The relationship between humans and animals takes a dizzying array of forms, provoking everything from impassioned principles to mystical tales. Some die for our food, while others sleep at the foot of our beds every night. This issue is a collection of stories, confessions and questions exploring our complex connections with animals.
Bullying in schools is a hot topic these days, and justifiably so, but the realities of social hierarchy don’t end with high school graduation. What does it look like to stand with those who are socially, politically and economically marginalized at any age? What is the role of power and privilege in doing the right thing, from pre-school into adulthood?
Terms like “investment” and “profit” conjure notions of coins or bills or figures preceded by dollar signs, and yet humans cannot live on hard cash alone. The Mad Farmer (a.k.a. Wendell Berry) writes, “Say that the leaves are harvested when they have rotted into the mold. Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.” What are the benefits of the non-monetary ways we share profits, raise capital and make exchange for goods and services?
Because dancing is what we should do, not only with our feet but also our thoughts, this topic is open to all sorts of perspectives on the meaning of dance and movement. catapult magazine invites creative and whimsical reflections on the body in motion.
Responding to our issue on the Enbridge oil pipeline, this issue asks whether we need to rethink progress. Today, we are confronted with accelerated movement toward cheaper, faster, newer, hipper, bigger. Progress is synonymous with production, and financial gain is understood as forward movement. But, if there is one thing that we learn from Christ's sacrifice and weakness, it is that progress is not always a forward, linear movement.
On March 30, 2013, the Hermitage Community, a contemplative retreat center in Three Rivers, Michigan, held a service of confession, lament and hope in preparation for the construction of a new Enbridge crude oil pipeline that will cut through the center on its way from Canada to a refinery in Indiana. Another service took place the same day on a section of the pipeline in Manitoba. This issue contains some of the material that was presented at the Hermitage service, as well as reflections inspired by it.