Since the death of Paolo Soleri in 2013, there have been a short ton of discussions about What Happens Next. Talk is taking place on a Facebook forum, as well as in person. A medium unto itself, social media, sometimes raising dust for me as, IMO, wheel-spinning whining can only lead to much more frustration.
Blathering about how Cosanti Foundation doesn't do this or that, doesn't do something else, isn't constructive; maybe it's inevitable but it's also a lot of blah blah that's a bothersome waste of time.
I get that that dissing something you love happens. It is not unfamiliar to me as an experience but I'm here to say: It doesn't help. The more interesting challenge is to not give in to the mindset of a frustrating, perplexing, self-abnegating, ego-tectonic, self-aggrandizing, anxiety-ridden human. (It isn't likely that such people are not right at the center of such blather.)
Witnessing all the complaining is deja vu recreation of the SOSO I felt compelled to put behind in 1986 when I decided that if I wanted to help actualize change at Arcosanti (or anywhere else, for all that matter), I had a duty to get on with being my own person, with my own small life, with doing whatever it takes to Learn To Do Good, as a cross-stitched sampler hanging on a wall in the home of childhood friends on Long Island exhorted.
That embroidered sampler's directive is analogous to one Ani Pema Chodron offers in her 1994 book, Start Where You Are, from which the title of this blog entry is taken. To start with what I see now: Now is where we are.
What I see from where we are now is a need for the Builders of Arcosanti to put all of their heads together, to get their acts together. Because here is a simple fact: Cosanti Foundation can not do anything for Arcosanti without the help of gangs of Arconauts. If Arconuats want to see Arcosanti 'more better built,' Arconauts have to figure out how to work together so they themselves can (will be able to) implement whatever changes they want to see happen.
With that in mind, I have begun asking Arconauts to make wish-lists of what they want. I've got a hunch there will be a fair amount of consensus about the needs. That leaves only implementation strategy to agree upon.
Strategy, after all, is simply a matter of energy. Right intention requires commitment.
Money is out there, it's available, can be raised to do what needs to be done. Personally, I find it highly unlikely that a collective of Arconauts lacks sufficient brain-power, energy and will to pull off the organization of a functioning cooperative.
That said, in the here and now of "starting where you are," one talented, enterprising individual Arconaut is simply forging ahead with a good idea by marketing a useful product on her own. If you'd like to contribute, click on the link at the top of this entry to reach her crowdfunding appeal.
While I am personally convinced we need a long-term strategy, it's great to see an immediately useful, Arconaut-initiated, project put forth in the straightforward way Erin is doing.
Remember, Arconauts: We Can! Venceremos!