What’s the problem we’re noticing?
The relentless pursuit of financial returns, financial efficiency and accumulation of capital power at the global level has simultaneously created hyper-connected fragile systems and a corrupted and polarised political order incapable of responding effectively to overlapping and cascading crises or ‘polycrisis’. Covid-19 brought the fragility of global systems into stark relief and in this way the pandemic is a warning of the far greater consequences of a climate and wider ecological emergencies already destabilising societies around the world.
What’s our response?
Facing up to these interconnected crises (increasingly referred to as ‘the Polycrisis’) requires unprecedented cooperation and coordination to rapidly realise a more sustainable, equitable, and resilient world. To this end, campaigners, politicians, companies, governments, and communities all across the world are pushing for and enacting change. A key question we’re seeking to respond to is:
How can humanity navigate over the coming decades the breakdown of human and natural systems driven by interrelated, reinforcing social and environmental crises while influencing the nature of the unraveling, minimizing suffering, and building solidarity and social cohesion?
How are we doing this?
We are collaborating with Post Carbon Institute to convene and support a global and diverse community of practitioners, thinkers, and influencers navigating together the unraveling of human and natural systems, and positively contributing to emerging realities. From the outset key principles include meaningful inclusion of diverse perspectives, ways of being and knowing, balanced global south and north participation, accessible technology, and attendance enabled across all time zones. Participation by all age groups, and by people from all sectors and different perspectives from within these, is prioritised.
All those joining share explicit intentions to better understand and respond to the unraveling of human and natural systems. Crucially, rather than falling into denial or hopelessness, this community is intended to support one another to stay present, embracing the complexity and uncertainty of accelerating changes in many systems. With this framing we began with an international conference in 2020, The Great Unravelling? open to around 500 individuals, hosted online in partnership with Post Carbon Institute. The success of this event led us to hold the space in the longer term for a peer to peer network, the Liminality Network, where positive supportive relationships, collaborations, cross issue learnings and actions are now emerging.
All participants in the Liminality Network are committing to:
- Engaging in an honest, open, and humble exploration of the Polycrisis and how it has impacted and is impacting members and their communities
- Drawing on the breadth and diversity of our members, and their lived experiences and expertise, which offer unique insights and perspectives on a broad range of relevant topics
- Aligning around core values of diversity, equity, humility, curiosity, openness, respect, compassion, and presencing the voices of “more than humans” (other species and ecosystems)
- Acting collectively in ways that influence the nature of the unraveling, minimizing suffering, and building solidarity and social cohesion.
As conveners of the community we are striving not only to ensure diversity and a balance of global perspectives, but also to balance the focus of activities (events, dialogues, online discussions, working groups) between deepening members analysis and understanding of the crisis and opportunities we face; helping members stay in a place of both accepting and feeling agency; and supporting members to individually and collectively identify and develop interventions that grow alternatives to the current path humanity is collectively walking and ensuring the best possible outcomes.
In achieving this, our hope is that together we can strive to be fully present in this liminal space/moment, engaging with our full beings – head, heart and hands. We are embracing the diversity of perspectives and different ways of knowing, presencing the “more than human” and the people who cannot be with us, and seeking always to hold the tension and find balance between analysis and understanding, acceptance and agency and action and intention.
If you are interested in joining the Liminality Network, please complete this form. We (the Coordinating Circle) are inviting people into the Network in small numbers at a time, so please bear with us.