In this newsletter we have a round up of all the recent articles on Burn Out plus some new ones; Amazon’s debasing of language; a call for more mavericks; a Neighbourhood Planning update and two book reviews plus events and courses coming up.
Transitioners’ Digest (January – February 2016)
Burn out and Balance.
During January and February, we have been exploring the theme of Burnout and Balance. In this digest Rob Hopkins brings all the articles on the topic together including his fascinating Personal Burnout Audit, a piece by our new Inner Transition Coordinator, Claire Milne ‘What indigenous cultures can teach us about burnout’ and a final interview with Sophy Banks before she left Transition Network to take on new challenges.
How Amazon Debases Our Language, and How We Can Take it Back.
The word ‘fulfilment’ has two distinct meanings. The first, according to the Cambridge Dictionary, is “the fact of doing something that is necessary or something that someone has wanted or promised to do”, and the second “a feeling of pleasure because you are getting what you want from life”. Rob Hopkins likes the idea of the second one, a life of fulfilment, it’s something we all aspire to, right? You might even argue that we long for fulfilment: at the very least it’s certainly what one might call a Good Thing.
Why We Need More Mavericks, Not Less.
Rob Hopkins watched the recent BBC documentary on Kids Company, Camila’s Kids Company: the inside story, with great sadness. It told the story of Camila Batmanghelidjh and the unravelling of one of the UK’s best known charities, who did remarkable work helping some of the most disadvantaged kids in the UK. While what happened is clearly complex, and while its demise leaves many vulnerable people in very precarious situations, the programme also left the viewer with a sense that charismatic, maverick people are bound to lead to trouble, and I found that deeply unsettling.
Neighbourhood Planning and Transition initiatives: an update.
Is your Transition group involved in creating a Neighbourhood Plan? If you, so need to read this report by Amy Burnett, University of Reading and Dan Stone, Centre for Sustainable Energy about the options for grassroots action in low-carbon Neighbourhood Planning in England.
The Island that Never Was: an English castaway in Bilbao
The spirit behind Transition, that invitation for a community to come together to reimagine and rebuild itself, takes many forms, not all of them choose to use the label Transition, and some, like the story told in this book, emerged before Transition but very much sees itself as being a Transition initiative in spirit. Earth builder, ecological designer, author, educator and occasional Transition Culture contributor Robert Alcock has just published a book that gives a powerful taste of one manifestation of that spirit, set in the city of Bilbao, Spain.
Biology of Wonder: Aliveness as a Force of Evolution and the Commons
Andreas Weber’s book proposes that science study a very radical yet unexplained phenomenon — aliveness! He rejects the neoDarwinian account of life as a collection of sophisticated, evolving machines, each relentlessly competing with maximum efficiency for supremacy in the laissez-faire market of nature. Biology he says is discovering subjectivity as a fundamental principle throughout nature. As a conclusion he suggests that developing an environmental ethic is more than legislating new policies; it is about re-imagining humanity in the world itself.
14-15 March Fishguard, Wales
An event to provide positive examples of town regeneration from around the UK; to showcase what Fishguard and Goodwick have achieved; to explore strategies for enabling community supported entrepreneurism; and to identify opportunities for the future.
April – May
The online version of our very popular face to face fundamentals course in the skills and practices of Transition is packed with imaginative ways to delve into the practice of Transition showing you how to set up, run and grow a Transition Initiative.
Spiritual Ecology Youth Fellowship
St Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation and Peace – London
Starting Autumn 2016. Application Deadline: April 30, 2016
Young emerging leaders aged 22-30 who have the potential to be future catalysts for change, and who recognise the need to create a future that is not driven by materialism and greed, but rooted in the spiritual values of interconnectedness, service, stewardship and reverence for nature. The Fellowship will be offering a nine month experience of deep study, reflection and practical project development integrating the principles of Spiritual Ecology. A central component to the program will be the exploration of how these principles can be incorporated into projects, and how the values can be lived in ways that create lasting change.
The stories generated by Transition Initiatives from the ‘Initiatives list’ on the Transitiontowns twitter account
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This newsletter is published on the first Friday of each month.
Editor: Mike Grenville