Occupy Forum got right to the heart of the Occupy Movement
This past Monday's Occupy Forum got right to the heart of the Occupy Movement, that is, we discussed the emotional feelings behind why so many people have taken to the streets and have expressed a desire the change our government, economic system and our very society.
The Forum was facilitated by SF Occupier Brad who framed the topic for discussion as an examination of social love, which is how some political thinkers define the way people come together in mass movements and develop a deep empathy and caring for each other even though they're perfect strangers. In the very lively discussions that took place in break-out groups we talked about how we'd experienced such concern for the rights and well-being of people we'd never met, within Occupy and other movements/events we'd been involved in.
Some people thought it is easier to unite and feel a sense of solidarity when there is a perception of a common enemy (i.e. the police, the 1%), but when there is no perceived enemy, such as with global warming, it seems harder for people to unify.
We discussed the way our thinking and practice of love might actually be altered so that we attempt to love, not just individuals, but all people we encounter, all beings and our entire planet, and that this be the basis for society and any governments and economic systems that it creates would be based on such a model.
Two interesting Youtube videos which helped inform our discussion were:
The "Eros Effect" as described by George Katsiaficas: http://video.google.com/
Michael Hardt's talk at EGS, "For Love or Money": https://www.youtube.com/
The room was full again for our third Occupy Forum, and judging by the engaged, energetic conversations, they loved it! We'd love you to join us at next Mondays Forum: Organizing Neighbors, Fighting Foreclosures with Occupy Bernal activist Stardust.