I heard someone sing a song in Yoruba yesterday. It got me thinking about indigenous language preservation, which somehow led to this question:
What are 10 random things you would do if you lived forever?
Here are mine:
You can send me Bitcoin tips @payment code:
Here is an explanation of what a payment code is.
I don't feel safe on Facebook. Its interface and business model feel like the Skeksis from The Dark Crystal, sucking your content and life force for the profits of its shareholders and advertisers. In 2018 I pledge to post more to my website and create media I can actually search for and support beneficial impact with. I also pledge to create more local in-person events spread by word of mouth and real face to face contact.
Facebook is actually my least favorite place on the whole internet. It often turns into the shittiest version of a town hall where everyone is just bitching within cordoned off marketing corrals of political ideology, stuffing late stage capitalism down your throats in a last hurrah of centralized marketplaces. You can't even program your news feed to show you the info you actually want.
I knew all this going into Facebook, which is why I originally created a satirical profile under a different pseudonym. Yeah right I am going to give my personal information to the public. Also at the time I didn't want my political expressions to be censored or squelshed by my conservative family members. I didn't have the emotional and intellectual maturity at the time to talk with them about my views in a constructive way. As is the case with the majority of people on platforms like Facebook and Twitter today. They are not designed for the depth of dialogue and careful moderation, as well as successful collaborative mobilization that will be required for humanity to make its way through today's problems. Further, as a political activist, managing one's identity is often a careful operation. In this sense and many others I think Facebook actually suppresses political progress.
To emotionally and intellectually digest information on Facebook, I think the user needs a lot more blank space. The platform literally squeezes commerce into every square millimeter it can get away with. On the right hand sidebar right now, I have a bad version of Craigslist showing me random stuff for sale near me, there is a top navigation bar, and a side navigation bar, a central feed and a ride sidebar, all packed to the gills with what to me seems like a completely chaotic display of information. I nearly never click anything on the left or right. And this is without the far right ticker showing you realtime friend activity. It is so bonkers! I hate looking at it. It actually makes my face look different afterward. I look like I just saw the psychic detritus of thousands of traumatized people talking into a platform centered around ego and commerce, displayed on devices that put people in variously hunched over fetal positions.
I wish I could say I'm done with the platform right now. I hope I'm close, or at least will be able to re-center my content creation outside of it and use it more as a channel. I happen to be really good at writing engaging Facebook posts, and it has been a useful social utility for me in making connections with fellow creative activists. My head still feels like garbage after I'm on it, and I honestly feel terrible the entire day after making a post to it. I think this is because I can feel everyone reading it and how uncomfortable they are in that virtual space and what it's telling them about the real world. If people spent less time yelling at each other on the internet and more time with their neighbors building community and localized production, a lot of things would start to get better.
To ditch Facebook, I need a platform that has a better integrated mobilization function, is more carefully designed to support IRL interaction as its priority, and has a community governed way to decide which features to implement. Imagine a Facebook created by the Maker community crossed with really skilled facilitators who have mad chops in mediating conflict across race, class and ideology. But don't imagine a Facebook, imagine that this is just an interface format or plug-in that is available across any website that is a hub for community to share resources and information. And that it has a good, secure identity system. I need to get a thorough rundown on Blockstack from someone over there, but I vaguely know they've been working on the identity problem: https://blockstack.org/
(To finish up the story about my first Facebook profile... After about a year my profile, friend set, and a bunch of really incredible photos people had taken of me at festivals in full costume, all vanished with no warning, with a note that I had violated their names policy. At the time, there was no warning, and no channel to recover my profile to at least pull the data off of it for myself. Once I set up a new profile I regularly download a backup. I do this with Google Drive as well because Google will also pull content down without warning if it finds something out of bounds. These are platforms the user has essentially no voice in their design, governance or policies.)
Since getting involved with Bloom Network in 2010 I've been researching social network designs and following what's out there. At the moment my favorite things are weco.in and scuttlebutt.nz . We've been approached over the years by many companies developing social networks, to be early adopters because we have a large existing global network of interesting people. However, I really think we either have one shot at asking our communities to join a thing, or, and this would be my preference, the next generation of social networks gradually emerges as a more decentralized, interwoven ecosystem, which our website is basically just an inspiring-to-be-on routing engine for.
Bloom will be producing a conference in September 2018 at the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco. It will be part of a larger cycle of incubating regenerative action projects across the planet. As part of the practical implementation of it, and the needs for digital communication systems across the working groups, I think we're going to end up grabbing the best fit tools for now and beginning to string them together.
We've already spent 8 years designing a decentralized global governance model for Bloom. At the conference we'll be producing a hackathon to complete that including identifying the tech tools we're going to use for voting and proposals etc. I hope we can demonstrate an example of a community-directed technology/utility, which straddles the physical and digital world in a way that supports people in healing their bodies, psyches, and their ecosystems.
With love and passion for creative collaboration,
Reading is like collecting intellectual architectures to inform how I think, view and act in the world…
Here are books I’ve read since July this year, catalyzed by reading Daniel Pinchbeck’s latest book, How Soon is Now. I hadn’t spoken with him in 3.5 years, after taking on his former role with Evolver Network (which is now Bloom Network). His book set me off on a catch up of writings about climate change solutions and psychedelics, followed by books with tools and tips for large-scale mobilization.
I recommend all of these books - most of them have been on my to-read list for a long time. I recently learned how to set up my Android phone to read books aloud to me using Kindle + Android's visual disability feature. It's a robot voice but it's good, non fatiguing. That way I can read while driving or doing work with my hands.
My friend Michael Garfield interviewed me on his podcast, Future Fossils. You can listen here:
We discuss topics such as:
- The adoption of regenerative culture practices;
- Cultivating planetwide resiliency;
- Communicating across HUGE political gaps;
- How can we be good ancestors?
Last year I had the pleasure to share my thoughts and experiences at an ERIE event at UC Berkeley. ERIE stands for Entheogenic Research, Integration and Education. They are a group in San Francisco that produces talks and community integration circles for the psychedelic community to connect across different cultures and viewpoints.
This talk was part of the "Heads" tour - a book by Jesse Jarnow about psychedelic America. The highlight of this event for me was meeting Sarah Matzar, a former acid cook, mother and dye chemist from Guatemala. I was asked to share my thoughts about "the future of psychedelics":
"Magenta will share her vantage point on the future of psychedelic cultures. Hundreds of millions of people on the planet are tripping. How do Ayahuasca and acid cultures mesh? What’s beyond the blinky lights at a chaotic, sexist rave? And what does it look like as American psychedelic culture matures into societal integration?
Magenta is the executive director of Bloom Network (formerly Evolver Network), an international social network for regenerative culture. She dialogues with creative medicine people from 6 continents about the transformations that are happening in their cities and ecosystems caused by climate change and economic pressure. Bloom helps people migrate to sustainable, decentralized practices in governance, economics, agriculture, health and more.
You can now support the work I'm doing via my Patreon page at http://patreon.com/imaginationhealer. My first goal, at $200/month (I'm already halfway there!), is to produce a video series about my experiences living on gift economy for 5 years. Here's the intro video I made for that, and I hope you'll check out the fun and helpful rewards and choose a tier to support at. Thank you!
Here's a recording from NuMundo's Beta Launch Party in Oakland. The theme of the panel discussion was Leveraging Networks for Social Good. So wonderful to meet folks from GEN (Global Ecovillages Network), get to know Raines Cohen of CoHousing California better, and meet Ashay Aek from Australia! Lovely to meet networking counterparts from different communities.
Via Facebook Live: https://www.facebook.com/numundonow/videos/10153747482652811/?pnref=story
NuMundo now has a booking tool on their site where people can register for stays at ecovillages and "impact centers", as well as classes and internships. They've started populating the site with centers in Central America and are now fleshing out their North American listings. Check it out: http://numundo.org
Big ups to CEO David Casey and the whole NuMundo team for the amazing networking they host at events, for people working on transformational projects to meet and support each other. <3
I also got to do a lightning talk about Bloom Network. Several folks offered me support and collaboration, including developer support for our website (ok, so maybe I don't even have to raise money to get the site built??), mainstream media support, and incredible projects to feature on Bloom's site, including a mobile mushroom educational center and an upcoming thinktank in Washington DC on regenerative agriculture. I was able to also ask for personal support, since Bloom Network is scaling up very fast and it's a lot of pressure and newness for me.
I'm honored to be speaking at Baltimore Yoga Village April 23 via Skype. Along with Jim Sanders, founder and director of Tonkiri, a centre for healing and the study of medicinal plants. Jim is also a documentary filmmaker and photographer; you can watch a beautiful film he made on Tonkiri's website: http://www.tonkiri.ca/
The event will also feature a community discussion on personal and planetary healing. Participants can enjoy tea, yoga, meditation, healing rooms, and mushroom cultivation tips from Mushroom Life.
The gathering is part of Bloom Network's current theme, Planet Medicine, about humanity's relationship with the plant kingdom.
More event details: https://www.facebook.com/events/484596841745477/
I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by Sheri Herndon, co-founder of Indymedia and a fellow social architect. We've known of each other for a while, and it was lovely to have time to meet this kindred thinker. Sheri engages at the edge of cultural and scientific innovation, seeking to see their social implications brought to life. A practical futurist, she provides consulting and strategic interventions to government, nonprofits and business.
You can listen to our chat here. It's about Bloom Network and my role with creating regenerative systems.
Bloom Network is a global community of visionary culture producers. Our collective vision is a world where people can easily share their passions and resources, resolve conflict, and live creatively in balance with nature.
I'm so building some kind of earthen circular home someday. If you've never been in one and come across one, go inside it if you can. It feels completely different than a wood frame and insulation house. Being surrounded by earth is literally grounding and calming.
I fantasize about making a circular bed that you have to kind of crawl down into, that's all super fluffy inside like a nest, and hanging some kind of changing color rainbow light sculpture on top of it. A friend pointed out to me that that sounds like a tripper crib. Giggle.
At some point I'd like to travel around helping make sacred spaces for people, with earthen architecture and arts. My friend James Gyre at Naked Geometry makes incredible laser cut wooden panels. One way to get natural air conditioning is to put a grid like that at the bottom of a fire flue and wet it - some of the geometries you see in middle eastern architecture are functional!
Read the full article on Off Grid Quest here: http://www.offgridquest.com/homes-dwellings/building-methods/an-earthbag-round-house-for-less-than-5000