Democratic Forest Trusts (PDF)in Watson, Alan; Dean, Liese; Sproull, Janet, comps. 2006. Science and stewardship to protect and sustain wilderness values: Eighth World Wilderness Congress Symposium; 2005 September 30-October 6; Anchorage, AK.Democratic trusts with leadership elected by citizen-members promise to solve many of the problems afflicting both traditional government and corporate ownership of forestlands.Â This article explores these issues in some depth.Complexity and the Dream of Human Control of Eco-Systems (PDF)in Watson, Alan; Dean, Liese; Sproull, Janet, comps. 2006. Science and stewardship to protect and sustain wilderness values: Eighth World Wilderness Congress Symposium; 2005 September 30-October 6; Anchorage, AK.The title captures it.Â I then explore the kinds of institutions compatible with both nature and the modern world that are implied from this analysis.Rethinking the Obvious: Modernity and Living Respectfully With Nature (PDF)The Trumpeter: Journal of Ecosophy, Winter, 1997.Modernity is usually considered a wrong turn in terms of respect for and sustaining the environment.Â I argue the reality is more complex, for modernity has freed us from personal dependence on agriculture, ended the economic value of children, radically reduced the likelihood of large scale wat, and shifted much production to intellectual rather than material capital.Â This partially decouples society from nature, which gives us important opportunities as well as problems.Towards an Ecocentric Political Economy (PDF)The Trumpeter, Fall, 1996.This paper begins my effort at showing how liberal modernity can be harmonized with an ecocentric perspective on our relationship with the natural world.Â It is a corrective to much “free market environmental” literature that sacrifices Nature to money as well as to anti-liberal attacks by well-meaning but economically naÃ¯ve environmentalists.Unexpected Harmonies: Self-Organization in Liberal Modernity and Ecology (PDF)The Trumpeter, Journal of Ecosophy, 10:1, Winter 1993This is my initial paper exploring how what I term ‘evolutionary liberal’ thought can be an important means by which society and nature can be brought into greater harmony.Â The other Trumpeter papers build on it.Deep Ecology and Liberalism: The Greener Implications of Evolutionary Liberalism (PDF)Review of Politics, Fall, 1996.Liberal thought and deep ecology are usually regarded as mutually exclusive. But the “evolutionary” tradition offers a way to integrate the two through commonalties in the work of David Hume, Michael Polanyi, Arne Naess, and Aldo Leopold, providing a stronger foundation for liberalism while strengthening the case for an ecocentric ethic.(Related subjects: Ecology)Saving Western Towns: A Jeffersonian Green Proposal (PDF)in Writers on the Range, Karl Hess and John Baden, eds., University Press of Colorado, 1998.Developmental pressures in the rural and small town West involve three groups: long term residents, new arrivals, and environmentalists. Today their interests often conflict. This conflict is in part the outcome of institutions which prevent harmonizing competing interests. The concept of developmental trusts, both for rural regions and for small communities offers a means whereby these interests can be harmonized for the benefit of all concerned.(Related subjects: Politics)Social Ecology, Deep Ecology, and Liberalism (PDF)Critical Review, 6: 2-3, 1992.Murray Bookchin is considered a leading radical environmental theorist. However, his analysis is incapable of leading humankind towards a more respectful and sustainable relationship with the natural world. Criticisms of Bookchin from both the deep ecology and evolutionary liberal perspective complement one another, pointing the way towards a better understanding of how modernity relates to the environment.The paper as a whole offers an early discussion of issues that are more clearly addressed in later papers, particularly Deep Ecology and Liberalism (1996) and the three Trumpeter articles in 1997, 1996, and 1993. However, there are other ideas in the article which have not been developed more thoroughly elsewhere.
I’ve been busy polishing our ritual
script for Samhain (pronounced “Sow-win”), which we will celebrate the 30th. I hope every other Pagan reader of this
blog will have an opportunity to observe and celebrate this time as well. I think it is one of our two most
Wicca celebrates and honors the
Sacred in all its manifestation throughout life, for it is the Divine as it
manifests in the world that serves as our “sacred text.” We focus on the
meaning within phenomena as
symbols of a larger context toward which
they point. Life is a cycle, and
we see it symbolized throughout the course of a year here in temperate
zones. On the equator we would
need different symbolism to bring this insight alive, a sign that variety is
itself Sacred. Along with the Sacredness of variety, I believe our world’s
other most fundamental teaching about the Sacred is its eternal linkage of life
and death. Everything that lives,
Samhain is when we honor death, as
six months previously we honored life at Beltane. Then light was rapidly increasing, each day longer than the
one before. Now night is becoming
dominant, each night longer than the one before.
In NeoPagan and Celtic traditions
Samhain is the last day of the year, as sundown is the end of the day and the
beginning of the next. For Wiccans
such as myself, the time between Samhain and Yule is the time when death is the
dimension of Spirit most present at least symbolically.
Here in Sonoma County both our main
altar and our ancestor altar will be decorated with marigolds, and the central
candles will be atop a wonderful Mexican ceramic skull, for we are blessed with
the near coincidence of Samhain and Day of the Dead. These two celebrations are particularly harmonious for both
honor those who have passed on. Both connect with that part of existence we
usually most avoid. And Day of the
Dead is celebratory towards those who have passed, helping us connect with our
ancestors, something far less prevalent in NeoPaganism than in indigenous traditions.
Day of the Dead is indigenous to
America, particularly Mexico. Its roots are thousands of years old. Its celebration has moved north as Mexican people have come here to
work and to live, in the process enriching our own appreciation of this time. To me its is fitting that we integrate
their wisdom and beauty into our practice.