Happy April Daily Actors!
As I walk out the door and bury my face in a fragrant bouquet of jasmine flowers…that has nearly taken over our back steps, I am blown away by the near infinite display of bursting blossoms and shades of spring green. The last two years with the return of regularly quenching rains, it seems all of life is screaming extra loud with springtime delight. Like our chickens who are clucking extra pridefully, saying “Damn straight we be layin’ eggs again!” or the perfectly timed tastiness of nutritious, cleansing spring greens like chickweed and nettles.
The aliveness of spring’s verdant emergence is palpable. Amidst such a sublime immersion into the sights, scents and sounds of the season, I feel a deeper shift afoot and sense it in others. It’s a subtle knowing of a deeper truth about this big planetary moment. One that has been eloquently spoken by Arundhati Roy when she wrote, “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day I can hear her breathing.”
On a quiet Sunday in January, we caught a glimpse of her as the Another World is Possible Coalition hosted a community engagement fair where 102 organizations and over 5,000 people showed up. In February she was at the Seed Exchange, last week the Russian River Confluence event. On Wednesday April 5th at the Sustainable Enterprise Conference, Daily Acts is partnering with the Another World is Possible Coalition to host leaders from about 100 organizations and networks as we converge to connect and catalyze. This spring she will be at the Zero Waste Symposium, the Climate Mobilization, the Social Justice Fair, the Sebastopol Grange Landscape Transformation and many other collaborative events. She is on her way.
Last Wednesday we saw her at the Community Resilience Challenge kickoff. It’s hard to believe the Challenge is in its 8th year. What started out as an outlandish goal to plant 350 gardens in a weekend has grown into tens of thousands of local, regional and national actions and projects. At the gathering I was once again astonished by the power of community in action. After a round of Inspiration Speed Dating people broke into groups to share project ideas and support each other. There are plans for a lawn transformation at Charles St. Housing for low-income seniors and to solve the critter housing crisis by creating toad abodes, solitary bee nests and plant snack bars for pollinators. Jenna Topper from our Permaculture Design Course is taking the inspiration to Hayward where on April 15th she is working with high school students to transform part of the Hayward City Hall landscape.
Like the power of life expressing itself through spring’s explosion, together we are a force of nature, a planetary immune response bursting forth in a profusion of ways. We live in a movement moment, one where countless groups are taking action, giving voice to their people and cause and increasingly linking up with others in this emerging movement of movements. There is an incredible ripeness to this time, so full of urgency and inspiration and the transformative potential that becomes possible amidst the aliveness of crisis.
This can be both amazing and also overwhelming. It can be easy to burn out or overdo, to lose focus amidst the many challenges and opportunities. While it’s important to have a wide circle of concern about the world, it’s vital to spend our time in our circle of influence, to return to the power of our daily actions, to be the change we wish to see. This starts with the personal leadership to find and live our inspiration while staying healthy, rested and nourished; to turn our inspiration into action to live more sustainably and to turn our action into community power by engaging our neighbors and volunteering for organizations and networks who are caring for our planet and people, especially those with less privilege, power or access to resources.
As I sit in the garden on Monday morning planning my deadline and event-packed week and pondering all that is emerging, I feel both inspired and tired. Just then the sweetness of jasmine fills my nostrils, a wren flies by and supple new pear leaves tremble in the breeze. Though it’s a new week, there’s no real separation between today and the rest of this fast-flowing stream that is spring and this big planetary moment. So between deadlines this morning I’m going to take time to stop and breath, and let the springtime sweetness soak me to the bone. I’ve been spending a lot of time steeped in the insight that a really important part of living our inspired potential to contribute our best is taking sufficient time for rest and recovery. So get out and marinate in the magic of spring, engage in this movement moment by joining the Community Resilience Challenge and other events and activities, and remember to nourish thyself to best care for the rest. I hope to see you at the Sustainable Enterprise Conference on Wednesday, my talk on Living your Inspiration to Unleash the Power of Community on Thursday, or somewhere else along the way.