Network of Spiritual Progressives
= for an economy based on love and care, the "new bottom line"
"the NSP also has different projects that we are promoting:
1. Family Matters
We are tired of the Religious Right claiming to promote Family Values while all the while creating policies and practices that undermine the security and safety of families and that limit who are considered a family. The ethos of materialism, selfishness, ruthless competition for scarce resources, and a theory that in the pursuit of success any manipulation or attempt to dominate others is legitimate - the lessons learned in the competitive capitalist marketplace and inscribed as the shared assumptions of most work environments - creates a mentality that inevitably undermines our capacity to see other human beings not for ?what they can do for us? but rather as intrinsically valuable for who they are. It is this ethos of the marketplace that undermines loving relationships. It?s about time we in the progressive world became the real pro-family force, by exposing the contradictions inherent in the Right claiming to be pro-family while simultaneously embracing values that undermine rather than sustain love.
2. An Environmental and Social Responsibility Amendment (ESRA)
We are promoting a constitutional amendment that would ban all private or corporate money from federal and state elections (making them publicly funded and banning expenditures from any other source), require corporations with incomes over $50 million dollars to obtain a new corporate charter every five years, which they?d only get if they could prove a satisfactory history of environmental and social responsibility to a panel of ordinary citizens, and restructure our educational system so that courses on empathic communication, civic engagement, environmental sustainability, and learning to live in harmony with each other and the planet are required at every grade level k- through graduate school.
3. Generosity as a Strategy for Peace
Our Global Marshall Plan would seek to enlist the major economic and industrial power-house countries in each year for the next twenty years to give 1-2 percent of their GDP to an international body that would seek to assist the people in developing nations to develop local community control of their own economic and political systems to eliminate global poverty, homelessness, lack of adequate health care, and lack of adequate education once and for all, and to do so in ways that are environmentally sustainable for the entire planet. It would also overturn economic arrangements and treaties sponsored by Western countries that have in effect destroyed local economies.
4. Transforming Work and Professions
Many people want their work and professional lives to be filled with love, care, kindness, and generosity, yet again and again we see institutions, workplaces, and professions focused on the bottom line of money and power. As a result, consumers suffer and workers suffer too. The NSP is working to help people in various fields come together to envision how they can bring a New Bottom Line into their work and professional fields.
5. Peace, Justice, and Compassion for Israel/Palestine
Network of Spiritual Progressives co-chair Michael Lerner has been at the forefront of those seeking to end the Israel/Palestinian conflict, and we at the NSP continue to advocate strongly for an end to the Occupation. Tikkun, the spiritual progressive magazine supported by the NSP, was one of the first U.S. publications to expose the horrors of the Nakba and the truth of what transpired in 1948 and since. The NSP is one of the very few organizations that is interfaith, bringing together Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, atheists and every variant of secular-humanists, and openly pro-Israel and pro-Palestine both (because the only way to peace is a way that provides security and justice for both sides). The NSP seeks to affirm the humanity of both sides in face of the understandable but politically destructive path of trying to make one side the ?righteous victim? and the other side ?the Evil Other? (though admittedly in face of Israel?s brutality in Gaza this summer this position isn?t so easy to hold, yet we must if we want to actually change the situation rather than feeling our righteousness at being able to denounce ?the bad guys? at any given moment). And the NSP has continued to introduce new ideas on Israel/Palestine into the public sphere by generating conversations in response to Michael Lerner?s book Embracing Israel/Palestine, which is unique in its historical and psychological understanding and explanation of the conflict and how best to solve it.
Recently we have held conference calls with leading peace activists in both Israel and Palestine to learn about their efforts and to see how we can best support them. From these calls, we are putting together an activist training guide that includes steps that you can take to bring a new perspective to the discourse in your home, your community and the media.
6. Helping Youth Become Transformative Activists
We believe that the youth of our world desperately want to be engaged in meaningful efforts to create a future that allows them to have a good life too, and we provide opportunities for them to promote the New Bottom Line in ways they find engaging and exciting."