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Issue 57: September 2023

Add new dimensions to your outlook



Dear friend,

If life looks too complex, seeing it from different angles may help. I suspect there are many more dimensions than the four we usually think of (space and time). So instead of feeling overwhelmed by bewilderment, try feeling expansive and excited. We can't change reality, but we can change our response! After 19 happy years in Dorset, last week I emigrated to Wales, where we have bought a house in Hay-on-Wye: lots of new dimensions to explore up here...

Wishing you well,


The Future Dimension: Future Risks Review

If you feel the future's just too scary to consider, you're probably right, but that won't help your ability to prepare and adapt. Our Future Risks Review gives a constructive view of how to prepare and adapt for hazards ahead, see summary blog here, download report here. See here for info on our online workshop on October 5, Focussing up to Community Adaptation, or see Events.

The Cyclical Dimension: how crises recur

Peter Turchin left the USSR age 20, in 1977, and has lived in the USA since then. His recent book, End Times, analyses the patterns in 100 historical crises, from Medieval France onwards.

Two key drivers of crisis are a big widening of inequalities of wealth, and arising from this, what he calls ‘elite overproduction’. This fascinating idea means that a big number of very wealthy people are seeking ‘elite’ positions (political, business, etc.), whose availability is pretty inelastic. Read more.

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The E.T. Dimension: Is Earth a Karmic Enterprise Zone?
An extra-terrestrial view of our perplexities
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When even slightly plausible explanations fail, it’s time to try some which look highly off the wall, so give this one a test flight. It came to me in a dream while on holiday in the wilds of the Pennines. Read more.

The Welsh Dimension: Is food security better in Wales?
The Welsh Dimension: Is food security better in Wales?
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Food security is one of the issues which makes me compare the 2020s to the 1930s: there are huge problems looming, most people are in denial, but a few are making preparations which could be crucial. Some of these are in Wales, and as a fresh immigrant, I’m following the situation here closely. Read more.

Natural Happiness: Advocates Opportunity

To support the launch of his new book, Alan would like to train and work with a few Advocates: your main roles would be to deliver short workshops and talks on the Natural Happiness approach, in person or online, and outreach to find groups to work with. 

     Advocates will be able to shape this role to work with client groups of most interest to them: for example, this could include community groups, work organisations, gardening clubs, and sustainability networks. This is paid work, with training provided: see more details here.

Events update

Focussing up to Community Adaptation

Online workshop: Thursday Oct 5, 2-4pm Hosted by Schumacher Institute and Seeding our Future

This workshop is intended for community groups, individuals, and organisations involved with community resilience, including NGOs. One aim is to help community groups to see how they can engage with and benefit from statutory frameworks, such as Local Resilience Forums. Read more.

The Sufi Garden

The Sufi Garden is a monthly online meditation/singing group co-led by Alan Heeks and Karim Hadden. The sessions offer meditation, chants, poetry, and simple movement practices known as Dances of Universal Peace, drawing on the Sufi, Buddhist, Christian and other traditions. No previous experience needed, open to all. Free of charge.

     Next sessions: Wednesday September 13 & October 18, 7.30-9.00pm. To reserve a place or for more info, email [email protected].

Facilitated Workshops for Professionals

The Natural Happiness model is highly relevant for professionals of many kinds, including managers, coaches, hospital doctors, and consultants. Alan can deliver sessions from half a day to 2 days, tailored to your needs. Read more.

The Sacred Dimension: Sacred Land Cultivation
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I’m writing to share a vision with you which feels increasingly vital for our survival. This vision interweaves two ideas which I see discussed increasingly, but only rarely connected. One is the urgent need to increase local food production in the UK (especially vegetables, fruit, proteins), as climate change cuts the imports we heavily depend on. The other is to recover a relationship of care and respect with the Earth, to treat it as sacred, as an essential step in regenerating the ecosystems humanity is destroying. Read more.

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