To what extent has society lost touch with primary distillations of values?

Forgive the sweeping generalisations I’m about to make. Consumerism undermined our ethics; how much we cared for human rights in China was generally found wanting when weighed up against the cheapness of supply chains from China. For your money, what would you say President Trump has done of value to reshape the world in a direction it needed reshaping? For me, it is the break with China, heralding a break with globalisation that pre-dates Covid-19, and all the added impetus that pandemics bring for localised (& non-monetary?) economies.

The old world is gone” is the article by Elif Shafak in The New Statesman (28th August - 3 September 2020):
“For far too long, we in the West have consulted the same leather-bound dictionary compiled in the aftermath of the Cold War. Now our dictionary is in flames. We reach out to save what we can, but many pages of entries are scorched. Suddenly we realise we must redefine our most fundamental concepts. What is democracy? We thought we knew the answer, we took it for granted, but now we are no longer sure. What is normal? What is happiness? What are the values we should prioritise: ambitious trade agreements, financial deregulation, profit-driven business models that destroy the environment and pay no heed to co-existence? Or health and social care, diversity and inclusion, positive interaction with our ecosystems and purpose-driven business models?”

Thank you, Elif, for that distillation of the loci of concern. Am I allowed to assert that the latter direction of change is the one for which I was standing in the 2019 General Election?; no rewriting of old blog posts here.

What should we value?” by Martin Hagglund faced Elif Shafak’s aforementioned piece on the next page of this latest “The New Statesman”; a magazine for which last week’s edition

was exemplary:

“Human beings are the only species on Earth that do not know how they are supposed to live. All other species have a natural environment and a natural way to sustain their form of life. While some animals have to build things to make their environment what it ought to be (as is the case with beavers building dams), there is no question of what they ought to build and how species ought to make a living for itself. As in all environments, things can go wrong: a falling rock can break the dam, the water can become poisoned, a virus may spread. Yet when something goes wrong in the life of beavers, it is not because they have the wrong idea of how to organise their lives. Indeed, beavers cannot have the wrong idea of how they should live, since it is set by their nature.
“For human beings, by contrast, the question of how we should lead our lives is always at issue, even if we try to forget that fact. We can discover the ideal conditions for other species by studying their natural way of life. But we cannot discover the best way for us to live simply by studying our present or past societies.”

Let’s not concur with the implied "illiberal liberal" idea that all ideas of how we might best express our nature are equally valid and therefore to be taken off all pedestals on which history has placed them.

I wish the dialogues and cultural exchanges would open up between the “chattering classes” (whose socio-political preoccupations generally reject hierarchical concepts) and the intentional communities which shock with what the individual surrenders in service of something with unelected leaders and ideas that seem more like fantasy than science. The Bruderhof Community of East Sussex as presented in a BBC documentary caught the attention of my social circle this week. I’m a little down-hearted that the dialogue hasn’t yet provided an opener for me to propose that Buddhist Intentional Communities be discussed. I've lived in such communities, once in London and twice in Bristol; I still smile at having come up with the name "Shanti Towers" and then interviewed an ordained Buddhist to live with by playing the (recommended) game Therapy, to get to know him. In such Buddhist Communities one finds, in response to the question of how to collectively cultivate human nature at its best and support the cream rising to the top rather than demand some pseudo-egalitarianism, I have found an inspiring array of answers being lived out collectively, whilst supporting the development of "The True Individual".
Where I’m heading now is back to the hippy times through which this talk on The Ideal Human was given by one of the two most profound and impressive humans I’ve met and talked with. 

For me, the direction is clear, finding a team sharing the journey to living the highest ideal known to humankind, the Bodhisattva Ideal, and able to deliver the grassroots changes called for by the onset of this #PandemicEra (& model it all in Hastings and Rye Constituency), is somewhat problematic still for me, Imperfect Idealist & #FreeRangeBuddhist 007.

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Beyond Polarisation In Politics - Acknowledging Patriarchy?

In the wake of a police officer in Minnesota applying lethal knee pressure on George Floyd's neck for 9 minutes, the twitter-sphere -among other spheres- appears to have polarised views. Reading words from screens I have been hearing “shouting” like I've never witnessed before; the volume of messages and the tone of insistence/dogmatism of protest and counter-protest. I've been taken aback a few times, not least by banners declaring “Silence Is Violence.

I stepped into the discussion hoping to do so with more creativity than reactivity. However, I ended up tweeting more than I intended. At best, my aim was to go #BeyondPolarisationInPolitics, acknowledge what sense I could see in President Trump's words, and adding what I thought might help round his proposals, encourage approaches that put everyone on the same side. Putting everyone on the same side takes more than the hashtag #AllLivesMatter as a response to #BlackLivesMatter.

The most visceral upset I experienced was in relation to this tweet:
[I find now that the tweet I was going to copy I can no longer see in my tweet-stream; presumably deleted by the author or by Twitter. It said it was from a woman writing of her being raped by a black man in Leeds on a given date and the lack of attention/support she received from others in contrast to the attention being put across much of the world on what happened to George Floyd.]

How long would you take to retweet these words, if you would, and with what comment appended? (May #SleepOnIt become a watch phrase for us before sending what we can reasonably expect to irritate others...) Around this time in the middle of the day, I lay down for about two hours without sleep in a darkened room processing the enormity of the stream of human suffering I was feeling in touch with via Twitter that morning.

Sometimes I retweet without comment, and, unlike many other Tweeters I do this also for many tweets with which I profoundly disagree. Rather than have the “retweets are not endorsements” type of comment on my Twitter profile, at the time of writing, I use the very limited micro-blogging persona profile space for these words: Founder(2011)StLeonardsSharing Consortium.Parliamentary Candidate2019(565votes)working with #NVC leaders towards #LivingPlanetPolitics
@2066Country @ceisenstein

By retweeting notable content, amongst other aspects of the Twittersphere I am currently noticing is, as I'm confident you'll be aware, the lull in “We're All In This Together” sentiments. In that vein there has sadly been no apparent take-up of the 3rd part of my General Election slogan/potted manifesto of “Pause5G, Citizens Assemblies Now, Move Forward More Together”.

How might it be possible to cut across the polarisation that it might be too easy to fall into in relation to the #rape tweet above? The best added comment I could manage at the time was something that has now been removed (or I've mislaid), but it said that both concerns pointed us to the need to question patriarchy.

This was the first time I can recollect having written a word that I had previously avoided like the Coronavirus/Plague. The word that took so long to alight on my page (or flash in pixels) was patriarchy. I wouldn't be using that word if I hadn't discovered its meaning within a framework of #NVC i.e. the body of understanding proliferating from the legacy of Marshall Rosenberg.

The richest exploration, for my money, of the paradigm shifts that the world need now was provided  to the East Point Peace Academy YouTube Channel by Miki Kashtan. Miki Kashtan's previous blogging (from February 2013) around one of my poems I just hyperlinked so that I/we can return to extract more of its juice in showing the shortcoming of my compassion at the time I wrote that poem, and, sadly also in many subsequent times I have read words written by others not-trained as I have been privileged to be in the clarity of separation of observation/ judgement/ feelings/ needs/ values/ requests etc
So here's the UNMISSABLE (IMHO) Film of 2020, eclipsing the 007 movie, Spectre, that the #PandemicEra led to be postponed for launch currently to the 26th October 2020:

And here's just a paragraph from what I call “The Film of The Year so Far” (#PandemicEra #BuddhistEthics #SacredEconomics #LivingPlanetPolitics blog rating: 5 stars). This is the first section in Miki Kashtan's world-view that has got me, as I hope it will “get you”, looking more closely at what alliances might be formed in arriving at a shared understanding of, and addressing, patriarchy?
I put my hands in just about everything; I work from the smallest most-internal domain to global governance and it is always like a big choice what to focus on. I decided to focus on decision making because if we get decision-making right then we can go from there to making all the decisions that we need to make to create a collaborative nonviolent future. That's why I focused in this way and we'll see if that yields benefit. I look at the Coronavirus situation as something that is an opportunity in that exposes some things that were there for quite a while but were under the surface, and now suddenly there's crisis and there's the opportunity to see the cracks; so it's even more visible. We either have a nonviolent future or we have no future because the kind of present that we have -the way of living that is based on scarcity, separation and powerlessness- that comes from 7,000 years of patriarchy. The core essence of patriarchy is scarcity, separation and powerlessness. Patriarchy manifests in gender but isn't about gender; gender emerges from it. The two main things I see in patriarchy are control and either-or thinking. I'm going to try to show that in how we approach decision-making we can exit those and go to a nonviolent future of choice, togetherness and flow so that control is replaced by purpose and either-or thinking is replaced by integration.

1st Festival of the New Society #BeyondPolarisation

1st Festival of the New Society, #GrassrootsManifestoes and #BeyondPolarisationInPolitics  being held in 2020.

The Festival of the New Society, #GrassrootsManifestoes and #BeyondPolarisationInPolitics* is to be held #1stto5thSeptember every year; this year by Zoom + postcards etc snail-mailed to participants by Refuge Tree Woods host.
(Paul Crosland with Marshall Rosenberg at an event which he organised with Mediation UK and NVC-UK, May 2006)
During a particularly hot 2017 July (which was cooler in the wooded Ancient Woodland valley of Refuge Tree Woods, in Wales, with its refreshing stream, etc) a preliminary retreat was led by Alobhin.

The most notable talk there was given by Andy Slack and is available via the #PoliticsAndBuddhistEthics101 playlist:

2020 Programme 

The first three of the 5 days to be a daily talk on (mould-breaking) Triratna inspired themes for 1hour, with the remaining 30minutes of the session allocated to discussion with the other two speakers from the first three days:

Tuesday 1st Sept 
11am Alobhin - Title to be announced - though undoubtedly including A Vision for The Festival of The New Society as a vibrant network of those working beyond left-right politics and inspired by the Bodhisattva ideal.

Wednesday 2nd Sept 
11am Paul Crosland
 “Level-Up (Y)our Life” (talk outline below) 

Thursday 3rd Sept 
11am Andy Slack (TBC)-#PoliticsAndBuddhistEthics101 revisited in the light of recent Labour Party Election defeats and change of leadership.

Friday 4th Sept 
Chaired Discussion between the Zoom audience from any of the previous 3 days

Saturday 5th Sept
3x15minute talks from the 3 Speakers as to what we each take away from the 1st Festival of the New Society followed by panel discussion & networking next steps discussion including setting up Facebook group onto which to load the Zoom footage of the 1st Festival 

Talk Outline:

Level-Up (Y)our Life -being delivered on 2nd September by “Paul BasicIncome Crosland”* Independent Parliamentary Candidate, Hastings and Rye, 2019-2029(?) -promoting #GrassrootsManifestoes etc

Intro: Whose Life Is It Anyway?

1. Join any two (safe-ish) “cults” & distill the differences. 

Or (intensive) Pressure groups, Alternative Health groups, Stop5G?.

2. Build a model of Integration that works for you, 

so that your disparate parts cohere, widen and deepen you.

3. Stand For Something (in the spirit of Educate, Agitate, Liberate.

eg when I was asked to declare in a workshop a lifetime ago what I stand for I proclaimed “I stand for Generosity” & that memory I’ve made into a sort of backbone or return to my heart.

4. In Receiving Feedback (which may well include imprisonment): “I don’t know best, we know better”

Develop your own version of what excellence looks like in hearing others’ response to how you appear to them, at your “best” & “worst”. Recollect when you changed your views and keep that antidote to polarisation alive. Remember that leadership requires taking others’ in and following too.

5. Repeat 1 to 4 (3 times?)

6. From the Reactive to the Creative

7. From the Creative to the Communitarian -“Educate, Agitate, Organise” & Matching Energies etc

8. Ensuring that the Communitarian empowers the True Individual:

9. In Touch With The Transcendental

10. The Festival of The New Society, beyond polarisation, via “Grassroots Manifestoes”, “Deeper Accountability” and #WFAMIP?

*For further info, Facebook message me -“Paul BasicIncome Crosland”, text me on Zero7807-066-202
& email me at paul.crosland{at}

Also &


 * Aspiring to establish these hashtags for The #FestivalOfTheNewSociety: , #GrassrootsManifestoes , #BeyondPolarisationInPolitics and #FOTNSgmBPIP


Call This Democracy?

On getting elected to represent the constituency of Hastings & Rye with just 49.6% of the ballots cast, Sally-Ann Hart said that she “will be representing all of you regardless of how you voted.” As the Parliamentary candidate (2019-2029?) who stood for the decision making processes that enable us to “Move Forward More Together” , and has now taken the energy of the “Hastings Citizen Manifesto” to generate the UK-wide stand for “Grassroots Manifestoes” I want to know what policies you’d need the local MP to support for them to represent you? 
Democracy need not be a choice of three or four “set menus” but built up from below with a choice of policies only limited by our creativity in meeting the extraordinary challenges of our times.
I will work hard to give voice, as best I can, to the 32.4% of the Hastings and Rye electoral roll - that’s 26,250 people - who didn’t vote in the 2019 election. 

I stood because Politics in the UK seemed broken and the possibility of Independent Candidates giving power back to the constituents seemed to have been forgotten. To show a glimpse of what could be achieved by voting for a truly accountable Independent Candidate, let me know what policy or policies being implemented by this government would be what you’d want any candidate holding a balance of power -even the 1% of the vote I gained in 2019- to push for so that the MP acts with the consent of the majority; not just 33% of the vote. Those who voted Independent and those who didn’t vote together almost outnumbers those who voted for the current MP. Democracy has a long way to go. Subscribing to this blog is one way to join a journey which seeks the most positive use of social media to bring out the 10 policies that matter most to every constituent and have meaningful dialogue between all those who differ. Your considered thoughts and best intentions please, you in advance for your comments below,Paul