Monday, October 28, 2013

Freeconomy

The 'moneyless man' Mark Boyle has been well promoted in popular media. A recent opinion piece appearing on ABC online, 'Moneyless man finds happiness', summarises his views and the kinds of activities recorded in books he has written. Here are some quotes from the opinion piece on his response to the 2008 GFC and current levels of alienation:
... money is the most potent tool we possess in creating and perpetuating this illusion of separation and independence.
 

Through its function as a medium of exchange, money allows us to consume products with components or ingredients from all over the Earth. On a short-term and often superficial level, this can seem like it has many benefits... Apart from its widely ignored psychological, emotional, spiritual and physical effects on us personally, it also affords us an unwise buffer from the abuses and massacres that occur throughout the supply chains of the products we consume, and all the social and ecological problems associated with that...
 

... there are no end of ways you can meet your needs without money, and more than one way of being human in this world. The gift economy has since become the only booming economy in the world...

We've also just begun setting up a three acre small-holding in Ireland. We've called it An Teach Saor, meaning The Free House in my mother tongue. Here we plan to merge fossil-fuel free permaculture principles with gift-based values. We're integrating everything from forest gardening to pedal-powered washing machines and humanure composting systems, no-dig perennial crops to rocket stoves and wormeries, into one holistic culture. Augment that with music, storytelling and art and you have the potential to create truly sustainable ways of living. Our aim, apart from living free and happy lives, is to create closed loop systems that require no ongoing external inputs. It hasn't got all the glamour and glitz of urban life, but I feel it gives me a great sense of freedom, peace, meaning and connection to the entire community of life mine is dependent on.

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