On Earth Day, we offer some quotes and strategic questions to inspire your thinking:
We live in an era where truth is most often found by looking away from the spectacle presented to us. – Rebecca Solnit
What are the positive stories of change that are rarely covered in the media? Millions of people across the world are working to bring about a healthier, more just, and peaceful future – each in their own way shifting the course of events. It takes intention and focus to listen for and find these bright spots of innovations that are working…to turn off the noise of all the attention to what is not working. How can we surface, share, and amplify what is working?
Judging by what I have learned about men and women, I am convinced that far more idealistic aspiration exists than is ever evident. Just as the rivers we see are much less numerous than the underground streams, so the idealism that is visible is minor compared to what men and women carry in their hearts, unreleased or scarcely released. Mankind is waiting and longing for those who can accomplish the task of untying what is knotted and bringing the underground waters to the surface. – Albert Schweitzer
What is the untapped potential within the people in your organization or community? What might it take to inspire people to take action?
The final quote is from Tom Atlee of the Co-Intelligence Institute who writes about how evolution over billions of years can offer insights for this time of shifting to a sustainable future:
…whatever emerges becomes part of the environment for everything else. The myth of the rugged individual is visibly – perhaps even viscerally a fallacy from this perspective. There is nothing that exists outside the influence of what already is. For any system to form and persist, it requires its own particular nurturing environment. For any system to develop or shift, it requires its own particular challenging environment. Without the last ten thousand years of relatively stable climate, for example, there would be no civilization as we know it. And without periodic crises, there would be little reason to change, to become truly new. Evolution turns out to be a dance between survival of the fittest and the nuanced and less acknowledged embrace—and co-creation—of nurturing contexts.
Darwin gave us the gift of a remarkable insight: what fits, survives. What is equally true is that without the nutrient embrace of the environment, nothing within it persists. – Tom Atlee
In this challenging environment and time of crisis, how can we create the “nurturing contexts” that will help those leading sustainable changes and their ideas to thrive?