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View Diary: The Dark Side of Consumerism: What Landfills and Nursing Homes Taught These Indian Villagers (25 comments)

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  •  Important diary, thanks. (5+ / 0-)

    I'd just add one caution.

    We can't go back. We can't erase centuries of our Western "progress" (in quotes), for good or ill.

    It is awfully tempting to idealize simpler ways of life. Indeed, we have much to learn by studying them. But the best in our Western-rational-humanist tradition leads us to appreciate cultural diversity and the rights of women as full persons, for instance. In many cases, people leading simpler lives are without this appreciation, or it isn't contextually important to them.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Wed Oct 30, 2013 at 05:15:15 PM PDT

    •  some good points... (6+ / 0-)

      but maybe instead of looking at as 'going back'...we can look at as considering the different options and making the best choice in each case...an example...we are 'going back' to breastfeeding over the modern formula.

      many choices everyday...often take the easiest...but not always the best.

      much food for thought in your comment...and Sven's diary...thanks both.

      We are not broke, we are being robbed...but we can fight back...#KosKatalogue

      by Glen The Plumber on Wed Oct 30, 2013 at 05:37:44 PM PDT

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    •  I agree, karmsy (5+ / 0-)

      I think perhaps a better way to frame it than "go back" is an attempt to merge the best of both worlds. I think there's been an incredible imbalance towards all things western and material all across the world, to the point where many youth in places like Ladakh completely reject their own heritage, and the point of the Reality Tours was to show that not all that glitters in the West is gold.

      One other cool thing that Helena kept pointing out was the many movements toward sustainable agriculture and localized economies sprouting up all across the west. It's something people in developing countries often don't see, because they're mostly bombarded by Hollywood, consumer, and glamour images. So by showing that many westerners are very interested in learning about more localized sustainable living, it makes the traditional ways of rural villagers more attractive and people take pride in their ways. Again, it's not to say that they or we should be going back to a complete agricultural society, but I think we need to use the knowledge we have gained to embrace the aspects of localized living that are meaningful, sustainable, and also fun.

      Ecology is the new Economy => Kosonomy

      by citisven on Wed Oct 30, 2013 at 05:41:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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