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Do Dakinis Wage Class War? Buddhist Economics and Earth Democracy | Eco Dharma

do dakinis wage class war? buddhist economics and earth democracy

Written and plagiarised by The Class War Dakinis


The current economic system of predatory globalised capitalism is one of the most powerful human generated forces influencing our social relationships, shaping our environment, and conditioning our consciousness. If we are concerned about the transformation of the self and the world, we best pay it some serious attention.

It is a system that is highly destructive, violent, and unjust. It is harmful ecologically, culturally, physically, and spiritually. Challenging the dominance of our current economic system, seeing through its veneer of legitimacy, and working out how to dismantle it, is becoming increasingly necessary if we are to avoid deepening social, ecological, and spiritual crisis.

Many deep ecological and spiritual commentators have noted the impact upon our world of the agricultural and industrial revolutions. But all too often they ignore the fact that the shift to a system of production and distribution based on exchange rather than complementarity and mutual aid, was one of history’s most fundamental social transformations – a transformation exerting a profound influence on social and individual identities and consciousness.

Seeking remedies to our current problems we may appeal to cultural and moral trends, yet any concern to support positive social change is likely to be ineffectual without a basic understanding of the irrationalities of the dominant economic system. We might moralize about our anti-ecological society and call for changes in personal lifestyles and attitudes, but we need to be careful not to deflect the struggle for far reaching social change and obscure the need for concerned social action and radical structural transformation.

The principles of Buddhism offer an uncompromising critique of the current economic system, and point towards a very different approach. That critique is the subject of this article. The Dakini is a mythic figure in the Buddhist pantheon. She represents engaged compassionate action. So, attempting to understand how compassion can find concrete expression in today’s world we ask “Do Dakini’s Wage Class War?”

The current system

The current capitalist economic system has been called “the most successful religion of all time – making more converts more quickly than any other belief system in history.”(1) It is, unquestionably, the most dynamic society to ever appear. It has mutated through many forms: the medieval market place, imperialist trading exploits, the factory based capitalism of 18th & 19th Century England. Following the internal market logic of “grow or die” it has recently exploded into the extreme neo-liberal form it takes today.

It’s inherent contradictions: the valuing of profit over life; the irrationality of continual growth within a limited ecosystem; and the anti-democratic drift inherent in the centralisation of economic power in the hands of a few – have driven us deep into ecological crisis and social injustice.
h1. What is wealth without well being?

Taking profit and growth as its primary values, this is an economic system wholly contrary to the Buddhist vision of the value of human life – namely spiritual development. For Buddhists, the meaning of civilisation is not the multiplication and servicing of wants and craving, but the purification of human character. Economic activity needs to be evaluated in relation to such basic values. From the Buddhist perspective classic economic theory stands the truth on its head, “by considering goods as more important than people and consumption as more important than creative activity”. (2)

This strange inversion of values is not a glitch in the capitalist system. It is a problem that lies at its core. When we equate progress with economic growth, anything or anyone who gets in the way of the march of history had better watch out – unless they are price tagged and bar coded.

Current economic theory adopts an approach which places exclusive emphasis upon one method of human knowledge, namely rationality. This leads to a focus on the material and the quantitative, and to the exclusion of the qualitative aspects of experience. A process some have called a “disenchantment of the world”. The qualitative aspects of experience, including everything referred to as spiritual or moral, have been increasingly ushered out of considerations about economic and social organisation. In economic discourse those dimensions of life which actually offer us meaning and value are systematically excluded, only the measurable and quantifiable are admitted.

So, the current economic system has a very limited capacity to capture real human value. Using systems of measurement which reduce everything to money, orthodox economists suffer from a profound blindness. Money might measure profits, but it is useless when it comes to measuring forests, or human worth, or species, or community, or human happiness and well-being. As a result almost any economic activity is taken as a sign of progress.

Take for example the US $800 million that Los Angeles motorists spend a year on petrol used sitting in traffic jams. The standard indicator of growth, GDP, “adds this enthusiastically to the national accounts, unable to question whether it is really a sign of progress after all.” (3).

At the same time it is becoming increasingly clear that continuous economic growth beyond a certain level does not equate to progress measured in terms of well-being and happiness. While the UK economy, as measured by GDP, has doubled since 1970, surveys have shown that people’s satisfaction with their lives has remained stagnant.

Just how abstract and removed from people’s actual needs the financial system has become is illustrated by the figures of speculative capital that flow through the currency markets. $4 Trillion flow through the international currency markets each day. That is equivalent to 4 times the annual GDP of India. Only 5% has productive value. The other 95% is purely speculative investment, whose non-productive nature is revealed in the investment return times of a week, a day, sometimes even just seconds. These figures also hint at how disempowered national governments are in relation to the influence of international finance.

Not only does modern economics fail to take account of human values, it also reduces the members of a living planet into mere objects, resources and commodities to be owned, bought and sold. It reduces experiencing subjects into lifeless objects, animals into protein conversion machines, complex ocean ecosystems into fisheries, and the planet’s atmospheric regulatory systems into fossil fuel reserves. All with a price tag. It is a short-sighted system: it values some aspects of the world, such as oil or banks, but is almost completely blind to others such as children or coral reefs. Using this value system, life-giving forests are important only when they are chopped down. Commodification does great violence to the world.

In contrast a Buddhist approach places emphasis on sentience and experience, on the living quality of phenomenon, out of which arise value and meaning. Recognising reality as comprised of inter-related subjects, Buddhism teaches a reverent and non-harmful attitude to all sentient beings and the world. It encourages us to act in ways that align ourselves with a deeper understanding of the inter-connected ecology of life. It recognises that all things in nature have a value in themselves.

The harm implicit in the pseudo science of economics is all too evident in its ecological impact. The obsession with profit and growth makes our economic system wholly incapable of taking into account the fact that we live on a planet with non-negotiable environmental limits. Exponential growth has accelerated way past thresholds of sustainability. And the old economics has been unwilling to include environmental factors on the balance sheet. It does not account for the use of natural resources as expenditure, even though the use of non-renewable resources is clearly a false economy. (4)

Not only is the growth based model highly deluded as to its on-going viability, but it amounts to an act of violence against all beings that are equally dependent upon a healthy ecosystem. Chasing the mirage of unending growth is an invisible form of violence which threatens justice, peace, and survival. Some have called this destruction a Third World War: a war without comparison, involving the largest number of deaths and the largest number of soldiers without uniforms.

It is a war waged by capital and ‘free market’ ideologues against people and life! But, despite Margaret Thatcher’s famous acronym TINA (There Are No Alternatives), it is not inevitable, there really are alternatives! And Buddhist insights and ethics point towards a way to break with such a system.

New economics

One approach is the development of a new economics – “an economics as if people and the planet mattered”. This approach was explored by E.F.Schumacher, who explicitly linked it to Buddhism. It is now being developed by organisations like the New Economics Foundation.

In the New Economics wealth really means well-being, and the measure of well-being includes an understanding of the inter-relatedness of humans in society and of societies in the wider ecosystem.

The NEF developed a Happy Planet Index (HPI). This index of human well-being and environmental impact, moves beyond crude ratings, measured by Gross Domestic Product (GDP), to produce a picture of the progress of nations based on the amount of the Earth’s resources they use, and the length and happiness of people’s lives. (5)Similarly a Buddhist economics grounds itself in real and material interconnectedness. It redirects our attention to the underlying economies of nature and sustenance, on which the market economy depends, but tends to ignore.

As Vandana Shiva has pointed out, “Nature’s economy is the primary economy on which all other rest. Nature’s economy consists of the production of goods and services by nature – the water recycled and distributed through the hydrologic cycle, the soil fertility produced by microorganisms, the plants fertilised by pollinators. Human production and creativity shrinks to insignificance in comparison with nature.” (6) Ecological security is our most basic security; ecological identities are our most basic identities.

The sustenance economy includes the work people do to directly provide the conditions necessary to maintain their lives – caring for each other, producing their own food and basic sustenance, the sharing of common resources. It includes what is sometimes called social capital. This is the economy through which human production and reproduction is primarily possible. It is the economy of two thirds of humanity. Without the sustenance economy, there would be no market economy. (7)

The current economic system places excessive emphasis on the functioning of market economy as a representation of economic health. The precariousness created by this imbalance of attention on the market can be depicted as an equilateral triangle standing with a narrow point as its base The broad top of the triangle represents the dominant focus on the market economy. The narrowing body of the triangle represents the sustenance economy which the market continually attempts to appropriate to itself (reducing all social relations into commodity relations). At the bottom tip of the triangle we find the virtually ignored natural economy. This depicts a disastrous instability.

In contrast, a sustainable economic system, one which recognises the interconnections and embeddedness of individuals in social relations, and of humanity in a wider ecosystem, can be depicted as a triangle turned the other way up. The broad base is the natural economy, its middle the sustenance economy which grows out of the natural economy, and its narrow upper point a much reduced market economy.

A sustainable future, which values life, depends on economic thinking and practice undergoing this inversion, and re-prioritising the natural and sustenance
economies over the market.

Why Work?

Just as the dominant economic system reduces the living earth to so many resources to be exploited, so it reduces human life to production and consumption.
In modern economic theory the value of labour is production. By its narrow logic people are turned into the commodity of labour from which profit can be extracted. Estranged from the direct fruits of their work, it is unsurprising that wage labour is experienced as a miserable and alienating necessity (even a form of enslavement).

This attitude towards labour (towards us!) is reflected in the language of the business press. A typical headline to a Financial Times story about social disintegration in parts of Eastern Europe ran: “Green Shoots in Communism’s Ruins”; meaning the situation is pretty bad, but there are some good things. The “green shoots” the article refers to are “the unemployment and pauperisation of industrial workers” under the reforms imposed by the West. And those are “green shoots” because it means you can get workers in Poland for 10% of the pay of “pampered western workers”, as Business Week refers to us in a story covering the same process.(8)

Of course, Buddhism raises important objections to this process. From a Buddhist perspective the primary value of action lies in its ethical consequences not economic productivity. Work is a context for ethical action through which humans can develop spiritually. (9) To be concerned solely with productivity, and then only as a gross term of valueless consumption, is to do terrible damage to basic human nature.

Productive work is necessary to acquire the basics for material subsistence. So, Buddhism pays special attention to the ethical issues this involves in the idea of Right Livelihood, one of the eight limbs of the Eight-Fold Path – a fundamental Buddhist teaching. The idea of Right Livelihood suggests that work should not be the cause of harm or exploitation of other living beings, nor should it encourage or support generally unethical activities. It should also ideally be meaningful and supportive of spiritual growth.

The practice of Right Livelihood, offers a clear challenge to the contemporary system. It redefines work in relation to human dignity and meaning – returning it to the rich context of ethical and creative value. (10)

Consumerism vs Simplicity: Renunciation & Freedom

While Right Livelihood challenges the systemic devaluation of life in terms of production, renunciation and simplicity challenge its devaluation in terms of consumption. Whereas our current system takes consumption as an end in itself and tries to maximise it by optimal patterns of production (11), a Buddhist economics aims to maximise the well being of all with the minimum of consumption.

Like religion, consumerism claims to offer a solution to suffering and meaninglessness. $603 Billion a year ensures advertising invades every part of our public and private lives with messages promising a kind of salvation through shopping. One in every Six Dollars in the entire US economy is spent on marketing! We are encouraged to construct our self-identity through consumption, and locate the meaning of life in acquisition. But, its promises are false (as most salvational promises prove themselves to be!) – and its message is a gross distortion of reality, a mystifying spell woven to stimulate greed and craving.

Consumerism strengthens the sense of an individualistic separate self-identity – self as consumer and epicentre of experience – and depends on the stimulation of desires that it cannot resolve. “Needs” and “wants” become virtually synonymous. In contrast Buddhism identifies the delusive sense of a separate self, and the greed that accompanies that delusion, as root sources of suffering. It can make little peace with a system based upon fantasy, the multiplication of neurotic craving, and a tragic impoverishment of the human character.

The domination of “market” values like competition and hyper-individualism, distort how we relate to the world. Challenging consumerism involves claiming back both the public sphere and our own minds from the clutches of market determined values and messages.

Buddhism shows us that simplicity in material terms can offer an adequate basis for deep personal satisfaction, as well as social and ecological justice. Voluntary simplicity has radical implications. When we see through the obfuscation of consumerism we begin to determine our own needs and wants, developing a sense of what really nourishes us based upon our own deeper experience, imagination and creativity. It is an important act of self determination against the colonisation of our minds.

Buddhism offers the practice of renunciation, but this need not be understood as self-punishing sacrifice, but rather as recognition of the freedom that comes from simple living. Rejecting excessive and neurotic consumption not only liberates us psychologically; it also frees us materially from the oppression of the need to do ever more productive work to meet ever greater needs. It frees us up to do meaningful work, creative work, to contribute to our communities, to find true wealth in human relationships, sometimes to do nothing.

To break the spells of consumerism we need to cast stronger spells which invest simplicity with meaning – a meaning that is deeper, truer, and more powerful than the superficial messages that surround us. We need to celebrate simplicity as a joyous, liberating, and affirming virtue, one that really supports human dignity and creativity.

Contraction and Convergence

The rediscovery of the freedom of simplicity is going to be a key component in any equitable and just attempt to address the problems of climate change and unsustainability. At a global level one of the most useful models of economic transition to sustainability is called “Contraction and Convergence”.

It is a set of projections which show that sustainable levels of production and emissions are compatible with the raising of living standards for billions of people in the global south (if that is what they want). But it depends on a clear and planned contraction of production, consumption and emissions in the rich countries of the world. Rising production of the south would meet the contracting production of the rich nations, to converge at a sustainable level achievable by re-localised and diverse economies.At present it is perhaps the only socially just strategy on offer. But it is almost impossible to get it on the table in discussions between rich nations. The assumption seems to be that any discussion of lowering economic prosperity is political suicide.

Buddhists have a lot to offer in supporting a social and political will which recognises that true well-being is compatible with levels of consumption much lower than those pursued by the minority world. And it is important we work to achieve much wider recognition of this perspective. The options can be starkly presented: Rejoiceful simplicity in a just world, or lifeboat authoritarianism and increased militarised protection of ever shrinking islands of prosperity.

Further to this Buddhism offers a deeper critique of consumerism. Any form of economic exchange that reduces life to a mere commodity value is fundamentally unethical! So, while ethical consumerism may place a gentle pressure on producers to amend their practices to cater for a new expanding market, from a deeper perspective ‘ethical consumerism’ becomes an oxymoron. The only deeply ethical consumerism is the end of consumerism!

So, what is at the root of a Buddhist political economy? Dana

At the core of western political economics lies the idea of the individual and their property rights. Given that Buddhism rejects the idea of a reified self, it poses a major challenge to the very idea of private property.

The notion of private property is an extension of the conceit of self. It leads to the belief that increasing private acquisition offers a basis for security. But, the drive for ever greater personal acquisition is tragically tied to the erosion of the more basic economies on which life depends – the ecological and sustenance economies. At the macro-economic level the institution of private property leads to increased centralisation of economic power, the erosion of community, and damages the prospects for meaningful democracy.

In contrast Buddhism offers dana, or generosity, as the fundamental principle around which economics can be organised.
As a basic virtue, generosity expresses the most fundamental of Buddhist insights: namely that we are not separate entities but inhabit an intimate web of relationships with others and the world. The extent to which we can let go of ego-centredness is equal with our ability to open up to reality. Dana is a fundamental and concrete expression of the dynamic of self-transcendence. It is also central to the well being of a community.

When applied to economics dana suggests socio-economic forms which seem radical today. It leads to sharing and a wholly different relationship to property. As Sangharakshita says, ‘it is widely accepted that, within the Spiritual Community, common ownership is the ideal.'

This radical practice of common ownership has existed within the ordained sangha since the Buddha’s time. The traditional two-tiered system of lay practitioners and monks created a dualistic ethic, which rather carefully insulated the lay economy from the more radical arrangements. (12) But today perhaps we need to free the more radical application of Buddhist ethics from the ghetto of monasticism and extend them more widely across the full range of social relationships. (13)

The kind of property relations we currently take for granted are historically conditioned. They are socially constructed conventions, not some kind of inevitable or natural truth. In pre-capitalist and early non-hierarchical societies a range of customs and values influenced economic activity along very different lines. These included:

  • the principle of the irreducible minimum – the shared notion that all members of the same community are entitled to the means of life, irrespective of the amount of work they perform;
  • the principle of usufruct, whereby the means of life that were not being used by one group could be used, as needed, by another – including land, orchards, and even tools. It points to a basis for making an important distinction between private property and personal property (personal property being the things we actually need to live).
  • the practice of mutual aid, the sharing of things and labour whereby a family or person in difficulty could expect to be helped by others, and a recognition of the interdependence of each and every person within the community. These tendencies have been severely eroded by class and other social forms of domination. But they still remain central to the vestiges of organic society which survive beneath the current disintegrative system. (14)

These customs are suggestive of future forms of social organisation where sharing or dana once more takes ethical precedence over individualistic acquisition; and where the sustenance economy once more predominates over the market economy.

Within the present system the common wealth of the ecosystem is enclosed and gathered under the control of private ownership. This enclosure of the commons has been going on for centuries. And it has accelerated dramatically in recent years.

Viewing the planet and its life support systems as so many resources to be acquired as private property leads to exclusion, often based on violence. The “ownership” of the rich depends on the “dispossession” of the poor. It robs diverse species and people of their share of ecological, economic and political space. Rather than earth based and life based cultures of abundance, profit driven globalisation creates cultures of exclusion, dispossession, and scarcity.

Corporate globalisation, intellectual property rights, patents on life are based on further enclosures – these include knowledge, culture, water, biodiversity, cells, genes, and public services such as health and education. The rhetoric of “ownership society” turns everything into private property – with no intrinsic worth, no integrity, and no subject hood.

The belief in ownership underlies the transfer of control of more and more of the earth’s resources into the hands of transnational corporations. It gives them the means to significantly influence the lives of all of us in ways that we cannot control by current democratic means. Meanwhile the power to influence the global economy is increasingly appropriated to enormous and unaccountable institutions like the World Bank and World Trade Organisation.

Throughout the majority world people are repeating the experiences of the working classes of Europe during the Industrial Revolution. They are being pushed by economic forces into poor working conditions, without any rights to organise themselves and facing brutal repression of any worker based resistance. One sixth of humanity are living in conditions often worse than those of the factory slums of the industrial revolution. In the first three months of this year 150 trade union organisers were assassinated ion Columbia.

These inequalities were once justified by the idea of trickle down benefits. But this delusion is no longer sustainable. Orthodox economics says that growth should lead to increasing income equality in and between countries. But, globalisation cannot achieve these objectives. The widening inequalities in the world are enough to show that economics is not working.

The global economy is rigged against the world’s poorest people. One-sided relationships, subsidised international corporations, and a debt burden they had no control over, are all part of the problem. For every dollar spent on aid by OECD countries, $10 is sent back by poor countries in debt repayments. “In the current system, the only way for poor people to get a little less poor is for rich people to get very much richer, wrecking the environment on which everything else depends.” (15) For everyone to consume at the same rate as we do in the UK, we would need three planets to live on. It is quite clear that the trickle down justifications of the past are untenable. They are fantasies used to justify class interests.

It is important to recognise that it is not an undifferentiated humanity that is to blame for ongoing environmental destruction. It is the power of capital following the logic of the market. It is a particular and historically conditioned economic system. A system that perpetuates class interests and benefits a few at the expense of many – so many.

A more just and equitable world depends upon a vast re-extension of the commonwealth. Dana, as a basic economic principle implies a re-vitalisation of the idea of the commons. And it makes no sense to speak of the commons without a shared influence over what is done with them.

So, dana points to a return of the natural resources (once considered a “common treasury”) into truly democratic control. Dana implies the creation of a culture of Earth Democracy – in which the actual needs of people, other species, and the ecosystem have a stronger voice than capital and corporations. From the simple ethical value of giving come radical revolutionary demands.

As Sangharakshita puts it: 'There is no doubt that property is inequitably distributed, in the sense of not being distributed in accordance with the genuine need of people, but what can we do about it? [...] In a democratic country, a more equitable distribution of property or wealth can be achieved through legislation, which means in effect the forcible expropriation from the minority by the majority, as well as the encouragement of a deeper understanding, and a more effective practice, on the grandest possible scale, of the principle of Generosity, or Sharing.”' (16)

Conclusion: Earth Democracy

So, “Do Dakinis Wage Class War?” Well what is a Dakini? Dakinis are the name of family of archetypal figures from the Buddhist tradition. They are depicted as semi-wrathful female forms dancing in a halo of flames. These impassioned figures represent the inspired, creative and dynamic energy of engaged compassionate action. So, to reformulate the question, “does engaged compassionate action imply waging class war?” The arguments of this article would suggest they do!

We are living in the midst of a class war. It is a war being waged by corporations, capital, and a bankrupted economic system, against people and the planet. The war is waged in the name of economic progress and increasing material wealth. But in the process what it is to be human is being impoverished, the value of community and the natural world are being systematically destroyed.

Compassionate and wise action today naturally includes the struggle to eliminate the exploitative relationships and unjust distributions of power in our world. In this struggle dakinis empoy the two weapons of Wisdom and Compassion.

They use Wisdom, applying the insights of the tradition to break through the current system’s veneer of legitimacy. An application of Buddhist ethics to current economics is an important step in revealing its basic assumptions as false, harmful, and destructive – and can support a radical reformulation of economic relations. And they work with Compassion to build a movement based on solidarity – not in a war of one class against another, but in the struggle of compassion against the injustices of a class system, against all forms of social domination and exploitation.

Today we need to oppose globalisation based on the movement of capital & finance, and the unnecessary movement of goods and services, with globalisation based on compassion and solidarity. We need to bring compassion and wisdom to bear in the struggle for Earth Democracy.

Earth Democracy involves fully embracing our common, universal humanity, and our commonality with all life and other species through soil, water, and air. Earth Democracy is based on valuing the intrinsic worth of all species, all peoples, all cultures; a just and equal sharing of this earth’s vital resources; and participation in the decisions about the use of the earth’s resources (at every level from the local to the global).

It is not just a concept – it is being realised in the multiple and diverse practices of people reclaiming their commons, their resources, their livelihoods, their freedoms, their dignity. It involves the strengthening of local economies, the dynamic and forceful re-empowerment of local democratic institutions, and the building of a strong global anti-capitalist movement.

Compassionate participation in a global movement to reclaim democratic control over our food and water and our ecological survival, is becoming a necessary project for our freedom. It involves creating a strong and diverse global movement which says loud and clear – “Our World Is Not For Sale”.


1. See David Loy, The Religion of the Market. http//:www.bpf.org/tsangha/
2. E.F.Schumacher, Small is Beautiful, 1973.
3. New Economics Foundation, Are You Happy? Pdf down load, p42.
4. For a clear exposition of the irrationalities of a growth based system see The Limits to Growth: The 30 Year Update, Meadows, Randers & Meadows, Earthscan, 2007.
5. www.neweconomics.org
6. Vandana Shiva, Earth Democracy, 2005, Zed Books and South End Press. 7. Often in traditional societies which are breaking down into mercantile and wage labour forms, the work of the sustenance economy is that sphere of work for which women hold the major responsibilities. The devaluation of this sphere is can be linked to patriarchy. And it is valuable to note the dynamic relationship which exists between one social form of domination and another.
8. Reference from Noam Chomsky, Class War audio CD, AK Press.
9. The teaching of karma suggests that action needs to be ethically evaluated within the entire context in which it takes place. This includes the intention behind it, its impact on others, the nature of the act itself, as well as whether or not it achieves its ends. So, while the efficient productive value of work is not irrelevant, it must be balanced against the primarily ethical value of work.
10. The traditional formulation lists a number of livelihoods which should be avoided – primarily those that cause explicit harm such as trading in arms, living beings, intoxicants, or poisons; slaughtering, fishing, soldiering, deceit, treachery, soothsaying, and usury. These ethical considerations are easily extended to raise serious questions about the very basis of current economic activity which is often highly exploitative of other humans and beings, intoxicates through advertising and marketing, and in which the manufacturing and trade in arms plays a large part, together with a whole system of finance rooted in speculation.
11. E.F.Schumacher, Small is Beautiful, 1973.
12. In the early Buddhist teachings we find the Buddha offering teachings to householders which recommend prudence and accumulation of wealth. But these must be considered in the light of the emergence of mercantilism at that time and the freedom it offered from traditionally limiting roles. History has moved on to reveal the irrationalities and limitations of that approach. We can now see the social and psychological price paid by the rise of mercantile economy, and now need to re-apply more basic principles in a new socio-economic situation.
13. We need to also bear in mind that the monastic sangha has repeatedly found ways to subvert this idea. Historically the monastic sangha has repeatedly weakened this radical proposal by turningd itself into a kind of corporate self which has maintained a feudal like relationship with the wider populace. It has often drawn to itself economic power, sometimes in subservience to an established social hierarchy, and at other times exerting a powerful and unaccountable economic influence in its own right.
14. It is interesting to note here the that the term private is derived from the latin privare: to deprive, and once meant that property taken from the communal for use deprived the community of it temporarily. See Murray Bookchin, Social Ecology and Communalism, AK Press 2007, p.37.
15. David Woodward, of the New Economics Foundation.
16. The Ten Pillar, Sangharakshita, Windhorse Publications