was formed to help create a cultural infrastructure and context
for a society based on economic justice and ecological wisdom.
Everyone has an equal right to
life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. In order to exercise
these rights, each person also has an equal right to the use of
the Earth. The Earth is the Mother of us all, and offers her sustenance
and bounty to all. We are creatures of the Earth, not her creators,
and so no human being can claim exclusive ownership of the Earth
at the expense of others. The duty of each person, and collectively
of global society, is to protect and care for the Earth, and to
share her equally with all.
Those who monopolize the Earth
owe rent to the rest of human society as compensation to those who
are deprived of their fair share. This rent should be redistributed
and used to support common services that benefit all. Mother Earth
and her bounty – what we call natural resources – are
our common heritage, or Commons, entrusted by nature to human beings,
to be used, but not abused, with regard to the well-being of all
individuals and species. This is what we mean by “Earth-Sharing.”
Not a new idea, Earth-Sharing was
at the heart of humanity’s ancient culture and spirituality.
It was eclipsed over the millennia by the rise of patriarchal and
imperial institutions. These evolved into our present-day church/state/military/monopoly
complex – a global self-antagonizing system that has led to
extremes of wealth and poverty, war and fanaticism, ecological breakdown
and weapons of mass destruction that threaten all life on Earth.
Fortunately, the old wisdom is not forgotten and can be applied
to these new and challenging conditions.
Earth-Sharing was the goal of the “single-tax”
vision and movement engendered by 19th century American reformer
Henry George, author of
Progress and Poverty. Like artists of 100 years
ago, we take inspiration from George and others who challenged the
status quo, such as Emma Goldman, whose radical journal Mother
Earth spoke out against war and injustice, and espoused
progressive artistic and cultural trends.
In the 1960s, another cultural resurgence
– or “counter-culture” – also rejected war
and valued human freedom, equality, and respect for Mother Earth.
But this movement lacked the wisdom of George, Goldman, and others:
Without an economy rooted in Earth-Sharing, an otherwise free society
regresses into “freedom” to conform or to starve. And
the finer things of life – including art and culture –are
reduced to commodities, monopolized and controlled by wealthy and
powerful elites. Our alternative, Earth-Sharing, would relieve economic
hardship and free the human spirit to express itself in art and
For Earth-Sharing to be accepted,
implemented, and maintained in a democratic manner, we need a new
cultural transformation, a new spiritual liberation. Religion, philosophy,
literature, and the visual and performing arts are some of the channels
by which culture, values, and spirituality – and finally even
economic paradigms – are transformed, and the human spirit
We seek those interested in using the arts
to help create a culture that advocates Earth-Sharing. We hope to
put together literary salons, theatrical events, and performance
pieces with music, dance, words and images – and we invite
all kindred spirits to help realize this vision. We are at the beginning,
so the possibilities are infinite. We welcome your support and participation.
Mark A. Sullivan & Osamu Uehara,
Earth-Sharing Associates c/o Circle of the Free Spirit
Box 230316 Ansonia Station, New York, NY 10023
issued at the Council
of Georgist Organizations
Conference, Philadelphia, August 3-7, 2005.
p osted to this site in conjunction with Bernier
Dance and Artists for Peace,
Norwalk, CT, April 12, 2008.
Latest Update: May 2, 2009