Earth Community Navigators are engaged citizens who are actively contributing to turning the human course from the dominator model of Empire to the partnership model of Earth Community. Defining characteristics are a passion for connecting people, exploring new ideas, challenging conventional thinking, and sharing information and insights. They are deeply aware of the tension between the Empire and Earth Community, the urgency of our time, and the need to spread awareness of the disabilities of Empire and the potentials of Earth Community. They are at once intellectuals engaged in a search for truth and activists engaged in giving concrete expression to that truth in their local, national, and global communities. Their work is grounded in a sense of integral spirituality that recognizes the profound interconnectedness of all beings.
Stories are the primary tool of the Earth Community Navigator. Navigators themselves do not steer the ship. They discern the direction to the desired destination, attune to the cultural currents, the rocks and shores, and discern the favorable winds and then communicate the essential information through the telling of stories to those whose decisions actually determine the ship’s course.
A Story from Earth Community Navigator Puanani Burgess
Aloha David: I am sending a photo of the Hokule’a, the story-changing voyaging canoe of Hawai’i on her sail from Kahaka’aulana (Sand Island) on O’ahu to Waimanalo, on the Windward side of O’ahu and back, on December 23, 2006. This photo appears on the cover of the Office of Hawaiian Affair’s 2006 Annual Report. The photos of Hokule’a are attributed to Ama Johnson and Monte Costa.
Nainoa Thompson was taught by the Master Navigator from the Satawal Island in Micronesia, Mau Pialug, to navigate without instruments, using his native wayfinding skills to guide the Hawaiian double-hulled canoe Hokule’a on a Hawaii-Tahiti voyage of more than 2,200 miles. As part of Nainoa’s training process, Mau would take him to a lookout on O’ahu where he could see the islands of Moloka’i, Maui and Lana’i. Mau would tell him, “Look beyond the horizon, so that you can see the island you are going to. Because you have never been there before, you have to see it in your mind, or else you can never get there.”
That ability, no, courage to see something you have never seen before is an important part of navigating to the Earth Community that we all long for. Our ability to see it, describe it, share that vision is critical to making it real.
Like the navigators of the Pacific Ocean, the navigators of the Great Turning will require the gifts of mind as well as the heart of someone with the qualities of humility, leadership, courage and kindness. When we think the journey is hard and impossible, I remember that we made the journey then and now.
When I look at this photo, I appreciate the depth of courage, faith, knowledge and wisdom of my ancestors. Then I look at the statistics which paint a picture of an impoverished people and I wonder how that happened. I am part of the journey back to the future.