existence on every front. It is high time we move from crashing about on the planet like a bull in china shop and find a way to go forward with intent. We must find systems of living based on sustainability. The systems and tools exist, it is up to each of us to adopt them.

Saturday, 31 December 2011

Happy Kwanzaa - Creativity/Kuumba

"Working diligently to continuously enhance our families, neighborhoods and people." from http://kwanzaaguide.com/

There is so much work to do to undo the damage that our consumerist growth based economy has wrought. We must work to cleanse the toxicity left behind by our addiction to fossil fuels, junk food, and the acquisition of unnecessary plastic objects. We must harness the creative genius within us as individuals and a community to create the world we want to live in.

The previous two days have been busy around The Sustainable Living Project and I failed to post the Kwanzaa principles. Here they are;

Cooperative Economics/Ujamaa: "Sharing and pooling our financial resources and goods and services for the common benefit of family and community participants with the goal of building and sustaining cooperative economic enterprises."http://kwanzaaguide.com/

Observing the ways of nature we see that it is cooperative more than competitive. Competition in human endeavour is corrupting while cooperation is character and community building.

Purpose/ NIA - "Fulfilling our duty and obligation to contribute to  the high and morally serious purpose of nation-building, i.e. the quest to recover and restore our people to their traditional greatness" see more at http://kwanzaaguide.com

Nia is crucial for living a meaningful life. In these times, when we face The Long Emergency we must work to create The Long Emergence. It is up to us to create the world we want to live in, with resilience, connectedness, unity, self determination, interdependence upon our neighbors, clean air, clean water, clean food, and clean energy. If we choose to be puppets and ignore the principle of Nia we will end up with the catastrophe that is even now being engineered by the globalized growth at all costs economy.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Happy Kwanzaa Day 3 Ujima- Collective Work and Responsibility

"Collective work and responsibility is a powerful force in the construction of family and community, and in healthy development of children. This principle instructs that we are all responsible for the welfare and success of each other. All adults, for example, are responsible for the welfare of the community and for the nurturing and development of children. Similarly, all adults are responsible and accountable for the success and failure of neighborhood schools and the safety of the community. Neighborhood safety is most definitively grounded in a network of caring adults who monitor the behavior and skills acquisition, i.e., education of children in the neighborhood. Hence, as indicated above, collective work and responsibility is a powerful and transformative value, which if observed by critical mass of neighborhood residents, would have the effect of raising our neighborhoods to a level capable of producing persons of moral, academic, and professional excellence." see more at

Ujima gets to the heart of community, exhorting us to look after one another and work together to insure our future, to take responsibility for our actions, resilience.

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Happy Kwanzaa Day 2 Kujichagulia


"Kujichagulia principle says African Americans, like all people, need shared cultural values, symbols, rituals, and practices in order to give their families and children meaning and value, and identity and community.

The practice of kujichagulia/Self-determination affirms the right and responsibility of African Americans to think, to speak, and to act from their own cultural framework. By doing this, blacks make a contribution to the whole of humanity and thus are confirmed in their human worth. Blacks would do well to remember Mary M. Bethune instruction: “We as blacks must recognized that we are the custodians as well as heirs of a great civilization. We have given something to the world as a race and for this we are proud and fully conscious of our place in the total picture of mankind’s development.” for more see

For me this is about our need as an local culture to assert our self determination, to reclaim our independence from the globalized, corporate controlled economy of destruction. Yesterday I expressed my Umoja, Unity, by attending a local Kwanzaa celebration. Today I will express my Kujichagulia by practicing my drumming, studying resilience, stoking the fire with waste wood to stay free of fossil fuels where I can, eating home cooked food, and doing some Transition planning.

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Happy Kwanzaa

Day one
"Unity/Umoja To strive daily to engage in practices which build bonds of affection and attachment to our family members, our school teachers, and our neighbors
Perspective on Unity
Promoting the unity of the human family is the task of the whole family. Unity is action on behalf of the family, calling us to help overcome the divisions among family members, and to strengthen the ties that define and bind us as family members. Unity is the spiritual and social gravity which pulls the family together- husband and wife, parent and children, and family and neighbor. At its core, the principle unity is about attachment- attachment to each others and most importantly to the values which define us as family, as community and as a people. On Unity Day, the family celebrates its togetherness (ingathering), the achievements of family members (the harvest concept of Kwanzaa)."
from http://kwanzaaguide.com/2010/12/december-26-day-one-of-kwanzaa-umoja-day/