A Relational Economy is based on relationship rather than transaction. The economic problems around the world are more about spirituality than economy as, for the most part, we are driven by our hidden fears of not being or having enough – and the marketeers that promise to alleviate our pain. We live in a culture where too much is never enough, where our insatiable perception of need allows us to ignore the needs of our neighbors next door and across the globe. Moving toward a Relational Economy is about shifting from perceived transactional values to embrace the real value of people and planet.
Further, we are divorced form a sense of calling. Rather than living from a sense of purpose and passion, we are too often motivated by market demands, and what provides the illusion of security and control. Rather than exploring our longings and cultivating our gifts, we are taught to develop our skills based on a transactional value and return on investment. We often end up working at jobs we don’t enjoy, for employers we don’t like, and invest in a system of corruption only to ease our fear of the lack of enough.
Re-Imagining the Way demands that we cultivate the luxury of enough. Although corrupted by a religious system that supports not being or having enough, Jesus’ teachings were about acceptance, trust and surrender – and a call to let go of anything that gets in the way of love. One of the radical outcomes, mostly ignored by christianity, was that those who followed in his Way were those whose spiritual awakening compelled them to embrace his teachings, and to consider their abundance as a gift to care for one another.
The Way of life calls us to let go of our fears and the possessions we imagine to protect us. It is about embracing our calling, opening our hearts to the needs of those around us, and pouring our investment into caring for all creation. Rather than being driven by fear and consumption, the Way of life calls us to build an economy on the foundation of relationships, and sharing in one another’s needs and gifts.