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Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Sun Sep 20, 2015 9:10 pm
by Anneli
I'd like to share this with you, both to celebrate that "I did it!" and to perhaps inspire more of us to create similar things where you are, if you do find it inspiring, that is :)

I'm a bit nervous as I write this, because now I've really "awakened the dragon" in my life! I've been very cautious my entire life to stay below the radar, and to leave projects I've started after a while as soon as I got anywhere near that dragon (some big fears I have).

But, I've kept doing this same project long enough now, to know that I will choose to allow the fears to rumble as much as they want - I'm still doing it and I will keep moving in this direction.

So, a couple of months ago, I invited some people we know to an introductory meeting at my home about a local gift market (my project). No one came. Two weeks later, it was time for the first actual market, still at my/our home. I was the only one who had contributed to the gift market supply at that time, naturally, so it wasn't a very big thing. No one came. This kept happening for a couple of more Sundays (except for my supportive sister and her family, they showed up a couple of times!), until the 5th Sunday, a woman came! She had even prepared herbal tea bags to give away at the market. This happened last weekend.

And now, today, I've spent many hours organizing the first local gift market in a nearby barn, with toilets, a kitchen, benches and tables and everything we will need for future market days. 7 people came, and 3 of them contributed by giving away things to the market. I don't need to pay for more than the electricity, basically (our kind and generous landlord owns the barn and already runs his own little countryside tourist activity center on this farm, so that's why there are parking lots and everything in place already). I will give him and his wife a number of things and some help in return, even if they don't require it, because I really appreciate how they make our lives so much easier with their kindness.
I also offered the market visitors some plums, pears and grapes, water and crispy corn bread with vegan sandwich spread and sliced tomatoes on a "Refreshments table", and received a good sum of money in donations for the little food they ate (it felt like an awesome gesture from God/LoA).

I'm having so much fun preparing, organizing, setting things up, creating things to give away and a lot more when doing this. Gift economy in real life has been a silent passion of mine since 3 years back. Or maybe since childhood, money has not made much sense to me really (there are and has been some spicy emotions about money, and I believe creating a local gift market will make a lot of them come out now).

The way I've structured it is quite easy (I'm describing the nuts and bolts here if you feel there might be something useful in it, if you'd like to do the same thing in essence where you are):

People gather every two weeks in the same place. The basic idea is; if you want to take things home from the market, you need to contribute with something to the market first. There is also this friendly atmosphere where you can sit down, have something to eat and drink, meet friends, look at what others have brought to the tables, and just enjoy the whole thing a lot.
  • You bring with you 10 items of the same kind, worth up to app. 15 USD each. (And 6 items for 15-60 USD each, 4 items for 60-120 USD each, and 1-2 items for more than that). The different "value" levels are color coded so it's easy to find things to bring home from the same price level. After contributing like this, you are then welcome to pick 10 items (or 6, 4 etc) from the same color code at the market as a thank you gift in return for what you gave away.
  • The theme for the market is Food - Handicraft - Gardening/Farming - Ecology - Household/Homesteading.
  • When you've contributed with 2 different items from this theme, you are also welcome to give away one type of Art/Decorative item to the market, in half the numbers as of the others (5 instead of 10, etc).
  • When half of what you've contributed with (say 10 pairs of potholders, and 5 are taken) has left the market (people have picked them out, "purchased" them), you are welcome to give another batch of the same kind of item to the market.
  • The kids have their own market fair table, and they can give 3 items of the same kind, but without any other restrictions (theme, value etc). As soon as they feel that they can make/put together something that adults would want, they are welcome to join the adults' market tables.
  • The whole idea is to inspire people to be creative, to be "producers rather than just passive consumers" and to realize that we can support each other without money on a large scale, even.
  • People pick blueberries, mushrooms, make metal bottle holders from copper threads, knit beanies or cook chutney or hundreds of other things.
  • Every adult gets to choose a plant name, and each child gets to choose an animal name. So whenever there's a contribution, I register what it was, what the plant name is, and also how many and what "value" level or color it gets. And when something leaves the market, when someone wants to have one of these things, I make a note that this plant name item is reduced by one, and that the person who picked an item from the market will now have one less item to choose/"buy" from the market.
In the future, I wish to see this develop into a natural resouce center of both people skills and physical items, both expensive/cheap and high-tech/advanced or very basic in their setup. I wish to see this on both a local, regional, national and international scale - and I hope a lot more people will want that too, and help making it happen :)

I'm absolutely thrilled and terrified about what might come out of this as it grows and quite likely becomes more and more loving in its setup, and useful, diverse and creative, with all these people involved at some point in time. Well, not terrified of the love, but of things like media attention/representing the whole thing on a bigger scene, discontent participants, someone getting food poisoned from something they got at the market, people spreading bad rumours about it, people stealing or creating trouble (being drunk, or starting to yell at someone)....

My life will not be about some chicken tiptoeing around no dragon no more, that I can tell you ;) :shock: :)

(I chose this board because I think this is about what comes up when using our free will to follow our desires, and how we often need to face fears that come up as we do that, but still wish to go that way. But maybe it fits better under another headline/board?)

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Sun Sep 20, 2015 9:56 pm
by Anneli
Oh, I just noticed that I had described one part of the market setup a bit fuzzy - People can bring only one type of item if they wish, they don't need to give things from each "value level" to the market.

I've tried to construct this whole thing in the most loving way I can, but if you notice something unloving in the setup, I'd appreciate if you let me know about it. I will look at it to see if I feel the same thing, and then see why I created it in an unloving way/what inside me caused that, and, after allowing and releasing those unloving emotions and false beliefs about it, hopefully I will find more loving ways to set it up from there on.

It seems like I also have a feeling about stepping out of line when it comes to how I express myself on this forum - the striving to perform well in front of the teacher in school still makes itself known every now and then. There are rules for this forum, and I wish to follow them, and at the same time there are faults within me, still making me doing and saying things out of addictions, fears and other unloving things. Only here, if "caught" doing it, I will find myself guided to see what I'm missing, and it's shared with me with the purpose of making me grow in love and truth. So, I appreciate being in front of these teachers a lot, while I progress further and further towards a more and more pure soul. Thank you, teachers, for being here!

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 3:07 am
by Mary
Hi Anneli,

Having just skimmed your post I see some errors in the way you are interpreting the meaning of gifting.

You said:
The basic idea is; if you want to take things home from the market, you need to contribute with something to the market first.
This means that your market is about barter and not gifting.
The whole idea is to inspire people to be creative, to be "producers rather than just passive consumers"
Your market structure does a lot to try to 'force' people into this mind set rather than inspiring them towards it. In truth, it never works to try to control people into being generous or into a feeling of being creative or productive.
When you've contributed with 2 different items from this theme, you are also welcome to give away one type of Art/Decorative item to the market, in half the numbers as of the others (5 instead of 10, etc).

When half of what you've contributed with (say 10 pairs of potholders, and 5 are taken) has left the market (people have picked them out, "purchased" them), you are welcome to give another batch of the same kind of item to the market.

The kids have their own market fair table, and they can give 3 items of the same kind, but without any other restrictions (theme, value etc). As soon as they feel that they can make/put together something that adults would want, they are welcome to join the adults' market tables.
All of these rules are a lot about your desire to control the outcome and behaviour of people present rather than to just be yourself and act in a desire to give.

You have some large injuries of a desire to control those around you - including and maybe especially members of your immediate family. This is quite oppressive for them and for others and while people may do what you want out of guilt or an addiction you meet for them, this injury will mean that you are not truly giving or loving them.

My suggestion would be to begin to grow the desire to become sensitive to your addiction for control (you often do this in what others may say is a 'jolly' way, but it is actually quite a forceful demand on your environment and those in it). If you begin to see your desire for control and the arrogance you have about doing things in the way you think things should be done, (you would call it the 'right' way, which is not necessarily what God feels about the same subjects) then you will have much more insight into what issues are effecting your market and also how your emotions are negatively effecting those around you.

Love
Mary

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 11:57 am
by Anneli
Thank you, Mary.

I went ahead after reading your feedback and asked God to help me see my wish to control my family, and found two belly twisting fears. One was like if I would not control my kids, it would be like putting them on a tiny wooden raft and push them out on the ocean on their own. The other one was like I needed to keep people at an armlengths distance, and steer their actions and behaviour with my attitude (with the jollyness, among other tools), or else they would transform into a herd of panicking buffaloos without any common sense, running down everything in their way (me). I found some grief at the bottom of these fears as well, but there is more in there still.

These fears have caused me to feel very superior to others, I've felt that I know better than others about life (because I am the one who needs to keep all the control over them, so I "logically had to" know more about them than they did, and what was the right thing to do , if I didn't want to face my fears). I also felt that my entire life has been about this need for control, and even more so after the babies were born. So I'm feeling kind of without a lot of my lifelong identity right now.

The releases I was helped to make now, were enough though to make me feel that I needed to change the form of the market in some ways. I'm still inviting people to the market, but now they are simply welcome to come and enjoy the market hours, sit down and have something to eat and drink if they wish, and bring gifts to the "gift pool", or the tables, if they wish. And they are equally welcome to choose what they wish or need from the tables that others have brought and gifted to whoever wants it.

I will ask for more help from God to feel through whatever remains in me about this need for control, and I will come back to what you've pointed out to me here, as long as it feels like there are still behaviours and fears of these sorts in me.

I appreciate so much to receive your feedback like this, and I am grateful that I had the chance now to change the direction and framework of the market so early on in its existence, before more people were involved in it. This way, everybody involved avoid getting entangled in my control addiction, and can rather focus on finding their own desire to give freely to others in a place like this market, for example.

Now I feel a bit more confident that my role at the gift market, is to make sure people simply behave ethically and lovingly towards each other and the gifts that are offered (by allowing them to be themselves, but also to ask people who act unlovingly to please return when they are capable of and want to choose to be more loving), rather than trying to control via rules that they behave ethically with everything, without me necessarily personally needing to engage in what happens (only needing to refer to "the rules", that in themselves would be there because I wouldn't trust people's love and good intentions in the first place, only fearing that their buffalo stampede instincts would knock me out of life if I left them entirely to their own discernments...)

Much love and appreciation for this,

Anneli

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:29 am
by Alkhemst
I'm really interested in this topic, the gift economy and the nature of money. What I've come to learn is money is just a tool or an instrument that allows us to work together in what doesn't need to be but is a convoluted world as a result of us being dominated by fear. So its actually a loving creation from that perspective.

So money is a tool to bridge trust because simply we dont trust each other, more to the point, we are afraid of one another. What we end up trusting more is an authority (that we made up, so we believe we can manage it), called government for example, which endorses one particular instrument of trust over others. So we put a fictional authority that we created over and above firstly ourselves, then over and above our real authority God. So God is at the bottom of our trust in this and who we fear most. So you've probably heard Jesus say we have it all backwards, well that's a good example.

But back to the topic, I reckon its important to know the condition of where we are, ourselves and others around us, when designing a better way of working / interacting together, which is one aim of creating a gift economy.

It's also probably worthwhile looking at money itself to understand why it works rather than just focusing on why it doesn't. The fact that might be happening for you points to an injury in relation to money. So if that's present and it is in various degrees for absolutely everyone, I'd speculate, then its not altogether a pure desire for you, which means there's an emotional investment in it. An investment means its underlined by needing a payback, which is barter. I'm not saying this means you shouldn't do it, but some deep soul searching would benefit you and what you're wanting to build.

One thing about why money works is money is always based on guiding principles. All governments for example have constitutions, and many of those are base on ethical standards of practice. What is also useful is everyone using money can refer back to a multitude of documentation that helps us know how we should conduct ourselves in relation to money. This means while it may not be perfect, there is a level of transparency underpinning it.

One way you could learn from what works and improve on it is having your gift economy based on God's constitution, or as best as it can be grasped. Jesus did one up for God's Way of Love company, that's worth looking at.

I'm saying this because I don't feel you really got what Mary was getting at. She wasn't saying you should discard all rules exactly, she was talking about the rules you put together. What you came up with next is to discard the rules but still enforce them, which is worse in my opinion.

Anyway some food for thought that could be useful.

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:25 am
by Anneli
Hi David,

Thank you for offering me your feedback. I've read both yours and Mary's responses several times, and have used a couple of days to reflect on them, because where Mary's response felt accurate and got me into "activating" my desire to acknowledge and finally deal with my need to control others, your response felt a bit attacking almost, in the sense that I felt misunderstood and a bit judged. I have that injury as well, about feeling misunderstood and not really heard by the other person, so I knew I had to feel if this was the case with your response as well, rather than you actually having that intention with your response.
I'm saying this because I don't feel you really got what Mary was getting at. She wasn't saying you should discard all rules exactly, she was talking about the rules you put together. What you came up with next is to discard the rules but still enforce them, which is worse in my opinion
I felt, from what I understood of her response, that she was spot on with pointing out my need to control people, especially my closest family, and that gifting should not be about that regulated bartering that was in my original way of organizing it.

I didn't feel that I removed all the rules because this is what I understood that Mary said that I should do, but because that decision felt like the most loving thing to do after my emotional realization about control, with regards to the people participating in the market, and also to reflect what "gifting" actually is. The only rule left is that people need to behave ethically and lovingly towards each other, and by that also recognize the value of gifts, rather than someone coming and grabbing it all over and over again from the tables, for example.

But maybe I'm not really getting what you mean, so I wonder if you would like to explain a bit more about how I'm still enforcing the rules although they are not present any longer? I'd appreciate that, because I feel that I could still be very entangled in and therefor a bit blinded by my life-long wish to control others behaviour.

To respond a bit to your feelings and thoughts about money in our society: I can't really agree, because I feel that money as a tool for exchange, and its inherent ability to be stockpiled and be the facilitator of power over a lot of things, is not loving, especially since money helps us turn our focus away from the kind of giving that nature does, which I feel is designed by God and seems like a good example of "how to give", as well as keeping us focused on what can be achieved with money, rather than investigating how God actually deserves to be trusted, in the sense that we can find a loving way to get our needs and desires met, without money as a go-between.

I do feel that it's possible to interact with money in loving ways, like with Yeshua and Miriam giving away everything they do for free, relying on donations, but I also know that money has been a part of my injuries for my whole life, in several ways, and that there is more to heal inside me about money, like the fact that I feel that God owes me for allowing me to get hurt as a child, and that I shouldn't have to be responsible for fixing my life with those experiences burdening me, and where money is an effective means to keep that whole thing in my soul in my face through the LoA, by not having much money at all, keeping me "disabled" in a way.
I'm challenging this more and more, ending my paid projects while facing my fears, starting up a donation based shop with my crochet and knitted items for people to get for free, one day relying entirely on donations and gifts, is the intention. Crochet and gift economy are passions of mine, but as you say, they can be stained by my injuries still.
One thing about why money works is money is always based on guiding principles. All governments for example have constitutions, and many of those are base on ethical standards of practice. What is also useful is everyone using money can refer back to a multitude of documentation that helps us know how we should conduct ourselves in relation to money. This means while it may not be perfect, there is a level of transparency underpinning it.
I feel that this is what I tried to enforce with my previous market rules. To have documentation, to be transparent, to guide people in how to conduct themselves/ourselves in relation to gifts. I'd put that it's useful to support our desire to not trust God and God's laws, and that it only keeps us away from exposing our fears about not getting what we need and desire unless we make it happen ourselves/through regulated interactions.

Again, I may have misunderstood you all the way through, and I would appreciate your clarification with respect to what I believe you meant.

Kind regards,
Anneli

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 11:31 am
by Mary
Hi Anneli,

We have been filming for a couple of days and the following message from me has been sitting in my drafts. Since then I see that David has responded to you and you to him. You message to him is completely in façade and you have blamed him for your arrogant and angry response to his kind and thoughtful message. This is a red strike offense. I have decided to post my original response with additional comments made today in italics for the benefit of other readers but am requesting that Nicky issue you with a red strike for addictive and arrogant behaviour in this and other posts on the forum.

In my response to your initial post I mentioned that you had a number of issues. I have summarized them below with some more details added as I feel that these principles are of benefit to point out so that others might learn. However the way in which you have responded to my initial post makes it clear to me that at present you are only interested in maintaining your facade and that you have definitely not begun to recognise or work through your issues of control - as many of them are still evident in your response to me.

You have not taken the time to properly reflect on or to understand my comments and you also now believe that you have 'sorted out' what to do with your market when in fact the same issues I raised with you still apply and the so called 'feeling' or 'processing that you did about your issues with control were COMPLETELY in your façade.

You are angry.

You believe that you are right to have control.

And you have not yet connected emotionally with the truth of these feelings. And you certainly don't feel that these feelings and beliefs are sinful. So you have definitely not felt any fear or grief in relation to your issues of control.

The initial issues that I raised with you were:

1. You do not have a soul based understanding of gifting or the desire to give true gifts.


You resist truthfully giving because of some angry beliefs about money and feeling entitled to things that you want to hold on to. As a result you prefer the actions of barter and of controlling people into what you call 'giving' in response to your demands.

2. You are trying to engender and illicit emotions and motivations in people rather than respecting their free will to feel and do as they wish.


You say that you are attempting to inspire people but really you are directing them as to what they have to do e.g. how many 'gifts' they have to bring etc. There are emotional reasons why you don't respect people's choices. There is a lot of arrogance in you that causes you to feel entitled to bully people and to try to make them 'be' or 'feel' a certain way or to 'like' certain things.

The way to inspire people towards love is to live an example of loving and truthful behaviour. Since you are not doing that it is impossible for you to inspire them. And your controlling and arrogant projections towards people actually makes them less likely to be loving – not more.

At the moment you are trying to influence people into various emotions and motivate them without honouring their choices or the truth that the only way that people will truly feel creative and desire to give is by making some emotional changes inside of themselves. At the moment your intention to 'give' is not pure and so it is impossible for you to inspire people into a pure state of giving.

3. You have a lot of issues with control for control over others which you are acting out via your market.

This is an emotional issue out of harmony with love and is different to having rules and guidelines that govern your event. Having loving laws is a good thing. God has them. But at the moment, since your emotional condition is so domineering towards others you are not able to understand what love would do from a soul level. This also means that no matter way you SAY are the 'rules' or 'laws' that govern your event, everyone there is going to FEEL what you really believe which is that they should 'give' and 'like' doing it and to do things your way.

4. You have a large facade and think of yourself as 'good'. You feel morally superior to others and believe that people should do things your way.

These emotional injuries are quite oppressive towards the people around you and cause you to be very bossy and self righteous with others. And you have just been very self righteous and projected blame and rage at David.

You also arrogantly believe that you have understood my previously feedback regarding the issues you have with your market and that you have begun to deal with your issues of control when your responses indicate that you clearly haven't done so.

From your response to me and to David it is very clear that you didn't reflect upon your own condition or understand what we were attempting to help you with. I can also feel that you still feel very self righteous about controlling others and still feel morally superior to others. Until you can feel the sin in these states you will not make any changes.

In addition to these issues that I have highlighted, David has given you some great suggestions and feedback. If ever do grow the desire to deal with these issues sincerely I would also recommend you reviewing my posts on facade and all of the material created by Jesus and I that deals with the subjects of addiction and facade.

I would also refer you to the following feedback I shared with others that apply to you also:

Red Strike post for Jennifer B. about her attack on David

http://forum.divinetruthhub.com/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=291

All of my comments to Jennifer apply to you, you have behaved in almost the exact same way – in your addiction to have others share in your façade based 'emotional processing' and in the way that you projected blame and an accusation of attack on to David for simply offering you alternate point of view in a very kind way.

Feedback I gave to Marina in her introduction thread
The resistance to seeing how many demands one places on their environment and how truly sinful this is, is an issue for a number of people who are listening to Divine Truth at the moment. Living like this and refusing to see the sin in it - actually viewing the state as righteous - seriously degrades an individual's soul condition.
Mary

Anneli, I want to make clear that you having these issues is not why I am issuing you with a strike. It is your lack of sincerity to acknowledge or to deal with these issues and to continually interact with people via a facade that are in direct opposition to living God's Way and the things that mean that you will continue to be unloving towards others while a member of this forum. Should you choose to become more real and deal with your unloving expectations then that would demonstrate a sincerity that is lacking in you at this time and would mean that you were eligible to be a part of the forum.

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:56 pm
by Pierrejoseph
Thank you very much Alkhemst for sharing your very interesting insights about money. This is certainly a major issue for me and most of us on the planet I feel. It is so easy to get to point it out as the "evil" think that if we remove it the problem will be solved, but we are completely self deluding ourselves because the issue remains in our soul and all our alternative creations from this injured place can only be other systems which are not harmonious with love as well. This topics of money, and fear of lack is worth a topic in itself I feel. Oh my.... I personally would love a gifting economy and I "tried" to live in it at some time in the past (offering services just on donation basis) but then I I became aware how my soul beliefs are still of a barter economy - it is so ingrained and such a profound sinful process I realize now - no matter what I pretend or "try" to do with my willpower. As Mary pointed out somewhere on the forum, we are / I am never going to be able to purely love as long as I have this constant demands placed on the world on everything we do/I do to "help" others. This is so sad.

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:31 am
by Alkhemst
Pierrejoseph wrote:Thank you very much Alkhemst for sharing your very interesting insights about money. This is certainly a major issue for me and most of us on the planet I feel. It is so easy to get to point it out as the "evil" think that if we remove it the problem will be solved, but we are completely self deluding ourselves because the issue remains in our soul and all our alternative creations from this injured place can only be other systems which are not harmonious with love as well.
No probs, I just find it a compelling topic. You're right about the idea of money being "evil", its an illogical statement when you think about it, money has no free will so it can't decide to act in an evil manner. It's not even a physical object anymore as well, its really just a record of credits or debits stored mostly now as ones and zeros (binary code).

If you think about it that's what the law of compensation requires to work, a perfectly accurate account of when we use our will in (credit) or out (debt) of harmony with love. It's just that it's in our souls looked after by God, not on a series of computer servers managed by man. So if that makes God an accountant, he'd be the best!

Re: Creating a local gift economy

Posted: Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:18 am
by Anita
I have little money and the emotion that I will never get any either. I fear that I will eventually become homeless. Recently I have noticed that I project at others that they should provide for me since I have so little, even at daughter, she has much more than I've ever had. I can feel the demand coming out of me when I talk about things I want. I'm aware of it but I don't know how to stop it. I need to really feel how sinful it is.

I have Huge demands on mother, she gives me money which keeps me afloat. I justify my demands on her that she owes me, since she was such a crappy mother. And that it is my parents fault that I can not, and do not seem to know how to, get, earn or provide wealth for myself.
It's my uselessness and it get's enforced when I accept money from her, and it makes me even less capable of seeing or feeling that I can actually provide for myself.

Anita