for Holistic Community Living
The Crisis of Modern Civilization
Allured by the promise of new and better technologies that will make our lives faster, easier, and more sustainable, we are so busy proving what we can do that we rarely stop to ask what is the right thing to do. We have, in nearly every nation, tied our image of progress to a technological future based on unending and every accelerating economic growth. This world view, based on a limited and myopic understanding of nature, the human being and economics is rapidly denuding, consuming and polluting the very organism that sustains human life.
Now, humankind depends on each of us; on our commitment, our involvement, and care for its’ physical, social and spiritual well-being. It is in the face of such huge and awe-inspiring responsibility, that we welcome you to join us in building the OASES Network. This Manifesto addresses, in broad strokes the five key areas of dysfunction in our civilization and communities; identifies some green shoots of promise, and proposes 24 key concepts that can lead us along of path of re-imagining what a healthy and holistic community could look like.
Will we wake up before it is too late?
Opportunity in Crisis
Can the growing technological, cultural, political, economic and ecological crisis become the unwitting instrument for human transformation? Can the death throes of the old system make way for the beginning of a new civilization of freedom, justice and sharing? As the dysfunctional and unsustainable old paradigm slowly crumbles around us, the seeds of a brighter future, which have been laying dormant are now showing their green shoots:
- A deep reverence for the Earth and all planetary life is now dawning in the heart of humanity, as science recognizes the integral importance of all beings in the web of life.
- Through the interconnectivity provided by the rapidly evolving worldwide web, narrow-minded tribalism and nationalism is being replaced by a new cosmopolitan humanism – we are one humanity on one precious and precarious planet Earth.
- Sustainable, clean technologies are being developed with the potential to provide for the world’s needs, with dramatically reduced levels of pollution and energy use.
- A large and growing body of citizen activists is emerging to oppose injustice and “speak truth to power” to governments and corporations.
- New ideas are emerging from the distributed “wisdom of crowds” to reimagine a future with greater collaboration, and disintermediation that is more just and equitable.
- A renewal of human and earth connection is springing up at the grass roots through rural and urban farming, return to local, and the “small is beautiful” simplicity movements, among other initiatives.
THREE SPHERES OF COMMUNITY
Cultural Life of Freedom
- The Foundation of Human Culture and Consciousness is Freedom: We seek to foster free-thinking human beings on earth through the free expression of individual consciousness in the cultural life of society, namely art, science and spirituality.
- Developing Higher Thinking: The faculty of thinking is the greatest gift to humankind and the flower of human evolution; yet, we must not think that we have reached the culmination of human development with our present form of cognitive thinking. New and higher forms of thinking must be developed which allow us to transcend our normal thinking and enter into a discourse with the living, intelligent universe.
- Inner Exploration: Knowledge of the inner life of the human being must be explored with the same diligence as the search for world knowledge. Those who have developed the treasures of their soul and spirit have consistently demonstrated an inner creativity which is the surest wealth. They have bestowed the greatest blessings on humankind and demonstrated the unlimited potential for human becoming.
- The Fruits of Culture: Accomplishments in science, art, and spirituality are the fruits of civilization. These shall be supported and nurtured by the community to the maximum extent possible.
- Sanctity of the Family: As the primary unit of care for children, which hold the treasure of our future, the family must be held sacrosanct. The family archetype consists of father and mother (male and female) which the growing child seeks to emulate. The community must work to prepare and support couples who, out of their own freedom born of love, are choosing to make a life together. This support will be in the areas of physical, moral and educational support, as well as financial.
- Education of the Whole Child: Child rearing and education of the youth is our sacred responsibility. The goal of education is the development of the free-thinking, ￼thus morally conscious￼ human being. We shall strive to cultivate the unique gifts of each child as the promise and hope of our future.
- Peaceful Co-existence: A state of peace and harmony is the natural state of those who have liberated their thinking. Violence of all forms shall be avoided unless required in the act of defense of self or the helpless, and after all methods for peaceable resolution have failed.
- Dangers of Technological Takeover￼: The increasing merger of man with artificial, digital and nano-technology as a path of human evolution is a grave threat to the development of free human beings. We must remain free of technological dependency and control to remain free human beings.
- Death as an Integral part of Life: Birth, and death are intimately bound together in a sacred circle. The machinations of scientists and corporations to cure man of his mortality,fails to understand the gifts that lie within the mystery of death. We uphold the right of human beings to die naturally and free of intrusion from government ￼and medical establishments.
- Dangers of Escapism: All forms of escapism from human and earthly life, whether spiritual or technologically are gravely misguided. Ideals for human beings to leave the earth and make his home in outer space, or in some virtual reality or spiritual utopia, fail to recognize the primacy of the Earth in the life of human development.
- Minimizing Suffering in our Food Choices: While respecting the freedom of each to choose their own diet, we shall strive towards a diet that meets our bodily needs, while causing the least amount of suffering to our animal friends and our planet.
- Sacred Reverence for the Creative Intelligence: Our highest human capacities for thought and creativity are freed when lifted through humble reverence for the Creative and Benevolent Intelligence hidden within and behind the natural world, human beings and the invisible worlds. By whatever name we call this Being, we recognize the sacredness of this vast and mysterious Creative and Loving Force which we are part.
Civic Life of Equality
- Foundation of Local and Global Community is Equality: Governing bodies at all levels shall strive to make laws and regulations based on equality, justice and the rule of law. No organization or individual is above the law.
- One United Humanity : Though born as citizens of a particular nation, we affirm ourselves to be, first and foremost citizens of one humanity, with equal and inalienable rights to life and death, liberty and justice, and equal opportunities to develop and deliver our gifts to the world.
- Government Intrusion: An administrative body or government ￼that attempts to control the cultural and economic lives of the people is a threat to human freedom and well-being.
- Civil Service a Vocation: Political life is a vocation of service, not a path to power. In order to earn the moral right to govern, politicians and community administrators shall￼ work from a spirit of genuine and heartfelt service to community.
- Money Influence in Politics: The money influence shall￼ be removed from political life. Attempts by special interests and lobby groups to control the political process through lobbying and campaign contributions is corruption of the highest order.
- Local Decision Making: Local autonomy and direct decision making allows for the greatest equity among a liberated populous, and shall be fostered.
- Political Non-intervention: Individual enterprise and initiative must be fostered, and not be impeded unnecessarily by political or administrative interference, except to safeguard cultural freedom and political equality. The administrative arm of community life, must not impose on the free cultural life of the community, leaving members to think and express freely.
- Human Beings are not a Commodity: The use of labour as a mere commodity, to be bought and sold at the going market price makes of man (and women) a modern slave. They are no slave. Labour regulations must be made and administers that ensure that human beings are able to contribute their highest and best capacity to the community at a rate that ensures they can financially maintain themselves and their families now and into the future. Such wages shall be based upon the specific life circumstances of each worker.
Economic Life of Sharing
- Foundation of the Economy is Cooperation and Sharing: Discovering our inter-connection with all Life, we realize that like Nature herself, humanity is deeply rooted in co-operation, sharing and inter-dependence, not in competitive, profit maximizing, self-interest. We establish a new economy on these principles, rooted in the impulse of caring and interdependence.
- Sustainability for Survival: Recognizing the universal human need for a habitable and sustainable future, and the futility of a growth based economic model, we begin a collective process of simple living and embrace a culture of conservation and regenerative economics that honours the Earth as our most precious and sacred responsibility.
- Money becomes the Servant: A money system issued as centralized debt, growing exponentially through compound interest, is incompatible with a sustainable and equitable future. Money must assume its rightful purpose as servant of humankind, and not master. New economic systems that meet real human needs, sustainably must be embraced and developed.
- Land Reform for Affordable Living: Living together cooperatively and affordably shall be encouraged and recognized as the right of every person and necessary for sustainable human living. Speculation on land is inimical to community prosperity.
- Dangers of Monopolies: The existence of monopolies and oligopolies reduce diversity and concentrate power in few hands and are antithetical to an equitable and free society.
- Redefining Wealth: In service to the genuine needs of one another and other species, we rediscover true wealth in our relationships.
- Economic Excess Flows as Gift: We recognizing that our creative capacities lead to ever new ways to save human labour to produce and distribute goods more efficiently. This excess value is the product of both enterprising individuals and the culture, which has allowed these individuals to flourish and implement their ideas. Therefore, profits must be returned as gifts to the fertile ground of the human cultural life, namely education, arts and science, as the productive, generative ground of the future.
- Just Prices a Necessity: Prices of goods set and paid by a community for goods and services shall reflect the full value of their inputs, plus impacts upon the environment and cultural life of the community. They must ensure that all of the people involved in the enterprise are able to earn enough to sustain themselves and their dependents until they can produce another similar sale, so that people can sustain themselves and their families.
- No “Externalities”: There is nothing outside of the economic system. All environmental and social costs must be built into current prices and not pushed downstream upon future generations in the way of environmental damage, pollution, disease and social decay.
Do you have the gift of spiritual insight or intuition, management acumen or passion for creating conscious culture, organization and economy? Apply to join one of our interim Advisory Councils in one of three areas (Consciousness, Governance or Economic Cooperation) and help us to build the OASES Holistic Living Network.
Do you have skills in web development, graphic arts, social media, public relations, community building or (name your skill) ? Help us to build an online platform and physical community network that can act as lifeboats for the future.
Does your heart resonate with our vision? Does your financial cup runneth over? Help us to grow thriving communities for future generations, and leave a lasting legacy for the future. Your contribution can be allocated for general development or specific aspects of the OASES vision.