The usual middle of the night, half-awake mind meanderings down various rabbit holes. I think I might start using the new iOS 16 dictation to record those that seem potentially interesting. Be warned, what follows is unedited stream of consciousness. 😬

Let me describe the scene for you. It’s 4 AM and I’ve been woken up by my cat who is scratching on the wall. It’s chilly 60° and I have my windows open and a fan in the window. Just outside my window is an owl hooting every few minutes, keeping me company. My mind wanders, which is probably pretty typical for a human being in the middle of the night. Thinking about going back to sleep. And as is often the case, it’s easier to fall down and various rabbit holes of thought. In particular, tonight’s rabbit hole is a pondering about humanity and schemes and the nature of living as a human on the earth. Thinking about the point of living as an organism gathering resources to survive. We’re an interesting and special kind of animal, of course with seemingly complex life patterns, ways of being, ways of thinking, and always changing of course. Wondering about how much of human reality human experience is kind of scheming in an attempt to create security for present and future. The squirrel thinks about nuts and saving nuts for the winter, some animals store their winter food, other animals try to forage throughout the winter, and I guess some perform a mix of both. We humans are interestingly capable of ignoring the future, and at the same time planning for the future while overlooking certain aspects. For example, and not surprisingly given that I’m always thinking about climate change that’s one aspect of the future that many humans I have been very good at ignoring while they work at saving up, personal wealth to ensure comfort for themselves. For us I’m saying all this as a an American, whose family is primarily middle-class. When I look around, I see people who are obsessed with wealth and comfort. It is simplistic way though. I think it is accurate to say that in 2022 the humans I know, I’ve dedicated much their lives to the accumulation of small wealth and comfort. It’s personal and for family. Interestingly, in 2022 and in recent years, though, we’ve seen a creeping in of some thing that has always or at least recently sort of been at the margins and that is, larger belonging and identity. We create these things called states and nation states. We organize our larger communal identity and wealth into these states that have boundaries and which function like machines. The component parts, many layers of resource collection, and wealth generation in the form of individual humans Creating a matrix of organization which self maintains while also trying to grow again largely through wealth, generation, and resource extraction. And, of course, along with nationstates comes an attempt at security. Certainly in the United States, we see a nation state obsessed with security because it has been historically, also obsessed with wealth. Perhaps that is a part of the unique violence that we see threaded throughout the tapestry of its short history. Wealth, generation, and extraction seems to be interwoven with violence. Probably not unique to the United States, but certainly a primary thread of the tapestry.

 Having an individual identity in this larger social matrix has been confusing for me. On the one hand, I recognize the importance of social creation of shared, social, nurturing of the commune. I desperately want to contribute to the communal good and yet struggle, because in the United States, the commune has been Rooted in violence and wealth, generation, rather than human and ecological health and well-being.