Precursors to New Social Movements


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Adapted from writings in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. Updated Nov. 2014.



Some precursors to New forms of Social Movements spreading rapidly on Earth may be traced to action documented in the paper Informal Networks and New Social Movements that outlines the social relating based movements spreading through South America and through the Asia Oceania Australasia Region since the 1960s.


From 1958 in Sydney, Australia psychiatrist humanitarian barrister Dr Yeomans pioneered the use of community of a particular kind as a medium for nurturing community mutual help action for wellbeing; refer Community Ways for Healing the World.


Yeomans has been recognised as a global pioneer in evolving Therapeutic Community (refer Glossary) by the Therapeutic Communities Open Forum in the UK.


This document also extends the document Declaration of Governance and Law that outlines ways for Global Reform of local, regional, and global governance.


This document also extends the themes in Dr Neville Yeomans’ 1974 document On Global Reform - INMA where INMA meant Intercultural Normative Model Areas. In the On Global Reform – Inma document Neville introduces some core values guiding these new social movements as being:


a)    peacefulness and harmony

b)    ecological quality and abundance

c)    economic wellbeing, and

d)    social and political justice


The movement is about evolving the new rather than opposing the old.

Neville Yeomans conceived of a three-stage Transition process (T1-T3) based upon the above four values in transforming towards a new epoch on earth:


Tl = Consciousness-raising in national Arenas

T2 = Mobilizing in Transnational Arenas

T3 = Transforming in Global Arenas


During the 1970s, T1 Consciousness-Raising began firstly among the most disadvantaged of the area, including the First Peoples. Thus human relations groups on a live-in basis and in dispersed networks began assisting both the growth of solidarity and personal freedom of expression amongst such persons.

In initial experiences along these lines the release of fear and resentment within the indigenous members against Europeans led to a level of understanding and mutual trust both within the indigenous members, and between them and European members.

A mutual awareness of humanness led to the development not of a 'social contract' but rather of a community agreement. In legal terms a legally enforceable social contract may be contrasted with a morally enforceable, and perhaps in future a cogent humane law agreement based upon shared and strongly held values-based norms.

The next step was the focussing of activities on the local Intercultural Normative Model Areas (INMAs). This was accompanied by widespread T1 activities in the INMAs, conducted largely by those trained by previous groups.

Aborigines and resonant others from all over Australia and overseas visitors became involved. Over a number of years the population of the INMAs have increasingly involved people from many cultures.

Informal Networking has been growing through the Australasia Oceania Asia Region with news of healing ways that work passing in these networked networks. The word ‘healing’ is used in the original sense of ‘to make whole’.


T1 Consciousness-Raising in National Arenas


In the 1960s, Dr Neville Yeomans and his brother Ken with many others explored festivals, gatherings, ceremonies, and celebrations as consciousness raisers, where themes were conducive to people having social cohesion. Word was spreading of a global shift occurring - a new consciousness bringing the vision of world peace, harmony, and prosperity. These gatherings became places to informally network and spread network linkages. Refer ConFest and the Next 250 Years - Past and Future Possibilities and Sociograms.


And there’s recognising spreading rapidly that a global money system based upon an exponentially increasing debt, and the accompanying slavery of indebtedness to a few with astronomical wealth and power violates unalienable rights. So, people with values and capacity are preparing alternative local, regional and global means of exchange, energy exchange and local exchange trading processes and the like.




This social transforming action has been happening among indigenous peoples’ linking with people well versed in action research in the natural and social sciences in the Asia Oceania Australasia Region, the UK, and wider afield. The focus in these extended networks of networks has been exploring abundant thriving futures for earth and all life upon it.

A feature of this New Social Movement is rumours networking. This is where news of what has worked is passed on within networked networks with the invite to explore and adapt these ways if you want to in your own contexts.

A key aspect of this dialoguing and action research in this Area has been the evolving of criteria to be used in forming agreements and drafting Treaties and carrying out Treaty Gatherings where people begin embodying new ways of living well as they are engaging together in reaching agreements that they can all enter into. Other differing Actions have been occurring in other parts of the World.

The signing of the final draft of a Treaty evidences the Profound Agreement of peace and friendship that participants have already entered into.

Dr Yeomans work in evolving Informal healer networks in the Australia Top End in the 1970s are outlined in From the Outback. He writes of one mutual-help network forming with the name UP-INMA meaning Unique Peoples – Intercultural Normative Model Areas; referring to areas where people are exploring new norms for living well together.

As examples of earlier treaties, in 1992 Unique Peoples Treaties were written and signed – refer:

a)    Inter-people Healing Treaty Between Non-government Organisations and Unique Peoples

b)    The Young Peoples Healing Learning Code

From the above two treaties emerged the idea of forming common understandings and agreement between peoples and bodies coming together in gatherings from the 1960s onwards.

These common understandings may pass through peoples, cultures, and societies right through to leaders of sovereign nations around the world. These understanding may then emerge as Treaties. One of these potential agreements became known as the Preliminary UN-INMA Treaty.


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