A New Kind of Family: 3 — A Social Covenant

A Social Covenant


The foregoing skills offer an amorphous group of acquaintances the opportunity to forge themselves into a new kind of family; a family that may also function as a cohesive and effective crew. Whether or not this potential is actualized depends upon the readiness of those individuals to be forged, and their diligence in acquiring the skills.

If their desire has “ripened” sufficiently, they will know (at least intuitively) that in order for their deepest dreams to be realized, synergy is essential. They will therefore make promises—to themselves, to each other, and to the living Spirit within them—to master the skills necessary to make such synergy possible. Their promises will serve as a covenant.

What is a covenant? The dictionary describes it as an agreement that is “formal, solemn, and binding.” The word solemn suggests a spiritual or religious invocation. One that is formal rather than informal. And binding rather than casual.

This succinct definition is then elaborated. A covenant is “a written agreement or promise usually under seal between two or more parties especially for the performance of some action.” The italicized words and phrases are evocative, leading into a progressively deeper understanding of how we may harness ourselves to a shared vision.

Why are covenants necessary? Living lightly on the Earth, living communally, living with transformational intent—each of these paths is strenuous. And the journey that Light Morning has embarked upon blends all three!

Along the way, we encounter fierce resistance from our personal inertia. This inertia is then projected onto the consensual restraints of a status quo society. To free ourselves from these gravitational restraints, we must fashion a special consensus. A cocoon. A space capsule. A covenant.

What might a Light Morning covenant look like? In these renewal pages we have been bringing one into focus. The labor, financial, and attitude benchmarks were clarified, as were the needs for good focalization and the role of bread labor coordinator. Five key social skills, viewed as interpersonal binding spells, were also addressed.

These binding spells must be “spelled” correctly, for each is composed of discrete, sequential steps. Only when the steps, or “letters,” are placed in the proper order may the “word” be spoken. This is true for both the bread-labor benchmarks and the social skills, as well as for the spiritual components of the covenant, which have yet to be explored.

Where does the willingness to covenant come from? Learning something new, like an unusual dance or a new kind of family, can be exhilarating. It can also be awkward, uncomfortable, and threatening. Until the strange gestures become second nature, the learning curve may seem steep and intimidating. Returning, therefore, to an earlier question, “From where do we derive the willingness to face our interpersonal challenges with a warrior’s spirit and an open heart?”

Perhaps willingness comes from gazing into an unfamiliar mirror and seeing a startlingly beautiful creature. This one brief glimpse keeps us going. Maybe our resolve is further strengthened as we’re moved to help others seek healing in a similar way.

Or perhaps we find that the core social skills are relevant to any relationship, such as marriage or parenting, and we decide to approach covenanting as an apprenticeship. We may also be motivated by the pleasures inherent in stretching, whether that stretching be physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual. Perhaps we are seduced, in other words, by the joy of the journey.

Whatever its source, willingness helps us simplify our needs and live closer to “Mother” Earth. It helps us jettison some of our muscle-bound independence, and sense the guiding Presence which some traditions call the “Father”. Willingness also allows us to share our daily lives with others who are choosing to become re-acquainted with their archetypal “Parents.” It gives us the courage to covenant with them. To embrace them as brothers and sisters.

Finally, a well-activated willingness manages to stir up plenty of what we humorously refer to as UPS—Unresolved Parental Stuff. We seem to keep our local UPS driver busy. Lots of packages keep coming in! It is only by transmuting our bone-deep, “UPS” conditioning that we shall fully experience the promise of a new kind of family.