For more information about how land reform can create meaningful work, restore our ecology, and bring more wealth into our local communities, I invite you to read my book Land: A New Paradigm for a Thriving World.

I spent the last three years researching and writing a book called Land: A New Paradigm for a Thriving World. In it, I share how our ability to profit from land causes many, if not most, of the deep-seated economic and social issues of our times, and I dispel the notion that economic growth automatically leads to economic and social wellbeing. I also communicate how exactly we canshare the value of land in such a way that benefits all members of society.

When our economies grow, they cause the value of land to increase. Allow me to explain this with an example: If I buy a property for $100,000 and sell it a year later for $120,000 (with no work done to it), the locational value of the property has increased by $20,000. But that locational value has only increased due to the additional goods and services that have been added by the surrounding community. In other words, the property has become more valuable because the community has become more attractive to live in. In short: the community has made this land more valuable.

When more goods and services are added to the economy, we call it economic growth. But increases in goods and services cause land to become more valuable in the locations where those increases occur. This, however, generally only benefits banks, real estate developers, and wealthy landowners—not the rest of the economy, which has to suffer as a result of a higher cost of living.

So what we conventionally call economic growth does not always lead to economic wellbeing. What, then, does? The secret to solving a lot of our economic problems, as a I write about in Land, lies in sharing the value of land with one another. Ultimately, land has to be rented from our local community. People can still use land exclusively as long as they reimburse their community for their exclusive use of it. When the local community is reimbursed and when the funds are redistributed to all community members via a Universal Basic Income (including those who do not own land), everyone benefits.

Why share the value of land in the first place? Why create a more beautiful world? To me, I know of only one answer to this question: love.

What I didn’t write about—and only touched upon—is what will ultimately cause us to want to share the value of land with one another on a collective level. It won’t be government legislation imposed upon the masses. And it won’t be education on its own, either, for education by itself is but an empty shell that does not ask the most important question: why? Why share the value of land in the first place? Why create a more beautiful world? To me, I know of only one answer to this question: love.

The kind of love I’m talking about here is the kind of love that is universal to the human heart. Beyond economics, it is the state of our collective caring for one another—the love we carry in our hearts for one another—that ultimately sets us free and will liberate our economy.

All great historical breakthroughs were done from a spirit of unity and love.

But before I’m accused of being naïve, let me remind you that all great historical breakthroughs were done from a spirit of unity and love: The Berlin Wall and the Iron Curtain were brought down by people yearning for freedom and unity. Mandela was released from prison and became a great statesman by advocating truth and reconciliation instead of hatred and revenge. And Mohandas Gandhi himself brought down the might of the British Empire through simple yet profound acts of love and non-violent resistance.

“Love is what makes us want to share the Earth with one another.”

Love is what makes us want to share the Earth with one another,” a dear friend once told me. The truth is so simple, and so profound. Legislating a new economy will only take us so far. Ultimately, and in the final analysis, the outer world is a collective reflection of people’s inner worlds. And that inner world—where love is experienced—holds the key, I believe, to unlocking the potential for a new paradigm economy.

I would like to end this essay on a personal note. Though I do my best to be a loving and kind human being, I’m also a flawed one; so I’m not here to tell you “you must love,” for I cannot. When I am loving, however, I remember that love heals all. In those moments, I also remember that love is what changes the world—it’s changing mine.

For more information about how land reform can create meaningful work, restore our ecology, and bring more wealth into our local communities, I invite you to read my book Land: A New Paradigm for a Thriving World.

© Text Copyright Martin Adams rights reserved.
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