Understand: Corona made us modify our lifestyle quickly to avoid premature death. Now we need to show we learned our lesson and modify our lifestyle definitely to avoid repetition of such premature death threats, not just due to a virus but also due to hunger, pollution, criminality, etc. Health and determination is the vehicle, not fear and lockdowns.
Need: It is in our common interest to address sustainability proactively from a core human values (biological natural wellness) point of view directly, instead of relying on costly repairs when we realize we damage ourselves and our environment. Then it is too late.
Involve: Our modified lifestyle based on core life values such as health and safety is a responsibility of everyone, citizens and institutions together, not just government or healthcare institutions.
Targeted: In order to do so we need to place our core values leading on our overall agenda, not our financial goals or dependence. We need to address health in every aspect of our lives directly and with the help of our institutions:
- Health air
- Healthy food
- Healthy energy
- Healthy water
And safety as well:
- Safe and respectful relationship between people and with nature
- Safe entrepreneurship – 4 x Value
- Safe environment
- Safe governance – level 4 facilitating
- Safe learning – through participation
Entrepreneurial: We create level 4 awareness driven priority tables in which all fragmented functions of our society are present and take responsibility together through the definition of project with expected and measurable results:
- Local citizens – our behavior, awareness and culture
- Local government – public money and underlying infrastructures
- Local entrepreneurship – innovative products and services
- Local science and education – participatory learning
The tables are being chaired by an independent local sustainocrat (person or NGO). It is called level 4 awareness driven co-creation. Money is a means, just like knowledge, creativity, engagement and dedication.
Local government liberates 5% of its annual budget into an open fund for level 4 co-creation of local core human values. The remaining 95% is for “governance as usual” by taking level 4 processes as leading for level 1, 2 and 3 supportive modifications.
Devoted: The participation in this UNITED modified lifestyle continuity for sustainable fearless wellness is done with people who are devoted with passion and powerful belief in our co-creative strength as a community.
In real life it is often more difficult than in an online rollplay. Government officials for instance need to have freedom to commit in the community. They often lack this due to politically driven councils that need to free their authority and means. Or business people who just want to sell and turn over the responsability after invoicing. In real life it is a genuin change in relational commitment. But the online practice is a great help to understand the context differences and how behavior adjusts itself for the benefit of all.
For over 10 years now we (STIR Foundation) invited local and people to participate in core human values (eg. Health) driven cocreation programs (Sustainocracy, level 4) together. We got a number of programs off the ground but it was not mainstream. It felt often as one step forward and three back. Our efforts were however sufficient to prove our point, get formal recognition, publish worldwide certain results (f.i. AiREAS, air quality and health) and formally establish the level 4, awareness driven cocreation approach.
The corona virus shock up the comfort zones of many. This illustration shows the sentiments of money driven structures, such as business and government (modern dinosaurs) when the lockdowns started.
The word “economy” been distortionated over time, which is the cause of the current institutionalized fear. It does NOT mean “how do I keep or grow my money?”. It’s real meaning is “how to fullfil our needs and deal with shortages?”. A real economy is therefore not speculative, hierarchical, volume or shortage sales oriented, nor debt or tax driven. It is genuine and measurable core natural values driven and participative in cocreation. The next illustration shows us where priorities should be placed…..
Once I asked myself “if money rules, what am I willing to sacrifice to obtain it?”. This question resonated in my head when I decided to leave my executive position as a global expat in a multinational back in 1996. There were many things that I was not willing to sacrifice, on the contrary, not for myself nor for a well paid job. Money should be a means, not a goal. I drew a line for myself. This simple choice in perception of the reality of financial means changed my life as explained in this Braincandy short presentation about the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals….
By accepting money as a means than what is the goal? As a single father for me the goal became to provide a safe and healthy environment for my upgrowing children. But what is safe and healthy in an environment in deterioration due to mindless financial “destroy and repair” focus of business and politics? In a world of “what are you willing to sacrifice for financial benefit?” the answer was “everyone is doing it, so why should I change?”. Unhealthy air, unhealthy food, water pollution, no social contacts, negative stress….. Repair attempts became as financially lucrative for business and politics as the destructive growth focus. Until it all became unsustainable….
Why should any business take responsability and risk its continuity or support from stakeholders if no else does? Why would politics take responsability if the public opinion would demand financial stability and growth for their perception of wellness (the cost of living life) instead of humanistic and ecological responsability (the essence of living life)?
Society 21st century
My personal challenge was to define society 21st century in which everyone does take responsability. Beginning with myself. Through my personal life’s challenges I gradually arrived at the five core human values and the vision that this we need to address together (people and institutions), each from their own authentic contribution. In fact, the participation in safeguarding and developing these core values became the “reason to be” of all participants.
For certain entities this meant a huge, purpose driven transformation. Despite their original human based mission (eg. Health care) they were often very much money dependent and hence within the dominance of political economic fluctuations, guidelines or instructions. In time of extra needs they would be financially restricted. In times of financial abundance some hierarchical parasitism would try to take benefit. Upon participating in sustainocratic ventures the question was not how to finance these organizations? It became “how to best use their expertise and sustain their needs” through project driven engagements (Care for Health).
Sofar participating at a sustainocratic table was a volutary exercise. Corona came and placed the world in a lockdown. Whatever the possible reasoning behind the lockdown it has a powerfull effect on public awareness in general:
- Personal health first
- Solidarity among people
- Realization of what “health” really is
- Seeing our contribution to air pollution
- Seeing what hoarding does to us all
- What are basic needs?
- Questioning authority (due to lack of involvement in decision making) and motives.
- Relativity of jobs (those that really matter)
- Back to essentials
Back to basics due to Corona shows how many of our “economic” players do not at all contribute to our wellness on the contrary. They closed down to avoid further deterioration and do we really miss them? Other activities suddenly got to stand up to fill spaces and activities that were not covered, or severely reduced, by the financially oriented world. Think of “care for each other”. The sum of all this is awareness of our old “sacrifice” of our planetary benefits for economic processes that nobody needs. Are we willing to go back?
Level 4 regional development
We need not go back, we need to evolve. What does this mean? That we need to recognize for ourselves the need to assure our core natural values for our resilience as a species. Our wellness is not measured through a bank account, it is assured through our awareness driven adaptiveness as a community. It means that we cannot delegate our values to institutions but should take responsability ourselves with the help of the expertise in those institutions. The world upside down people tend to say, when institutions become servant to human natural core values.
This we call level 4 awareness driven regional cocreation:
- Level 1 regional development: basic infrastructure
- Level 2 regional development: integrate infrastructure
- Level 3 regional development: smart data generation and sharing
- Level 4 regional development: core values driven multidisciplinary co-creation
Level 4 cocreation requires a special type of leadership from everyone involved:
- Sustainocrat: remain independent, inviting, connecting and focused on the core values defined within the particular community. Assure interaction based on equality between people and institutions. No one is the boss, the core values are leading and everyone contribute through respected authenticity.
- Government: let go of dominant position and become facilitating. No political interaction based on interests, but participation based on prioritization and readiness to adjust levels 1, 2 and 3.
- Innovative entrepreneurship: product delivery is the start of the participation process not the end. It is what the product or service does in context of the project and expected results that makes the difference.
- Citizens: look at one’s own behavior and cultural influences on the challenges at hand and make the necessary innovative changes in favor of wellness of one’s own self and the community.
Participation is hence hard work, based on self reflective value driven contribution and results driven interaction. In our initiatives we developed various instruments that keep this sustainocratic ecosystem functioning dynamically and everyone successful:
- 4 x Value contribution of all participants (value for human being, society, environment and economic continuity)
- UNITED together based on key motivators to join the group
- SMART interaction and focus
- 10 – 10 – 80 (or 5 – 5 – 90) transparent easy to use project rule
During this corona era it may be fun to practice level 4 awareness driven co-creatioon through online rollplays or even invite people in function to give it a try. The next post will explain how.
Birds, plants, animals, also bacteria and virusses, they all get their food directly and freely from their natural environment. They don’t disturb it, on the contrary. Normally their urge for food contributes to the ecosystem, for instance though cross fertilization, spreading of seeds or elimination of the weak and sick. Their feeding in a way is connected indisputably to healthy life.
The human world is overwhelmingly unnatural. Not only for our feeding we made ourselves dependent of economized industral processes, for everything.
Now we are being alarmed again by a virus. Again because the Corona version is not the first and will not be the last. Virusses are a natural phenomenum that feeds itself mainly on vulnerable people. We can ask ourselves when dealing with a widespread pandemic if it is the virus that is the problem or our vulnerability?
Since virusses are of all times we need to go to judge our vulnerability. We can differentiate between natural and unnatural weaknesses. We can then also work in a positive way on our natural resilience instead of introducing unnatural remedies. Locking up 7 billion individuals in isolation with 1.5 meter distance is far from natural.
Natural vulnerability is caused mainly by epigenitic transfer, (remains of) illnesses or accidents, unhealthy lifestyle and natural aging. Unnatural vulnerability comes from what we ourselves add to the natural patterns. We can think of chemicals used in our foodchain, air pollution, negative stress, radiation of all kinds of equipment and wireless networks. Due to economic globalisation motives we also globalized our unnatural vulnerability. This makes us more receptive at global scale for illnesses that lead to pandemics (Spanish flu, measles, HIV, SARS, etc).
A complex paradox is our historical creation of a parallel economic ecosystem to nature. We attached economic growth to the growth of humankind, the growth of financial dependence, the growth of fighting symptoms via care, the increase of our life expectations and the enormous increase of the costs and complexity of our care systems.
This parallel money based ecosystem is however unnatural and unsustainable from macro natural perspective. Each natural pandemonium through a pandemic comes with a huge system crisis, such as a gigantic economic recession. This brings us closer to our natural reality but also shows the painful distance we created through the fear we collectively feel and the control mechanisms that start to try to restore the old fake reality again.
The solution is to be found in our awareness that the unnatural, no matter how luxurious or safe it feels, is unsustainable. The pandemics and recessions will only grow and so will the human drama’s worldwide. They will eventually reach all, including ourselves and those who try to supposedly benefit or control the situation.
A positive acknowlegdement is that this unnatural human world gave us a lot of knowledge. Now we can try to combine the best of the two worlds, the natural and unnatural, in order to enhance our resilience without having to reduce much of our wellness.
A few things will need to change. We need to step away from our fears and look our challenge into the eyes together. We step away from the control mechanisms from above to give way at regional level to innovative adaptations of our communities. We let resilience and health guide our cocreative actions and adapt our dependence by working together on our healthy basic needs (food, water, clean air, warmth), if needed with the use of knowledge and techniques, and in symbiose with our natural environment. Gradually we take some resilience disturbing elements away from our existence.
We are than applying Sustainocracy, as precedented in Eindhoven in areas of health attention, such as air quality and social resilience, since 2009. Instead of fear we build on trust together. Instead of unnatural vulnerability we build on natural resilience. Instead of 1.5 meter distance we go hand in hand. Instead of avoiding death we work on living life ..
A lot of people feel fear and even panic due to corona, the lockdown and dramatic personal experiences with family or friends, or through the media. It is hard to develop objective awareness in this situation, especially if one is personally affected by the many consequences and impositions. A lot of speculation can be read on social media about deep state, mind control, power abuse, financial interests of a few, etc. It is difficult to keep calm.
When we look at the population and society in the Netherlands we tend to be blind for things that have been building up for many years:
- a greying population. CBS figures show that 1.5 Million citizens are over 75 years old! These are all loved mums, dads, grandparents, uncles, aunts who are in the autumn of their lives. They will die a natural death when time is come or they fall ill and maybe decease as a cause of that. Corona is just one of the possible influecers or accelerators. Numbers of many 1000s of such casualties sound dramatic but have been real and natural for years already. They were however not highlighted. More dramatic now is the impediment for people to see their sick or elderly loved ones, or moarn their death in family presence due to the corona measures.
- unhealthy lifestyle. Our consumer capitalist lifestyle produces anxiety, stress and all kinds of health problems. A large portion of society (over 50%) at age higher than 40 has some kind of chronical disorder or disease such as overweight, trauma, diabetes, cancer, OCPD, etc. They all use the care system with more or less intensity.
- stressed care system: Corona accentuates a problem that is known for years already. Our healthcare system is overworked and overloaded, already before corona. The reason for lockdown is to try to handle the situation in a system that needed revision long time ago. The system is also privatized and ecomomized, showing important flaws in the operational structuring. A mayor transition is needed here.
- layered society: Our political economic reality is based on grouping people through age and function. Young people go to school in massive conglomerates of youngsters. The middle age are workforce going to offices, care institutions, etc. Eldery are seperated and individualised. They travel when healthy or get grouped in elderly homes when care needing. A corona virus can find its way easily to the vulnerable because of this grouping by age.
These are just a few awareness issues that need attention, not just by government but all of us together. Corona alike problems will recur. We cannot avoid them. We can take steps that make society more resilient. And now is the time to do it:
- Care for health – accept health (not just health care) leading in our society and lifestyle
- Participation in cocreation of our basic needs based on health – such as food, healthy air, water, etc
- Community based society in which all ages mingle and act together. Regional communities in which “care for eachother” is the basis of our coexistence. Professional healthcare is supportive to this, not reactive.
- Restructure our economized care society from market working into a social care society with societal participatory working. Our insurrance is our community, not a healthcare number.
- Let go of control based governance and focus on harmonizing for health based on core human values and innovative adaptiveness.
Creating Sustainocratic tables now, that deal with this transition “society, health and healthcare”, can start the process. Alleviation of suffering is based on the reassurance that things are done with our awareness in order to avoid similar problems in the future. Happiness is based on cocreating a society in which we share our responsability and results.
Sustainocracy, our new democracy
Inspiration 9: Sustainocracy suddenly makes sense
Just look at the five statements in the blue picture carefully. How much sense does it make now for you during the corona situation? Have you also been taking for granted these core values while doing all kinds of other things? How about now?
Then look at your usual daily activities (work, entrepreneurship) before the corona crisis. How much does it contribute to these five conditions for sustainable human progress? If it does not you can ask yourself if it may even be damaging your own or that of the world?
The next question you could ask yourself is: what contribution could I myself, with my talents or with my job, put on the Sustainocratic table to enhance, sustain or improve these core condtions? I am sure you can find some. If not, think how you can support those who can…..