One of the best things we could have in life is starting the year among a bunch of friends. It’s even better when we’re able to extend this moment that usually last a couple of hours to days, months or even years. Be surrounded by friends, people with shared interests, people that are able to hear and dialogue in a human and intelligent way, is a gift for which we should be grateful.
Among the people that are receiving this message today, are friends of several moments and several histories of different interlacings: some that i already know for long time, some with whom i’ve already had breakfast, some whose ideas and conquests only know from the internet, some with whom i’ve already shared megalomaniac journeys, some with whom i haven’t dare to co-criate…
Everybody, although, I think , share with me a dream. Many times the words, images, symbols and paths we describe in this dream are different, but not divergent. All converge to a point in common: the well being and the happiness of whole humanity.
There’s is some time now that I dedicate myself to the study of humankind, its constitution, necessities, desires, decisions and implications of it to himself, for those who surround them and to Nature. Maybe this started, in a subtle and unconscious warm during my medical course, in the nineties. But for sure it was not that time that this study developed. Our university courses aim to develop technical-scientific tools, not human beings sensible to environment that surround us. Other stimuli, other reading and examples, arising from self determination in wanting to know more that leading me to study the human affairs. But i’m not intending to talk longer, since this is to be the start of a dialogue, not a monologue.
I’ll tell you about a dream I had, and wish to share with everyone of you, my friends that, by chance or destiny, crossed with me in this exact moment and space in Universe. This dream talks about a future that we only can imagine, for now. In common sense, talks about a Utopia. Utopia, as Berri states, that exists to make us to continue to walking. (1)
In this dream, You and I were facing each other, talking. Talking without the mediation of no technological equipment. We decided to let them at home, even liking them so much, because we wanted a conversation a la “old way”. While one talked, the other listened carefully. We responded empatically, showing we were really tuned on the same frequency. We knew that, if some kind of resistance or change were going to happen, this would be by the means of horizontal relationships permeated by a profound respect and mutual aid.
In this dream, we remembered how humanity went thru more than 2 million years living in a cooperative and sustainable way, hunting and gathering, without labour division between sex. A naive nostalgia, that send us to an idilic world that, we knew, wouldn’t come back. If we wouldn’t go back to the Stone Age, maybe we could start using better the technology we developed so brilliantly the last thousand years, even more intensely the last decades. Maybe we could develop a model yet not fully designed, capable to make us return to our lost humanity. Maybe we could start do unveil a bio-ethic-political-economical-social-spiritual horizon not fully theorized yet, neither consciously practiced, in a scale enough to generate a significant change in our society.
We perceived, in this dream, that people around us started to express more and more a desire for an autonomy that could happen by means of association and cooperation, and that the emergency here and there of movements that do not only protest against the misery of our lives but joyously affirm the possibility of a radically different life were already unmistakable signs that this horizon we were eager to unveil is each time more ready to be appreciated.
We knew, in our dream, that one of our main roles were to help the development of this collective consciousness, through creation, improvement and implantation of models, tools and attitudes capable of molding actual reality according to our necessities and desires.
“To make the world work for 100% of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological offense or the disadvantage of anyone.” (2)
We felt that we don’t needed to enter in shock with the stablished powers, because those already have a crashing power, that could end with our aims. We could, instead, create a mixed mechanism of resistance and creation of alternatives (3). We could create a detour in the river natural flow, digging another riverbed, built with the help of those who believed in our shared dream.
We knew also that not all truths would be already written, at the moment we started to walk our path.
“Paths are never straight lines. They zigzag, journey uphill & down. They reach dead-ends. But when we put out best foot forward, we just might venture in utopia’s direction, toward a world from below, by & for all.
We gingerly find stepping-stones to more marvelous destinations. Then strive to cobble together whole landscapes out of nonhierarchical practices. We kick broken glass from our way. Sometimes get lost. But the precarious passage itself is our road map to a liberators society.
We hold hands, desiring to traverse anew. When darkness descends, we build campfires from the embers of possibility, & see other flames in the distance.” (4)
We knew in first place, in our dream, that the change we hoped to co-build would come from a continuos, cooperative work, made from hundreds of thousands of people, during a prolonged period of time. But we knew also that it would be funny and enriching to walk this way together.
“Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment (beware of such moments!) but as an endless succession of surprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society. We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world. Even when we don’t “win,” there is fun and fulfillment in the fact that we have been involved, with other good people, in something worthwhile. We need hope.
An optimist isn’t necessarily a blithe, slightly sappy whistler in the dark of our time. To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness. What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives.” (5)
And, in a moment, I was awake. The funny thing is that i woke up but the dream wasn’t gone: it was there, its presence screaming and asking, with a visceral urgence, that I helped him to came to reality. And here am I, surrounded by far than special people, with whom I wish to share this dream and, much more than this, wish that let me share their dreams.
That said, i ask:
What you that is reading this text right now, and who I am calling to compose this dream with me, would add that is YOURS to make this at the same time a common and a completely yours dream?
(1) Fernando Berri – “Utopia is on the horizon. I move two steps closer, it moves two steps further away. I walk another ten steps and the horizon runs ten steps further away. As much as I walk, I’ll never reach it. So what’s the point of utopia? The point is this: to keep walking.“
(2) R. Buckminster Fuller
(3) R. Buckminster Fuller – “You never change something by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
(4) excerpt from Paths toward Utopia, ilustrated by Erik Ruin and words of Cindy Milstein
(5) Howard Zinn, in Optimism of Uncertainty – this text continues as goes: “If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places–and there are so many–where people have behaved magnificently, this gives us the energy to act, and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction. And if we do act, in however small a way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.”
(text originally written on January 1st, 2012)