Posted in Equality, Philosophy

Redressing the issue of inequality

“The planet does not need more ‘successful’ people. But it does desperately need more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of every shape and form. It needs people who live well in their places. It needs people of moral courage willing to join the fight to make the world habitable and humane. And these needs have little to do with success as our culture has defined it.” – David Orr

Yes, the planet needs more people who are willing to join the fight to make the world habitable and humane. Some of us are doing great in sharing thought-provoking matters that expand people’s thinking and create awareness promoting equality.

On another note, I came across this article on “What is patriarchy?” that says:

“Societies that are matriarchal and to some degree egalitarian societies still exist in the world today. Matriarchy, the counterpart to patriarchy, is a society where women, particularly mothers, are the social and cultural heads of the society. Some indigenous tribes in Africa have been called matriarchal. Egalitarians societies are equally as rare as matriarchal societies. Some countries in Europe are considered more egalitarian than most other societies in the world, as are many traditional Native American tribes.”

I think it is a blessing that societies that are matriarchal and egalitarian still exist, as these societies can serve as an example to the capitalistic patriarchal societies that it is possible to create and live in a sustainable and equitable society where men and women are treated equally, and they can co-exist in harmony with the environment too without destroying it. Some countries in Europe such as Iceland and Denmark are relatively more peaceful, and I believe it is because they have a strong egalitarian mindset and lifestyle.

English: (Green) Iceland. (Grey) Europe. (Ligh...
English: (Green) Iceland. (Grey) Europe. (Light-grey) The surrounding region. See also: Category:SVG locator maps of countries of Europe (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Iceland: An example of an egalitarian society

I learnt from this article that Iceland not only has a strong egalitarian mindset and lifestyle, but is also considered “the most gender egalitarian country on earth” based on these four areas: “economic activity, education, health and political representation – regardless of the absolute level of resources”. This may explain why Iceland has a very low crime rate and high standard of living.

This website reported that “Icelanders are happier than the citizens of other nations, according to a Gallup poll”.

So, Iceland is a fine example of a modern society that is able to function well without the controlling patriarchal mindset, as I think they manage to find a happy balance in their socio-economic system that is equitable and sustainable in their own ways. Perhaps other modern societies can look to Iceland as a model and learn and adapt from their egalitarian socio-economic mindsets, in order to address the problems of inequality in their own countries.

A paradigm shift to redress the issue of inequality

I was reading this online book earlier “A feminist criticism of exchange“, which shares the following thought:

“Patriarchy has infected women and men for centuries, distorting our view of the world and warping our socio-economic practices. The agenda of feminism is to liberate everyone–women, children and men–from patriarchy without destroying the human beings who are its carriers and the planet where they live. “

I learnt that the proposed alternative to capitalist patriarchy (based on exchange paradigm) is the gift paradigm, which is need-oriented rather than profit-oriented.

“The gift paradigm emphasizes the importance of giving to satisfy needs. It is need-oriented rather than profit-oriented. Free gift-giving to needs–what in mothering we would call nurturing or caring work–is often not counted and may remain invisible in our society or seem uninformative because it is qualitatively rather than quantitatively based. However, giving to needs creates bonds between givers and receivers. Recognizing someone’s need, and acting to satisfy it, convinces the giver of the existence of the other, while receiving something from someone else that satisfies a need proves the existence of the other to the receiver.

Needs change and are modified by the ways they are satisfied, tastes develop, new needs arise. As they grow, children need to become independent, and mothers can also satisfy that need by refraining from satisfying some of the children’s other needs.

Opposed to gift-giving is exchange, which is giving in order to receive. Here calculation and measurement are necessary, and an equation must be established between the products.”

I think the gift paradigm will also help to redress the issue of inequality in the modern societies, as well as build strong relationships among one another that are established on love, respect and compassion.

In short, the money system that is based on the exchange paradigm is “ego-oriented rather than other-oriented”, whereas the gift paradigm that “is need-oriented rather than profit-oriented” would be a better alternative to the money system because “giving to needs creates bonds between givers and receivers” – an example given is mothering, which is nurturing or caring work that is not based on the money system.

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Author:

I am a beloved child of Divine Love/Great Spirit, and so are you. We are spiritual beings on a human journey. My main interests in life include Nature, music, spirituality, inspiration, philosophy, sports, reading and photography.

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