What Kind of World Do We Want? And How Do We Get There?
By Lois Schroff
Addressing this issue, Naomi Klein offered advice in her most recent book: No is Not Enough. As a start, she advocated forming discussion groups to find ways to work in unison toward creating a better and fairer society. Although it is easy to feel powerless in a world that is ruled ever more by the 1%, we know that radical societal shifts are possible, i.e., the end of Apartheid and the fall of the Berlin wall.
Recently I studied the attempt made one hundred years ago by Dr. Rudolf Steiner, European educator. Between the two World Wars, he advocated creating a balance between government’s three main powers--cultural, political and economic. He spoke with leaders of Austria, Germany and several other nations of central Europe in an attempt to defuse animosity while promoting ideas for a more creative approach to governing.
This he referred to as the Threefold Social Order1 whereby there would be a division of authority into 1. Cultural (issues of poverty and freedom), 2. Political, (law and order), and 3. Economic (balance of production and consumption). In the western world economics and politics have spearheaded the rapid movement toward oligarchy. The realm of cultural concerns relating to the welfare of the general population is being ignored, leading to a general feeling of unease.
Small trials of the system of government advocated by Steiner are being used in Europe, UK and the US in Camphill Communities (homes for the handicapped) and CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture). CSAs offer a radical alternative to the “free market,” whereby consumers, distributors, and growers agree to associate with fair prices for growing good food, guided by clear agreements.
Naomi Klein calls for heads of protest groups, while setting aside their individual issues, to unite and put their collective human energies together to find creative solutions that apply to all areas of imbalance. This is perhaps one way forward. As Klein pointed out, if there is never anything but NO, there won’t be union, solution or forward movement.
The US made its beginning by forming a constitution based on three branches of government (executive, judicial and legislative). Perhaps these were the wrong three and they should be changed to cultural, political and economic.
“Love one another” is a nice slogan, but let’s unite it with creativity and action.
1.Towards Social Renewal 1917. See also Rabbi Michael Lerner, http://www.tikkun.org/nextgen/psychopathology-in-the-2016-election-3