The Year 2000 Problem:

An Opportunity to Build Sustainable Community

A Guide for Y2K Study Circles

Welcome to this online study circle guide!  You can use it as a resource to bring focus to the maze of information about Y2K.   Use the study circle process to help you think and feel with others about what the the year 2000 problem means to you.  You will find here inspiration and ideas for building neighborhoods and communities that not only prepared for Y2K, but more sustainable and better places to live. This guide is an offering to support the creation of ways of living with our world that will ensure a future for humans and all our relations.

This guide will be revised and updated periodically, linking or adding new readings, resources and ideas.  Your suggestions and feedback are invited and encouraged!  Contact Doug Mosel at

What will our post-Y2K world look like?  Will it be a return to "life as usual," only to await the next technological collapse?  Is it possible that we can take advantage of the opportunity presented in this brief moment of vulnerability -- regardless of the severity of Y2K disruption -- to mobilize enough momentum toward sustainability that we will never turn back?

Some say Y2K will be a speed-bump, little more than an inconvenience.  Others predict that it will involve widespread disruptions, but that those problems will be resolved in a period of a few weeks, at most.  At best, in this scenario, government structures would continue functioning and most communities would work well together to surmount problems.  At worst, there may be a few toxic or nuclear accidents, some epidemics and an occasional need for martial law.  Others expect truly catastrophic breakdown, with months or even years of disruption (including widespread starvation, etc.), and major changes in our social structure (ranging from emergency martial law to fascism to local gang control to the rise of resilient communities).  Will Y2K bring the end of the world as we know it -- or the beginning of the world as we want it?

What is a Y2K Study Circle?
It's a small, self-organized group interested in learning about the possibilities for sustainable community presented by the "millennium bug." Each session, designed to be 1 1/2 - 2 hours in length, includes: ü Pre-session readings ü A Question to Enter the Conversation ü Questions to Deepen the Study ü Actions that Could be Taken ü Reflection on the Conversation üClosing the Circle or Optional Ritual ü Resources & Links

What Do We Have to Do to Prepare?

Openings and Rituals

The opening is an important way to mark the beginning of the circle session, by providing a transition into the "space" of the gathered group and to hear from each person as you begin. The intention for an opening is to express appreciation for this time in our world, for nature, for the opportunity offered by the topic, or for the study circle participants.  Openings will usually be simple and brief (a few minutes) and might make use of song, objects, readings, or something from nature.

Rituals can offer a deeper integration of mind, heart, and spirit, and are an option for each session (see "Resources for Rituals" in this section).

Suggested Guidelines for Study Circle Conversation