Ecological Awakening Conversation 1: The Root of Disorder

Ecological Awakening Conversation 1: The Root of Disorder

In this short conversation, my dear friend Winston Janusz and I discuss the root of human disorder. As I said in my book, Ecological Awakening, I feel we have to deal with the source of our problems and not just try to fix individual symptoms. 

Winston has a Master of Divinity degree and is a licensed therapist. I, Morgan Caraway, am a published author and natural building instructor who has written numerous books including, The Book of Leaves: Reflections on Dying and Change, and, Blessed Disillusionment: Seeing Through Ideas of Separation.


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Why Money is a Terrible God

Why Money is a Terrible God

“Your people are driven by a terrible sense of deficiency. When the last tree is cut, the last fish is caught, and the last river is polluted; when to breathe the air is sickening, you will realize, too late, that wealth is not in bank accounts and that you can’t eat money.” - Alanis Obomsawin

Most of us are raised in cultures where we are taught to value currency at a very young age. It’s one of the early, formative lessons—money is important. We might see our parents struggle to make ends meet or, conversely, see the comfort they enjoy by having more than enough. These lessons run deep and inform our sense of security, even as adults. We also see what happens to people who don’t have money—they are usually homeless, or vagabonds, eking out a meager existence by begging, digging through trash, or dumpster diving.

Modern economies are driven by money. Tribal cultures had strong social bonds and took care of the weak and the helpless. People traded for whatever else they needed, and items of value were directly exchanged. Around 3000 BC, the Mesopotamians came up with the shekel—a standardized unit of weight to measure and trade grain. Silver and gold coins, emblazoned with a lion head, were first minted around 600 BC by King Alyattes of the Lydians (now Turkey). Moneys printed with silver and gold are commodity money, meaning—they are generally considered valuable in themselves. Paper money originated in China during the Song dynasty. Marco Polo incredulously recounted how this money was created from mulberry tree bark in The Travels of Marco Polo. The Khan had the money printed and stamped with royal seals and let everyone know it was good for trading for anything, including gold. Paper money is representative currency, meaning, it doesn’t have value, in itself, but represents either a small amount of something generally considered precious, such as the gold standard, or the word of a government or other official agency as to its value (fiat currency). Most modern currencies don’t have a physical existence at all, this includes the money generated by fractional banking and cryptocurrencies.

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Why You Should Buy Directly from Authors

The CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, makes $2800.00 a second. Impressive, right? As you probably know, Amazon started out as an online discount bookstore and almost single-handedly, drove mom and pop book sellers to extinction. Now, you can buy just about anything on Amazon, and the vast majority is manufactured in China. Amazon has been so successful that even big-box store goliath Wal Mart has been forced to match their online prices and offer two-day shipping.

But, to go back a bit, as I said earlier, the foundation of Amazon was built on the backs of authors. Recently I uploaded my book, Ecological Awakening, to Amazon's kindle ebook store. At first I sold a decent amount of copies, good enough to make it the top-selling book in its category, but sales soon dropped off. I considered trying some advertising but, to do so, I would have to offer my book on kindle unlimited, which basically means you give it away for free. There is a monthly fund shared among kindle authors but it came to light that most of it is stolen by unscrupulous authors who engage in "stuffing," which means, artificially inflating their pages read count by publishing the same material under different names. By doing this, these individuals have made up to $100,000 in a month. This leaves honest authors, such as myself, not making a penny off of our work.

Other problems I have with the way they treat authors:

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