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Independence from Industrialization
This year Independence Day means more to us than celebrating the independence of the United States from the tyrannies of the rulers of Great Britain. In a very individual way we are celebrating our independence from industrialization with our Lifely blog.
This morning I realized that in all the years I’ve celebrated Independence Day, I had never looked up the meaning of the word “independence.” It was one of those words I thought I knew the meaning of, but actually, it turns out that I didn’t fully understand it at all.
According to the dictionary, to be independent is
* to be free from outside control
* to not depend on another's authority
* to not depending on another for livelihood or subsistence.
Stated in a more positive way, to be independent is to have the desire and ability to live from one’s own authority, and be responsible for one’s own individual decisions, livelihood and life. This doesn’t mean standing alone, because at the same time we are also interdependent with everyone and everything that contributes to our lives, including people, organizations and the environment, so independence means taking responsibility for their wellbeing too.
We love the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
Note that the very first unalienable Right is LIFE.
Our pursuit of life—not just having bodies that are barely alive, but living vibrant, dynamic lives in spirit, mind, and healthy bodies while participating in the whole of Life—is not only our birthright but is the very foundation of our country.
Citizens of the colonies wanted the freedom to make their own decisions about their own lives and their own country. And so we have Independence Day.
To us, Independence Day is about remembering our freedoms and rights, being aware of who and what may be limiting them, and being diligent about protecting these rights. And not just for us here in the United States, but for everyone in the world.
Today we live in a world ruled by industrialization, which expects us to allow multinational corporations to provide for our daily needs instead of us using our own skills, creativity and resources to provide for ourselves in our own ecosystems. For us, eating food from a can tainted with pesticides instead of our organic tomatoes grown in our backyard is not our idea of independence.
Having begun this blog, on this Independence Day we are celebrating our stand for independence and freedom to live oriented to Life.