Knowing When to Fly South
One of the advantages of traveling around the country is that I get to meet a lot of diverse people. Add to that, a Facebook friends list of over 800 people from many chapters of my life. My circle includes Tea Party and Libertarians to Socialists and Communists. They are Atheists to Fundamental Christians to Tibetan Buddhists. Some dropped out of high school while others have the highest degrees. Men, women, straight, gay, black, white, brown, from many countries, with many world views, it is a broad cross-section of people, I think.
As I travel, people talk to me. I am one of those people who engenders trust and they share what they've never said aloud, the personal and the planetary, their hopes and fears. From the young couple who were hitchhiking across America, to the homeless man at the rest stop, to the respected law professor, everyone seems to have one thing on their mind these days: a collapse is coming. Today, one of the spiritually-oriented lawyers I know posted this on Facebook:
Collapse Preparation 101
The stories about what will cause the collapse vary. Climate change, solar flares, corporate greed, liberal waste, war, or weather are popular explanations, depending on life experience and values. What we all have in common is a sense of something is happening and we need to prepare.
Birds know to fly South when winter is coming. A Pennsylvania real estate agent chose a house that had a well in addition to city water, "just in case" something happened. The law professor is creating community and putting down some roots. The homeless man is telling everyone to become mobile, to shed non-essential possessions and be ready for what may come. The young couple is learning to live on the road and create community as they go. They chose this time to travel because they don't think it will be possible later. A Tucson author and her engineer husband sold their house to move to Indiana to be close to friends and water. The stories could go on and on.
So, I am coming out of the closet here to let you all know that I feel it, too. And to share with you that it gives my work a sense of urgency.
If a collapse comes, what will be needed?
When I was a little girl living in Florida at the time of the Cuban missle crisis, my neighbor had a bomb shelter in their side yard. From the outside, it was a big hill of dirt with a door and the neighborhood children liked to climb the mountain to the top. When my best friend told me that her family would hide there in case of a bomb, I wondered where my family would hide. It didn't seem right that my neighbor wouldn't let us come be safe, too.
I want to live in a community where we're all thinking of all to be safe and taken care of. the time to build strong communities and connections is now. Each of us can take the individual actions necessary but we also need collective action to make sure everyone is taken care of. I don't want to tell my neighbors that their children can't be safe from what may come.
Not knowing what will happen, we need to be flexible and resourceful. We will need strong and capable leadership from people we know and trust are working for the good of everyone. Lawyers have brilliant minds and good hearts. They/we are already trusted leaders in our communities. We can be the kinds of leaders that pull people together and find solutions for the big problems that may come. We can create order while honoring the human values. Or we can exacerbate the conflicts and create rigid rules with little compassion or mercy.
I want to live in a community where lawyers are peacemakers, problem-solvers and healers of conflicts.....whether we have a collapse or not.
No matter what the question is, Community is the answer.