Notes on Glocalism
by B.J. Delas Armas
on 5/23/2008 09:02:00 PM
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I was just websurfing on a Friday night. Happened upon a newly wedded old Muslim friend's xanga site. Then happened upon her friend's site. This friend of a friend directed a PCN, a Pilipino Cultural Night, that I had watched at SD and even let me crash at her place for the night.
She posted something interesting about consumerism that I had been wanting to post, but I never really quite put it all together. I've wanted to talk even more about the consumer culture we live in, and explain how I try and live outside of it as much as possible. These notes she wrote about are a good springboard for me.
Here's an excerpt from her post
ConsumerismWhat is the good life?
This is what caught my eye...particularly because Dom wrote that on my shirt, and the song by Kanye is on heavy repeat.
""American Dream": ownership, family first, white picket fence,
"2.5 kids," inward focused life = protective, exclusion, money for
vacations, social status, financial stability, disposable income,
productivity, time equals money, focus on what you have, shopping as
recreation, if you want something you should have it, more cars than
drivers, having the latest of everything, kids are involved in
everything and attend private/prestigious schools"
Redefinition: perhaps involving redefining what is "best," outward
focused = good life for everyone (redistributing) considering all of
humanity, living sustainably, rich relationships (spend time, not
money), cultivate talents, stronger connection to the earth, peace of
balance of work, play, health, conscious consuming, quality time,
shared resources, freedom to pursue dreams/passions, access to nature,
freedom from financial fears, quality food with friends, time for
creativity, value shift out from under the burden of productivity,
slowing down, living by the rhythms of life and the cycles of the
Where do you get caught up?
· When you are at the end of your rope and need a quick fix/act of
I guess this is fine cause we all fall, but not too much.
· Community reinforcement
· Traditions, gifts, souvenirs
· Unconscious consuming
· Societal expectations
· Have to "own" otherwise your not fiscally responsible/successful
This is something I've just discovered: you don't have to own something to utilize it. I "own" lots of books, but what it's ultimately useless if those books and knowledge don't even end up being circulated in my consciousness and used by me.
· Earning more money to keep up same lifestyle
The old saying about teaching a man to fish. I'm sick of paying people to do things for me. To cut up, fry, and cook my food.
It makes me think what the hell I've really learned in 24 years. All I've learned is how to pay for things, that I'm really too dependent on others, that I'm blessed, and damn, I need to do something.
· Over-commitments/ energy spread too thin
· Impulse buys
How do you break the cycle?
· Setting boundaries:
When you're breaking any cycle, it's important at first to set boundaries and reach goals, just to give you a bit of confidence that you can get through something. Then once you meet those goals, just slowly cut back and cut down.
For instance, Facebook and I. I made a goal to not be in it for a year. I really wanted to stop wishing, hoping, and clinging on to these fantasy people that I barely even knew. I needed to stop stalking. Goddamn it was pathetic.
I didn't reach the 1-year goal as I've joined back, but given that I initially set hard boundaries and have made it less a part of my life, it's become exactly just that: less a part of my life. I've discovered that there are a lot more interesting things outside of that reality...
· Creative ways of giving out gifts
· Breaking traditions or redefining
· Small steps/changes
· Pulling people alongside with similar values
· Being a voice to others
· Curbing Media Intake!
Speaking of reality...
Reality is what you take into your world. And if all you take in is crap, your reality is crap.
· Spread awareness
· Sharing: possessions, housing
· Intentional community
· Become an educated consumer
· When you do something you love, you feel full and need less
· Periodically do an internal values check to make sure your actions
are line with values
· Move somewhere simpler/slower
· List where your time is going to see what your priorities are
· Cut out things that are unnecessary
· Intentionally decrease your means so that you are forced to be more
intentional with what you spend (make a financial commitment, start
saving, work less)
Labels: Consumerism, Lecture Notes, Psychological Anthropology, Spirituality and Religiosity, Who Am I?