A Vision for the New Year

At the Dawn of 2018

A new year is beginning, and many of us are relieved to leave 2017 behind, as if the change in the calendar date could signify a change in everything. For me, last year was a strange mix—politically disastrous, personally full of satisfying work and some incredible experiences.

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The Story We Need to Tell; the Movement We Need to Build

Monster Hurricanes, Raging Wildfires, Massive Floods, Unprecedented Heat Waves…

This disastrous summer has shown that climate change is no longer a theory but a full, galloping reality. Now is the moment to organize around it, and build a movement broader and stronger than ever before.

Great efforts have indeed been […]

Where Water Flows Through the Cracks: A Visit to Aranya Farm, India

Today We Visited the Aranya Farm

It’s a beautiful example of food forests, inter-cropped annuals and biodiversity, a paradise on a plot of land that was a barren crust of thin soil over rock twenty years ago. Now it is rich with mangos, bananas, papayas, soursop, acacia, mulberry, pigeon pea, sorghum, tomatoes […]

Lessons from the Fires

“Sacred fire, that shapes this land,

Summer teacher, winter friend.

Protect us as we learn anew,

To work, to heal, to live with you.”

This is the chant we sing each summer as part of the fire protection ritual we do on my land in Western Sonoma County. […]

We have Two Great Crises

1 Officer Hospitalized, 6 Arrested During Violent Overnight Berkeley Protest

Preparing for our climate change workshop and ritual today, while last night even as protests filled the streets the LA police shot a homeless man. I start my talks these days by saying that we have two great crises: climate change and the concentration […]

Permaculture Solutions for Climate Change

The solution to both our social and ecological solutions is the same: community. Restore the community of caring and sharing, understand that community means the interconnection of people with the environment and natural communities that sustain us, restore power and resources to communities, and trust in the resilience of the community of life. We have already altered the world, and it will never be the same again. But if we take action to stop the damage and employ the solutions, if we partner with nature and our great earth-healing allies, it can still be a beautiful, thriving, life-sustaining place for ourselves, for the life around us, and for future generations. […]

On Not Lighting a Solstice Bonfire

So tonight I embrace the cold. Call it in—cold is what we need, to cool the overheated earth, to bring back the rains. I offer up the fire, to the snowy plover, to all the endangered species, to everything and everyone whose simple birthrights are stolen. Let this be the Solstice magic. Tides turn. Miracles happen. Out of darkness, light is born. […]

My State of the Union

During Obama’s State of the Union message, I was scheduled to give a talk at Northern Arizona University on “Women Taking Action: Using the Insights of the Feminist Movement.” As part of it, I decided to write the State of the Union as if Obama were suddenly possessed by the spirit of the nurturing, caring, […]

Now That The Election is Over…

Organizing after an Obama victory is like bicycling with the wind at your back, instead of peddling into a stiff head wind. I’ve lived and organized through the victories of Nixon, Reagan, Bush and Bush, and believe me, this is better! And we have a lot of organizing to do. […]

My Day–The Short List

Something is happening. Occupations are springing up all over the place. One of the young women organizers told me she’d passed on my consensus download to someone about to start Occupy Mississippi! There are union folks here from Wisconsin, displaced stockbrokers from New York, laid off policy wonks from here in DC, affable former corporate managers from Texas, ex-cons from the ‘hood here in DC, a lot of homeless people, and students who’ve woken up to the fact that they are debt-slaves. What will happen if ordinary folks all over the country get addicted to having a say in the decisions that affect their lives? […]