The discussion follows three steps.
The first step is to find out what aspects of the topic are of interest to participants. This will be done by a go-around giving each participant who wants to speak a chance to say what brought them to the meeting.
The second step is a presentation expanding on the announced topic. In this case, the interface between basic ecology, conventional economic practices and the goal of sustainability, including alternative approaches to mutual provision (the economy).
The third step is to return to the group for questions and discussion about how the step two perspective relates in their personal interests and collective future.
More detailThe topic is relevant because every adult has experience with the economic system; it is the hub through which most of our material necessities are acquired. At the same time, to be alive is to be a full participant in the life process. Increasingly, people are learning about the ecological basics of resource limitations and waste, and how the unfolding impacts of these issues are affecting our well-being and the well-being of the natural world. By sharing bits of experience and understanding related to these topics, a personal context can be established for hearing the step two presentation.
In 30 minutes, or so, my presentation will highlight the basic inconsistencies between what life on this planet offers and economic convention. Having done that, I will introduce a variety of ways in which our mutual provision can be adapted so as to respect the limitations of ecological reality. Finally I will introduce the Question of Direction, a tactic by which we may be able to change the structure of the system and set our world on course toward long-term well-being.
After the presentation, the meeting focus will return to the group. In light of the overview presented, what local issues might be influenced directly by the suggested change of perspective? What steps can be taken individually, in community, and as part of the encompassing challenge of shifting society's goals?
Copies of "Life, Money & Illusion; Living on Earth as if we want to stay," will be available at the workshop. The book is summarized here.
In the event that more time is available than the above discussion can fill, I have a list of supplementary topics that may be of interest. They include:
- Well-being measurement (how we might establish a "Genuine Progress Index" by adding indicators of social and environmental well-being to the economic indicators already brought regularly to public attention.)
- How the Popular Education process, upon which this workshop is based, works
- Money creation: Conventional debt based money compared to no-interest, community currency and/or demurrage currency;
- Morphogenetic Fields (the information field of species that is thought to resonate with DNA)
- Faith of the Bottom Line (neo-classical economics as a fundamentalist State Religion)