I am so honored to serve as an interfaith chaplain at an alternative community like The Evergreen State College in Olympia WA. We worship in this Longhouse, built as a sacred space by the Native Peoples' Program. At Evergreen, yoga, meditation, organic farming and sustainable economics are central to the curriculum. Recently someone told me that Evergreen is 'weird.' My reply:
Evergreen is 'alternative.' What's 'weird' is mainstream America's unchallenged assumption that earth can survive another decade of unregulated capitalism, as practiced by Goldman Sachs, Massy Energy, Haliburton and BP, with workers' pensions robbed by Wall Street parasites, coal miners facing negligent homicide from CEO's, the environment devastated by big oil, and our valiant soldiers forced into multiple combat tours as imperial legionnaires, while vulture corporations gorge themselves on war profiteering.
Communities like Evergreen represent a new paradigm that will rise like a phoenix from the ashes of post-industrial corporate feudalism. Some cry, 'Evergreen is socialist, communist!' But the Greeners I know are wise enough to see that socialism and communism are as dead as Reaganomics.
Evergreen is not about socialism: it's about simple living that supports local businesses. Evergreen is not about big government: it's about small government and lots of community.
The opposite of capitalism is not communism but contentment: the contentment of sustainable agriculture, green technology, worker-owned cooperatives, publicly chartered local banks that operate within their means, all nourished by shamanic circles of prayer, chant, dance and celebration.
The opposite of a corporation is not socialism but a singing heart: one that knows, "If you live in love, it is enough to have enough."