Charles Starrett

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Culture consultant & social tech teacher/facilitator at SoulCo & Northeastern University. He/Him. Dad, Harvard and NEC alum, visual thinker, dabbler in ukulele, electronic music, 한국어, and TTRPGs.

We live in the material world

Assuming you’re a human being, you live in a body. That body has needs.

Many of these needs support our physical existence, such as: food, water, and shelter. Others contribute to our sense of social belonging. And still other needs are in the realm of self-actualization — or becoming who we are capable of becoming.

One thing that all of these needs have in common is that they need to be filled in material, tangible ways. This is obvious when it comes to food, water, and shelter, but no less true for social belonging. Those needs are filled through such acts as conversation, physical touch, generosity — very real human activities.

Self-actualization also requires us to act with outcomes that are visible. Perhaps cooking a new dish, or getting better at coding, or running for public office.

Even mental health, much of which can be invisible, has objectively measurable impacts on the physical health of our bodies and our ability to meet our body’s needs.

From grappling with individual decisions to debating want kind of society we want to live in, we must never forget that we live in a material world. Everything we think and feel has the potential for very real outcomes on our human bodies, our social body, and the Earth body.

So the question is: what outcomes will best support the well-being of all? And what do we need to do to secure those outcomes?

25 June 2022

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