Monday, May 3, 2010

Spiritual Roots of the Center for Urban Transformation

“For tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today”
African Proverb

When Buddhists say, “A bodhisattva fears not the result, but only the cause,” they mean that we must expend the bulk of our energy planting good roots today, rather than fretting about the plants that are already growing from the roots we planted in the past.
Master Hsing Yun, "Describing the Indescribable"

“Seek wisdom, not knowledge. Knowledge is of the past. Wisdom is of the future.”
Lumbee Proverb

Spiritually the founding and vision of the community and economic development organization, the Center for Urban Transformation (CUT), is centered upon the spiritual underpinnings established in the traditions of the ancient, indigenous peoples of Africa, the Americas, Eurasia and Oceania.

The founding vision of the organization is also deeply rooted in the core tenants and practices of engaged Buddhist practice as well as the dharma teachings and practices of other religious and spiritual systems such as Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism and any other faiths that advance the cause of global social, economic and environmental justice and insures the highest standards human rights practices to all humankind and a concomitant end of suffering for all sentient beings.

The organization is profoundly concerned with applying the wisdom teachings of the various spiritual and social systems of the ancients to modern times and creating conditions that allow sentient beings the opportunity to develop optimally in all areas of their being.

Because of the CUT commitment to its spiritual foundations the organization is obligated to developing projects that advance the creation of healthy and sustainable communities for all through the design and implementation of projects in our target communities.

Currently the CUT is centering its projects and work in the communities of Chicago’s south side, especially Greater Englewood, New City, Washington Park and Woodlawn. The CUT is committed to designing projects that have the capacity to be applied and replicated elsewhere in ways appropriate to communities interested in our approach and philosophy to community and economic development.

The CUT is interested in empowering communities globally. As such when other organizations and communities are interested in CUT programs CUT will work in an advisory capacity and accept any programmatic changes that the host organization deems appropriate for their unique situation(s).

Linked to the spiritual underpinnings of the CUT is the commitment to project development that is profoundly rooted ecological sustainability and the use of technologies and practices that support it. Furthermore ecological sustainability is critical to design and creation of communities that provide a safe, healthy and nurturing environment for all of its residents. These communities will serve to heal the plight of those that have been historically disenfranchised and underserved at all levels of their being - physical, psychological, cultural and spiritual.

Further it is our desire for the communities that we work in to become desirable places for all to live or provide the inspiration for social and cultural changes in communities around the world through the design and creation of the next generation of institutions that shape all areas of human activity – housing, business, education, social, cultural, psychological, spiritual, ecological, public health and technology.

Join us in designing and developing the core institutions vital for the survival of the next 70, 700 and 7,000 generations of sentient beings as our ancestors made it possible for all of us to be here in this moment. The current unsustainable human affairs require a profound paradigm shift to insure a sustainable future for all sentient beings, particularly at the spiritual level.

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