In this interview, I talk with the RS contributor and Sacred Economics author about the
ritualistic origins of money, negative interest
banking, the spirit of the gift, the morphing future of Occupy, and the strange alchemical art of
making economics sacred.
The transition I map out is evolutionary. It
does not involve confiscation of property or the wholesale destruction of
present institutions, but their transformation. As the following summaries
describe, this transformation is under way already, or incipient in existing
The deep link between money and being is good news because human
identity today is undergoing a profound metamorphosis. What kind of
money will be consistent with the new self, the connected self, and a
world in which we increasingly realize the truth of interconnectedness:
that more for you is more for me?
The impasse in
our ability to convert nature into commodities and relationships into services
is not temporary. There is no more room for the conversion of life into money. Postponing the collapse will only make it worse. We need to shift our perspective toward what we can give.
What can we each contribute to a more beautiful world? That is our only security.
The imperative of
perpetual growth implicit in interest-based money drives the relentless
conversion of life, world, and spirit into money. The more of life we convert into money, the more we need money to live.
Usury, not money, is the proverbial root of all evil.
The realization that property is theft usually incites
a rage and desire for vengeance against the thieves. Matters are not so simple. The owners of wealth play a role
that is created and necessitated by the great invisible stories of our
civilization that compel us to turn the world into property and money whether
we are aware of doing so or not.
Community is impossible in a highly monetized society since community is woven from gifts. Intimacy comes from co-creation, not co-consumption. We must do more than simply get people together: we need to create together. Creating gift circles can reduce our dependence on the traditional market and help us transition to a co-creative partnership of interdependence.