What even is capitalism?

I talk about capitalism a lot. Whether it’s healing internalised capitalism or seeding business beyond capitalism, its transcendance is at the core of this school’s purpose. 

But, what actually is it?

Capitalism is an economic system that has social, cultural & political threads to it.  Its most common definition is a system in which trade and industry are controlled by private owners, rather than by the state. 

 But it’s also based on three, less-talked-about and detrimental principles:

1.    The pursuit of infinite growth on a finite planet.

2.    The artificial production of scarcity (to fuel said growth).

3.    The devaluation of complex, living systems to lifeless resources

 It’s these principles that lead to the climate crisis & inequity we see today (along with other crises), and ask us to imagine a world beyond capitalism. 

But here’s the thing. This system is so ubiquitous – so all encompassing – that it can be hard to imagine a world beyond it. 

We’ve also internalised it to a degree that it shows up in our belief systems, values & habits.  (you can learn more here,)

This means to vision & seed a world beyond capitalism – one with less burnout, stress, hustle, extraction, not-enoughness – we need to look first to the ways the system lives through us and as us.  The ways we unconsciously assume “this is just the way things are”, or “the way the world works”. 

We need to look within, to see how we can untangle it from our minds & hearts, before (and during) we do any work of changing the system ‘out there’.

Otherwise we might transform it, but not transcend it. 

I want to offer you two reflection prompts today:

1 What would a world without scarcity feel like, in your body? What emotions & sensations come up when you imagine this?

2 How might you generate that feeling of aliveness this week? That sense of energy, wonder, possibility & life?  (note: this space is where some magic happens).

The In-Between

Navigating transitions - personal, professional, societal - can be tricky work. So often when we...

Resting When It’s Hard

If you’ve been reading my work a while, you’ve probably heard me talk about internalised...

The Third Way

 Years ago, I had a conversation with my therapist around accepting certain family dynamics as...

Hope in an age of despair

Hope is a practice. It is the stubborn commitment to believe in possibilities that we cannot yet...

Hot Take: Leadership Is Not The Same Thing As Power

Hot take. Just because you’re in a position of power, doesn’t mean that you are a leader. A common...

Gracious Limits

This is a Guest Post by Carol Wilson, the Founder and Transformative Conversation Guide for Table...