Hello there all.
The last Au update, end of a short era.
Joe here and feeling a bit colder than last time I wrote although France has welcomed me back with some unseasonably warmer weather. I hope you all had a nice holiday season with your family and friends. My landing was unfortunately a bit rougher than I had planned. Although all arms were open wide, my little parasites freely given to me from tiny female mosquitoes down in Sierra Leone had my head in a bit of a muddle. Four take offs and landings on the same day blocked my ears to make me partially deaf for the following week as well, plus a six hour plane ride is much too fast for soul and body to arrive at the same time, my body flew home, but my ethereal half took a more circuitous route, but we met up a bit short of the New Year.
I feel on top of my health now, and have still so much to process about the last three months I am so glad to have had, and shared with all of you. In those short 3 months the world saw lots of events happen that we hopefully can all learn from and take stock that yes we do need to cherish every day, but we also need to address many other issues affecting the world’s mental and physical health. Although billions smaller positive things happened on a daily basis, some of the more devastating events which dominated the international news – Hurricane Sandy, the bombing of Palestine and the ongoing war in Afghanistan, plus the unfortunate events in a primary school in Connecticut – clearly show that on many levels we all have to work together as one people, not billions of separate entities running around on the face of the planet, to help bring our world into a brighter future for us all, environmentally, financially, or socially.
Maybe our old ways of thinking and living have started to become extinct and we now need to move forward and embrace a new world. We need to think in a different way and realise that there is a world we can leave behind of abusing our world’s resources to the point of causing catastrophic weather patterns, bombing weaker countries into oblivion, or mindlessly killing young children and teachers. It all ends when we get together as a 7 billion strong entity and just say out loud and in unison, “ENOUGH!”
My short time away taught me so much and showed me once again that material poverty or wealth is not the only way to judge a person’s or a country’s quality of life. Living in Sierra Leone without life’s basic amenities we are so used to in the western world made me re-explore the side of me which half fell into the comfort zone of thinking okay I have a nice life, my family is happy and healthy, so we are sorted. No actually we aren’t. A small country, still recovering from a brutal war, with no electricity or running water in their houses sometimes seemed to be worlds ahead in happiness, forgiveness, and moving forward into a brighter future. The questioning faces I was confronted with on December 15th as to why someone would do such a brutal thing to innocent children made me fumble in my reply being lost for words and the only answer I came up with was disconnection. The young man had disconnected from his humanness and somehow his own self. Then I looked around at the people around me living life without having much, but feeling a connection with their fellow citizens and their land in a way I nearly forgot existed in our modern western world. I thought back to the suburbs of big cities, the lovely countryside of Europe, and a flash of people living in their houses but not in their communities flashed to the fore. I saw people driving around in their cars, building bigger and bigger places to live to try and find happiness and I just knew that many of us need to re-connect in a big way.
Has that big re-connection already started? So many places around the world have made huge steps in redefining modern lifestyles – quality of time becoming more important than the quantity of material goods, vibrant communities growing food and sharing the workload, local currencies, small-scale barter systems and so much more. In having the good fortune to visit and live in some of those places over the years, I have great hope for the future. Too many books come to mind as well, spiritual journeys, financial rethinking and the one I am currently enjoying, “Sacred Economies” by Charles Eisenstein, seems to combine the both wonderfully. I like to keep the vision of the less caring world that was starting to scarily emerge over the past few decades becoming a fading memory. OUR new world begins today and it needs to be hastened in. Although it is much nicer to focus on the good events we should not forget those few horrific ones which taint our worldwide community, we need to remember that humankind had a hand in some small way in ALL the past events, good and bad. We are all responsible for the world we receive and leave to future generations. So no sitting on our laurels feeling self-satisfied with our cozy little comfort zones. As long as children die of curable diseases, our natural resources are sold off for profit, war is our answer to diminishing resources, and people feel the urge to kill indiscriminately, our cozy little worlds do not exist. They are tiny bubbles that will one day burst. We all need to try to be more pro-active in creating the world we want to live in where young children don’t die in Afghanistan while out searching for firewood but instead strike a land mine and are blown to bits. Those land mines are put there because we all, in some small way, have stopped caring. Sure we can blame the faceless corporations that make them, or the military complex responsible for burying them, but if our pension plans or other investments help fund those same mines how are we not part of it?
I am not intimating we all need to dig up land mines or head off to the developing world to give a hand. I am trying to figure it out myself and wish there were clearer answers but I haven’t found any in my search. How our money is spent or earned is quite a powerful tool, trying to be mindful of where the food we eat comes from has a huge effect on our world, transportation is a dilemma we all face and although mobility is such a wonderful asset in our lives, its negative impact in many ways is felt worldwide.Thinking globally and acting locally is wonderful, but I can’t help to feel that sometimes it just isn’t quite enough as we can get lost in our private world and forget totally about the wider one. Any ideas out there? I am hungry for your thoughts and ideas.
I do deeply feel a connection to all of you now reading this, and also to those others of the world who will never have a computer in their house or maybe never even see one. They are no less human than those children I hear behind me right now having fun with their grandma in our house being warmed by a small fire while my wife plays Christmas Carols on the piano (I started this two weeks ago;-). Our bubble is sweet and the place I call home, but I feel a need to be even more a part of the change and our new re-emerging peaceful, caring, connected world. I can feel it coming and hate to be the one to break the news, but the old world did end on December 21st 2012, but man what a beautiful rebirth we can all be a part of in 2013.
I look forward to our continuing journey together.
Much peace and love, Joe (Aka Almami Kamara) .