In her depression book, Cheri Huber suggests that depression results when we are depressing something. What was i depressing?
At first, i thought it was the idea of exchanging money. I had noticed before that I enjoy things way more when i don’t do them for money – from truffle making to presenting self-empowerment workshops. This certainly was a part of it – and it didn’t seem all of it. Nevertheless, i revamped my life design website to offer things on a gift economy basis. I also offered life design again on the Timebank. And then i noticed some dread. What was that about? Why was i not enjoying sharing my skills?
It finally hit me this morning: I want to find a way of living that works toward dismantling the system(s) that are so life-alienating! Maintaining edible landscapes in the backyards of very well-off people while i and others like me are hardly paid anything is not dismantling the system. This does nothing to the food dessert nor does it dent the income inequality that allows some to outsource menial labor – cleaning up their presentation gardens at the same time as the cleaning lady washes their clothes. Offering life design even when i frame it in the radical way i am trying to live it – moving out of the system – ends up helping people adjust to the system, which just perpetuates the cultural traumas i would love to heal.
“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti
I am not sure where that leaves me. I don’t even know if it is possible to live without money, especially with a chronic illness that requires me to take daily meds. Actually, i don’t even know if that’s what i want – to live entirely without money. Sometimes money makes transactions so much simpler. Still, i am relieved to have more clarity for my search: How can i contribute my skills to the dismantling of the systems that are destroying the planet and making so may people’s lives miserable?
Postscript seven hours later: After my life design session, which flowed beautifully and contributed greatly, i began wondering if my resistance is just another “not good enough” theme. Unless i live in total alignment with my values – which might not even be possible within this system – it’s not good enough and ultimately i am not good enough. Something else to ponder!