On Track – Day 3: Manitoba!

This morning the active reading and relaxing of earlier yesterday was replaced with me mulling the heated debate and difference incited from last night’s deep discussion with other passengers about what sustainability means to them. My resolution of building community remains but is a little jarred from the reminder of the world’s many complexities.

The contradictions of our society and the theories which seek to improve it run like a current through the things we do, as it usually involves living today in this society which we aim to improve. The man today sitting outside The Forks Market during our stop in Winnipeg spoke about why he doesn’t give to Greenpeace: Organizations working in offices trying to make things better, he gave in the 70s he said, but where did that get us? Things are worse now he affirmed. The irony is this is exactly how we hope to keep SYC going, with donations from people who believe in our mission. But to keep our work going, inspiring teaching and working with youth making changes one step at a time, we join the society of organizations who need operational budgets and to work in offices and with governments, businesses and institutions that consume and use money to keep the whole thing rolling.

I am reminded of my bike tour with Otesha. What an experience, living and cycling with 13 other advocates who believe in alternatives, in making choices that do not contribute to environmental destruction, in making choices which empower and support respect for people and the earth… There was a lot of radicalism and perhaps rebellion running through us, as we dreamed of ways to live that don’t impact so strongly on the ecosystems on which we depend, ways which don’t rely so much on outside technological devices and a highly specialized workforce, but more on community building and self-sufficiency. But the places we stayed at: churches, and the schools we presented at – these institutions were what supported us and made the tours possible. These places of concentrated power and gathering of everyday people meant that we had a place to stay, a place to present at, and people greeting us and showing us the way through their town then ushering us to the next. This is that contradiction that I speak of… believing in better but understanding that we rely on what is.

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2 Comments

  1. LARRY GUPTILL

     /  December 8, 2010

    nice to follow your progress. what day was yesterday?

    Reply
    • sustainablecampuses

       /  December 10, 2010

      yesterday of dec 8th was Day 6 – we’re now reaching into Day 10!

      Reply

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