When I grew up things seemed certain, and most things were straightforward. The story behind our culture worked. We went to the market and grocery store to buy our food, no questions asked. We went to the doctor for relief of whatever ailed us, no questions asked. The weather was the weather, no questions asked. People seemed mostly content plugging away at living their life.
Those times are over. Food has become a complicated conversation around pesticides and sustainability. Healing has become a complicated conversation because many of our ailments don’t respond predictably to standard treatments, many of which have disconcerting side effects on top of that. The weather is kind of crazy these days. And people are depressed, confused, distraught, suicidal, and uneasy. Things are changing. The old story that upheld our culture no longer works. The cracks are showing up everywhere because the usual standard answers and solutions have stopped working predictably.
Life has become so unsettling that we need to begin asking some deep questions of ourselves and our culture. Why is our story changing? How is it changing? Are we changing the story, or are we being changed? Are we evolving, or are we being evolved? Author Charles Eisenstein calls our in-between stage The Space Between Stories because we have one foot in the old story, the profit based story of competition and aggression that we are all tired of, and that makes us stressed and sick. Our other foot is already in the new story, the one of non-poisonous, healthy agriculture, one of the inexpensive and gentle healing methods, the one that leaves us energized and inspired about our work, the one where we have more leisure time, and the one that heals us emotionally.
Along the way, I have seen many cracks in my story. I went to art school and the professors tried to funnel my creativity into rigid parameters. I felt restricted. I was pregnant and was treated like a patient. I felt violated. I’ve watched how my children were being taught to so many tests. I feel sorry that this has taken the fun out of learning. I cannot trust the integrity and healthfulness of grocery store foods. I feel unsafe.
What cracks have appeared in your story?