Community or Self?

I recently attended an evening of food, drink and live music at our friends’ house. The music/words (Jimmy Davis and Luke Concannon) were of protest, disenchantment with the status quo, revolution and social justice. The experience got me reflecting on the topic of whether we are primarily community-minded or family/self-minded.

The people hosting the evening, Stu and Verity, constantly bring our community together. This week I launched an appeal to help fund a vehicle to transport me, my wheelchair and family; donations are being made from all over the world, and I feel a massive sense of community. When the community gets going, good things happen.

Maybe the status quo in a country like the UK is fine for most people: Ford Focus, three-bed semi, two weeks in Lanzarote, widescreen, good mates, down to Old Trafford, recycling, giving to charity shops and good times (just one of thousands of satisfied demographics). What’s the problem? Climate change? ‘Doesn’t affect me.’ Social justice? ‘Well, I work hard and believe you get what you deserve.’ On Saturday I attended a golf tournament and it seemed the world was just fine for me and the thousands of spectators.

How do we bring about the social justice when most people are fine? The model which relies on financial self-improvement is inadequate and a more community-based approach is enriching and necessary.

PS – whatever your political views, if you like rap, then listen to Jimmy. If you want to hear an uplifting ‘change the world song’ listen to Luke. Lastly, if you want to see the world in a different way, take a look at The Barefoot Diaries, put together by the hosts of the wonderful community evening, Stu and Verity.

Author: Andrew Knowlman

I am a 50-year old father of two children, married to Jane. I live in Hertfordshire, UK. I was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis in April 2015.

One thought on “Community or Self?”

  1. Yes we do love community – and what a beautiful one it is here, what an amazing night we had on Friday evening; and what a beautiful soul you are Andrew, it’s so inspiring to be around you and hearing your voice. Looking forward to more times together. Thanks for the mention in your blog 🙂 xxxx

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