The Moneyless Man

How can we feel so disconnected from the water that we drink, the food that we eat, and the soil from which the food grows?  How can we feel so cold and calloused toward our fellow man, and fellow creatures, who breath the same air, and bask in the same sunshine?

Mark Boyle, Author of “The Moneyless Manifesto” says that money is a key factor, and an unequaled tool that is used to create an illusion of separation, and destroy the benefits of oneness.

“The reduction of life and all its expressions to an empty statement of financial worth is only made possible through the use of such an abstract, objective, meaningless thing as money. Cold, hard cash. It changes hands so easily, so thoughtlessly – numbers entered on a screen. It makes life so easy, because we don’t have to think. We don’t have to question where the endless rows of Ikea furniture come from, or how we can have strawberries in February; we just hand over the money. Simple.

 

The real costs of these luxuries are not internalised in the price because they can’t be. How do you quantify the loss of a rainforest – the death of a hundred thousand trees, the extinction of plant and animal species, the loss of homes, cultures, languages, knowledge and ways of being human? How do you figure in the costs of climate change, of soil depletion, of depriving a people’s land of its water, and then forcing them to work in effective slavery, doing soulless jobs growing monocrops for faraway people whose eyes they’ll never look into?

 

You can’t. So we don’t. And money is the only way we can do that, because it is so completely, utterly abstract that it can embody all that harm and sadness and tragedy and not be the slightest bit affected. Cold, hard cash. Numbers on a screen.”

If you would like to learn more, Mark’s book is available for free online at http://www.moneylessmanifesto.org

Changing the Roles in a Familiar Homeschooling Conversation

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I posted this on facebook, and it went over so well, that I decided to make it a blog post.  I am posting it on Dadosaurus Rex because I want all of my posts on my regular blog Do You Believe That to be completely and totally positive, and this one (while it is humorous) is a bit snarky.

I will probably never do this, but I was imagining what it would be like if I started talking to “public school parents” the way that many of them talk to me.

I would start by immediately assuming that they are homeschooled.

Me: “So, when did you start homeschooling?”
Public School Parent: “Oh, uh, they go to public school.”
Me: “oh” (Pregnant pause) “OH! I had a friend who sent her kids to public school. But what do you do for socialization?”
PSP: “What do you mean?”
Me: “You know, they just sit at their desks all day, not allowed to talk, with people who are all the same age, and mostly from the same economic, cultural and social background. How do you plan on socializing them?”
PSP: (Tries to give an answer but is interrupted by me asking more questions)
Me: “Aren’t you worried about bullies? What about school shootings? Don’t you think that you are wasting your child’s most precious years by institutionalizing them? Don’t you want to spend time with your children, Don’t you like them?

I would then walk away victorious, certain that my haphazard barrage of questions had completely changed their minds, and I could look forward to seeing them at the next homeschool playgroup.

Some may consider my dialogue presumptuous, or rude, and maybe it is.  But somehow, it is to be understood, that when you live your life in a way that is “different” because you are trying to do what is right for your family, its okay for you and your children to become the objects of public scrutiny and debate.  But the irony is, that most people who take the road less traveled have already asked themselves the difficult questions, they have counted the cost, and they have determined that this is the best course of action for them to take.  The people who just go with the flow, and do what is expected, for the most part, have not taken the time to weigh their options, but rest in knowing that if something does go wrong, they won’t be to blame.  They were just doing what they were supposed to.

Want more Dadosaurus Rex? Check out my facebook page www.fb.com/thedadosaur

Triggers for My Eating Habit

Its been almost a week since I stared the August 2014 Local Eating Challenge, and I feel great!  I have learned a lot about myself, and the way our food is produced.  The biggest challenge was definitely when I had to spend the better part of 2 days, and one night out of town.  I still wasn’t sure how much food I would need, but I managed to survive off of 5 pints of blueberries, some radish seed pods, a beet, and a few ears of corn.  (also, I was able to find a restaurant that had some local cider)  Definitely not something I would like to do all the time, but it was a learning experience.

One thing that I learned, is there are a number of reasons why I eat, and not all of them involve necessity, or hunger.  These include:

  • The food is available
  • I’m Bored
  • Out of Habit (snacking at my desk at work for instance)
  • I’m dehydrated (Sometimes we can get confused, and think that we are hungry when we are actually thirsty)
  • CRAVINGS!
  • Someone else is eating
  • I am stressed

Having strict limits set on what I could eat, caused me to think every time before I just started gorging.  I had to ask myself, “Is this something I can eat?” and it brought a certain level of awareness to my eating experience.  It inserted an empty space between my impulses and my actions, a time when I could say, “Hey, am I really even hungry?”

So, next time you are headed for the pantry, ask yourself why.  You might be surprised by the answer.

 

 

And So It Begins

Well, Today is the first day of the August 2014 Local Eating Challenge, and I have to admit I am quite ill prepared.  I did make sure to thoroughly gorge myself on all the leftover contraband I could find yesterday…but I didn’t bother to plan out my local meals and snacks for today.

Not to worry, though, because eating local is easy.  I woke up this morning and packed my vittles to munch on throughout the day at work.  Blueberries, greens, and cucumbers from a local farm, kale, onions, radish seed pods, and mint (for tea) from my garden, and a few peas from my dad’s garden.  I usually do most of my heavy eating in the evening, when I am home, but I haven’t worked out a menu plan yet, so I will have to take that as it comes.  (You’ll find I’m super organized, and like planning ahead)

I am feeling very optimistic however, because I have a fantastic accountability team and support group.  We will see how I feel at the end of the month.