Most of us think of money as some kind of universal phenomenon, like matter and energy. It has even been said that money IS energy, or it is LIKE energy because without it everything comes to a halt, just like a car without petrol!

So is it possible to have a world without money? That seems like asking if it is possible to have a world without energy.

Matter and energy are top-level concepts, which means that there are no higher-level concepts to explain them. The two are bound up into the same concept: the universe is matter/energy.

When money gets equated with energy it is seen in the same way: as a top level concept that is used to explain all human economic activity. Money, however, is not a top-level concept; it is subsumed under exchange. Exchange is a property of life (another way of saying that all life forms are dependent on other life forms); money isn’t.

Humans differ from other life forms in many ways, and when it comes to exchange with each other they are able to consciously organise their exchange activities and relationships. They develop methods and means to facilitate exchange, and these together form exchange systems. An exchange system provides all the tools and rules that make exchange easier.

Money, as we understand it today, is just one of many ways to facilitate exchange. We have come to see money as one of the essentials of life (even the purpose of life!) because we are forced to use it by those who benefit from our use of it (businesses and governments). We are told that it is the only “legal tender” and anything outside of it is the “black market” or the “economic underground”. We are encouraged to see the world in binary terms: either exchange is facilitated with money or it is ‘barter’.

The Talent Exchange, as part of the global Community Exchange System (CES), is an exchange system that facilitates exchange without money. It is not barter, yet it is not money! In many ways it facilitates exchange more efficiently than money.

Above all, the Talent Exchange demonstrates that not all exchange has to be straitjacketed into one exchange method: money. By limiting our exchange options to money (by monetising everything) we are denying the many different exchange relationships humans can enter into and the methods they can use to facilitate exchange. The CES promotes the notion that there are a multitude of ways of facilitating exchange and that no one can command that we use only one way: money.

Most of the world’s problems can be traced back to ‘money’ because the world is energised by money. It straitjackets our thinking, our relationships and our activities by getting us all to focus on it. Rip off the straitjacket and discover a whole new world out there that gives you the freedom to trade and exchange in whatever ways you like, ways that will create friendships and good will.

There are many, many ways to trade!