by Frank Nuessle
I had the good fortune to be in the audience at Pendle Hill on April 1st to hear Charles Eisenstein rap on what was on his mind at that time. I can’t remember how many times I’ve listened to and talked with Charles, but it’s been quite a few. Yet I’ll never miss a chance to hear Charles, because every time, it’s different, and I always grok something new.
One of the things that I love about Charles is that he ‘walks his talk’ and lives in an open state of trust, trusting that he will receive from the universe what he needs. His is an example to be emulated. Another thing that I so appreciate about him is that when he gives a talk, it isn’t canned (that is not to say it isn’t contemplated), and before he begins, he first attunes himself to the audience, to what’s going on in the moment, and by so doing, he begins to create a social field that is open and loving. It’s a sense of the whole that is perceptible and that then permeates the space.
Charles went on to offer a meta-narrative about the nature of the transition that our culture is now undergoing. He talked about the old story how a good person holds him or herself to ‘principles’ and that if you are successful holding yourself to those ‘high’ principles, you will win the war against your own nature. In other words you start out as a sinner. To say there is lots of judgment in that story is an understatement and one that I’ve lived out of for most of my life. This brings to mind lines from a wonderful Mary Oliver poem, “Wild Geese”:
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Charles then went on to reframe our old stories of self and our ‘story of the people’, both the old story of separation and the new story of connection, and then he gave a hint about how his new book which will tell that everything we need to transform the world, to bring humans back into harmony with each other and the planet, is already known and all we have to do is change the stories that make our reality.
There’s much more to share about this wonderful time with Charles and all our TTM and Quaker friends, but that will have to wait until another time.
For now, let me leave you with a quote from the Wilkes-Barre born, quantum physicist, David Bohm, who died in 1992 and who it was my good fortune to meet and spend time with. Bohm wrote:
“At present, people create barriers between each other by their fragmentary thought. Each one operates separately. When these barriers have dissolved, then there arises one mind, where they are all one unit, but each person also retains his or her own individual awareness. That one mind will still exist even when they separate, and when they come together, it will be as if they hadn’t separated. It’s actually a single intelligence that works with people who are moving in relationship with one another… If you had a number of people who really pulled together and worked together in this way, it would be remarkable. They would stand out so much that everyone would know they were different.”
Maybe that’s were Transition Town Media is headed.
David Bohm would have loved Charles and how his work is helping to fulfill David’s dream of ending that separation of mind and self, out of which we all live, and from which we are all recovering.