“To receive everything, one must open one’s hands and give.” ~Taisen Deshimaru
gift ~ a thing given willingly to someone without payment; a present.
ecology ~ the branch of biology that deals with the relations of organisms to one another and to their physical surroundings.
economy ~ the wealth and resources of a country or region, especially in terms of the production and consumption of goods and services.
As we begin our group exploration of gift economy/ecology (GE) and investigate the personal gifts we have to offer the world, this month’s materials offer varying ideas and lifestyles within the incredibly diverse GE spectrum. There are limitless ways of living in GE, not only related to money–although some humans have found ways to live without it. GE can be honored as an awareness about how we give of ourselves, our energy, our things/belongings, time and even our money, to people or ideas.
Questions to hold: What are possible gifts in our power to give? How do we recognize something as a gift? What gifts do we receive? What would or could our society look like without money?
1. Relationships: The Basic Building Blocks of Life by Margaret Wheatley
2. She Hasn’t Used Money in Fifteen Years article about the late Heidemarie Schwermer
3. What Do Those Hundred Men Do? by Robert Wolff, chapter excerpted from his book Original Wisdom (Please note and pardon: This PDF was copied from two online sources of the book and not a scan of the actual book. There is a page jump and abrupt font/style change that duplicates a sentence and breaks structure. A black line is drawn through duplicate words. Please excuse. I’m grateful to the author.)
In this talk, Pavithra Mehta gives us a lot to think about and hold in our hearts. From individual actions of gifting, to the way her family’s business operates and serves people of India, her ideas promote an intentional shifting consumption to contribution, from transaction to trust, from isolation to community.
The Burning Man Festival is a week-long experience where participants co-create and co-destruct an entire city smack in the middle of the Nevada desert, leaving no trace. In this video, Halcyon–a frequent co-creator at Burning Man–offers his thoughts about “Gifting” and what it means to attend an event that reveres Gift Economy as one of its founding principles.
Reading Sacred Economics: Money, the Gift and Society in the Age of Transition by Charles Eisenstein
Watch this Video below, Living the Gift: An Interview with Charles Eisenstein
❤ Commit an act of kindness that does not involve money.
❤ Do something (anything) completely out of your comfort zone, and write about it on the Sharing Feed (link in Welcome Email).
❤ Do something with money that is very different than your usual behavior.
Download Word Document August Gift Ecology Circle Reflection Prompts to answer the following reflection prompts. When you have something to share, don’t forget to post on the Sharing Feed! (Private link is in the GEC Welcome Email.)
Any thoughts on the readings and videos of the month?
What does gift economy and/or gift ecology mean to you?
What is something you do or give regularly that is upon the gift economy spectrum?
How do you feel when you help people? How do you feel when you receive help from others?
Any reflections on this month’s homeplay? What is one new thing you learned or observed about yourself to do with your homeplay assignments?
What drew you to the Gift Ecology Circle?
Moment of Ahhhhh
❤ This content was lovingly gathered and curated by Giftivist Fairies. Have a question or comment? Please get in touch. ❤
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