Developing a Regenerative Culture for the Great Turning Movement

This article is based on my ideas about the Great Turning Movement. If you aren’t familiar with them, click here.

This article discusses how to ensure that the processes, relations, and activities of the Great Turning movement reflect the regenerative society we are aiming for. We need to actively work to promote a movement culture of cooperation, humility, absence of blame, spirituality, diversity, and interconnectedness. It should also involve global consciousness, social justice, reverence for the earth, and other qualities of the world we want to create.

A crucial aspect of this is how we enact power and decision-making within our organizations and in the overall movement. Click Healthy Power and Decision-making for a discussion of this.

If we organize and act within the current Modern/Industrial paradigm, we will probably fail, or we will reproduce the problems of the current society rather than truly transforming it. For example, we don’t want to engage in our activism from these Modern Era attitudes:

Thinking

  • An overly intellectual or rigid attitude.
  • Categorical thinking, which means placing people, groups, and events into categories and believing that the category tells you all you need to know about them.
  • Thinking in terms of immediate cause of a problem rather than recognizing systemic cause and effect or the deeper cause of an issue.

Perception

  • Believing that we can make something happen (such as social change) rather than seeing the larger process and the flows that are operating and realizing that we can align with those.
  • Seeing people in the movement as just cogs in the movement machine to accomplish tasks rather than as whole people with feelings, hopes, fears, and a variety of talents and skills.
  • Seeing those who disagree with us as enemies.
  • Viewing ourselves as involved in a struggle rather than being aligned with the flow of evolution.
  • Believing that we are right, and we have the answers, and others should just follow us rather than recognizing that many different people and organizations have perspectives than may be valuable.
  • Seeing humans as separate individuals rather than as participants in community, society. and the natural world.

Status and Power

  • Ego and desire for recognition, especially from our charismatic leaders.
  • Judging others who aren’t politically correct.
  • Competing for power, either within the movement or society, rather than cooperating for the good of the world.
  • Trying to lead the movement from the top down rather than empowering the grass roots.

We must be alert to other subtle ways of unconsciously acting out the current worldview. Most of us grew up with underlying assumptions and attitudes from the current culture, so it is easy for us to act from them without realizing it. We must be awake to this danger and actively work to change our attitudes to those of a regenerative culture. This will require introspection, psychological exploration, and honest, caring feedback from each other.

Most people in the movement probably believe in the values of the new society and have a worldview to match, but this could be at mostly an intellectual level. Part of our work will be to transform our own consciousness so that these regenerative cultural values are deeply felt and lived, and they permeate the movement.