Framing the Supra-Narrative

The Tension

SEEDS has the potential to make a significant difference at the supra level (see below for definitions). However, it feels as if many of the discussions about SEEDS are focussed on the nano, micro and to some extent the meso levels. As SEEDS storytellers, how do we ensure we encapsulate all levels in our storytelling? How do we help the emerging supra-narrative to take shape?

This topic explores a possible framework, in the form of a book, which has the intention of inspiring a wide range of audiences (outside of SEEDS) to take a bold evolutionarily coherent leap towards a higher level of complexity in their own lives, their organisations, their bioregion, their nation and the planet. As they do this, much of the work required for them to fully understand why SEEDS exists will have been done.

The Levels

  • Nano (the personal level)
  • Micro (the organisational level - home, church, school, business, government, etc.)
  • Meso (the bioregional level)
  • Macro (the economic, ecological and social level, taking into account the rise and fall of earlier civilisations)
  • Supra (the planetary level, taking into account the relative ease with which species can and do adapt to changes in their environment).

The Need

If you feel the call to help with telling the supra-narrative, please read through the following posts to get a feel of where we’re going. As you read through them, please do add any suggestions/ideas/critiques/comments as they come up.

The biggest need we have right now are case studies of SEEDS projects which have creatively funded liquidity pools. If you can help with telling their story, please see Case Studies.

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Book Concept

The book introduces the concept of the Transformational Trilateral Treatise (T³ or Tcubed). This is a proposal to create healthy flow between three sectors in society— business, government and corporate—with the aim of nurturing the emergence of a Regenerative civilisation, as the Extractive civilisation collapses.

The brief book’s tentative title is Rebuilding Society. The intention is to align it around the theme of Rebalancing Society by Prof. Henry Mintzberg.

A draft document will be shared in due course, but for now, here are a few further details for those who would like to start co-creating now.

About the Book

  • Primary Audience: Business and Government visionaries who want to make an impact and/or leave a legacy
  • Secondary Audience: Anyone interested in building regenerative communities.
  • Challenge About a Diverse Audience: Making the content meaningful enough to appeal to CEOs, while simultaneously meaningful to anyone, no matter their education level. Also, the book cannot be categorised into any of the typical categories: economics, history, civil society, business books, etc.
  • Length: 33-38,000 words (about 80 Google docs pages) - similar length to Rebalancing Society.
  • Objective: To solve the significant ESG (Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance) problem CEOs are about to face, while creating healthy flows from corporate (fiat) revenues to regenerative (tokenised) projects.

Book Framework

Section 1 - Where We Are (current situation)

Part 1 - Reality Check

A cold, hard look at the systems making up our civilisation (without once referring to CO2 levels, global warming or other obvious symptoms).

Part 2 - Roles

Using the Shareholder-Stakeholder debate, we show that each sector of society has specific strengths. We show how SDG-like targets can be ‘outsourced’ to Plural, allowing business to focus on innovation and commerce. Introduction to what crypto has achieved.

Part 3 - Flow

Referring back to the 3 ecosystems in Nature, we show how flow can be created into the Plural sector. In so doing, we rebalance society, as called for by Henry Mintzberg. More detailed discussion of ReFi value creation.

Section 2 - Where We’re Headed (Tcubed explained)

Part 1 - Nodes of Innovation (Cities) & Nodes of Regeneration

The private sector is concerned about CSR and ESG. We show how, even when the numbers aren’t greenwashed, results don’t transform the system, which means we never improve. Instead, companies can focus on innovation in cities and regenerative projects can do their thing in rural areas in a symbiotic relationship. Explains how cities and outlying communities create flow between each other and flow between Sustainable systems and Regenerative systems.

Part 2 - Glocal

A discussion of bioregionalism and globalism. The importance of geophysical vs national boundaries.

Part 3 - Case Studies

Examples of SEEDS projects where liquidity pools have been funded through creative partnerships with HNWIs, businesses or local governments.

Section 3 - How to Get There (things the reader can do)

Part 1 - Public

What visionary public sector leaders and players can do, without changing policy.

Part 2 - Private

What visionary corporate leaders and employers can do, without negatively impacting their share price.

Part 3 - Plural

The important missing piece in grassroots activist movements. How activists must shift from competing against them to creating healthy value flows between systems that are dying and systems that are emerging.

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The Systems

The book starts with a brief overview of the systems which make up our civilisation. Shown below are links which are included as footnotes to additional resource material. Please feel free to suggest additional systems and/or changes to this list.

  • An economic system intentionally designed to accumulate wealth (and in so doing, perpetuate poverty.)
  • A public health system built on a flawed understanding of how natural, healthy ecosystems function.
  • A food system designed for commercial efficiency rather than ecosystem health and so our food poisons rather than nourishes.
  • An education system which teaches conformity and scarcity, dissuades risk-taking and suppresses creative, independent thought.
  • A media system which exists solely to maintain the functioning of an economic system designed to accumulate wealth.
  • A political system which promotes the wellbeing of corporations at the expense of the people.
  • A belief system based on competition rather than collaboration and which rewards extraction rather than regeneration.
  • A scientific system based on limited Newtonian physics where visible matter is emphasised over the invisible energetic realm.
  • Global institutions like the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development working on the wicked problems of humanity. Despite their efforts over many decades, social and ecological concerns have never been higher.
  • An allopoietic religious system that abdicates personal responsibility to various forms of external power.

From the Book:

Each system— independently— is an epitome of complexity. The relationship between each system is exponentially more complex. Each of these individual systems of society are stacked like Matryoshka dolls to create an operating system we call civilisation. We have willingly embraced these systems in the name of progress. In the process, we’ve individually developed a ‘civilised’ mindset. Collectively, our individual mindsets have created a socio-cultural ‘reality’. This worldview has been embraced as almost the only acceptable form of civilised progress. The packaging is so appealing that non-westernised societies aspire to this ‘pioneer’ species, rapacious mentality. As we will shortly see, they aspire to adopt a system of societal development and inevitable collapse. Native American mythologies have a name for this insanity: Wetiko.

The Historical Precedents

The book includes reference to historically significant events that laid the groundwork for our existing civilisation. They are presented in story form, to make it easier for the average reader to follow.

Shown below (in list form) are the key events which may or may not be included as footnotes to additional resource material. There are far too many events to include them all. Please feel free to suggest events to be dropped, additional events and/or changes to this list.

  • 0313AD: The Edict of Milan gave Christianity legal status and a reprieve from persecution. In the three hundred years prior to the agreement, about a tenth of the Roman Empire had converted to Christianity. The agreement enabled —in less than a hundred years —a significant shift from the polytheistic worship that was dominant at the time.
  • 0325: The First Council of Nicaea was the first effort to attain consensus across all Christian beliefs. The Council laid the groundwork for the establishment of a state religion.
  • 0380: The Edict of Thessalonica made Nicene Christianity the state religion of the Roman Empire. Combined, these key events took Christianity from a small persecuted religious sect to the strongest and dominant religion in the Roman Empire. A key teaching of Christianity is the dominion of man over Nature. In other words, the belief that man controls Nature has its roots in these early events.
  • 0534: The Corpus Juris Civilis (“Body of Civil Law”), becomes the first scientific collection of Roman legal documents. This act, by order of Emperor Justinian I, codifies the Roman way of governance, based on the state religion of Christianity.
  • 0596: The Gregorian Mission was an effort by Pope Gregory the Great to convert Britain’s Anglo-Saxons to Christianity and to introduce Roman Civil Law to Britain. By the time of the death of the last missionary in 653 the mission was largely a success.
  • 1050: The Gregorian Reforms were a series of reforms initiated by Pope Gregory VII, which solidified the moral integrity and independence of the clergy. In other words, the precedent was set for the church to operate above and beyond the laws of the state. They accomplished this by claiming infallible knowledge, because their teachings came from a superior source (God).
  • 1066: The Battle of Hastings was fought between the Norman-French army and England, beginning the Norman conquest of England. Before the Battle, the people of England held allodial title to their land. In other words, they were granted custodianship of any land by their occupancy of the land. In other words, no one owned land they didn’t occupy. By 1086, William the Conqueror had surveyed and documented vast tracts of land in the Domesday Book. This survey shifted the concept of land as ‘custodianship’ to land as ‘ownership.’
  • 1452: The Doctrine of Discovery was invoked by Pope Alexander VI, which established a spiritual, political, and legal justification for colonization and seizure of land not inhabited by Christians.
  • 1450–1640: At the same time the justification for seizure of land was created, the Enclosure Movement in England took off. A number of laws were passed which increased the amount of full-time pasturage available to manorial lords, by taking land away from the community (the commons).
  • 1501-1875: The Transatlantic Slave Trade exported African labour to both Americas and the Caribbean, on the premise that they were ‘not Christians.’ This period also included a number of conquests of ‘heathen’ nations, which started the European colonization of the Americas.
  • 1776: Wealth of Nations published by Adam Smith.
  • 1798: An Essay on the Principle of Population published by Thomas Malthus.
  • 1817: The Doctrine of Comparative Advantage, introduced by David Ricardo, keeps citizens of countries rich in natural resources in constant poverty, so that the low-cost labour can be used to extract mineral wealth.
  • 1912: Ludwig von Mises publishes The Theory of Money and Credit.
  • 1914-1918: World War I
  • 1929-1935: Great Depression
  • 1936: The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money published by John Maynard Keynes.
  • 1939-1945: World War II
  • 1947: Inaugural Mont Pelerin Society meeting arranged by Friedrich Hayek.
  • 1980: Ronald Reagan elected president in US and Margaret Thatcher elected prime minister in the UK, kicking off the on-the-ground implementation of Neoliberalism.

Indigenous Governance

Also discussed in this section is The Haudenosaunee Confederacy, the oldest living participatory democracy on earth. In story form, an explanation is provided as to why Neoliberalism flourished while The Haudenosaunee Confederacy was never widely adopted.

Case Studies

This section of the book will include examples of SEEDS (or other token) projects where liquidity pools have been funded through creative partnerships with HNWIs, businesses or local governments. If you can help with telling the story of any of these projects, please provide the following:

  • Geographic location, including a pin on a Google map
  • Names of key people, including links to their social profiles or bio’s
  • What kind of project it is e.g. agroforestry, carbon sequestration, local employment, etc.
  • What stage the project is in: Forming, Storming, Norming, or Performing. See explanation.
  • How funding was achieved i.e. tell the story about how the PPP partnership came to be, what each party liked about the concept, etc.
  • Why you’re excited by the project. In other words what kind of impact the project will have.

Each case study should be about a page long, but this is certainly no hard and fast rule.

Great to see what work you’ve put into this. I’m also excited to see more storytelling evolve on the supra-level and I’m curious to see this book evolving.

As requested, here is some feedback I could find:

If you take food as a separate system I’d suggest to do the same with shelter.

For the rest I feel you are comparing a primitive now to a prosperous potential. Here I think it is important to not look too primitive at the ‘now’. I like to think of the world as a beautiful place that we try to make even more beautiful. I think focusing on this would make the message even stronger. Many people who are already happy with the way things are going will probably dislike a too negative tone towards the current system (and I think this is especially the case for CEO’s, whom you’ve mentioned to target). It is important to light up the flaws, but also to not exaggerate them. For example; the description of the media system seems wrong to me, especially because of the word “solely”. Out of that, I agree with the high focus there is on this area that you mention. I think it gives more strength to the story when not being too negative about certain things.

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Great point about not being too negative, Bart, thank you and taken on board.
When you see the final writing you’ll see that I’m actually writing about the systems themselves rather than the individual developments, which is what most people write about when they’re discussing human progress. I’m framing them all as sub-systems within the meta-system of Societal Development and Collapse, which has played out a number of times in history.

Will definitely revisit the words used and make sure my bias doesn’t come through too much :blush:

Re: shelter. Could you point me in the direction of any studies that look at how we have progressed from communal shelter to ‘private ownership’? No worries if you can’t - would just save some time :sweat_smile:

I would also be interested in studies about how the development of shelter went. I know it is described in the book “Sapiens - Yuval Noah Harari” so maybe look between his sources. He doesn’t go too deep into it so in the book itself you might not find the detail you are looking for.

It is also interesting to take a look at how the concept ownership works quite different in most of the Arabic world when it comes to housing. Also here, I don’t even know enough of the Arabic system to give a clear preference (from the information I’ve heard I think I’d prefer the Arabic system and they must both have their pros and cons).

How far did you get with your book itself? Any structure of the final product already into place?

I’m going to check out "Rebalancing Society by Prof. Henry Mintzberg :slight_smile: , would you recommend reading that?

Thanks for the pointers on shelters - will see what rabbit holes this will lead me down :rabbit:

Yip, the writing is progressing well, but it’s too early to share a draft just yet. Hopefully within a week.

I highly recommend Rebalancing Society. It was a penny dropping read for me, because he speaks about the 3 sectors and how they should be balanced. He misses the impact DeFi (or ReFi) can make, which is forgivable, considering his background. His book is where the idea of flow between the 3 sectors came from. I would ultimately see this book becoming part 2 of his book i.e. they are companion volumes. Discussions were kicked off with him this week…

You can read his book in under 2 hours. Short, sharp and to the point. I loved it.