Saturday, August 29, 2009


More healing than rest and relaxation is sleep. And so, in some ways, this post is way out of sequence. I pointed out under transportation that it was so much less important than eating and that was why it was so far from the beginning of this sequence. By that logic, this post, number 37, makes sleep sound really unimportant.

Actually, in many ways sleep belongs somewhere at the start of the needs segment, in the early posts where I was discussing physiological needs. What I did discuss there was the need for Shelter, both Temporary (5/19/09) and Permanent (5/31/09). One of the reasons for this need is to have a safe location to sleep. Indeed, people sometimes refer to this as "place to lay my head". We need to sleep and we need safe space to do it.

Both lack of sleep and too much sleep have been shown to shorten your life span. Sleep deprivation can cause multiple ill effects, including headaches, hallucinations, and hernias--not to mention traffic accidents in those foolish enough to drive while sleep deprived. According to Wikipedia, it is impossible to have complete deprivation over a long period of time because the body lapses into episodes of microsleep.

The average person needs seven to eight hours of good, sound sleep. Caffeine (from coffee, tea, sodas, or chocolate), nicotine, and alcohol can interfere with sleep--in other words, the stuff people usually use in this society. A great quote from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke claims: "The widespread practice of 'burning the candle at both ends' in western industrialized societies has created so much sleep deprivation that what is really abnormal sleepiness is now almost the norm." This is a good example of what our crazed capitalist society is doing to people.

There is a Zen story of a master being told of someone with miraculous powers and being asked what miracles he could perform. He answered, "My miracle is that when I feel hungry I eat, and when I feel thirsty I drink." And in this society, the miracle may be that when we are tired, we actually sleep.

Dick McLeester, Welcome to the Magic Theater--Subtitled 'A Handbook for Exploring Dreams', this is a long out of print catalog of useful information about dreams and dreaming; you might find it in a used bookstore
MedicineNet, "Your Guide to Healthy Sleep"--A simply written guide to understanding the essentials about sleep and how to take care of yourself by getting enough
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, "Brain Basics: Understanding Sleep"--A more technical analysis of sleep
The National Sleep Foundation--Yes, there is a whole foundation devoted to studying sleep; this site contains lots of articles related to basics about sleep and new information being found out by sleep research

Also see the resources under Temporary Shelter (5/19/09) and Permanent Shelter (5/31/09)

Quote of the Day: "No day is so bad it can't be fixed with a nap." - Carrie Snow

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Edward M Kennedy

I'm from Massachusetts. I was born here and lived most of my life here. We certainly know the Kennedys here.

They didn't bring us Camelot. They weren't the saviors some folks would like to make them out to be. They were a family of power and privilege. But the three Kennedy brothers, each in his own way, tried to make things better. And Ted Kennedy lived that legacy.

Ted Kennedy was far from a perfect person. Aside from his personal troubles, he sometimes allowed political expediency to dictate his senate votes. He opposed the Cape Wind project, apparently because it would hurt tourism on Cape Cod. He supported the war in Afganistan.

However, Kennedy more often took a principled stand in a progressive direction. He opposed the war in Iraq, opposed the Supreme Court nominations of Robert Bork, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito, and has supported gun control, alternative energy, and same-sex marriage, as well as working on raising the minimum wage. And he made his dying years a struggle to make sure everyone got adequate health care.

I used to believe that politicians didn't make that much difference--no matter who is in power, the real work needs to be done in communities, building a new society from the ground up. I once said that if a radical leader was elected promising to change everything, I'd be scared, since I've seen what top down social change looks like. But Ronald Reagan, Newt Gingrich, and Dick Cheney have taught me the damage conservative politicians can do.

I now believe it's important to elect progressive liberals, if only to protect us from those who would try to turn back our efforts. And Ted Kennedy, with forty-six years in the Senate, was one of our strongest progressive voices. I often didn't make those calls to Congress or worry about influencing whatever bills were in Congress, because I knew Kennedy and my other Massachusetts Senator (John Kerry) along with my congressional Representative (Mike Capuano) would vote the way that was needed.

No matter who replaces Kennedy, it won't be the same. Ted Kennedy devoted his life to championing liberal and progressive causes. He will be missed.

Quote of the day: "... the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die." - Edward M Kennedy

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Recuperation, Rest, and Renewal

Recuperation, for me, is really about the healing aspects of rest and leisure. It's about recreation, play, and simply lying about, doing nothing, as methods of stress management. It's about taking the time to refresh the body and mind.

It's about the idea that we really need to take care of ourselves. We need downtime.

When I was in a political/spiritual community, we adopted the idea of Shabbat--even those of us who weren't Jewish. We really liked the idea, as workers and activists, that we needed a time to just be. While the spiritual aspects of this practice are important, the physical, mental, and emotional healing that occurs around being able to relax and just be, rather than doing all the time, is very important as well. We have to be careful not to burn ourselves out trying to change the world.

Relaxation is one of the main methods of recuperation. While there are some specific methods of relaxation (such as Progressive Muscle Relaxation and diaphragmatic breathing), just letting go and not giving into the compulsion to do something may be the most important way to do it. (I've heard the expression from meditation teachers: "Don't just do something, sit there.")

In a culture that emphasizes busyness (not to mention fear, tension, and stress), just letting yourself relax and recuperate and renew yourself is an important need.

Kathleen Barton, "Stress-Busters: 12 Ways to Renew Yourself"--A short article listing some thoughts on how to recharge yourself
Stephen Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People--Covey's seventh habit is what he calls 'Sharpen the Saw' and subtitles: 'Principles of Balanced Self-Renewal'; he discusses physical, social/emotional, mental, and spiritual renewal and the importance of taking time to do it
Martha Davis, The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook--Step-by-step instructions on techniques for relaxing the body and calming the mind
Jeanne Segal, et al, "Relaxation Techniques for Stress Relief"--A good survey of a variety of relaxation methods

Quote of the Day: "Sometimes the cure for restlessness is rest." - Colleen Wainwright

Sunday, August 23, 2009


This is my first post on what Manfred Max-Neef calls leisure needs and I am calling leisure/rest/recovery needs. I think we basically need leisure time/down time/recovery time to renew ourselves. In fact, perhaps everything in this section is about healing.

I have already covered a lot about physical healing in my sections on Emergency Medical Care (5/22/09) and Regular Medical Care (6/3/09), so while I think that physical stuff is an important part of healing, I want to focus on emotional healing here.

The two are intimately connected. I worked for a while in the admissions area of a psychiatric hospital (not directly part of a medical hospital) and one of the first things that they did was a full medical assessment, since many symptoms of emotional problems can be caused by physical problems. In the same way, emotional difficulties can lead to physical difficulties. We are vastly interconnected people.

Trauma is also intimately connected with healing, since many of us are healing from some type of trauma (a word that comes from the Greek term for a wound). There are many forms of trauma, even confining the term to psychological trauma. Another related type of healing concerns recovery from addictions. What ties this all together is a view of healing as a movement away from a state of dis-ease and toward health.

I can't imagine a future where there will be no trauma and no problems, therefore healing will always be a need for us.

Ellen Bass, The Courage to Heal--A classic book on recovery from childhood sexual abuse
David Burns, Feeling Good--A basic book on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, a respected method of emotional healing; while this book focuses on dealing with depression it gives good information about the cognitive distortions that cause a lot of psychological problems and outlines how to deal with them
Eugene Gendlin, Focusing--A method of going inward and getting in touch with what's going on within us as a method of healing
Stephen Levine, Healing into Life and Death--A Buddhist teacher who works with the dying, looks at what dying can teach us about healing and living
Starhawk and Hilary Valentine, The Twelve Wild Swans--A book on witchcraft that has a whole track devoted to personal healing online connection to an amazing variety of resources built around the Twelve Steps, a spiritually based self-help program that has done wonders for people trying to heal from addictions; they also include links to 'anti-12-step programs' and secular programs attempting to help others heal from addictions

Also see the Resources in my posts on Emergency Medical Care (5/22/09) and Regular Medical Care (6/3/09)

Quote of the Day: "...healing means more than seeking relief for a symptom or illness or family problem, although it may include all of these. Healing means becoming whole, a unique, powerful, aware, fulfilled person. ... It means living passionately, creatively, and joyfully.
"Healing also means becoming part of a whole, comfortable, connected, and intimate with other people and with nature." - Hilary Valentine

Thursday, August 20, 2009


This is my last piece on the 'Participation and involvement needs'. Along with meaningful work and energy to accomplish it, organization to get the work done, and transportation to get to and from wherever, I ended by listing 'Trade (of some sort)'. Here we are getting back into the subject of economics.

In my post on 'Protection from Poverty' (6/18/09), I mentioned that our economic system isn't the be-all/end-all of ways to deal with our need to get things from each other. As a friend of mine pointed out, if we don't believe that we need to do everything for ourselves (and I hope anyone reading this has figured out I'm not advocating some type of pure self-sufficiency), then we need to figure out how to do some small degree of specialization--recognizing that some people so somethings better than others. And that's economics. You have some thing I want. There are much better ways of getting our needs met than simply taking what we want.

For one thing, as I mentioned in my earlier post, there is the idea of a Gift Economy. We could just give stuff to each other. I also talked about the Solidarity Economy and, in my post on Participatory Economics and Economic Theory (7/8/08), I mention the theory of Participatory Economics as well as Starhawk's 'minimal agreements for a new economic system'.

Another form of 'economics', that some subsume under the Solidarity Economy, is local currency, actual locally printed money, that is only good in a certain area, which helps keep the money in the community. Some of the 'Transition Towns' have encouraged this as an attempt at 'relocalization'. (See my post on Transition Towns (10/16/08) for more on the Transition Initiative.) There are also groups that simply trade time without any actual currency changing hands. (I mentioned this in my Protection from Poverty post.)

And, then there is good old fashion trade or barter. You have something I want, I offer something I think you might want. My point is that there will be a need in the future to be able to exchange goods and services. I'm not sure there will be a need for money.

The Gift Economy--A website run by feminist thinker Genevieve Vaughan packed with information on gifting, including links to the entire text of her book For-Giving
Ithaca Hours--One of the largest local currencies in the US
Parecon--ZNet sponsors this website which will tell you all that you want to know about Participatory Economics; among other things it contains the text of four books (Parecon: Life After Capitalism, Looking Forward, Thinking Forward, and Moving Forward) that Michael Albert has written about Participatory Economics
The E. F. Schumacher Society Local Currency Program--Resources for creating local currency as well as information on BerkShares, a currency based in Berkshire County, Massachusetts

See also the Resources in the Protection from Poverty post (6/18/09)

Quote of the Day: "In a very real sense, we are the economy. The economy begins with the work we do... the often unpaid,'informal' productive work--like child care, housecleaning, bartering, and sweat equity--we do." - Susan Meeker-Lowry

Monday, August 17, 2009


Food was my third post on needs, after air and water. This post on transportation is number thirty-three on my list of needs. Do I think food is a lot more important than transportation? Yes, and I think most people would agree, at least as long as we were talking about food for them versus their need for transportation.

But what if it was our need for transportation as opposed to the food needs of people in some far away country? This isn't an academic question. The early potential for biofuels has become an issue when it became apparent that we could either raise crops for food or for fuel, and using corn to produce ethanol may we mean that there is less cultivated land to grow food on--food that could feed starving people.

I saw a cartoon where a rich man is grabbing an ear of corn away from a poor mother with a crying child, saying "You think your baby is hungry? My SUV is starving!" It's a great example of believing that we can continue to consume as much as we want and, even if there's peak oil, high tech fixes will save us.

Of course, there is the rather clever use of waste vegetable oil as a fuel. While I think it's a trip have in a vehicle spew exhaust that smells like french fries and to the degree that it isn't going to be used for anything else I think it's good, there are problems. At one point, fast food restaurants were delighted to give the stuff away and whole buses were powered by it. But as it's becoming more popular, some restaurants are rethinking this--suddenly waste vegetable oil is becoming a valuable commodity.

But there is a need to get from one place to another. I think the best, most ecological transportation is human powered. The most sustainable method is walking. It's cheaper, healthier, and uses completely renewable resources (ie, food and muscle power). After that comes bicycles and other human powered vehicles. While they require resources for their manufacture and maintenance, they don't need any fuel (other than our bodies) to run. I live in a house where only one person (out of six) has a car. When I moved in I asked how we did large shops. It turns out that we have a bike trailer that all the cyclists (including me) use for shops and other things. It can hold more than six bags of groceries and is useful for many other things as well. I recently heard about someone gathered a small fleet of bikes with trailers and used them to move all of her belongings from her old place to her new place several blocks away.

And if you do need to use vehicles with another source of energy, it's good to share them. Public transit, ride pools, etc, all use nonrenewable energy--but they use less of it to transport more people.

Beware of phony technosolutions. A few years ago, someone I knew let me use her all electric vehicle. It was amazing to drive--it purred along. But when I thought about it, while it didn't give off toxic exhaust, it was powered by electricity that was generated somehow. Somewhere fossil fuels or nuclear power were probably being used. As with other similar 'solutions', having an electric car simply moves the problem out of sight.

the American Public transportation Association--A US based advocacy organization supporting public transit
Bamboo Bicycle Trailer--How to build a bicycle trailer using free plans;it uses no welding or tube bending, and can be made any size and from any material
The Bicycle Riding School--They teach anyone how to ride and specialize in teaching adults; they've taught kids as young as three and adults in their 80s; note: I am not unbiased here, Susan (owner and head teacher) is a friend of mine and I've helped out there at times
Green Grease Monkey--A Boston area "company that specializes in converting diesel vehicles to run on vegetable oil"
The Sustainable Biodiesel Alliance--An organization that claims to want to "create a better world through sustainable, community-based biodiesel"; they are working directly with farmers (and groups like FarmAid) and have a list of 'Baseline Practices for Sustainability' that includes energy conservation (ie, recognizing the need to reduce consumption) as well as 'Food Security' Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's interactive map of bike and walking trails

Quote of the Day: "There is more to life than increasing its speed." - Mohandas Gandhi

Friday, August 14, 2009


Okay. Organizing and organizations as a human need. Sounds a bit strange. But really, if we are going to get anything done, we are going to have to find ways of working together and working together well.

In order to get any type of work done, we need energy. But, although there are many folks that prefer to work alone, when we work with others we get much more done. And if there is more than one or two of us working together, structure helps. That's what organizing is all about.
It doesn't mean we have to have bureaucracy. If you've been following this blog for a while, you know that I advocate decentralized structure. But structure, nevertheless. Organization to get the work done.

This also doesn't mean organization for the sake of organization. In fact, I think many organizational structures should be temporary. Just as I think we need to avoid bureaucracy, we need to avoid institutions--organizations that seem to exist primarily to perpetuate themselves. Organization exists to achieve certain goals. When the goal is met, often the need for the organization is over. I think the transition movement is smart about this. The steering group that helps guide the initial effort deliberately plans its own demise. (See my post on Transition Towns--10/16/08)

In spite of things like bureaucracy and institutionalization, organizations and organizing are an important part of life. Early on, in my post on Creating Social Change, I blogged on the motto: "Agitate, Educate, Organize". Organizing is part of the process of social change, part of getting work done, part of how we will need to live.

Covey, Stephen, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People--Covey devotes a chapter to 'Principles of Creative Cooperation', outlining the habit he calls 'Synergize'; this is a way to build on the fact that the whole is more than the sum of it's parts, so as we work together new things can emerge; as he points out, 'All nature is synergistic'; our organizations should be as well
Jo Freeman, "The Tyranny of Structurelessness"--The need for structure, in fact the impossibility of 'structurelessness', and how those advocating for 'structureless' organizations are usually the ones benefitting from obscuring power dynamics
Steven Johnson, "Two ways to emerge, and how to tell the difference between them"--A chapter of a book on cybernetic democracy that I liked so well I devoted a post to it (see Clustering and Coping--8/13/08); it talks about two different ways that organization can emerge and what makes the difference
Bruce Kokopeli and George Lakey, Leadership for Change--A manual on the difference between leaders and leadership; organizations need leadership, they don't need leaders; this little booklet is available from Training for Change

Also see the resources in my posts on Communal and Cooperative Resources (10/12/08) and SLoDBN Resources (12/15/08)

Quote of the Day: "Don't agonize. Organize." - Forynce Kennedy

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


If we are going to do work in the world--hopefully, meaningful work--of whatever type, we are going to need energy to accomplish the work. This is a basic principle of physics.

In my post of 5/16/09 (Warmth), I mentioned George M telling folks in his workshop that all the energy we use is solar power, in the sense that it ultimately comes from the sun. The energy we use to do anything with our bodies is from eating plants (either directly or indirectly) and those plants store energy that they get from sunlight.

Therefore, eating well is one form of energy we will need in order to do any work. My mother used to talk about us needing to use 'Elbow Grease' to get things done, and I think that may be one of the most effective forms of energy that there is.

Further energy that we will need to do work takes us to the realm of 'Peak Everything'. We have limited amounts of oil, gas, coal, uranium, etc. Hopefully, we do not have limited amounts of sunlight, ingenuity, creativity, willingness to work, etc. (See my posts on Peak Everything--7/20/08, Peak Oil--7/18/08, Appropriate Technology--8/19/08, and Warmth--5/16/09.)

One of the problems with some of the 'alternative' methods of getting energy--solar panels, wind turbines, geothermal pumps, even my beloved bicycles--is that it takes energy to create them. Someone calculated that it takes more energy to create those tiny wind turbines some people put on top of their house, than the wind turbine actually ever generates. Also, some high tech solutions (such as solar panels--or even computers) create toxic waste products--which often ends up as pollution in some developing country.

In order to get anything done, we need to use energy--and we need to use energy wisely. We need to think about how much energy we really need to get something done, and whether this is the best use of the energy. We will need to think about how to do things Simply and Sustainably (see my posts of 9/24/08 and 10/14/08) so that in a time of limited resources, there will still be energy available to do needed work.

Co-op Power--As they say: "...a multi-class, multi-racial movement for a sustainable and just energy future"; currently organizing in Massachusetts and Vermont (USA), but a model that could be applied anywhere
Tamara Dean, The Human-Powered Home--A sourcebook of information on pedal and crank powered devices
Home Power Magazine--Trumpeting the gospel of alternative energy for over twenty years
Pedal Power---A webpage devoted to using the act of pedaling a stationary bicycle to generate energy; lots of useful how-to information
Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food--A manifesto on eating healthy, getting our energy from plants, and ignoring the junk that agribusiness is trying to sell us
Also see the resources under Food (5/13/09) and Warmth (5/16/09)

Quote of the Day: "Energy and persistence alter all things." - Benjamin Franklin

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Meaningful Work

Here I am beginning what Manfred Max-Neef calls Participation needs and what I am referring to as 'Participation and involvement needs'.

Meaningful work is very strongly related to feeling useful. In my post of 7/27/09 (To Be of Use) I mention 'doing meaningful income producing work in today's economy is a near impossibility'. It doesn't mean that people don't try but, unfortunately, in today's capitalist society most people lead 'lives of quiet desperation' (as Thoreau put it). Yet there is a need for us to feel that our work does more than earn a few folks a lot of money.

Part of what is needed is to rethink the idea of 'a job'. Our real work is not to make money, but to do things that help others and/or help society move along. Most of that is not anything that we can get paid for.

If peak oil hits and the economy collapses, we will get a real chance to rethink 'meaningful work'. Meeting real needs (the stuff I am listing in this segment) will be the work we will all be doing, and money may quickly become irrelevant in this process. In the meantime, think about what would be meaningful for you and see if you can do it--whether you get paid for it or not. (I realize that there are many people, eking out a living on the edge of survival, that this is impossible for. Maybe the most meaningful work would be to help them to get to a place where they can have enough of their needs met that they could begin to think about what would be meaningful for them.)

Richard Bolles, What Color Is Your Parachute?--The classic job hunting book, first published in 1970, now with online back up
Stephen Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People--He makes the point in this chapter on learning to 'Begin with the End in Mind' that you can be quite efficient and 'productive' and if you haven't thought about what you really want to do first, you can quickly accomplish a lot that will get you nowhere, as useful a way of looking at meaningless work as I've seen
William Morris, "Useful Work versus Useless Toil"--An 1896 analysis of what work is actually useful, as opposed to what benefits the capitalist system instead of people (also on the internet here)
Marsha Sinetar, Do What You Love, The Money Will Follow--A guide to developing 'Right Livelihood'

Quote of the Day: "The first duty of a human being is to assume the right functional relationship to society -- more briefly, to find your real job, and do it." - Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Communication, like several of the needs I've blogged about, has at least two different meanings. In this case the two meanings I want to focus on are about what we say and about the technology to be able to say it at a distance.

The first meaning focuses on the process of communication. How can we communicate better? How can we make ourselves understood more clearly? All the references in my resource section refer to that kind of communication.

Actually, I think the biggest issue in this aspect of communication is less on being understood, and more on understanding others. In order to increase truly effective communication, I think there needs to be a lot less talking and a lot more listening to each other. Unfortunately, most people in this society (especially men) are encouraged to try to make themselves understood--with very little emphasis on actually pay attention to anyone else. This results in a communication that often appears to be all of us talking at each other. No real communication occurs if no one is listening.

Looking at the technology of communication might seem a little esoteric for this blog at first, but if you think about a very low energy future, it quickly becomes important to figure out what means of communication technology might be practical at that point. I doubt that cell phones have a long-term future, and I am skeptical about computers as well (the server farms that power this and other blogs use enormous amounts of energy). I am obviously a computer user--and I use it a lot--and I also have a cell phone that travels everywhere with me. Nevertheless, I don't foresee a future for either. I'm not even sure that land-line telephones will do well when we are way past peak oil.

The Archdruid (John Michael Greer) wrote an interesting post a bit over a year ago, where he speculated that amateur (ham) radio--especially radios that can be made from electronic scraps and bits of various things--might be something that could survive for quite a while. The comments to this post are worth skimming as people try to figure out lower-tech versions of the internet and one person mentions hand operated printing presses. Once upon a time, Gutenberg's press was high-tech. Who knows, it may someday be again.

Suzette Haden Elgin's Verbal Self Defense Home Page--A web page devoted to the 'The Gentle Art of Verbal Self Defense', a linguist's attempt to deal with 'hostile' communication
Daniel F. Perkins and Kate Fogart, "Active Listening: A Communication Tool"--Focused on listening to teenagers, this online paper gives basic information on how to do 'active listening'
Marshall B. Rosenberg, Nonviolent Communication--A communication model that focuses on getting everyone's needs met and responding honestly, even in hostile situations, without attacking the other person; there is a Center that offers trainings and resources in this method
Deborah Tannen, That's Not What I Meant and You Just Don't Understand--These two books are a bit simplistic in places (especially You Just Don't Understand which has overtones of Women Are From Venus, Men Are From Mars) but have lots of insight into the different ways we communicate and miscommunicate and how to match your communication to another person's

Quote of the Day: "The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen. Just listen. Perhaps the most important thing we ever give each other is our attention. ... A loving silence often has far more power to heal and to connect than the most well-intentioned words." - Rachel Naomi Remen

Sunday, August 2, 2009

First Fruits

It's the beginning of August, and the time of the Pagan feast Lughnasadh, better known through its Christianized name of Lammas. This is the time when the first harvest begins, the first things are brought from the farm and the garden, a time sometimes known as the time of 'First Fruits'.

It's a good time for taking stock and looking at what is beginning to come in from your (sometimes metaphorical) garden. In my case, I am assessing what is going on with my blog, with my zine, and with my efforts toward community.

In terms of the blog, I'm two-thirds of the way through this segment and hoping that all this work is going to be useful to someone. I still have another fifteen posts left in this part. To review what I'm doing, I am cataloging what I think are the real needs people have and how we can meet them. I identified forty-three specific needs ranging from air to breathe to our needs for freedom and I am also listing some resources that I know of that might help us toward meeting those needs. I am certainly open to suggestions for needs I may have missed, or other things to help meet those needs, or even pointing out how something may not be a real need. My thinking on this is that we need to start focusing on meeting these real needs and stop trying to fulfill some of the artificial, consumerist 'needs' that this society foists on us to replace our real needs (plasma screen giant TVs, SUVs, owning multiple McMansions, etc).

The first issue of my zine, Bodhisattva Revolutionaries and Social Alchemists, is out and I have it available at several places in the Boston area (the Lucy Parsons Center, the New England office for the American Friends Service Committee, and the Papercut Zine Library) as well as being available through Spirit Movers Enterprises. I am now working on the second issue which should be out by the fall equinox (September 22nd).

And I am beginning next steps on my ever evolving path to community. I have come up with a plan, and in my careful and unhurried fashion, it begins next summer/fall (2010). I already have a few people on board with it and I am looking for a few more. I feel hopeful about this.

These are the fruits I am beginning to see from the work that I am doing. (Although what is actually growing in my garden is another story...) What are the early fruits of your work?

Next, back to my needs segment, where I'll be focusing on communication.

Quote of the Day: "We have been raised to fear the yes within ourselves, our deepest cravings. But, once recognized, those that do not enhance our future lose their power and can be altered. The fear of our desires keeps them suspect and indiscriminately powerful, for to suppress any truth is to give it a strength beyond endurance. ... For as we begin to recognize our deepest feelings, we begin to give up, of necessity, being satisfied with suffering and self-negation and with the numbness that often seems like their only alternative in this society." - Audre Lorde