|Origins: Our World|
The World Revolution is conceived as a response to our current global crisis and to the whole array of critical problems and issues, throughout various parts of the planet, facing human beings and facing the natural environment.
The problems are serious. But they should be no new news to anyone who reads the newspapers or has the courage to look at the world with candid and honest eyes. For a majority of the world's people, these problems and the consequent hardships are self-evident facts of life and lie within the domain of immediate personal experience. For review, common examples of our world's major problems and crises include the following: human rights violations, war, civil and ethnic strife, the oppression of women, widespread poverty, pollution, global warming, deforestation, ozone depletion, discrimination and exploitation, hunger, overpopulation, crime, urban violence, illiteracy, the corruption of politicians and power-wielders, cultural malaise, spiritual emptiness and anxiety, ethical unconcern, mechanized schooling.
This is not to say that our world has no goodness or beauty in it. Not at all -- and quite the contrary. Our world is full of beauty and good things. In every part of the world, there are natural wonders of immense beauty: wildernesses, mountains, ocean shores, landscapes, lakes -- and from most places, one can view the sunset, the sunrise, or the full moon. Human-made wonders of beauty and testaments to goodness and positive achievements abound also. City parks. Museums. Arguably, man on the moon. The worlds of art, crafts and music. Cultural celebrations and festivals. An increased knowledge and understanding of the nature and workings of various aspects of our world. The Olympic games. And in many parts of the world, people live in relative social harmony and demonstrate a basic level of benevolence and respect towards their neighbors. And most of us either know or have heard tales of noble or compassionate individuals who have performed good deeds, or performed extraordinary tasks, individuals whose lives counter the notion that human nature is innately and forever corrupt.
And it is also not accurate to say that civilization and the human condition is completely degenerating and worse than any previous period of human history. Compared to past historical periods, both ancient and recent, our present day world demonstrates many improvements that have been made in various arenas of human life.
Nevertheless, in our present day world, there are problems. They are serious, and they demand attention and response. Some of these are unprecedented in human history and occur on a scale also unprecedented in the past.
Richard Falk, along with others of the World Order Models Project, have classified the various different social problems of our planet into four basic categories -- it is a classification scheme that serves the very helpful purpose of facilitating conceptualiztion, understanding, and discussion of the world situation. These four basic world problems are: war, social injustice, poverty, and environmental destruction.
In response to these four major problem areas, Falk and his associates derived four positive "world order values" or goals, the converse of the above:
Borrowing, then, from Falk's theoretical scheme, these four goals comprise the foundational objectives of the world revolution:
The purpose and goal of the world revolution, as initially conceived, is to achieve the four "world order" values/objectives of: peace, social justice, economic well-being, and ecological balance.
The aims of the world revolution can actually be simplified, for conceptual purposes, into one single goal, namely: social well-being.
First, the basics of "social well-being" consist of the 4 world order values:
Second, "social well-being" can be delineated to include some of the following sub-elements:
With the basic objectives now defined, I will discuss at this point three aspects to the nature and qualitative characteristics of the "world revolution," in order to clarify further the meaning of this rather grandiose and provocative title.
Second, the world revolution is intended to be a large-scale movement, global in its scale and holistic or comprehensive in its scope. "Large-scale," "global," "holistic," and "comprehensive" are some of the basic qualities which distinguish the world revolution as a unique force in the world arena, in relation to the more limited levels and scopes of activity of the already existing movements, organizations and programs for social change. Though the world revolution will not be a separate or distinct entity from existing programs and movements, it will lend a new quality to their activities: a larger supporting background infrastructure of activism and a global context within which they might see themselves.
Third, the world revolution is intended to be definitive in its efficacy and urgent in its time-frame. That is, it intends to translate its objectives into actual facts of social reality and to achieve these objectives (on a global scale) within the relatively short time period of 100 years ("short" considering the magnitude of the task and the normal historical pace of civilizational changes). To actually achieve global "social well-being" and the four "world order" objectives, especially within the period of a century, will require a social transformation of such enormous breadth and depth that it will have to be considered a "revolution" by any social or historical standard.
Betty Reardon, in one of her books on peace education, delineated three levels of social change activity:
1. Reform: changing existing practices within existing structures and institutions
The world revolution is intended to effect progressive social change at all three levels: reform, reconstruction, and transformation.
How will it do this? The basic plan is this. The world revolution will build upon the work of already existing movements, programs, organizations and institutions throughout the world that are involved in progressive social change efforts (at all three levels of the Reardon scheme). The role of the world revolution in relation to the existing projects will be multifold. Listed here are some of the basics, as initially conceived:
a. Attempt to unify, consolidate and coordinate the various existing programs into a larger collective movement of much greater social, political and cultural force.
b. Consolidate an initial world revolutionary constituency -- with sufficient numbers of people so as to be able to influence the values of the rest of the populace as well as to effect national opinion and policy.
c. Enhance the efficacy of existing programs by (a) providing a vast, efficient
d. Bring the work of researchers and scholars together with the work of activists,
e. Provide a holistic, comprehensive conceptual framework and context for various
In addition to this basic methodology, the world revolution will also consist of newly devised approaches, programs and strategies for progressive social change. Two examples of possibilities include the following:
a. Developing a "world party," perhaps akin to the existing Eurpean-based "green party," that advocates the world order objectives in the national-governmental arena.
In particular, there are two special, major projects which will be related, and perhaps integral, to the world revolution: (1) Earth State and (2) the United People's Organization. I will introduce these here, only briefly, as further examples of world revolution plans and activity.
a. Earth State is a vision/plan for a future "global civic society" or "organic world
b. The United People's Organization is conceived as an equivalent to the United
In actuality, the world revolution already exists. There are already large numbers of extraordinary, as well as ordinary, people actively involved in progressive social change efforts, who are doing excellent work, and whose activities can certainly be called "revolutionary" in their nature. A progressive social and global consciousness is growing among the world's people, most strikingly perhaps in regards to the natural environment.
The idea, then, is to give this existing fire more fuel -- and to give it a new title: "the world revolution." The title, it is hoped, shall lend an inspiring sense of grandiosity to the cause of building a better world.
(Spring, 1994 / Seattle, USA)
martes, 10 de mayo de 2011
Introducing the World Revolution