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INNER PLANET

We are living in an internet update and news feed culture which has made us globally present. No more are we looking at clearly defined edges, either to ourselves or to our immediate environments. Rather we push the boundary out on this one in every single new internet post or shared picture. In our dialogue with a global community.

And yet it is unfortunately not the case that our continual social media presence has in turn led us to become globally present. We are less present than ever to the space around us and to the clear sense of the world which we only tend to consider peripherally in relation to our self-narrative.

For example, once upon a time, a developing capitalistic culture scene first began to encourage us to think of ourselves as causal and impactful in Nike terms or in that perfect boy cut fit blue denim lines jeans terms. In a way we began to speak of ourselves as a unit which could stand out in the context of an immediate periphery because of our visual impact.

However, a team of innovators, across Europe and America are capitalising on this unitary significance and trend of self-definition through impact to teach us that we are all so impactful. And in a far more interesting way that our clothing choices or style.

Drago sat down with Marion Grahek this week, a young woman who is a key collaborator in this movement called InnerPlanet. A movement for which, the name itself, is a bit of a giveaway.

The App takes the idea of making the planet relatable to all. That it is a planetary self which we find and export out into the world in each of every single one of the daily choices. That we profoundly unitarily significant, only because we are compartmentally profound. And if there was nothing for the individual to correspond and interact with, then we would have no meaning at all.

And this is a dialogue which the capitalist playout has so far navigated well. You isolate the individual and teach them about impact. That we are dualistically socially individualised is a great start for the InnerPlanet movement and their idea of a Carbon Tracking app.

InnerPlanet are creating this App with the goal to help all of us see clearer and to give visuality to the image of our footprint, stamped out across the globe. A carbon footprint which we print on the world with every flight and travel decision.

And of course, the potential of such printing goes far beyond the ‘carbon print’ tagline. For truly, we are printing indelibly on the world with every purchase, interaction, with all our little decisions.

An App which standardises behaviour and so allows us to see the full potential of our impact; both individually and as a social group.

If my behaviour were standardised, what would be the impact on global temperature? On rising sea levels? Through the app, the feeling of being vital in a new pair of jeans or a highly shared internet post is pushed out to the ends of the world as we begin to see that our own carbon impact does not exist as a type of isolate, a concern of the lone self, but that it exists on a global scale. What would the effect be if everyone behaved in this way?

And so it is here that we get the sense that perhaps it is not too ambitious to think we can start to fix the world halfway down aisle four. That we are significant even in our weekly supermarket shop, because capitalism makes us consumer significant. That it does this during a weekly food shop, because capitalism is essentially a community of commerce which always makes our purchases significant outside of any singular dogma of self-importance and individualism. Our purchases our significant because they drive the market and because they are an action within a community. Even if this is an economic community, they are not to be considered singularly, but as something with potential to be collectivised.

And to hear these ideas communicated through one of the key collaborators in this project, Marion Grahek, gives us a real sense of a holistic approach to change, one that is vital among the young. Holistic because it involves a circular, as opposed to hierarchical vision of change. A circle which starts with ourselves and spreads itself out in the way we choose to interact, to shop; the way we conduct our lives. And so this push for change is the pushing out from a very nexus of self. A neuxs and cetre we have been trained to believe in through decades of capitalist culture which trained us in such extremes of self centring.

Now through people such as Grahek, we neither wait for change to come from above, nor push it from the bottom; we build these mental mechanisms for change into our rounded infrastructure of global notions of the self.

Human Nature by Pejac | Acrylic on wall, Salamanca, 2013

And we do this through the idea of an impact currency. The word ‘currency’ being a great way to think of the pay we must always receive in terms of our actions and behaviour. This is always a currency the planet must pay, that those around us must pay, if we refuse to pay it ourselves.

This is the idea that the app rests on; every one of our daily choices, whether they be dietary, linguistic word related, or travel related, each come with a consequence which is ours alone. And this is because we are not isolate, we are not self-contained.

And InnerPlanet is not seeking to fight against this either, but looking to work with this idea of data collection. How easy would the use of the InnerPlanet app be, if instead of manually logging our carbon usage, or flights, or purchases, the app would be able to monitor this for us?

So, of course, the potential is vast, and yet needs investment, research and the collaboration of like-minded individuals who want to get this idea of global responsibility onto the screens of our smart phones. And into our daily consciousness.

I Don't Believe In Global Warming by Bansky | Regent’s Canal, London, 2009

Ultimately, Marion is highly aware that any impact currency app cannot give us the full picture – after all – the impact of buying meat from a factory farm, also has a carbon impact, a water usage impact, a loss of rainforest impact; impact itself is not an isolate, but an interrelation. This is about interrelationships.

This is also the reason why Innerplanet are keen on the use of networking and social gathering as a means of app development. Between October 25th – 27th, Innerplanet will be hosting the third Climathon in London, an event which will also be shadowed by similar events in the USA. October 28th will be the first “Interdependence Day,” a name itself which plays on the idea that our own freedom from the destructive global trends, the economics which grew self-identification as part of a growth economics, with only be overcome by a recognition of selfhood and individuation in a way which is entirely tied up in others. Which is global in its proportions.

And the name of the app itself tells us this; InnerPlanet. We are working for the innerhealth of all here, not just our planet, but ourselves and the wellness of our conscience too. And yet, it is not really an “InnerPlanet, but an interplanet that the app gives us; a sense of us all being interrelated. All the remits of our selfhood pushed out there to the world. Our society becoming interconnected, interrelated, interdependent, and we ourselves, interresponsible.

Mural by Blu | Lisbon, 2010

What the app essentially offers is the chance to scale up and out our daily actions. And this is the brilliance of such an app as InnerPlanet. It globalises our myopic self-conception and individuation, thereby giving us a holistic approach to planetary change, helping us to work in collaboration with a global economy which will not change fast enough of its own accord.

The choice now is to live as if it all really does matter. To transform that moment when we stand in the supermarket and lift a tin of durable long-life carrots, or hold up an apple, and to see that what this really is is an “inter” and not an anti-movement. Whereas we were fast individuated as part of a growth economy, we are now being interindividuated. Because in the act of consuming, we are a collectivised individual, we matter and our consumer choices matter.

Our action is collectivised and the individual self acts as a node for all the interests of big business, economy, self-promotion and individual happiness which all come together, as we see that it really does matter which product we choose to buy. That is matters not because we look to be individuated through a consumer, capitalist culture, but because we now view the individuation it gave us, that feeling of separation which drove sales, as the prerequisite to a global environmental movement which teaches the individual how its actions are in fact global.

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