Everywhere we feel it; the spreading anxiety, the growing precarity, our social media feeds enclosing around us. The news haunts us, a new crisis is ever arising, our jobs take over our lives.
And we’re so tired, all the time busy and tired.
It’s the air we breath and yet no one ever talks about it. So we become depressed, use drugs, spend money on “wellness practices”, individualize ourselves, focus on dead end careers and retirement plans. Or worse, we’re arrested, assassinated, become refugees, become displaced. This is no way to live and we all know it; we all feel it in the deepest parts of our spiritual being.
How are we then to live in this world? We must go back to our physical beings. We want to be free from physical want, we want pleasure and connection with those around us, and we want purpose. We want to laugh over good food, to have the time and mental space to enjoy a sunset, to feel good about our children’s future, to take care of our loved ones and to be taken care of in turn, to relate to the natural world around us. And we must be clear, these desires, in their true, uncommodified and non-exclusionary form, are inherently revolutionary. They cannot be compatible with the dominant capitalist world view that atomizes us, makes us sick in body and mind, and places the luxury of time and wellness out of the reach of the vast majority.
The question is not why, it is how. How do we build a life with those around us? How do we create a world in the ruins of the old?
To invest in the question is to become revolutionary.
Help us build this path together. We want to hear from you. Share what experiences you have undergone.
At Woodbine, we have been working to create the material conditions for autonomy and revolution in New York City. Through the OpenVillage festival, we want to connect with you, build networks together, hear your successes, your failures, and everything in between. There are already so many examples, from the Zapatistas in Chiapas, Asimong discussing communal care, Cosain talking about peer based mental health practices, John examining decades of communal living, Calafou’s post-capitalist eco-industrial colony, and The Reef project in Brussels.
Building a life together means we must examine every aspect of our lives. Our urban gardens, our communes, communal dinners, elder-care, child-care practices, mental health practices, the riots, the side hustles for money, manipulations of institutions, shoplifting habits.
How do we deal with money? How do we create beauty?
How do we struggle through patriarchy and oppression within ourselves?
How do we provide care? What structures do we need to create?
What lessons can we learn? What inspires us? What are we scared of? How do we stop being so scared of each other?
How can we create optimal conditions for our children and our elderly?
As the indigenous around the word have been showing us, we must call out our own “Basta ya!” (“Enough is Enough”) and fight for a “world in which many worlds can fit”.