May 10, 2013

Being The Change - The Transition Towns Movement

Gardens grow more than food - they also grow community resilience 

Current ways of living in industrialized nations are increasingly seen as the unsustainable practices that they are. After we come to this realization we have to ask ourselves questions about where to go from here. The Transition Towns movement is helping provide some solutions as we move away from our fantasies of infinite growth economics on our finite planet.

Why should perpetual economic expansion be a goal for anyone but those at the top when such growth does not benefit the rest of us and harms the environment? If economic growth does not lead to increased happiness and environmental integrity, why support it?
Clean energy

But how do we quit participating in this flawed system when it seems like there aren't any viable alternatives? How can we transition away from a doomed perpetual growth model to one which is sustainable?

Although they may be discredited and poo-pooed by mainstream decision makers, alternative ways of living do exist, and many individuals and small groups are choosing them.

Gandhi advised we be the change we wish to see in the world. As we transform our own lives, desired outer transformations in the world around us will happen simultaneously.

The principles of Transition towns can  be applied on an individual basis as well as to villages, towns, cities, and nations.

Alternatives To Unsustainable Living
Transition Towns
"Transition Towns (also known as transition network or transition movement) is a grassroots network of communities that are working to build resilience in response to peak oil, climate destruction, and economic instability. 
Central to the transition town movement is the idea that a life without oil could in fact be far more enjoyable and fulfilling than the present: "by shifting our mind-set we can actually recognise the coming post-cheap oil era as an opportunity rather than a threat, and design the future low carbon age to be thriving, resilient and abundant — somewhere much better to live than our current alienated consumer culture based on greed, war and the myth of perpetual growth." - source

Sustainable housing
In my own town a small group of optimistic and dedicated world changers meets regularly to discuss the best ways to move forward with the Transition Town mandate in this location.

The TT program is based in part on the tenets of permaculture, and seeks to raise awareness of sustainable living and to build local resilience. It hopes to make such changes sooner, rather than later.

And with a nod to Gandhi's sentiment, the Transition Town movement also believes that inner transition must accompany the outer transition in our communities.

First we get our own house in order, then we help our communities do the same. In this way we will create secure, sustainable practices and more enjoyable ways of living together.

Low carbon travel
Check out the Transition Network website for more information on sensible, do-able alternatives to current harmful practices.

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