Walk In Beauty

The Transition Towns movement is attracting more people every day. And a big part of its success comes from the feeling of energy and joy that people get when they join in, roll up their sleeves, and get to work. It’s the same sort of exhilaration you feel on a canoe trip down a swift river — a feeling of being in control yet carried along by a great natural force.

It’s the feeling of working with nature, instead of trying to overcome obstacles. In this case, human nature — our natures. The Transition Towns movement has tapped into not one but two powerful streams within human nature. And “going with the flow” is not only exhilarating, it makes it possible to do much more.

First is the simple, but enormously strong power of attention. Whatever you choose to frequently focus the spotlight of your attention on broadens, deepens, widens, and proliferates in clarity and detail. Always. Naturally.

And the second great stream is the process of asking questions. As Michael Patterson says in the Global Ideas Bank, “Ask the question with deliberate genuine intent. You will get an answer. That’s just how your brain works.”

He goes on to suggest that you concentrate on practical questions, which is perfect for transition work. So begin your questions with “What?” or “How?” or “Where?” or “When?” or “Who?”.

Our lives, and ultimately our culture take shape from the kinds of questions we ask. Everything is constantly changing, and we influence the direction and content of those changes with our persistent questions.

So you may wish to join the Transition Towns movement. You may enjoy exploring questions like “How would I like my life to be?” and “What can we do in our community to make that kind of life more possible?”.

There is room for you, no matter what your interests are. Some are asking “How can we grow and distribute fresher, healthier, better-tasting food locally?” Others wonder “How can we have more comfortable homes and still save money and energy, and reduce global warming?” Or perhaps “What do we need to do next to develop a community-wide, non-polluting electrical system that is more reliable and less expensive to maintain?” Or “How can we support our local arts and crafts people and integrate them more into education and our daily lives?” Building local resilience has need for all of us.

Maybe we can model our overall goal on that of the Navajo and ask of each proposal “How will this action help us to walk in beauty?”

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