Dreaming a New Civilization!

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Posted by Penny McManigal on January 17, 19100 at 17:44:07:

Today is the appropriate Day to share This Dream, to begin to Weave it into the fabric of our social structures. 1/17/00

A New Civilization! as seen by an artist and visionary,
Penny McManigal

I see a new civilization. I see it in my mind's eye as if it exists in "real time". It is both nurturing and well nurtured.

Everywhere I look I can see and feel the delight in nature's bounty. The towns and cities are all well planned, with ample open spaces surrounding them. It is obvious that the fields and orchards are well tended and cared for. There is no litter because people have learned to care about aesthetic pleasure and to be responsible for their own actions.

The lines of architecture, vehicles and clothing are graceful and undulating. Materials are soft, rich in variety and a sense of interesting textures. Lighting creates an inviting ambiance. Colors help to form neighborhoods or defined areas. Different sounds of water can be heard coming from many streams and fountains. Lakes and ponds are in abundance. The general architecture reveals a vast variety of trees, shrubbery and flowers. Communities are interesting to behold, with surprising touches here and there.

In this atmosphere it is no wonder that the lives of the people are both varied and interesting to the majority. There has been a co-mingling of people of all ages, races and occupations. There is a very real sense of pride and respect for one another. Citizens honor their opportunity to be of service to their greater community. In turn, they are honored for the services that they render!

The reason that this sense of well-being pervades this new civilization is that central to their lives is the town's, city's, county's region's and nation's "Centers for Creative Resolutions" building which acts as the hub for all significant innovations and interactions. These centers are round in shape. In the center of each is a courtyard, or amphitheater with ample seating and a raised platform. On the perimeter of this circle is a building which surrounds it. The building is divided into sections and represents the main functions of its community, or society; for example areas for governance, the arts, media, education, health-care, etc. Each section has a number of representatives who will represent its sections at meetings of the whole. There is an eternal flame at the very center of the courtyard, which is the symbol of generations in endless continuity and exists as a reminder to protect the health and well-being of all children. The flame is named "The Children's Fire".

Four times a year, at the beginning of each season, a celebration is held throughout the land in all the "Centers for Creative Resolution". It is held to bring all of the people together in a collective group in such a way that all citizens can speak about that which they do best, and that these thoughts and facts can be heard in relation to all the others. This is a time to look, hear, taste, touch and smell what has been produced in the previous four months. It is the time to bring critical problems of the community to these "Centers for Creative Resolution" for healing. There is great anticipation for this occasion, which lasts for several days.

These festivals always begin with an important Question for the entire community. Then, in turn, the citizens speak and represent their sectors of the whole. All present listen as the thoughts, feelings and ideas are expressed around the center. Every answer considers the effect on the children and future children. The last group to speak are those who are called The Pattern Keepers. It is their expressed purpose to take all the suggestions and responses made for the initial Question by the different sectors of the community into consideration. Furthermore it is their responsibility to observe the various patterns of thought developing as the Question moves around the circle. If the development is thought to be good for the community and for the children, a Resolution will be reached and all will then move on to the next important question. If, however, The Pattern Keepers sense that poor judgment has developed, it is then their responsibility to stop any further action because "The Children's Fire" has been endangered. At this point the question is once again listened to and the different sectors offer their best effort to answer that question. This will continue until there has been a consensus reached which is good for the people, their children and future generations.

Following the days which had been set aside for these creative resolutions is a day of High Celebration! Complete with festive attire, delicious food and musical fanfare, the entire community gathers in the center, all eyes giving attention to the raised central platform. For it is here that all citizens will receive the stimulus for the community's (region's or nation's) forum for the entire next four months!

Understanding that some people's strengths come as visions or images for the future of all people, the community waits with intense anticipation to see what of significance will be revealed to them on this new horizon? This is the day when the creative visual artists present their essential new images and symbols, revealing a new creative energy waiting to be tapped by the entire community! This is the day when the musicians present their new, essential sounds, when the wordsmiths share their significant and essential phrases to be pondered and the dancers reveal their movements, suggestive of the new energies to be unveiled. The purpose of this day is NOT to entertain, but to REVEAL!

The entire community will be stimulated to continue the primal work of creation through their own sectors of governance, education, health, etc., as they use these
newly presented symbols and sounds in their focus for the next season. In effect they will together create a collective force which will move the society to greater heights than would otherwise have been possible.

In this way the artists and visionaries will be able to lead the way, and the community as a whole will develop new thoughts and social actions in each of the sectors. The resulting effect will be seen in new materials, new clothing design, interesting cuisine, and in all ways possible, as the ideas weave throughout their community; in the schools, homes and offices.

What I like best about this idea is that once again the artists and visionaries will be fulfilling their purpose, which as the new "shamans" and "priests" of their culture, is to respond to the "heartbeats" of civilization and to find creative ways to keep it in balance and to preserve a sense of wholeness and also wholesomeness!

"If the people lead, the leaders will follow..." (author unknown to me)

Penny McManigal,
Weaving The Dream!
A Worldwide Co-creative and Interactive LiveArt Project for 2000


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