So Interconnected – 8 quotes from Grace Lee Boggs book – The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism for the Twenty-First Century

by Mark Votava

512UxM1s9JL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_1. So interconnected

“I cannot recall any previous period when the issues were so basic, so interconnected, and so demanding of everyone living in this country, regardless of race, ethnicity, class, gender, age, or national origin. At this point in the continuing evolution of our country and of the human race, we urgently need to stop thinking of ourselves as victims and to recognize that we must each become a part of the solution because we are each a part of the problem.”

2. A new concept of citizenship

“’We have the power within us to create the world anew.’ We need to see that we can solve our health and education problems only by first creating a new concept of citizenship – one that will also cure our failing political system.”

3. Cooperative relations with one another

“My hope is that as more and different layers of the American people are subjected to economic and political strains and as recurrent disasters force us to recognize our role in begetting these disasters, a growing number of Americans will begin to recognize that we are at one of those great turning points in history. Both for our livelihood and for our humanity we need to see progress not in terms of ‘having more’ but in terms of growing our souls by creating community, mutual self-sufficiency, and cooperative relations with one another.”

4. The way we have been thinking and living

“In this decade, slowly but surely, we recognized that our catastrophes are not acts of nature but the consequences of our own ideas and actions. Therefore, we can bring an end to them by transforming the way we have been thinking and living.”

5. We are the leaders

“…we are the leaders we are looking for.”

6. Many cultures, movements, and traditions

“…we need the wisdom that comes from many cultures, movements, and traditions.”

7. Transformed into consumers

“In the past few decades, once productive Americans have been transformed into consumers, using more and more of the resources of the Earth to foster ways of living that are unsustainable and unsatisfying. This way of life has created suburbs that destroy farmland, wetlands, and the natural world, as well as pollute the environment. The new economy also requires a huge military apparatus to secure global resources and to consume materials for itself, at the same time providing enormous riches for arms merchants and for our otherwise failing auto, aircraft, and ship manufacturers.”

8. Listening to one another

“What we urgently need are impassioned discussions everywhere, in small groups and large, where people from all walks of life are not only talking but also listening to one another. That is the best way to begin creating an understanding of the next American Revolution, which I believe is not only the key to global survival but also the most important step we can take in this period to build a new, more human, more socially and ecological responsible, and more secure nation that all of us, whatever our race, ethnicity, gender, faith, or national origin, will be proud to call our own.”

How interconnected do you believe we are?

Purchase The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism for the Twenty First Century

My new book The Mystical Imagination: Seeing the Sacredness of All of Life (2015) is finally done! It is available on kindle and paperback!

“Our crowded, overly-consumed, hyper-active, digitally-addicted lifestyle is draining the life out of us. We are desperate to transcend the chaos and find a better way to live. We need a mystical imagination. Get ready to be transported into the depths of meaning as Votava breaks open the contemplative path and shows you how to live your life to the fullest.” Phileena Heuertz, author of Pilgrimage of a Soul: Contemplative Spirituality for the Active Life and founding partner, Gravity, a Center for Contemplative Activism

My first book The Communal Imagination: Finding a Way to Share Life Together (2014) is available on kindle and paperback also!

“Inside everyone there is a longing for community, to love and be loved. We are made in the image of a communal God. But in our hyper-mobile, individualistic, cluttered world… community is an endangered thing. And community is like working out – it takes work, sweat, discipline…  without that our muscles atrophy. Everybody wants to be fit, but not too many people want to do the work to get there. Mark’s book is sort of a workout manual, helping you rediscover your communal muscles and start building them up slowly. It is an invitation to live deep in a shallow world.”  Shane Claiborne, author and activist