This piece was written for our contemporary myriad movements, but it is particularly poignant in regards to the Wave Of Action, which is attempting to tap into the incredible creativity around the globe. As events, actions, and images are being crafted, remember to look for opportunities to strategically collaborate with one another. We can increase our strength by working together not only in name, but in coordinated actions. This essay was inspired by a group of women during a Women Weaving the World discussion. Many thanks to all of them for the deep reflections, but particularly to Kathe Schaaf who spoke of the movement of movements in an eye-opening way. Learn more about Women Weaving the World here. ~ Rivera Sun
This article originally appeared on WaveOfAction.org
I feel like shaking everyone and saying, don’t you get it? We are a movement of movements.
My friends, we have been trapped in old dominant paradigm thinking. We have been steeped in warmongering, hierarchical, competitive, control-based mindsets since birth. We think we are lacking something, or that we’re ineffectual at organizing, or we’re failing. We call for a Movement of Movements, like the War to End All Wars, a rallying cry that will amass the allies on the edge of the battlefield so we can massacre our enemies.
It makes me want to laugh – and cry.
We want to name, label, categorize, and control the emergent phenomenon of this revolutionary resistance. We want to take the wild flurry of activity that is erupting on a thousand fronts and turn it into an army for change. We want to call it something because then we can control it. This is what our lineage of science and religion has taught us: if we give it a name, it is ours. If we trademark the Movement, we can capitalize on it. If we organize it all in one place, we can make it work to what we consider its highest potential.
We need to let go.
We need to surrender to this very large phenomenon and join with it. We need to trust each other, the causes, and the organic, emergent nature of what is happening . . . this is revolutionary. This is a way of participation that is radical in our society. The long history of invasion, conquest, genocide, wars of aggression, and abuse of people and the planet has indoctrinated us in false beliefs that we must organize everything in order to survive. But these old patterns of competition and control are a worldview perpetuated by the wealthy elite, who profit from such mentalities at our expense. To this end, they have abused the theories and philosophies of the Judeo-Christian God and Darwin, alike. They school us in fear-based, violent mindsets to ensure that we will never pose a serious threat to their dominance. If we do not emancipate our minds from their worldview, we will remain blind to the greatest strengths of our movements.
Building a Movement of Movements seems to be the logical, strongest, and wisest approach to breaking our opponents’ power, but our real strength may lie in our myriad movements. The empowered elite are fighting us on all fronts. We have them surrounded on all sides. Our plethora of issues distracts them, divides them, and weakens their centralized position. They sit in the fortress of wealth and power, staring wild-eyed into the living, breathing, diverse jungle of opposition. There is nothing they would like more than to see us assemble all of our strength in one place and march down the road to their fortress. Then they could destroy us in one swoop. So, from the balustrades of their socio-political system, they taunt us and mock us, calling us disorganized and inefficient.
We are not disorganized. We are organized differently.
“We are the ivy crawling up the buildings, the moss breaking down the bricks, and the dandelions shooting up in the sidewalks. We’re as vast as the planet and as microscopic as infectious disease. The Dandelion Insurrection isn’t a handful of radicals. It’s all of Life itself!” – from The Dandelion Insurrection
We must learn to look at the interconnections of our myriad causes and wage struggle through collaboration, not control. Our causes are not at odds with each other, nor do they need unification under one name or coordination from a central command. Instead, we need to collaborate strategically, using our diversity of issues as our strength. If we look at the overlapping issues of health, economy, jobs, peace, surveillance, education, energy, housing, environment, democracy, and so on, we will see that every movement is working to replace destructive, corrupt systems with constructive, life-supporting, sustainable alternatives. Our strength lies in our inherent unity, not in the label attached to it. Our only weakness is in our uncertainty . . . and the fact that we remain unaware of the power of our situation.
We can tap into the collective and coordinated strength of our many movements by learning to strategically collaborate with one another. A few key elements of such an approach are:
- Celebrate other’s achievements; the success of one cause is the success of the whole.
- Support each other’s efforts through solidarity, encouragement, resources, media campaigns, etc.
- Take time to analyze the interconnections of the movements. Search for untapped strengths and sources of support. Identify pivot points of change and opportunities for other movements to help sway a critical element of your own movement.
- Talk with each other. Find out how your efforts overlap and look for opportunities for strategic collaboration.
- Our movements are revolutionary; their manner of collaborative, horizontal organization is the most natural, organic system on Earth. We terrify the empowered elite because we reflect, in our very structure, the most powerful force on the planet: Life. In what they call our disorganization, we embody the natural systems that the patriarchal, Puritanical European colonizers have been trying to repress and control for thousands of years. Our movements are as frightening to them as a liberated woman, or the pagan religions of old Europe that succumbed to the first invasion of the mentality that now engulfs the empowered elite around the globe. We are organic and uncontrollable...and we are, ultimately, unstoppable.
Instead of codifying our movements under one name, we must learn to recognize who and what we are. We are a movement of movements, a great multiplicity of motion.
Author/Actress Rivera Sun is a co-founder of the Love-In-Action Network, a co-host on Occupy Radio, and, in addition to her new novel, The Dandelion Insurrection, she is also the author of nine plays, a book of poetry, and her debut novel, Steam Drills, Treadmills, and Shooting Stars, which celebrates everyday heroes who meet the challenges of climate change with compassion, spirit, and strength.
HOW TO HELP: FOOD FUND
Wave of Action in Los Angeles: https://www.facebook.com/events/1413346825582931/
Full Schedule for NYC:
Friday, April 4
9:30 am: The Dream Marches On: Sanitation Workers 1968--Airport Workers 2014
Meet just south of the intersection of Belt Parkway and Lefferts Blvd
Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated in 1968 as he stood with striking Memphis sanitation workers, who were struggling to make the American dream accessible to all. 48 years later, New York area airport workers are organizing renew that road to the American dream. Workers, elected and clergy leaders and community supporters will gather at the Lefferts Blvd JFK AirTrain Station at 9:30 a.m. They will march along Lefferts to 83rd Avenue to Queens Blvd to Junction Blvd, with the march ending at 3:30 p.m. on the 94th Street Bridge by Ditmars Blvd, which leads into LaGuardia Airport.
##11:00 am: Vigil at Congressman Charlie Rangel's Office 163 W 125th Street, New York, NY Join the vigils at congressional district offices across the United States to demand that congress pass the [Robin Hood Tax on Wall Street](goo.gl/GTstQ3) – the only real cure to the illness of rampant economic inequality. RSVP: [https://www.facebook.com/events/752900214729898/756392451047341](http://goo.gl/BDFGhM)
##3:00 pm: Summer Disobedience School Reunion People's Gong Federal Hall Join the #OWS Direct Action Summer Disobedience School Class of 2012 as they come together as a part of the global wave of action on Wall Street to perform the People’s Gong. Find out more at [nycga.net](http://goo.gl/nv3ISz).
4:20 pm: Medicine for the Movement
Liberty Square (Zuccotti Park)
Occupy Reefer Madness is a coalition of seasoned lawyers, policy experts, Occupy Wall Street Activists, artists, marijuana users and non-users who are new to activism. We demand the passage of The New York State Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act. We will be giving a public teach-in on the details of this bill how you can help make recreational marijuana a reality in New York and beyond as part of our contribution to the #waveofaction beginning on April 4th. If we can make our medicine legal in the marijuana arrest capital of the world then we can do it everywhere.
5:30 pm: 99% Wave of Action - Say No To the Regressive Agenda of Cuomo!
Demand a New York that works for #AllOfUs, not only the 1%.
6:00 pm: Political Prisoner & Movement Martyr Night Vigil
New York City Veterans Memorial
Join local peace activists as they join the World Wide Wave of Action with a candle light vigil & silent night march from Foley Square to the NY Veterans Memorial to raise awareness about those killed & imprisoned during the on going non-violent struggle for justice for all.
More Information: Wave Of Action
6:00 pm: Know Your Rights - NYC #WaveOfAction Mask Edition
Did you know you can be arrested for wearing a mask during #WaveOfAction?
Police in New York City sometimes enforce a very old city law that bans masks and facial coverings at gatherings of two or more people unless it is “a masquerade party or like entertainment.”
If there is more than one masked individual at an event, everyone wearing a mask could get arrested. The law permits the police to use discretion in enforcement, so there may be some situations, and some types of face coverings, that police will ignore.
Find out more at nycga.net
6:30 pm: Operation Safe Winter Community Potluck
60 Wall Street, New York, NY
Join members of the NYC Activist community to provide healthy hot meals to those in need in & around the Financial District of New York City. This project is a grassroots volunteer effort inspired by Operation Safe Winter.
Find out more on nycga.net
7:00 pm: Book as Tactic: NYC Launch for Debt Resisters' Operations Manual
Join us on Friday April 4th for the New York City launch of the fully revised and updated edition of the Debt Resisters' Operations Manual. We will discuss the original conception of the manual as a form of collaborative research to emerge from Occupy Wall Street, and reflect on the possibilities of using the format of the book as an organizing tool in the task of building a debt-resistance movement. Along with a brief introduction to this revised edition, the event will also be an opportunity to celebrate the role played by books in emancipatory movements more generally—including book blocs of course! Refreshments will be served, red squares will be distributed, and plans will be hatched for moving from analysis to action in the years to come.
##7:00 pm: 99% City-Wide Wave Of Action- People's Assembly Liberty Square (Formerly Zuccotti Park) 7:05pm Vigil for Dr. King / 7:15pm Assembly The People’s Assembly will happen after the vigil of Dr. King to reconvene the spirit of the Occupy Wall Street Movement as well as many of the movements that preceded it. Read more at [nycga.net](http://goo.gl/otm9Rg)
8:30 pm: People’s Grassroots Conference on Monetary Affairs
Federal Reserve Bank 33 Liberty Street New York 8:30pm
We will be giving presentations and answering questions on the history of the Federal Reserve, The NEED Act, the Livable Wage Movement and the New York City Bitcoin Center in front of the NYC Federal Reserve from 8pm – 11pm as our contribution to the #waveofaction kick off party.
9:45 pm: Occupy Veterans Memorial Civil Disobedience
New York City Veterans Memorial 55 Water Street New York 9:45pm
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is a POP space intended to be open to the public 24 hours a day to honor those who served in South East Asia yet at 10 PM it is closed by management. Take a stand with Occupy as we honor those who have died in wars both past & present on April 4th with a reading of names at the space starting at 9:45 PM. At 10 PM we will engage in a non-violent sit in to protest this 1st amendment infringement & to raise awareness about the need to end all wars. This action is to also show solidarity with Veterans for Peace who have supported Occupy & it’s community.
Find out more on nycga.netFor more information go to [nycga.net](http://goo.gl/Ci4EFi) ##Occupy Jail Support## NYPD Central Booking 100 Centre Street 10:00pm Civil Disobedience often means having to take an arrest to carry the message of economic injustice to the wider world & those facing arrest need your solidarity in the form of jail support. Please join the Occupy Wall Street Jail Support community as they volunteer to track, wait for & then greet those arrested as they are released. For more information please follow the hashtag [#JailSupport](http://goo.gl/KImYfa) on April 4th online via Twitter & Facebook and visit [nycga.net](http://goo.gl/OmyWLx).
11:00 pm: Wildcat March
From Federal Hall Steps to Union Square
Wear Black. Bring Pots, Pans & Noise Makers.
Find out more on Facebook