Transition Culture

An Evolving Exploration into the Head, Heart and Hands of Energy Descent

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10 Jan 2013

What would you like to see on Transition Culture in 2013?


Detail from an Aberystwyth Transition Town Initiative poster.

As we kick off 2013, and as I start to plan what I’m going to be doing on Transition Culture over the year, it would be great to hear your thoughts.  Are there any people you would particularly like me to interview?  Any aspects of Transition you would like discussed or explored?  Any projects you’ve heard about that you would like to hear more about?  Any debates or discussions you would like to see take place here?  Do you find the podcasts useful, or do you prefer the written word?  Coming soon are interviews with Josiah Meldrum of Hodmedods Peas and Beans (you’re going to love it) and David Gershon, author of ‘Social Change 2.0′, but I’d love to hear your thoughts.  Thank you so much.

Categories: General

Comments are now closed on this site, please visit Rob Hopkins' blog at Transition Network to read new posts and take part in discussions.


Ben Leeman
10 Jan 11:06am

Transition culture is just the beginning of a new sustainable and ethical new worldview.
The domination of global financial institutions, global corporations, the industrial/military network, the warmongers who are using the popular media to promote terrorism, hatred of the ‘other’ and wars so that the resources of these unfortunately countries can be exploited by multinational companies needs to end.
Only then can the Transition Movement really bloom. Living sustainable through such practices as recycling, growing one’s one veggies, minimising the use of non-renwable resources, etc. is a start. But we need to do much more. Hence the need for an ethical worldview and a basis for developing an ecological sustainable occupation of this globe where resources are shared in a socially just manner rather than fought over.

10 Jan 11:22am

Wonder if TC could explore tougher topics like green-health ? medicines, NHS?/etc…. and a difficult topic but equally how best to manage the end of our time on this wonderful planet and by that I mean elderly care? / green burials, etc. these are tough subjects but rarely discussed. is it a step too far ?…

Other possible topics. Young People – In Scotland, Young Scot are developing a points/reward programme for green action. So Scottish Communities Climate Action Network might be worth chatting too. Several transition groups up here are members. We are also exploring those difficult conversations with the corporate sector in Scotland too. So rather than treating them like aliens, we are trying to explore projects which have mutual benefit, like community work hubs, revolving loan funds, etc.

I’d also like to hear more about what’s not working, what isnt sustainable, or how finance/grant aid is affecting transition groups etc. again in Scotland CCF is a great fund, but does it lead you down certain paths that tick boxes for Gov officials, or not….

We could also explore the links with the Development Trust movement in the UK. how many transition groups are in towns that also have dev trusts or co-ops, CIC’s etc.

Loads to explore for 2013. keep up the great work – thanks to all in Transition world for 2012. every bit inspiring.

Raimi Stranger
10 Jan 11:28am

The power of bankers over governments and religion and this over almost all people worldwide is the unjust laws which have been passed to allow private individuals to create money from nothing and not only charge interest on this money they gain from nothing ,but never create money for the interest amount on any loan because money is only created as capital of a loan… the debt of whole countries as well as most men to a few private individuals thus is guaranteeed to exponentiate giving these men power to own everything in the world that can be bought, even most of mankind and its governments … this is evil on it’s greatest scale and there can be no transition until it ends… God’s stated solution is to let it destroy this earth and to create a new earth where Love between folks is essentially the first and last rule of life [as a second death is the reward of those who do not respect Love… that then is God’s prophesied transition for mankind, to take the few who Love now to build the kingdom come of Jesus for a thousand years before the attempt to save the many from themselves as they were in this life, to inspire with a pre-established Loving community which Jesus claims will save billions -Rev 7:9-10 ,whereas few will be saved now and the many and this earth destroyed by the ways most choose to follow now -Matt 7:13-14 :-

2 Peter 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness [to God’s and Jesus command to Love, no more sin -Ezekiel 18:24]

Revelation 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away

Isaiah 65:17 For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

the reason is not just because creating new worlds is exactly what God does, but because death frees mankind from sin [Romans 6:7], a wider solution than grace on the past sins of the few when they freely choose love over the ways most live by in the capitalist rat-race and mass religion of divided sinners…

I say this because it will become apparent very soon that those with power to control even the beliefs of mankind with mere money they legally stole for nothing by changing laws to allow it, will not yield their power except in death of this world [and their own of course, which God ensures comes first so that folks can see what denying Love leads to , the worst time ever for mankind that has been or will be – Matthew 24]

it is as well then to realise that bible prophecy is very different from religion of sinners , in fact Jesus warned mankind against mass religion -Rev 13:3-4, that it would be completely corrupted by Satan manifest as a man of sin claiming he is God, is the Christ … accepted by most Jews even as their Messiah… the Antichrist with entourage of ministers ruling the whole world, the NWO even…

I would suggest the point will become rather apparent fairly soon now , capitalism has reached the point where ownership of the planet by oneman will soon be complete with everyone else in exponentially increasing unrepayable fake debt to him… as indeed ‘economic theory’ requires [but few acknowledge the mathematical truth of this … but as Einstein said , compond interest is the greatest power in the universe- after God’s Love only … and God knows full well how few people believe in Love which is the only way to know God … ]
1 John 4:8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

1 John 4:16 and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

so a very few choose Love and God tells them the Truth , most though will sadly die because they deny their own Love to follow liars in politics and religion…

John 14:26 the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and remind you of all things that I said to you.

one chooses freely what to believe in, but many are not very careful about it … so perhaps it is worth more than anything to discuss how one comes to know from God , and how one comes to be lied to by men of power of lies…

2 Timothy 2:19 Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.

Betty Dawes
10 Jan 12:00pm

I have no specific suggestions. However can we have
the written word? Your posts are always interesting and the links useful for further reference. Thanks for all your efforts. Betty.

Jonathan Crinion
10 Jan 12:07pm

Perhaps interview the Prime Minister?

paula soares
10 Jan 2:01pm

I would love to focus on ‘applied transition in universities’… practical projects in action that contribute to the change in the academies on a deep level in terms of methodologies, approaches, connectiveness, etc.
It would be very interesting to co-create a net of universities that are interested in being a part of the ‘transition in academies’… not so much to do ‘research’, but to ‘act’ with consciousness…
Hopefully there will be a tribe of universities of the future that come together…!!
Huge hug for all your great inspiration rob hopkins and the transition network!!

10 Jan 2:28pm

I love the podcasts but I would really like to see video instead/as well, even if it was a low quality Skype capture.

It would be great to see (and hear) and interview with Vandana Shiva.

Please keep up the great work.

Teen Ross
10 Jan 4:01pm

A podcast / video interview with Stephan Harding would be a wonderful thing…

Brad K.
10 Jan 4:25pm

Social values.

Our industrialized school systems were instituted to produce factory workers — obedient, understand (read, write, math, social awareness) and follow instructions carefully, respond well to authority, punctual, and trained to work by the clock.

Then, after WWII, the government and big business became invested in scientists and engineers (and universities started receiving all the money, if they would just graduate more students). And elementary and secondary education systems began siphoning off all the “college” prospects, redirecting them from serving their community, to “bettering themselves”, “serving their nation”, or just “because a college education is important“.

Now, as the industrial age comes to a close, how is a resilient community going to take charge of their children’s education. The purpose? First, to assure that the values and experience that nurture and grow the community are indeed passed on to following generations, in such a way that that knowledge base remains reasonably intact despite the opposing needs of competing special interests.

Next, if we worry about local food security, how much more important must it be, for a sustainable answer, to assure a sustainable body of people growing up and investing in the needs of the community, first? How can any social structure survive, without assuring that progeny are educated and raised to serve the community first?

Or should Transition continue to contribute their children to national (special) interests?

Should each Transition community consider where it needs its best and brightest youngsters? How to raise them into the crafts and responsibilities that they are suited for, that the community will stand stronger for having those best suited to the jobs that need to be done? From dog catcher to street sweeper, blacksmith and glass maker, roof repairman and road builder, bridge maintainer and farmer — the industrialized school system isn’t focused on communities surviving — school systems can always consolidate, to preserve careers of teachers and administrators, tax bases, and government funding. But the communities . . Here in rural America, we often see what happens to a community as schools are consolidated away.

The university system seems broken, as more graduates are produced for a falling number of niches sustaining the industrial age. Will schools be allowed to crash and bur, or can something useful (to the community) yet be salvaged?

Of course, there is that companion question: If your ideas are worthwhile, where are your children? “Children are our immortality” has been expressed many times, yet still I see the lingering “I won’t impose more mouths on a hunger planet”. Unless you are going to solve hunger in your own lifetime (it hasn’t happened yet, in the lifetimes of many people), then how will you go about assuring that your community, and world, will continue to work on solutions to the tough problems? Is this an issue that can be (or should be) surrendered to the social institutions created to sustain the industrial age?


gael bage
10 Jan 5:46pm

I would like to see more creativity, and sharing of art craft and skills between the wisdom and experience of the elderly and the evolving intelligence of the young that encourages mutual respect.
Also education is still geared up to the old industrial capitalist society, it needs to change to encourage more imagination,creative options and be individually tailored to each childs abilities and talents. We still need good literacy and numeracy to develop individual paths.
Councils should be more accountable to community and encourage low impact sustainable housing.
our financial system is corrupt, has no sound basis and is ripe for change. If anyone else did what the bankers do they would be behind bars – how come they have immunity ? As for government well we pay a fortune in tax, purchase tax and car tax – surely some is left to repair infrastructure, our local roads have multiple craters some large enough to burst a tyre or ruin suspension, driving takes enough concentration without scanning for such hazards on the road continually.
We should plant more trees to help mitigate global warming.
Farmers should stop squandering soil fertility, and stop destroying wildlife with chemicals nicotinoids are killing our bees – no fertilisation and we starve. Other chemicals destroy life in the soil, and run off into our rivers and drinking water.
land can be managed to retain water better, hedgerows could be more productive not just a boundary, they could produce fruit nuts and fodder for cattle.
with social services failing we need to manage our own social support system.
promote sustainable bio-technology more and be more adventurous using closed cycles to reduce waste.

James R. Martin
10 Jan 7:08pm

“What would you like to see on Transition Culture in 2013?”

Thanks for that question!

Perhaps I was slow on the uptake, but I only recently learned that a top world expert on Arctic sea ice (ACI) publically predicts that ACI should disappear in summer within a mere four years. Learning this was like getting hit by a truck for me. For it is all happening so fast — and so much faster than predicted in the recent past. “It all” being the whole spectrum of anthropogenic climate disruption, destabilization, or whatever we want to call it. It has me profoundly worried, and even a little scared.

And to be honest, I feel that I’m going through a grieving process. Not yet the Hospice Scenario grief, but the grieving which comes with a great loss, nonetheless. Species are going extinct; people are dying in extreme weather events; once fertile lands are drying up and blowing away, forests are burning and dying….

I live in the land of extreme denial and cultivated ignorance: the USA. I hear that folks on the other side of the pond are not quite so committed to ignorance and denial on the climate emergency (that’s what I’m calling it now – not ‘change’ nor even ‘crisis’). But here in my neck of the woods don’t appear to be grieving or afraid, or even much concerned. They don’t see any dang emergency. Or so it seems.

So will you make one of your posts address the question of urgency and the risk (or danger) of any tendency we may have to put a BAND-AID® on gaping lacerations? And in that post, would you please address the question – “By what percent must we be reducing our fossil fuel consumption, and in what time frame?” I’ve seen numbers like 70% in just a few years (round it to 5-7).

The core question I’d like you to address is … “Is this thing a little ol’ crisis, or is it an emergency?” and “If it be an emergency,
why are we not taking it all that seriously?” (At least here in the USA.)

James R. Martin
10 Jan 7:12pm


I meant to type:

“But here in my neck of the woods, [folks] don’t appear to be grieving or afraid …”

Brian Smith
10 Jan 10:56pm

Celebration of simplicity, with features of what has worked when technology has been removed from the process would be really helpful.

Keep it simple, should be our guiding principle for future success.

Kind regards and best wishes for 2013.

Jo Homan
10 Jan 11:54pm

I’d like more stuff on inner transition since that is at least half the story for every single person involved in transition. It’s not just what we do but how we do it. Pieces that examine or reflect on personal resilience, positivity and visioning.
I guess one aim of this blog is to foster or exemplify or showcase a more mature culture, one that goes beyond bright ideas and ‘how-to’s. Although those positive values are contained within the tone and subject matter, I think it would be good to bring it to the foreground sometimes.

Raimi Stranger
11 Jan 8:02am

…mankind is systematically destroying the future possibility of life on earth in every way possible simultaneously , and yet there is no sense of urgency, no priorities, no resistance to the evil of man against man… and no exploration of what is beyond the end we now pursue with complacent faith in man … man who unleashed the synthetic Mycoplasma on the whole earth to create synthetic evolution of an elite in pre-supposed control of the cure, man who engineered world wars and now want a third to reduce the population of wage-slaves to its now-crumbling fake virtual money con-game, man who has decimated land and sea for supposed ‘profit’ which has profited no-one except to deliver power to the decimators… just opening the eyes is the first requirement and the next is to cease denial and be honest, to face the Truth that man has given too much power over man to his own worst enemy, man, for nothing … then, and perhaps only then, will one even begin to seek the only solution there ever was , which even thousands of years ago has been said , that most will not even see until it is too late…
simply consider where we come from, how our world and consciousness just begin and end… but from what ? … then note Love still exists which none can bottle or put a price-tag on … and wonder why God puts so much emphasis on Love alone… nothing else…
then you may just begin to see there is and always was only one solution to mankind’s slavery and destruction of mankind and this earth… the solution never changed, only men change…

Philip Revell
11 Jan 1:00pm

An interview with James Robertson about our diseased money system and how it needs to be reformed would be good. See his book Future Money, if you haven’t already. This seems like an absolutely crucial topic as it is our current money system that necessitates the drive for economic growth, drives unsustainable resource use and transfers wealth from the poor to the rich. There is only so much we can do locally without a fundamental change to national and global financial systems.

Lucy Neal
16 Jan 4:41pm

I would love to see some indepth stories about the role the creative arts play in making space for change. Playing For Time is unearthing stories to draw together – communication between initiatives, Transition Culture and the publication would be great!! let’s really dig into the ground on how the arts transform and prepare the ground for new things to grow…

Brad K.
22 Jan 6:55am

I would like to see some mention of criminal corrections approaches. There is a distinct carbon footprint, for felons sent to prison, vs. other options, including parole, exile, etc. Will the industrial age apportionment of sentence hold up, in a resource constrained world? What changes should Peak Oil and local food security concerns make in sentencing guidelines, perceptions of severity of crimes, and police/security procedures?

Can American highway patrol forces afford to equip every officer and vehicle to succeed in a high speed chase, as one for-instance?

Do we need to consider economic and energy impacts of crimes, depending on whether damage occurs to a community resource, a personal resource, an item that is a luxury vs. foodstuffs? What about raiding a garden, without permission? Is that trespass or life threatening? Should Transition enterprises plan for contingencies like martial law, curfew, and posses to apprehend/confront a suspect? How much of the industrial age court and prison system should be relied upon?

Nick Osborne
13 Feb 4:54pm

The role of the Fool in Transition.

Fools are about traversing paradigms, and so is Transition. What role does fooling, improvising, moving into unpredictable spaces and engaging with people there have in our transition work?

I’m doing some training with to find out….