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These two short examples are illustrative before we go to 2018 and the diverging/converging realities.
How would a monkey tell a fish what it is like to climb a tree? For the monkey it is difficult to explain. For the fish problematic to understand. They both live in different worlds. The fish and monkey excel in their own living environment, context and behavior yet can hardly imaging each other’s world because it does not belong to their daily reality. They would even deny each other’s existance.
Then there is the inspirating story of the flatlanders. These are imaginary beings that live in a two dimensional world. In their world there is no up or down, just forward and backward, left and right. How do you explain these flatlanders about the existance of the third dimension in which we can deal with depth and height too? That within these 3D we can find endless amounts of 2D worlds that run parallel and even could cross each other? And that these worlds have no idea about each other’s existance. Each of these flatlanders would also be capable of denying the existance of the other ones.
When we talk about Sustainocracy as societal alternative we also find such perceptions at human level. Sustainocracy is a different reality than what we have been used to for generations and were educated into. Just watch these 10 minutes of James Wildman showing us how we fool ourselves:
Sustainocracy is also a new dimension that has been added to our society. That is new and difficult to understand. It does not require much explanation for those who have made the step already. For those who encounter the ideology and practical reality for the first time, they tend to stay in their old patterns of reasoning. They mirror Sustainocracy against their own known and accustomed way of living. That does not work. Just like a fish will never climb a tree if it keeps swimming in the water.
On the other hand why would an ape want to convince a fish? Or should the 2D world want to understand the 3D reality? That indeed is not at all necessary. Unless one can get clear benefits from the cross over. That is one of the reasons why new realities such as Sustainocracy came about. The current (old) human reality is destroying our habitat, including our relationships among each other and our environment. The consciousness that develops involves “it needs to be done differently”. This is already a step into the direction of a new dimension of connectedness and behavioral adjustment.
The advantage of any human being is our capacity to evolve in awareness (understanding new things) in which new dimensions become visible and challenge our behavior and lifestyle. In essence we can evolve from swimming into climbing trees and learn to manage both. We are also capable of reasoning in 2 and 3 dimensions while opening up our personal and collective evolution towards 4 and 5D consciousness. The human being has unprecedented evolutionary possibilies even during a single lifetime. This also means that certain people advance in this sooner or deeper than others.
That is how the situation arises in which different realities start to appear, diverge and mingle, colliding or strengthing each other. That does not only go for the individual but also for institutions, governance and business enterprises. In 2018 new dimensions and realities manifest themselves structurally (not ad hoc anymore) as optional next to the old one.
In Sustainocracy we position “the human being” and our core natural values at the kernel of our thinking and dealing with reality. It is all about the wellness we create together, our continuity and evolution as a species. Then suddenly different rules count than the current political and economically geared situation that made us dependent of a costly hierarchical structure. For many only this single reality exists because of their dependence on it. “It is as it is”, people state with apathy. With this attitude they reason about everything as soccer player that wants to play basketball by using only soccer rules. That cannot be done of course. It is not as it is, it is the way we interpret our reality and act accordingly. Big challenges such as pollution, deforestation, destruction of life on Earth, inequality, climate change, illnesses, etc get us to think differently. To that understanding belongs new models and behavioral patterns.
2018 stands for new societal structures that at first function next to eachother with engagement of three groups of people and institutions:
- Those that hold on to the political economic reality and their own fragmented role in it,
- Those that structurally engage with level 4 participation (like Sustainocracy), reasoning and dealing from a holistic approach and symbiosis,
- Those that get stuck between the two realities.
This situation we will also encounter during the city council elections in 2018 in which core human values and cocreation have penetrated the political agenda too. An example is the Brabant Health Deal.
More and more citizens group together to take responsibility for their environment and quality of life, looking for partnerships in equality and purpose with the local policy makers. Also the political economic hierarchy has no other choice than to engage in order to avoid liabilities that can be connected to the old governance model. The new reality hence gains momentum.
Still there will be regions in which so called Trump effects can occur due to the conservative capitalists that see their position weaken. The effects are being analyzed by Otto Scharmer (Theory-U) in his recent blog. He sees it all as a prelude needed for the awareness boost that precedes change.
Anyhow, and concluding, the new realities manifest themselves, show what they are about and win engagement through self aware citizens, governors, innovative entrepreneurs and institutions. This gives both tensions and positive flows. But in 2018 for the first time they will stand side by side and fight their differences in an evolutionary battle for our sustainable future. Nature itself will add to it too assuring that it will be another challenging year full of threats and opportunities. How we deal with this duality will determine our own flow.
I myself made my choice already over 20 years ago as a person. In 2009 STIR Foundation was created to host the engagement of people and institutions that wanted to shape the core human values through innovation. And since 2012 it has its own name, framework and common denomination under Sustainocracy, which expresses itself through level 4 movements such as AiREAS, FRE2SH, COS3I and School of Talents in Eindhoven, Brabant, Netherlands, Europe and the entire world. In view of this evolution 2018 will be for me individually and collectively at the side of Sustainocracy, a wonderful year.
During DDW2017 (Dutch Design Week 2017) in Eindhoven we had the opportunity to open the doors of our food resilience initiative, referred to as the FRE2SH cooperative (Food, Recreation, Energy, Education, Sustainocracy, Health).
Over 4500 visitors came to see the FRE2SH ecosystem in which various businesses connect to share food responsibilities in town. Such partners are forming a community relationship between city food production, consumption and food processing activities.
Currently FRE2SH provides different types of herbs, lettuce, flowers, mealworms, oyster mushrooms, water Kefir, trout…
Some of these products are processed into salades, soups, brownies, hamburgers, etc.
There is a zero waste policy in which solutions are designed to reuse all nutrients in the chain. Also residues like plastic, coffee, etc are reused. Transportation is done on foot or by bicycle to avoid air pollution.
The STIR sustainocratic cooperative in Eindhoven for Food Securities in city populations, FRE2SH, is uniquely exposing itself through presentations, workshops and food trials during the entire Dutch Design Week 2017 (October 21st till 29th). We show our wurm and mushroom productions, aquaponics, the FRE2SH phylosophy and partnerships with permaculture in and around town. Also our restaurant and neighboorhood food engagement programs are being presented as well as food innovations and our intentions for the future.
Come and see us, participate and engage:
Veemgebouw – Strijp-S – Eindhoven – 5th floor
The 21st century is unique in our history of entrepreneurship. Our entrepreneurial mission has transformed. Within the core human values driven democracy, referred to as Sustainocracy, we create innovative value continuously, together with a large diversity of partners. These innovations did not exist before because they address issues that have reached our awareness and need for change to produce sustainable human and societal progress. Once available they become of economic and political interest due to the trade-ability and transformative characterstics of each innovation in multiple formats and with many trade supporters. We have called this way of working the 4 x Value discipline since we ask ourselves four basic, values driven questions:
First: What does our entrepreneurship contribute to the wellness of the human being?
This is a difficult and transformative question. In our current care driven economies we try to make people dependent on services, social securities and technologies out of political or economic interests. Entrepreneurship is hence an economic instrument, not humanitarian even if we try to convince ourselves it is. As a consequence people become less alert, lazy, subordinate, disengaged and non-productive. We tend to take away their self reflection, creativity and wit to favor our own financial wellness. This is not the 21st century entrepreneurship.
Our entrepreneurship is not a money driven occupation, it is core human values driven, creative and meaningful. Collective self-sufficiency is a core human value in Sustainocracy in which people do meaningful things in and for the community that fullfill basic and general needs. So our entrepreneurship should help people be able to take responsibility for their own quality of life rather than taking it away from them. We then see their health, their engagement and productivity increase which is good for them, society and the economy. Our entrepreneurship is hence focused on helping people create their own wellness.
Second: How do we contribute to society?
Also this is a difficult one to answer. Who are we trying to please? In our current society the public dominance is mastered by political and economic interests. Our Sustainocratic foundation however is focused on our human values. This represents a different kind of accountability for both the citizens, governance and entrepreneurship. When the 5 core human values are respected than the society itself will be resilient to all kinds of issues. We therefor need to enhance society from a core values point of view, not political or economic. Then we see that politics and economics show interest and start relating to the sustainocratic values to sustain themselves and their initiatives. Which is good. So by being creative in the field of core human values we also gradually transform the political and economic discourse. We contribute to social cohesion, public engagement and political and economic management of wellness. In fact we created a leadership movement of change within a managed culture of political economic conservatism.
Third: How does our natural environment benefit?
Our current lifestyle and political economic steering produce pollution, destruction of our natural habitat and the restroing capabilities of our environment. In fact we are a parasite of our host, planet Earth. Our entrepreneurship is hence focused on turning this around to become a symbiotic partner of the environment of which we are part and of which we depend. How do we deal with innovation to take away, avoid and eliminate our polluting activities? How do we use natural resources in a cyclic way? What can we learn from our living environment that presents solutions which took over 4 billion years to evolve and often show must better results than whatever our human wit can come up with. Whatever we do in our entrepreneurial spirit it should not damage but heal and interact with our natural reality.
Fourth: How do we generate enough money as means for our continuity?
Within our entrepreneurial processes we distinguish two clear patterns. The first one is the creative part of thinking of meaningful innovations that make a difference within our Sustainocratic mission. Since we create something that cannot be bought, simply because it does not exist yet, we can only invest in our venture. As we use our 4xValue method to guide us we enter the path of other entrepreneurial members of society who have no business interests but do have societal or environmental challenges (government) or intellectual interest (universities) to deal with. Business partners are interested in participating to see if they can lay hands of the innovations to include them in their commercial activities as soon as they become visible and tangible. In this phase these partners invest money and their own talented contribution to effectively design our innovations. Money is a means here.
As soon as the innovations come to existence they have a number of properties that can be fragmented again among the participating partners: new products, services, policy modifications, new knowledge and experiences, educational values, etc. All these can be incorporated in economic patterns of social cost savings as well as business development. Each enlargement of the use of the innovations contributes to both the economic growth as well as the overall global change for resilience. Money is again a means to provide continuity through new investment patterns or the creation of an innovation fund (royalties or donations) for continuity of both the 4xValue processes as the continuous delivery of meanful entrepreneurship. Our innovative drive is therefore the main attractive force for the diversity of partners to participate with investment of resources and financial means.
4xValue as mirroring tool
We have now noticed that employees, stakeholders and investors start using the 4xValue criteria to see if the company they work for (or with) is producing integral value. If not than people ask themselves if they want to work there or invest in it? Salary or divident is often not enough anymore and people want to get reassurance of their own meaningful contribution to society and the multiple positive reciprocity of their engagement.
While focusing ahead on the expansion and deepening of Sustainocratic processes locally and globally I was confronted suddenly with a moment of looking back. My awareness break throughs had begun when having to deal with the growing up of my two daughters by myself. Now that they have reached an age that they start dealing with life themselves I suddenly start experiencing new and forgotten levels of freedom. I can go out more often, travel and deal with people in a different, more intimite way. Time has passed by fast, always packed with responsibilities. Having arrived at less turbulent waters now someone invited me to look back at the roller coaster that I had been sitting in: Single father and initiator of a new global model for governance (Sustainocracy)…
Aging as a sign of maturity
Someone once told me that until 40 years of age the physical appearance of a person is what God gave us and after 40 what we made of it ourselves. From an inner perspective something similar happens I presume. Until 40 we learn by interpretation of our actions and their consequences, after 40 our awareness tends to determine our actions. The riping process of the fruit of life shows in one’s face. The paradox of physical degradation and spiritual growth to fullfilment is both painfully humiliating and gratefully producing submissiveness to the wisdom of life. Something like: “before 40 ready to procreate, after 40 ready to cocreate”. Both extremely satisfying phases of life, both erotically challenging and highly interactive with our fellow human beings.
My aging and maturity process as Sustainocrat
My productivity as an author with a vision became primarily reflective of the progress I made myself in awareness and vision development of the true values of life. My single fatherhood gave me the time to reflect and put things on paper. Looking back at the covers of what has been published as books about new forms of entrepreneurship and the new societal engagement with sustainocratic governance, it shows an interesting trayectory.
Most of the covers (not all) of my backward reflections in book format
“Change the world and start with yourself” is the easiest way ahead. It saves travel expenses and one can be at it all day. The next step is to invite the near surroundings to do the same. My home town Eindhoven became my living lab. This I could combine with my tasks as a single father, travel by bike and still be on time to pick up the children from school. Various communities appeared of which AiREAS and the former STIR Academy (now School of Talents) are the ones that got most response. Government, businesses, science, schools, citizens, etc started to engage and the clusters of communities started to live an innovative life of their own with sometimes 100’s and 1000’s of participants.
If the above is a minor sample of the results of a crazy idealist that turned into a global initiator of a new model for societal and personal governance, what will the remaining part of my life bring? My maturity has provided me with peace of mind. My determination is still as high as ever but reduced the revolutionist part in me and enhanced the evolutionary side. There is a “can do” attitude now rather than “must do”, which give room for personal joy in the progression and attention for myself, my health, my loved ones and at the same time enjoy the opportunities that lay ahead. It is good to see that the DNA created around Sustainocracy is spreading around the world even without me. That gives me the feeling that ‘it is all right” allowing me to become a bit more sellective in my ventures and deal with complexity with a senior attitude. The main satisfaction I feel is that the core values defined by me as missing elements in society are now regaining their importance. I don’t have to convince people anymore and can now concentrate on helping make it grow into a mainstream participatory society.