Forum : The Human Chat



The Human Chat connects community members who share similar backgrounds, struggles, and will feature discussions of . Personal stories shared in The Human Chat will feature content from interviews related to purpose, identity, and the stories of people who have struggled with both in contemporary socioeconomic-political contexts. This includes focus on human experience, and how it is affected by access to resources such as money, health, social respect, and safe living environments. Forum leaders can lead discussions with their own stories, contextual background research, or call-outs for others to share their own narratives or participate in surveys, interviews, and additional collective building of knowledge and empathy.


Currently forum topics include: Work, Health, Travel, Grief, Identity, Addiction, and Celebration.


The Meaningful Work Project asks the question, What would a fulfillment based economy, rather than a need and greed based economy, look like? This project will include interviews and other information collection methods on the work people do, their relationship to enjoyment in work, as well as research on work, stress, health, and economic restructuring.


The Health Challenges Project is an outreach to connect community members with shared health issues together, with an additional goal being to explore how health impacts life, work, and fulfillment--as well as what the struggles to develop quality health care that reaches all those who are suffering looks like. What issues do patients face in trying to get proper diagnosis, care, and successful treatment? How does this affect those who are uninsured, or who cannot afford treatment even when insured?


A component offered by the Health Challenges Project, offers space for those struggling with compulsions to unhealthy habits, especially involving the health epidemic related to drug addiction (but also possibly open to discussions of gambling, sex, TV, Facebook, games, our phones), to share the experiences they have undergone in the fight to resist cravings and to live in ways that are beneficial to flourishing and survival as human beings. It is a nonjudgmental space that looks at addiction as a health issue and personal struggle that is understandable, given that addiction is often rooted in deep water of our pasts, our psychology, and our biology--which differs from person to person. Contextual research of stats, psychological and biological studies, and stories on addiction are featured to bring together a solid picture upon which better policy, practice, and care can be built.


The Debate Team offers space for reviews of evidence in tandem with presentations of alternate vantage points on questions of justice, ethics, science, practice, and more. Sections may be written by one or more authors offering precise summaries of each viewpoint of a debate, rooted in evidence, with reference to sources of information, and connection to personal impact. Evaluations of evidence should be situated in science, philosophy, or recognizable frameworks /references.


The Conscious Traveler Project People build their worlds around context; this serves to define, transform, and create place in what would otherwise be unremarkable, mere, space. To travel consciously is to know the superficiality of escaping one world in contrast to the depth of entering another--to discover significance rather than stare at spectacle. The careful observer knows that multiple meanings are held in buildings, public sculptures and displays, local customs, ways of speaking, gestures--everything is a symbol that points to a historical meeting point or contemporary statement, to a series of events, the people who set it in motion, the systems those individuals work in, and the ideas that inspire committed repetition of ritual and dynamic deviations from tradition, alike. Being a conscious traveler--walking through others meanings--further requires delicacy, tact, an interest. It requires effort to develop keen awareness of the ways social status, wealth, and other types of power constructs others places, our own homes, and the interaction between the two, including the ways in which outside observers and tourism affect local spaces. Contributors offer reflections on impact, context, and perspective on their travels--what it's like being a stranger, rendering a strange land more familiar.


The Grieving Connection is likewise an outreach to connect those who have suffered a loss. It looks at how humans cope in the face of the unthinkable, and offers space to honor, rage against, feel sadness for the connection that goes missing, even as love carries on after death and grief touches all, no matter one's status. Anyone can share a story honoring the person they loved, struggling with missing them or mixed feelings in their grief, and the struggle to cope after loss. It is the intention to bring these stories together with more knowledge about what keeps people going after loss, how individuals move on (or don't), and how the experience of loss changes life.


The Identity and Community Project is a collection of stories about human inclusion, and the character of communities forged from shared history, experience, and struggle. Reflections shared here focus on the ways individual realities are shaped by communal belonging. This includes the ways experiences of individual identity are affected by the class, race, gender, sexuality, religion, and other identity categories that we see as significant to the 'self'--and how caricatures of people in these categories are often hijacked as rhetoric points that ignore actual human experience during public debate, institutional policy, and common practice. Community input will help inform contextual research on the common characteristics of experiences of bigotry as well as, a place to collaborate on a look at successful tactics of solidarity of allied communities standing against identity based oppression.


The Raving Joy Project offers a lighter note and brighter look--at groups of people celebrating. It asks how communities maintain, adapt, or change traditions, how they create new ways of having fun, and the context surrounding the occasions they deem worth celebrating. It is a section that allows people to share the different styles of music and dancing and loving and being joyful that they do while celebrating their communities, their connections, and the beautiful things that life offers--as well as humanizing different communities that may be remote to each other, to remind us all that love and shared experience is at the core of our bonds with each other, no matter where you are on the planet.


Other forums may be suggested by forum leader/monitors!

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