I used to hold a weekly discussion group in my basement. I'd bring people home from school for a night and choose a topic and we'd just talk about it for a few hours and try to see if there was anything we could do about any one issue, or anything we could learn from one another. A lot came out of it. I've considered making a community on livejournal for the same purpose, to analyze and reform the ways of the world as best we can, but I figured it'd be worth trying to post some of these issues here, see what comes out of it first.
One issue that I think is important right now in my life at least, is money.
Money is like the backbone to our society. Yet in my mind, our society is going in a very wrong direction. Our economy fuels our current direction, but where exactly are we going? When we consider the many facets of how money works, what it does, and how we are actually using it, many come to the conclusion that it is evil at heart, and that there must be another way to make trade. Whenever I've asked people "Why don't we get rid of the monetary system? There's got to be a better way, this is creating too much damage, too much greed, too much hatred. Seems a lot of our problems might be gone if we could just find a better way to make trade." people say "yeah, it would be great, but it's impossible, the system's too big, don't bother."
Well it's about damn time someone at least /tried/ to think up a new method. James Redfield (writer of the Celestine series) has mused the idea that in a new world, money won't be exchanged based on a regimented system of goods and services, but rather on a system of spirituality. Instead of placing value on raw materials, goods and services only, we will also see value in wisdom, knowledge, the environment. When someone gives you a gem of wisdom, something that enrichens the way you see reality, you might pay them for example. Yet at the same time, if someone's hungry, you would offer them food, no charge. If someone wanted to cut down trees to build a house, it would obviously cost money, not just for the moving of trees and creation of the house, but the removal of carbon-dioxide eating plants. I saw this method of paying for things much more effective. This way, whenever a politico was asked "Why aren't we feeding them in Africa?" they could not say "Because we can't afford it." Why should value be placed on food, but not on clean water, or fresh air? On clothing and shelter, but not happiness and knowledge?
Before, in my naive childhood, I would say to just get rid of money, and trade items for items, while food, clothing, shelter and water were left free at their essence, costly only in increasing forms of luxury.
But I don't know. These models have been looked over and rejected by all practical people, apparently. What do YOU think? Maybe we can think up a new system, something that will make the world a better place...
And let's not stop at the monetary system. The education system, the government system, corporations, all of these things are allegedly in place to move humanity forward and keep stability, but they are not structured appropriately for their cause. What can we do to reform the machines that govern our lives?
Love from Loh