What about the cultural and socio-economic context we are living in, can’t I just have blamed that in my recounting of my debtor story here?. Or, as many thinkers/writers including Margaret Atwood and Charles Eisenstein have recently explored, blame the primal human programming from our hunter-gatherer days that has a huge proportion of us ‘grab it now’ and believe we can grow sufficiently to pay it later, inflated by credit opportunities and an entire global economy built on this very premise?
Yes it has a large part to play for sure and there will be more referencing of that wider socio-political story here, though Strike Debt, an offshoot of the Occupy movement, has available all the information we need to know about the mechanics of the debt industry and their shady operating tactics, their own Debt resistance manual, kit and an extraordinary social initiative launched in November 2012 – Rolling Jubilee – through which debt, a cheap commodity these days, is being collectively bought up and written off by an open collective of contributors in an act of simultaneous critique and liberation.
But the external story we have all been living inside is not the whole story.
Eisenstein brings this up in Sacred Economics. He says, like the Sufi’s I love and many have said before in different ways:’on a personal level, the deepest possible revolution we can enact is a revolution in our sense of self, in our identity”
An obvious statement for some, but for others (including me at times) a confronting one when there is so much out there to blame and to bring to account at this time. I see it as a mirror between the two worlds, so without, as within, and all that. Inseparable.
And nowhere to hide.
..My own experience, shared here, which was the first entry into the Liverpool Volume of the Book, is what initiated the content for this concept, which stemmed from a broader interest in the darker side of gift. Initially I did not intend to disclose my own related experience in detail, for a project I saw as ‘stripped down’ and focused on the ‘other’. But as well as those others involved in the current stage of the project – who I will talk about later once we are up to date – many I have talked to or gave me contributions on that day in Liverpool – asked me what my personal interest and motivation was in the project. So just as I have done in the past – where I have laid the initiating narrative from my own life out as a bridge for other to cross the projects I have been involved in – so here it has been detailed and all vulnerabilities laid open. And it has been very hard to write. Sometimes it felt like loss of credit rating was equivalent to loss of credibility rating. And then I realized that is simply the pathology of debt at work with its chief companions of guilt, shame and pride playing their part. And this is also the language of the work, of the Book itself.
What people who read this blog make of this approach and their relationship to the Book if they choose to contribute to it when it opens its pages again, is really up to them. I will be its servant, there to collect, discuss, recite and lovingly destroy.