Eight Inspirations for Building a Local Peace Economy
The following is a collection of daily inspirations for building a Local Peace Economy written by Jodie Evans, CODEPINK co-founder. You can sign up for her daily inspirations here, and read her past inspirations here.
Keep On Pushin!
"Can't Stop, Won't Stop, Never Stop
Until We All Get Free!” — Curtis Mayfield
Daily Practice: Looking for how to grow your local peace economy? Look to where inequality is most desperately felt in your community. Is it homelessness, militarization of schools, police violence, criminalization and incarceration of communities of color and immigrants, privatization of health care and education, pollution, exploitative labor, and joblessness, racism, homophobia, transphobia or somewhere else? The needs are growing as the war economy ravages our communities. What can you do to create freedom for ALL in your community today?
"Utopia is on the horizon. You walk two steps away and the horizon runs ten steps further. So, for what does Utopia work? For that, for us to walk.” — Eduardo Galeano
Daily Practice: We're writing from Festival of Utopia, a gathering of 15,000 from around the world creating peace economies. A common theme is the presence of the structures that they need to break from and the need to invent and imagine what is possible. This weekend, witness the structures that hold oppression, destruction and violence in your community; how can you break free and create conditions conducive to life?
"Do what you LOVE!” — Lady Buggs
Daily Practice: Be inspired by Lady Buggs. She lost the two jobs that were supporting her in Florida and moved back to the family house in Youngstown Ohio and has created the yummiest local peace economy. Her generosity has created generosity from the community back. She is teaching what she loves. She is feeding her community. Growing vegetables in what was an empty lot. Making value in what had been devalued. What are you doing to grow your local peace economy? How is your garden growing? Who are you sharing it with?
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that!” — Martin Luther King, Jr.
Daily Practice: At CODEPINK our goal is to be disarming. As peace activists, our days are full of grief and rage at the violence unleashed on innocent people globally. But we know our work is to disarm, which is often done with humor. After 14 years it is still a daily practice. It is a muscle we all need to build. Watch what you can do today to disarm hate; watch how often you encounter it. This is one of the most important tools in growing our local peace economy.
A Message from Grace Lee Boggs
"We have to see every crisis as both a danger and an opportunity. It’s a danger because it does so much damage to our lives, to our institutions, to all that we have expected. But it’s also an opportunity for us to become creative; to become the new kind of people that are needed at such a huge period of transition. That’s why it’s so wonderful to be here today—that we dare to talk about revolution in such fundamental terms.” — Grace Lee Boggs
Daily Practice: We have the opportunity to challenge the current extractive war economy and create a new peaceful regenerative one. We can build a new society out of human values. Gather your community to imagine together.
"What you encounter, recognize or discover depends on a large degree on the quality of your approach. Many of the ancient cultures practiced careful rituals of approach. An encounter of depth and spirit was preceded by careful preparation. When we approach with reverence, great things decide to approach us. Our real life comes to the surface and its light awakens the concealed beauty in things. When we walk the earth with reverence, beauty will decide to trust us. The rushed heart and arrogant mind lack the gentleness and patience to enter that embrace.” — John O'Donohue
Daily Practice: As you begin this week; make time to set your desires for divesting from the war economy of exploitation, extraction and scarcity and shifting your energies to growing your local peace economy. Take time to slow down and really feel and see how you can engage more with your community. Write down the steps to make it happen. Put it on your calendar. Take the time so the beauty will embrace you.
"Living organisms have learned to self-organize as bioregional communities that create and maintain the conditions essential to a living Earth community. We humans must take the step to maturity as we learn to live as responsible members of that community." — David Korten
Daily Practice: What are you doing locally to create conditions conducive to life? Today, watch your actions; which ones are nourishing life? Yours, your communities, the earth? Make the practice of nourishing life a habit.
"To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.” â€• Arundhati Roy
Daily Practice: Start this week with an open-hearted connection to your community, place, and local peace economy. Where can you offer yourself to growing beauty and connection?