Each of us alive on the planet today is experiencing change brought on by events over which we have little or no control. One ongoing event we all share, we call climate change. At a recent gathering called to strengthen and nourish a diverse community of elders in these parts, participants spoke of the perilous state of bees everywhere and of the diminishing populations of bats in the northeastern states. Fewer butterflies, bees, and bats, interrupted growing seasons, and extreme weather in the form of drought or deluge here and elsewhere signal that our world is changing and that we must respond intelligently to these changes rather than react out of fear.
I first read about the large but invisible group of culture changers known as cultural creatives in 2000 when Paul Ray’s and Sherry Ruth Anderson’s book, The Cultural Creatives: How 50 Million People are Changing the World, hit book stores. I believe I heard about the book on a CBC radio show, but I can’t be sure. What I can be sure of is the electric shock of recognition I felt when I heard the authors describe their research into a sizable but largely invisible segment of Americans whose values set them apart from mainstream culture.