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Unlearning: Waxing on our “Off the Map” Trajectory

Here’s another attempt to write more personal posts and not just use this space for info regurgitation. Trying to document some of  my internal processes and thoughts I share in our small community, my intention being a clarity and understanding that I’ve yet been able to manifest. Thanks, ~G

Sunday Morning, North Corktown, Sage on the altar.

Sometimes, I truly grasp the reality that the life Angela and I are pointing towards will land our family in extremely unfamiliar territory. This runs counter to the direction we’re told to head when we settle down, start a family and, ahem… grow up, but it’s my belief that peak oil, climate change, economic and diplomatic crisis have us all spiraling towards that unfamiliar. Though I admit to fumbling quite a bit, I prefer to be active rather than passive in the face such things.

Detroit Evolution is our attempt to be active in the shift away from the dominant culture into this unknown and is an expression of our admittedly idealistic hope for a just and humane realm for our kid and his kin. I’m already in pretty deep as I’ve been running this code, with its glitches, since my youth. Every time we find a way to make something rather than buy it and the more aware I become of my personal role in racism and oppression, I feel as though I move farther away from the place whence I came. All these little things increase momentum into that unknown.

I’m now honored to be working more closely with the East Michigan Environmental Action Council and the Detroit Food Justice Task Force. Due to this, I’m reconnecting with the so-called real world a bit to get a better grasp of the work at hand. As I watch the local news and try to thoughtfully process the cultural landscape of Detroit and its relationship to global issues I’m forced to take in more of the culture at large. Based in this new perspective, for someone who doesn’t care to be oppressed or oppress others, the unfamiliar still seems like the most viable option.

It’s is more dynamic than that though, damn dualism. As I move towards less comfortable and more active and often challenging physical and mental states, I’m experiencing a greater sense of inner peace and purpose. This is conflicted I know, but sitting with conflict is the call of the day. For me the more unfamiliar the territory, the more active my mind is and the more I become myself. Maybe this stems from my observation that the greater the differences and variables in a subject/object relationship, the greater the opportunity for engagement and participation. I’m still working on all of this.

There is another exciting unknowable element in this, the people, communities and cultures, seen and unseen that we have been honored to commune with. But I’ll save that, which I consider to be the axis mundi of this work, for the next. Shanti.

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