2012-07-16

An Assignment for the Week

Dear Friends, if you are inclined to accept assignments from Lake Chalice, then Lake Chalice has an assignment to suggest for you this week.

For today and for each of the next six days:

Record in your journal incidents you notice of "market creep" -- examples of the the market and market values impinging into areas that were once less commonly matters of buying and selling.

For orientation to this assignment, take a look at Michael Sandel, "What Isn't For Sale," Atlantic Monthly, 2012 April. (See here.)

If you don’t keep a journal, please consider starting one. Journaling is one of five foundational spiritual practices for giving a solid foundation to your spiritual life and support for whatever your primary spiritual practice may be. (For Lake Chalice on journaling, see here; for Lake Chalice's series on spiritual fitness and the five foundational practices, begin here.)

Where in your life do you notice market creep? The changes in the last 30 years happened slowly, without a deliberate decision that we wanted the market in so many aspects of our lives. They happened in tiny increments that we didn’t notice at the time. So let me ask you to simply start noticing.

Where do you notice buying and selling of things that didn’t used to be bought and sold, of things that maybe shouldn’t be bought and sold?

Where do you notice that interests of stockholders are exerting a subtle influence on what is going on.

Try keeping count of how many commercials for a political candidate, or for a prescription drug, you see.

Write down also how you feel about this. Maybe some instances are positive. Maybe other instances are not.

What enterprises did you have contact with, in the course of your day, that just might be appropriate for "we, the people," to do collectively: through our city, county, state, or national governments?

What enterprises would better be carried out through nonprofit organizations?

If you feel like it, share what you notice as a comment to this post. Or just hold it in your awareness.