The Year of the Snake

Adbusters’ Big Ideas of 2013, and the thought-provoking words of an unnamed Hopi elder

Sustainability 2013: How will you help in the Year of the Snake?

Sustainability 2013: How will you help in the Year of the Snake?

Doing the right thing in the Year of the Snake The January/February 2013 issue of Adbusters (ad-free) magazine was recently delivered to my mailbox. With a theme of “The Big Ideas of 2013,” it included a number of gems, including this:

“As we enter 2013—the Year of the Snake—a great challenge awaits us, one that can activate our deep hidden potential: Can we mobilize for Singularity? Is our played-out Western civilization still capable of personal sacrifice, spiritual fortitude and meaningful applications of our alleged intelligence? Do we have it in us—maybe with a bit of help from Seneca, Buddha, Confucius and Muhammad—to shine a light into the darkness?

“Can we get the bees swarming again? Learn to talk without commercial interference? Keep money circulating without derivatives and usury? Construct a global market regime in which the price of every product tells the ecological truth? Kill off corporations that break the public trust?”

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A mind toward sustainability
I was approached recently by a reader who told me how moved he was by something from my June 7, 2012, column—a particularly salient section of a thought-provoking piece attributed to an unnamed Hopi elder. In the spirit of thoughtfulness about the way we carry ourselves on this planet in these challenging, interesting times, I would like to leave readers with the piece in its entirety:

“What are you doing?”

You have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour. Now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour. And there are things to be considered…

Where are you living?What are you doing?What are your relationships?Are you in right relation?Where is your water?Know your garden.It is time to speak your truth.Create your community.Be good to each other.And do not look outside yourself for the leader.”

Then he clasped his hands together, smiled, and said, “This could be a good time!

“There is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore. They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly.

“Know the river has its destination. The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water. And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate. At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves. For the moment that we do, our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.

“The time for the lone wolf is over. Gather yourselves! Banish the word ‘struggle’ from your attitude and your vocabulary. All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.

“We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”