Joanna Macy

Joanna Macy

The Great Turning

Mind & Supermind Hosts Joanna Macy

When: Monday, October 29, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Lobero Theatre, 33 E. Canon Perdido St.

Cost: FREE

Guest Speaker: Joanna Macy, Ph.D.

The Lowdown: It’s no secret that one of the many pleasures of living in and around Santa Barbara is attending the Mind & Supermind lecture series. Next Monday, October 29, the series gives us the opportunity to hear ecophilosopher Joanna Macy speak about the “Great Turning.”

What is the Great Turning? It’s a growing international movement that Macy describes as “the essential adventure of our time: the shift from the industrial growth society to a life-sustaining civilization.” With Al Gore and the IPCC having just been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 for their work in climate change and global warming, the issue of sustainability is a hot topic; but Joanna Macy comes at it from a slightly different perspective and takes it a bit further. Drawing from Buddhist thought and indigenous traditions, as well as contemporary science and systems theory, she creates an integrated perspective aimed at helping us understand how “our inter-existence in the web of life becomes an experienced reality and guide for action.”

Although she speaks about the Great Turning in terms of a revolution, she doesn’t start from a point that demonizes corporations and politicians. Rather, she seeks to demystify the workings of the global economy and identify the interlocking causes that keep so many people from seeing other alternatives. And she’s not just advocating action to conserve energy, save species, and repair ecosystems; by outlining nonviolent strategies and programs for everything from housing to agriculture to local currencies, Macy’s goal is to guide us toward a “profound shift in our perception of reality” and create a new, healthy, and vibrant civilization.

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