On the road this week … thoughts on recovery …

I’m in Florida, Michigan, and Indiana this week … but wanted to share this thoughtful reply to my postings on economic recovery …

Jason wrote:

Not sure if Brian is available for individual email response but here goes:
Brian, I liked your using the addiction metaphor for economic recovery language. I’m curious if Obama is using, “Let’s get back to where we were before” language just to sell it though and get the popular support he needs to make the deeper systemic changes?? Are you thinking that it would be better to let the economy tank, or “bottom out”?
This morning on NPR in Oregon they spoke of over 400 million coming to Oregon to do road projects and K-12 school infastructure. My son’s small elementary school is looking to make cuts in their permanent staff. I don’t know how much of the money will go to infastructure projects.
However, I do not think everyone has to “bottom-out” to make deep changes. I’m wondering if this recovery plan will give us the traction we need to stay in the game and draw on courage to move away from dependencies on fossill fuels and stuff made overseas?
Some people do need to scrape the bottom of the barrel before they pull their lives out of the gutter. I’m not sure that’s us though? I completely agree with the addictions you mentioned. However, the western medical model of health is another apt metaphor here. In western medicine you’re considered healthy if you’re neutral, that is no obvious sickness. Thus people run around after things untill we get sick and then make changes. If we aren’t sick for awhile then we forget our self-care and run ourselves into the ground. Then more drugs, repeat cycle.
Eastern wellness is more focused on wellness as thriving. So when we’re healthy we continue to seek things that bring us to life, and life abundant. Getting a massage, regular counseling, spiritual direction, planting a garden, etc. This really deepens Jesus words for me of being bread and water that is alive. You’re probably aware of these distinctions but I think they illustrate my hope that bottoming out isn’t necessary?
So I don’t know maybe we’re too entrenched in the western medical model to not spend this little bit of breathing room Obama has worked for on getting immediate pleasures, or our next fix?? I’ve walked with people in recovery and I also spend lots of time with my 4-year-old daughter. She is remaking the world for me and within me. That’s not to say we don’t need to go through the dark night still . . .

My thoughts go along similar lines … I hope we can take this current socio-economic sickness as a wake-up call to pursue a more healthy way of life. And if we miss this opportunity, I imagine we’ll experience intensifying problems in the future until we learn what we need to learn and change what we need to change.