The next wave of innovation will leverage intuition and the power of positive intentions to help safeguard new abilities against corruption. In this sense, forging an uplifting path ahead requires upholding values of trust, common decency, and dignity. Developing a greater understanding of humanity’s place, and purpose, in life will contribute to a more evolved collective consciousness. The more knowledge we gain about our origins, the better equipped we are to create our future.
- The Power of Humility
- Healthy Habits
- Environmental Actors
- Economic Priorities
- Lessons Ahead
Depart: Subchapter I.
Knowledge of Self
Depart on a Journey to Discover Our Inner Universes
Go deep within to a reflective awareness of the connections between nodes of life. Gain insight from emptiness, and find yourself within that clear, open space.
“Our own individual inner universe, our way of being conscious, is just one possible way of being conscious. And even human consciousness generally, it’s just a tiny region in a vast space of possible consciousnesses… With a greater sense of understanding comes a greater sense of wonder, and a greater realization that we are part of and not apart from the rest of nature.” — Anil Seth
If we wish to gain insight on our true nature, it is necessary to delve into the field of consciousness.
One growing approach to this investigation concerns a branch of metaphysical philosophy dealing with the study of the mind called noetics. In Greek, noēsis / noētikos describes inner wisdom, direct knowing, intuition, or implicit understanding. The Petaluma, California based IONS (Institute Of Noetic Sciences) describes Noetic Sciences as: “A multidisciplinary field of study that brings objective scientific tools and techniques together with subjective inner knowing to study the nature of reality.”1 In this multidisciplinary field, the study of subjective experience is seen through a scientific lens to examine ways in which consciousness pertains to the physical world.
The idea behind the term unity of consciousness is that when we experience sensations like sound and feeling, or smell and taste, we do so all at once.2 Consciousness has the capacity to integrate complex parts and patterns into a seamless whole. Consciousness plays a crucial role in supporting individual and collective transformation, and engaging a global community in the realization of human potential.
Consciousness is not a fixed quality we possess, but rather an evolving experience of who we are. We can develop our awareness of consciousness when we quiet our inner dialogue and calm the frantic pace of our daily lives. Deeper insights of consciousness occur when we tune into the resonant frequency we share with all other observant beings. To create conditions for our bodies to live in a healthy, relaxed, and liberated state, enables the mind to gain greater awareness of the sensations the body receives. This collection of sensory input and extrasensory insight can then be reconfigured by the mind, through complex pattern recognition and resolution, to influence matter. At this precise moment, the unity of consciousness expands to allow for a state of total harmony. Perhaps this is what is meant by the title of the Radiohead song “Everything in its right place”.
“Technology is a manifestation of mind. It’s our thoughts and imagination brought into physical form. If you look around this room, every object, even the room itself, started as a thought. And like thoughts, technology can run wild, and cause immense devastation and suffering, or it can be our ally, to help us realize that which we all see: Peace, truth, love, enlightenment, whatever name you want to give to that.” — Mikey Siegel
New pieces of technology are currently being created to help access and explore the mysteries of consciousness. One of the people in the spotlight of this pursuit is an engineer named Mikey Siegel who has been working on integrating technology with consciousness through a series of global events he’s titled the Consciousness Hacking MeetUp. These community-based gatherings offer the opportunity for attendees to try out a device Siegel created called Heartsync which can connect up to 24 people wearing EEG headsets to a computer, visualize their heart-rates, and emit corresponding sounds through speakers. This device enables a group of people to synchronize their breathing and heart-rates into a collective rhythm. Through Siegel’s network of MeetUp events called Project Nights, other individuals and startups are able to share potentially influential prototypes.3 For instance, a group called Luciding Inc. has invented a specialized headband that can send electrical pulses to you while you sleep, which they claim allows for the ability to control one’s dreams and enjoy lucidly-navigated desires.
Technologies that sense and transmit heart rhythms, or that allow us to choose our own adventures through our dreams, reveal the powerful interworking of our own biological machinery. We are learning to harmonize the energies of our external technologies with the energies of our internal technologies. Along the way, we are deriving an ever greater meaning of what technology can be. Most of all, technology can be interpreted as a manifestation of human imagination.
Altered states of consciousness are a built-in feature to human experience. Popularized modes for quickly altering consciousness—like entertainment, caffeine, alcohol, hallucinogens, sensory deprivation, or electrical brainwave stimulation —are ripe for reinterpretation. Like with chemical substances, the potential for dependency to develop presents risk to certain avenues for altering consciousness. Yet ancient practices will continue to be our most accessible means for experiencing internal transformation. The most sustainable means for gaining insights from different states of consciousness might very well continue to include the shamanic method of rhythmic percussion, or the yogic methods of breath-work, movement, and meditation.
We believe that in the future, ecosystems for exploring and expanding consciousness will continue to grow. So too will the number of possible paths toward the discovery of the truths hidden within each of our inner universes. Opportunities to access enlightened experiences from within will continue to unfold. All the while, humans will gradually develop a more cohesive connection with the outer universe.
Embark into Greater Awareness
Lucid dreams, meditation, and hallucinogens serve as bridges between states of consciousness and reveal the power of mind over matter.
“As a lump of salt thrown into water melts away…even so, 0 Maitreyi, the individual soul, dissolved, is the Eternal—pure consciousness, infinite, transcendent.” — The Brihadaranayaka Upanishad
Mystic wisdom reveals universal truths that exist outside the intellect, and can be obtained only in the spirit realm. Mystic awareness becomes available with distance from the intellect and corresponding sense of self. The amount of processing simply to navigate one’s everyday individual experience requires powerful calculations and energy. As such, living in a constant state of mystic awareness is unfortunately not practical for navigating the physical world. Yet, we can certainly become more aware of the truth about our inter-connections by giving greater attention to insights shared by mystics. We can also prioritize some time each day to take a break from all our processing and, in a calm, appropriate space, learn to develop mystic awareness.
No matter what we come across in that time and space, we will at least benefit from accessing a more selfless realm and stop burning so much energy on judging ourselves. We should, instead, learn to embrace all of who we are, appreciate our various flaws and mistakes, and see how our imperfections connect us to the perfectly chaotic composition of life.
The Upanishads are ancient Sanskrit writings that comprise part of a larger body of religious texts known as the Vedas, text that informs core elements of Hinduism as well as Buddhism and Jainism. These writings are considered “authorless”. The date of their origins remains in question, although some scholars have placed the earliest writings as far back as 800 BCE. As early philosophical texts, the Upanishads are extremely precise in describing a connection between the physical world and the spirit world.
We believe that once we begin to distance ourselves from the demands of our ego-techno-centric economic system, we will free up space to pursue a more mystical relationship to the natural world. In small ways we can uncover the connections between people in order to arrive at a more spiritually awakened existence.
When we sleep we enter an entirely different space in reality. Dream Yoga describes a tantric process, in the realm of lucid dreaming, typically taught as a transfer of enlightened experience from a teacher to a student. One of the first sensations practitioners of this type of dreaming often report is the challenge of learning to fly during their dream. Perhaps this common, initial experience of Dream Yoga reflects humanity’s fascination with flight. Maybe it’s a feature of a shared desire to exceed our species’ physical limitations. In any case, dream flight reminds us that we’ve entered an enhanced plane of existence, in which the otherwise impossible becomes achievable. In a lucid dream, the dreamer deliberately arranges the environment and their actions by their own active choice. In Buddhist traditions, the dream state is taught to be just another passing state of consciousness, or illusion of the phenomenal world. Similar to how a rainbow reveals the colors within the visible spectrum of light, so too can dreams reveal what we might not yet be able to explain.
How might we transfer the wisdom of Dream Yoga’s mystical state into practical applications to societal challenges? How might we take proactive control of our environment through enlightened experience? There are various pathways to unfold the layered projections that comprise reality. However we access that unfolding of self and sensory perception, we discover that we are all connected to a mystical cosmic force. The sooner we collectively come to that realization, the sooner we will be able to begin creating the next chapter of human achievement.
Trace the Hero’s Journey for Humanity
The phrase “the hero’s journey” was popularized by Joseph Campbell who employed it to describe a narrative motif he repeatedly found throughout various mythologies. The journey has three parts: Departure (on the journey / call to action), Fulfillment (of the quest / acquiring knowledge), and Return (home or back to one’s people, with a renewed sense of how to improve life).
“Every story is a travel story – a spatial practice.” — Michel de Certeau, The Practice of Everyday Life
In The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell looks to myths from around the world, and early written history, in order to trace a common structure to better understand the human drive. His work revealed how the majority of stories that are passed down through generations contain a central character who can be seen as the story’s archetypal hero.
Campbell found that each of these archetypal heroes go through a transformative journey. Whether its Odysseus’ return home from war, or the story of Jesus, Buddha, or Mohammed being forever changed by the wisdom they received from a spiritual source, the journey itself reflects a departure from all previous standards, and signals entry into the unknown.
In his book, Campbell explains the nature of the monomyth, in which, “A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.” 1977’s mega-hit, Star Wars, helped popularize the notion of the hero’s journey. Filmmaker George Lucas has acknowledged the importance of Campbell’s work in interviews, citing Campbell as a constant inspiration in realizing the film’s characters, its universe, and the central theme of the battle between good and evil, light and dark. In fact, so strong was the correlation between Lucas’ story and Campbell’s original text, that the third printing of Campbell’s book featured a photo of Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker on its cover. This only helped to further insert the idea of the hero’s journey into the collective consciousness.
We feel it’s time to explore how the hero’s journey can be applied as a way of looking at humanity’s evolution. How we too are currently on a collective journey, and how it is now our time to step up to the demand for change. It’s our time to respond to the greater call for action across our species.
- The Power of Humility
- Healthy Habits
- Environmental Actors
- Economic Priorities
- Lessons Ahead