A Fable of
Liberty Lost and Found
A parable for these times that try our souls
Thomas Paine began Common Sense with a parable about a remote community struggling to govern itself. He used the fable to show how and why governments arise. Revealing the absurdity of hereditary monarchy, his work inspired the first modern republic.
A Fable of Liberty Lost and Found unites the fictional preamble and epilogue in my nonfiction book, Making Global Sense, inspired by Thomas Paine’s Common Sense. Paine wrote Common Sense to spark national revolution. I wrote Global Sense to spark world evolution.
In updating Paine’s parable in “A Fable of Liberty Lost and Found,” I aim to show how governments change when people and societies lose a genuine connection with Spirit, by any name we use for the divine creative force. If we lose a wordless sense of our oneness that guides us to rule ourselves mindfully, that’s when we often let others to govern us instead. That’s when tyranny happens.
Out world in this century faces the perils of accelerating climate change and growing autocracy. Our fear is natural and real. Amid the future shock of rapid global change, people are defaulting to the safety of kings and other masters. For the sake of free democracy and a sustainable future, I’m retelling and expanding Paine’s cautionary tale, followed by an optimistic alternative ending. all to encourage the practical idealism of common global sense.
Read an Excerpt from:
A Fable of Liberty Lost and Found
Let us imagine a small group of brave humans settle on a large, remote and unoccupied island paradise surrounded by a vast ocean.
Let us imagine all these settlers are enlightened, each attuned to the cosmos. Each knows all that exists is vibrating light. Each feels inner peace and love for themselves, for all the settlers and the earth. A global sense of universal oneness guides their daily choices.
Among the settlers is a young man named Kodesh. Like the others, he freely shares his true self in each moment. He treats other settlers and himself with respect, empathy, compassion, and humor. Kodesh joins his fellow settlers in building an inland hamlet. He joins other settlers to locate ley lines for building huts and community buildings. He helps plant a sapling tree as a symbol of the settlement’s faith and unity.
Human beings are social animals innately unfit for total solitude. Kodesh cannot satisfy all desires by himself. He turns to others for help as others turn to him. Self-sufficiency is valued in any society, yet talents are most noticed through service, such as Kodesh divining where to dig a well in a drought.
As some perish, facing hardships together forges bonds of community among all the pioneers. In their open society, rights and duties are shared fairly among all as natural equals. Aside from women bearing children, they have no gender roles. Each one’s talents and interests guide what they do in the community. For instance, Kodesh harvests grain. His neighbor Shakti mills flour. Any man or woman can do any task.
Kodesh now discovers that his friendship with Shakti has grown into love. Their hearts open to each other. They are in one another’s dreams. Their souls join in making love. They begin a family, happily producing two children, raised in kindness and generosity.
Like others, Kodesh solves problems creatively. He invites advice from those with more wisdom and experience. If a dispute arises with Shakti or any other settler, he trusts conscience, intellect and intuition to reveal the best solution, maybe with mediation. If any person is offended, forgiveness comes easily. Kodesh knows everybody does the best they can do, given what they know at the time.
Sometimes the community gathers at the tree of unity. They decide issues together, like where to build a reservoir. Everybody talks until a decision is reached by general consensus. If the process takes time, that’s fine. Full community support of decisions is worth the effort.
The settlers live in harmony because people rule themselves from within. Their graceful, respectful spirituality makes laws and government unnecessary. They all share an unwritten, tacit “social contract” to govern their lives together daily with conscious self rule.
In this way, trusting mindfulness and personal sovereignty, they balance freedom and duty. Their utopian anarchy lasts as long as people behave themselves.