While the term DIY most certainly means “Do It Yourself,” the concept itself is far more vast.
Obviously, doing something without the help of others isn’t an easy task, especially when these “others” are companies that have limitless quantities of wealth that you yourself most certainly could use.
DIY, while in its simplest terms means building or creating something from scratch, is more often being used to describe CHOOSING to do something your way vs. someone else’s. Not backing down to “The Man,” so to speak.
While this certainly isn’t the easiest route to go, many find that they prefer being broke over working for someone else. Being your own boss has its risks, but it allows an artist to thrive creatively without having to alter their vision or sacrifice integrity.
Meritocracy essentially stands for giving each and every person equal opportunity to “become” themselves. Many are robbed of their dreams because they simply did not have the money, education or resources to even begin, while those who do have access to these things are usually born into wealth, and did not earn a penny of it.
This relates to the idea of the Pyramid vs. the Round Table. Wealthy elitists relate to the pyramid, since it represents a small sect of wealth at the top, while the bottom gets virtually nothing. Meritocracy relates to the Round Table ( think King Arthur,) because it represents even distribution and fair opportunity for all individuals. Meritocracy works for the good of the community vs. the needs of the family (and if you’ve read any of my other posts involving the Illuminati and Old World Orders, you’ll understand what I mean by this.) If you must, think of images of past country villages or Indian tribes vs. houses in suburbia and Dictatorships.
In relation to meritocracy (one of the key tenets of Gnosis,) the DIY ethic parallels the concept that everyone has a special passion, and they should be able to utilize this talent as freely and as often as they like. Essentially, the world would be a better place if everyone’s occupation consisted of something they loved to do. Many lose their dreams in sight of money, family and material possessions.
DIY’ers believe that age and situation isn’t an issue; they go after their dreams anyway. Yes, it’s understandable if you have a family to feed and bills to pay, but many DIY’ers are in this exact same position. The difference between DIY’ers and most people is that they tend to be creative thinkers, which has allowed them to find ways to make ends meet while still engaging in their passion.
If you speak with any artist who works outside the confines of the system, they will tell you that it takes sacrifice. Could you live a lifestyle where one day you’d be squatting or starving because you couldn’t pay rent? Would you be willing to give up material possessions in order to buy supplies and equipment for your profession? Are your talent, passion and dreams worth more to you than money or security?
If the answer to the last question is no, than it is understandable why you’d fit better in the system, and there’s nothing wrong with that. DIY’ers are the opposite, however. They make their art, music, writing, etc. because they feel they have no other option; it’s something they HAVE to do. Without freedom of expression, many DIY’ers would feel meaningless. (I urge you to watch this video, from the brilliant DVD, “D.I.Y. or Die” by Michael W. Dean.)
Although not many people know about them, there are currently groups and ideas circulating in society that try an emphasize this sense of community and overall well-being.
Freegans, for example, are known for “dumpster-diving,” or retrieving unused food items from restaurants and companies that throw away perfectly edible food. While some freegans partake to save money and to simply survive, others do so out of principle, which is to avoid consumerism at all costs in order to prevent excessive waste.
“Really Really Free Markets” exist to give to others in need. Whereas in a thrift shop people are still buying goods, Really Really Free Markets give away goods of all kinds for no price at all. “Swap Shops” also are similar, except they use the bartering system, which gets rid of any stigmas of a gift economy. (For example, some feel that giving away free goods is not healthy, as it allows some people to become more dependent on receiving things from others vs. standing on their own two feet and learning to survive independently. In Swap Shops, one has to give something to the store in order to receive something from the store.)
Freeganism, Free Markets and Swap Shops essentially exist to try and help the community and the environment (and by helping the environment, you are helping fellow humans.) All three of these concepts allow consumerism to be minimized by making use of what others consider waste (“One’s man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”)
Possum Living is a concept that ties into everything mentioned previously. The phrase was coined by Dolly Freed, who wrote the book “Possom Living” based off of her experiences living at home without having to “make a living.”
Freed decided that there was no need to work at a job that she hated in order to get by. She lived at home with her father in a small house outside of Philadelphia, and used the property she had to grow food, catch fish and raise chickens. All of their meals essentially were prepared using food they grew, which was not only cheaper but healthier as well.
Many gave Freed flack for her lifestyle, including her mother (separated from her father,) who felt that Freed was living in squalor. Simply put, Freed had no interest in the elegant, lavish goods her mother aimed to acquire. She openly admits in her book that she’s quite a lazy person, but she takes care of her father and the animals she raises, she isn’t going hungry and she manages to live a stress-free life unlike many people her age. (And keep in mind, Dolly Freed is in no way a “hick”, lunatic or deadbeat.)
In a documentary on Freed (here,) Dolly points out how her neighbors adjacent to her have an entire plot of clean-cut grass, just there for show (as many American families do.) While some people enjoy achieving this American Dream image, Freed enjoys using the land for her benefit.
Essentially, I found Freed’s vision to be inspiring. Why has our society put such a negative stigma on laziness and a premium on working? Well, probably because laziness is now viewed as sitting in front of televison and doing NOTHING. Freed did have to do work around the house obviously, but this was miniscule compared to the stress of working 9-5. People may argue that they have a mortgage to pay and kids to feed, but rarely do they seek out options, such as moving into a smaller house and having less possessions.
This is a key point in Possum Living and of the DIY ethic; people CAN choose to live their lives the way they want, but they are too attached to their possessions and scared to move out of their comfort zone.
You don’t need to conform to the rat race; there ARE options out there, you just need to seek them out. And sometimes, you have to do it yourself.