I’m Mamajack; I live, cook, bake, brew, ferment, garden, and write prose, recipes and code in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Shasta bioregion. I’m part of the larger movement helping us restore our humanity in the fullest, sanest sense of the word. Restoration means settling down to reconnect with our homes, ecosystems, communities and ourselves. Settling down means to settle the rhetoric, mind, attention, and spirit.
So much is lost in technically advanced societies as our cultural breadth and inheritance, bit by byte by inch by dollar, erodes and shrinks. Our status as persons, humans, and citizens is replaced slowly with a single, global status as “consumers.” Anything that does not serve the ends of global corporatism, anything that fails to bolster our status as effective micro-sites of production and consumption, has been relegated to the status of ‘unnecessary.’
At the same time, the world is rife with totalist ideological and religious systems obsessed with purity. These develop monstrous and misshapen ego forms whose violence threatens the very existence of earth’s living communities.
We’re punks, ministers, housewives, farmwives and writers. We’re urban farmers, bricoleurs, everyday workers, lovers of the earth; we’re jazz, hiphop and rock and roll. We’re DIY doers of things and we’re resolute about resisting the consume-and-obey glowing right-wing plastic death-wish in contemporary Western culture.
Caught between the Western paradigms of endless growth and the reactionary demand that we bend the knee to absolutist ways of life, this blog will suggest continually that we settle down, clear out a space in our lives to clearly observe and question what is happening in and to our world and ourselves.
There is a great grief we feel but it’s accompanied by a great passion to restore and repair the world, the earth and her systems, and the human community.
To restore is to challenge the paradigms that have got our matter, mind and spirit tangled into an unsustainable mess. Such paradigms include, but certainly are not limited to:
– The religion of “markets” as a solution for everything.
– The alienation of people from household and community life and labor.
– The alienation of people from creativity and the work of their hands.
– Neglect of quality, universal public education, and poor to absent knowledge of science, leading to ignorance of the wonders and wisdom of the wider world, of science and the scientific method.
– The alienation of people from the earth, with its ecosystems and its other nations, all the animals and plants (among other living things) that make human life possible.
– The dominance of the global corporatist-statist complex which has reduced the status of humans and citizens to mere “consumers.”
– The creeping dominance of totalist systems, now as in the past, that promise easy, catechistic but false solutions to conundrums that have stumped even the best minds of history.
I hope we’ll find some real food and food for thought here, as well as some practical application of how to settle down on the earth, in ourselves, and in our communities.