What better world could we create if we incentivised and funded stories of regeneration, meaningful stories about our cooperative nature as humans and stories about our interconnected relationship with the living world. This response invites all of us to think about our own contribution to culture.
Why do we need to cultivate a regenerative culture?
Our mainstream culture is largely based on competition, division and extraction. It labels humans as predominantly selfish or greedy and it sees little to no value in the living world. It is a degenerative culture that seeks to addict, to take and commodify.
These traits are destroying our physical and mental health, destabilising our democracies, and have taken us to the brink of an unimaginable ecological crisis. As the US environmentalist and author, Paul Hawken says, “Degeneration steals the future, Regeneration heals the future.”
How are others approaching this?
There are many ways that people around the world are attempting to [collective response]. Below is a small sample. If you have any further examples that you think should be on this list, please get in touch.
Role of art
Art is where we can change the narrative, because it’s where people can imagine what change looks and feels like. Jeff Chang, co-founder of Culture Strike, asks us to think of social change as a wave.
The breaking wave is the climax, like an election win, or policy change but we don’t always recognise the undercurrents and conditions that lead us there. In the world of art and culture, many of us help construct the conditions that lead to this climax.
The artist Favianna Rodriguez says it best: "You may attend a rally or vote, but you also read books, listen to music, engage with visual art, turn on the radio and create your identity through culture.
Artists are central, not peripheral, to social change. To have the movements that make the wave, you need cultural workers."
High profile ambassadors
Never before has content and opinion been able to reach as wide an audience in so short a time. This social media reach has great potency if used for regenerative means.
If more of our sports stars and celebrities promoted seaweed over sports drinks, Regeneration over Reeboks or climate change over relationship change – then we could rapidly increase education and engagement and start to shift the culture.
The algorithms and vast sums of money that now dominate the ‘attention economy’ may make this seem unlikely, but we humans are intensely social animals and if a large enough group of the world’s most powerful and influential voices began to shift – then so too could the culture.
Some of these solutions are featured in our short film - Regenerating Australia. Find out where you can see the film.
Regenerative actions you can take on
We believe every one of us has a role to play in Regeneration. If you are interested in helping, here are some actions we have identified that you could take on in your life.