Categories
Recognize Interconnectivity

Everything Is Connected

“Walk­ing on the moon will change the weath­er,” is a quote attrib­uted to a shaman in Africa in response to the lunar land­ing in 1969. The resource deple­tion required for space explo­ration offers one exam­ple of the need to rec­og­nize the rela­tions between all mat­ter and ener­gy.

The New York Times front page, July 21 1969

“Con­nec­tion is every­thing. Con­nect with oth­ers, and with your spir­i­tu­al self. Love the truth you find in oth­er hearts, and always lis­ten to the voice of truth in your own heart. Be as fair, hon­est, pos­i­tive and cre­ative as you can in all your thoughts, speech and actions. The heart of our human kind is tol­er­ant, coop­er­a­tive, car­ing and coura­geous.”Gre­go­ry David Roberts

All life, every­where, com­pris­es a uni­ver­sal design. That over­all design reveals com­plex con­nec­tions that account for infi­nite vari­a­tion, as well as repeat­ing pat­terns. The largest objects, like the sun and plan­ets of our solar sys­tem, share sim­i­lar char­ac­ter­is­tics with even the small­est ele­ments, like atoms, the build­ing blocks for all ordi­nary mat­ter. Elec­trons orbit the nucle­us of an atom in the same way our plan­et orbits around the sun.1 The struc­ture of the human body also shares many qual­i­ties with the anato­my of our plan­et: each is made up of around 70% water,2 each has chakra points,3 and each is great­ly affect­ed by its rela­tion to sun­light and the pull of the moon’s cycle.

Buzz Aldrin’s boot­print, NASA, 1969

Earth’s rain­forests behave like lungs. Trees are inte­gral parts of the planet’s res­pi­ra­to­ry sys­tem. Defor­esta­tion and pol­lu­tion are mak­ing it hard for our plan­et to breathe, which in turn makes it very dif­fi­cult for us to breathe. We have to do bet­ter to take care of both our indi­vid­ual bod­ies, as well as our col­lec­tive lands, waters, and ecosys­tems. All bio­log­i­cal sys­tems are con­nect­ed through an extra­or­di­nary set of rela­tion­ships. When one sys­tem is ill cared for, it affects every oth­er sys­tem and its con­stituent parts. The ques­tion that occurs to us then becomes: How can we address the inter­re­lat­ed symp­toms of our soci­etal system—such as inequal­i­ty, pover­ty, and con­t­a­m­i­nat­ed water—as we would address any issue relat­ed to own phys­i­cal health? When the work­ing order of our bod­ies begins to fail, we seek to begin cor­rec­tive mea­sures imme­di­ate­ly. So then why does Flint, Michi­gan still not have clean drink­ing water after five years? Because of mas­sive sys­temic cor­rup­tion and lack of account­abil­i­ty. These issues, in turn, lead to a fail­ure of col­lec­tive con­fi­dence in gov­ern­ment insti­tu­tions. The repair to this kind of dis­trust must first begin with acknowl­edg­ing how we are all con­nect­ed as peo­ple and forms of life, and using that fun­da­men­tal rea­son for respect as a jump­ing off point toward prop­er­ly address­ing what ails us the most.

There is a great deal of evi­dence to sup­port the idea that our human design can be under­stood as an exten­sion of oth­er designs in nature. In the ear­ly 1900s, Indi­an physi­cist, Jagadish Chan­dra Bose, stud­ied the ner­vous sys­tem of plants and lec­tured about the ways in which plants exhib­it per­cep­tion sim­i­lar to how humans receive, and react to, infor­ma­tion. Among the var­i­ous devices Bose invent­ed was a cresco­graph, a device used to detect plant growth, very small motions with­in plant tis­sues, and to mea­sure plants’ elec­tri­cal respons­es to var­i­ous stim­uli. Through his research, Bose came to under­stand that plants respond not only to light, but to sound and touch as well. Rec­og­niz­ing this sen­so­ry capac­i­ty of plant-life helps us under­stand how human­i­ty is not the only species that feels. This recog­ni­tion, in turn, can open up a greater sense of aware­ness and appre­ci­a­tion for life in what­ev­er form it takes.

All actions have con­se­quences, whether intend­ed or not. The health of our plan­et and our own bod­ies are well served to rec­og­nize how our actions, and even our thoughts, mat­ter. Think­ing about the var­i­ous ele­ments we incor­po­rate into our lives, leads to a larg­er con­sid­er­a­tion of the abil­i­ty of envi­ron­men­tal fac­tors to influ­ence how we feel, and even who we become. There have even been sci­en­tif­ic stud­ies explor­ing the influ­ence of envi­ron­men­tal fac­tors on a cel­lu­lar lev­el.

Solar array pro­to­type inspired by origa­mi tech­niques, BYU, 2014

In the ear­ly 1980s, Dr. Bruce Lipton’s research on the biol­o­gy of a cell’s out­er lay­er revealed how a cel­lu­lar mem­brane can behave like a com­put­er chip in its capac­i­ty to store infor­ma­tion. Con­tin­u­ing these stud­ies into the ear­ly 1990s led Lip­ton to con­clude that the cel­lu­lar mem­brane also serves as a kind of mis­sion con­trol for respond­ing to the envi­ron­men­tal con­di­tions expe­ri­enced by an organ­ism. In this way, the mem­brane is able to change the cell’s behav­ior, and even phys­i­ol­o­gy, by influ­enc­ing the genet­ic activ­i­ty of cor­re­spond­ing cells. This con­cept was foun­da­tion­al to the emerg­ing field of epi­ge­net­ics. This abil­i­ty, for gene expres­sion to be mod­i­fied based on envi­ron­men­tal changes, has been instru­men­tal in rethink­ing the nature of genomes. As Lip­ton explained to the news­pa­per Irish Inde­pen­dent in 2014, “Genes don’t con­trol any­thing, they’re just blue­prints. Where­as ‘epi­ge­net­ic control’—control above the genes—turns every­thing on its head. The envi­ron­ment influ­ences the selec­tion and read­ing of genes. A person’s health isn’t gen­er­al­ly a reflec­tion of genes, but how their envi­ron­ment is influ­enc­ing them.”4 The impli­ca­tions of envi­ron­men­tal influ­ence on gene expres­sion have led to wide­spread alter­ations in what peo­ple eat, where they live, what they do for work, and every oth­er con­ceiv­able lifestyle choice.

Con­tin­ued dis­cov­er­ies of the inter­con­nec­tions deep with­in our bod­ies and envi­ron­ments have the effect of expand­ing con­scious­ness on an indi­vid­ual and col­lec­tive lev­el. We are not iso­lat­ed, nor apart, from nature. The more sci­ence has looked the more we see evi­dence of incred­i­ble syn­chro­niza­tion between our­selves and nature. Quan­tum entan­gle­ment describes the phe­nom­e­non in which mul­ti­ple par­ti­cles share the same state. Accord­ing to

Lead poi­soned water in Flint, Michi­gan, 2015

this the­o­ry, an action upon one par­ti­cle effects the action of the oth­ers regard­less of how lit­tle, or how much, space exists between them. This phenomenon—which was also described by Ein­stein as “spooky action at a dis­tance”5—leads to the mys­tery of non-local­i­ty (mean­ing that trans­for­ma­tion­al inter­ac­tions can occur between objects even when those objects do not share the same phys­i­cal space). Some­times this phe­nom­e­na can seem to occur in dai­ly life. Like when a per­son receives a wave of emo­tion at the same time as some­one else they are close­ly con­nect­ed with. Obser­va­tions like these reveal how despite any phys­i­cal dis­tance, we are inex­tri­ca­bly con­nect­ed through the nature of exis­tence.

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Recognize Interconnectivity

Consciousness Is the Foundation for Everything

Con­scious­ness is inti­mate­ly involved in all phys­i­cal and meta­phys­i­cal phe­nom­e­na; a fun­da­men­tal truth and orga­niz­ing prin­ci­ple of the uni­verse.

“Con­scious­ness isn’t some­thing we have; it’s some­thing we, and the whole world, are.” Jude Cur­rivan

Does a dog know it’s a dog? How does a bird know to sing in the morn­ing? How do we come to ask our­selves: Why are we here and where are we going? Con­scious­ness plays a pri­ma­ry role in these ques­tions. While no one has yet been able to prove what con­scious­ness is or where it comes from, we can all feel its effects. If we take the hypoth­e­sis that con­scious­ness is not a prod­uct of the brain, but instead a facet of being alive, then the con­ver­sa­tion begins to open up…

What even has con­scious­ness? A liv­ing sys­tem cer­tain­ly has con­scious­ness, a more spe­cif­ic ques­tion is: what kind? A plant is con­scious of where sun­light shines and it reach­es in the direc­tion of that light. This kind of plant behav­ior is well under­stood on a bio-mechan­i­cal lev­el and through the lens of per­cep­tive behav­ior. Per­haps a more appro­pri­ate ques­tion to ask might be: How can we, as humans, adapt our con­scious­ness to con­nect on more of the myr­i­ad fre­quen­cies chan­nel­ing through­out the web of life?

The Music of the Plants research began at Daman­hur in 1976, when res­i­dent researchers cre­at­ed an instru­ment that was able to cap­ture the elec­tro­mag­net­ic vari­a­tions of the sur­face of plant leaves and roots, and turn them into sounds. It took the find­ings on plant intel­li­gence and plant per­cep­tion to anoth­er lev­el.

Ron Cobb, 1969

Around the world, researchers con­tin­ue to explore where con­scious­ness comes from and how it evolves. For the last twen­ty years, at the Ernst Strüng­mann Insti­tute in Ger­many, neu­ro­phys­i­ol­o­gist Pas­cal Fries has been inves­ti­gat­ing how the elec­tri­cal pat­terns of gam­ma, theta, and beta waves work togeth­er in the brain to pro­duce dif­fer­ent types of human con­scious­ness. The hypoth­e­sis of Fries’ research is that rhyth­mic syn­chro­niza­tion between net­works of neu­rons is linked to how the human brain has evolved over time to process infor­ma­tion.6 In look­ing into his research, we won­der how the under­ly­ing mech­a­nisms of neu­ronal syn­chro­niza­tion might be under­stood and lever­aged in the future to fos­ter enhanced cog­ni­tion and deep­er con­nec­tions between indi­vid­u­als.

Illus­tra­tion of con­scious­ness by sev­en­teenth cen­tu­ry physi­cian and occult philoso­pher Robert Fludd

We are fas­ci­nat­ed by how brain func­tion relates to the mind’s abil­i­ty to move beyond the bound­aries of phys­i­cal space and time. With this capa­bil­i­ty, the mind can tru­ly become our

Tarot Cards by Suzanne Treis­ter

most pow­er­ful means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion and con­veyance. Per­haps one way to begin to under­stand how the mind might even learn to con­trol mat­ter in the future, is to first rec­og­nize how every­thing in the phys­i­cal world is always in motion. As with all mat­ter, the var­i­ous parts of our bod­ies com­prise chan­nels of ener­gy that vibrate at var­i­ous fre­quen­cies. If we can learn how to syn­chro­nize the fre­quen­cies occur­ring through our bod­ies and minds with the fre­quen­cies of oth­er mat­ter, then per­haps we can actu­al­ly learn to make that mat­ter change its fre­quen­cy and cor­re­spond­ing motion.

At UC San­ta Bar­bara, Jonathan School­er (Pro­fes­sor of Psy­cho­log­i­cal and Brain Sci­ences) and his col­league Tam Hunt (an Affil­i­ate Guest in Psy­chol­o­gy in the university’s META Lab) devel­oped a “res­o­nance the­o­ry of con­scious­ness”.7 Their the­o­ry posits that syn­chro­nized vibra­tions com­prise not only human con­scious­ness, but all phys­i­cal real­i­ty. As Hunt explains,

“Even objects that appear to be sta­tion­ary are in fact vibrat­ing, oscil­lat­ing, res­onat­ing, at var­i­ous fre­quen­cies. Res­o­nance is a type of motion, char­ac­ter­ized by oscil­la­tion between two states. And ulti­mate­ly all mat­ter is just vibra­tions of var­i­ous under­ly­ing fields.”
Tam Hunt 8

In light of every­thing in the uni­verse being in motion, the phe­nom­e­non of res­o­nance offers a frame­work for how dif­fer­ent ele­ments are brought togeth­er through a shared vibra­tional state of exis­tence. We can feel when we res­onate with anoth­er per­son by how we are drawn to that indi­vid­ual; how our con­ver­sa­tion with them can feel instant­ly effort­less and expan­sive. Or, we might res­onate with a cer­tain place, whether it’s a city puls­ing with quick ener­gy or a peace­ful and idyl­lic coun­try­side. Res­o­nance expe­ri­enced through cer­tain fre­quen­cies reveals how con­nec­tions are formed and cul­ti­vat­ed. If con­scious­ness is a uni­ver­sal con­stant between all that exists, and if all that exists is always mov­ing, then we can think of con­scious­ness as the ever-chang­ing con­duit through which every­thing is expe­ri­enced by every­one.

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Recognize Interconnectivity

We Are Infants of Our Galaxy

Stars glow for bil­lions of years, while we burn out in about a cen­tu­ry. If not in our infan­cy, our species is still in a nascent form, not unlike ram­bunc­tious kinder­garten­ers or inse­cure teens. In what ways do we want to grow up?

“One day while I was sip­ping some groove juice I real­ized / That in the span of time we’re just babies / It’s all rel­a­tive, time is unre­al / We’re just babies, we’re just babies, man.” — But­ter­fly, Diga­ble Plan­ets, “Exam­i­na­tion of What”

We are made up of the same atoms that were once stars before they explod­ed eons ago. Life and death cycle through­out time and space. The birth of the cos­mos was either the begin­ning of life or the death of what­ev­er void exist­ed before. Regard­less, life and death are just about the only two things we can all count on. Nei­ther can exist with­out the oth­er.

What cre­at­ed the cos­mos? We can’t say for sure, but we do know that unique set of con­di­tions marked a dis­tinc­tive moment in the biog­ra­phy of life. Life ebbs and flows, finds expres­sion in many forms, but goes into infin­i­ty, through an ongo­ing series of begin­nings. And to what end?

“The cos­mos is with­in us. We are made of star-stuff. We are a way for the uni­verse to know itself.”— Carl Sagan

In the book, Liv­ing With the Stars: How the Human Body Is Con­nect­ed to the Life Cycles of the Earth, the Plan­ets, and the Stars, Pro­fes­sor of Pathol­o­gy Iris Schri­jver, and her hus­band, astro­physi­cist Karel Schri­jver, help explain how star­dust finds its way into our bod­ies. Part of that dust is made up of hydro­gen, the fun­da­men­tal ele­ment that was cre­at­ed with the birth of our uni­verse. The hydro­gen in our water and in our bod­ies is the rem­nants of that mys­te­ri­ous ini­tial spark.9

Carl Sagan, CBS, 1974

There are still many mys­ter­ies of our exis­tence to dis­cov­er. The uni­verse is an end­less­ly fas­ci­nat­ing place, evi­denced by the far­thest reach­es of what we have seen. The Hub­ble tele­scope has allowed us to reveal about 100 bil­lion galax­ies in the uni­verse. And, in each galaxy there are approx­i­mate­ly 100 bil­lion stars. Our own Milky Way galaxy is esti­mat­ed to con­tain more than 10 bil­lion plan­ets.10 Thanks to NASA’s Kepler space­craft, the num­ber of exo­plan­ets dis­cov­ered out­side our solar sys­tem con­tin­ues to dra­mat­i­cal­ly grow.11

Neu­ro­science of Con­scious­ness by Mesa Schu­mach­er

Accord­ing to a cal­cu­la­tion report­ed in Forbes, the num­ber of poten­tial­ly hab­it­able Earth-like plan­ets in our uni­verse is more than 10 to the 22nd pow­er.12 The impli­ca­tion here is that there are expo­nen­tial pos­si­bil­i­ties for all the diverse types of life-forms with which we may share the uni­verse.

Excerpt from children’s book “You Are Star­dust”, Elin Kelsey, 2012

Every end coin­cides with a new begin­ning. Death marks an end of a sort, but cer­tain­ly not the end. Life evolves through cre­ativ­i­ty —a potent force as expressed through diverse exam­ples of pro­cre­ation, self-real­iza­tion, col­lec­tive actu­al­iza­tion, and inno­va­tion. Human­i­ty must con­tin­ue to evolve at this cur­rent, crit­i­cal world­wide inflec­tion point, not only tech­no­log­i­cal­ly, but also soci­etal­ly and eco­log­i­cal­ly. We believe in the pow­er of respon­si­bil­i­ty and renew­al to change course from dis­as­ter to the heal­ing uplift of a won­drous rise.

“We are evo­lu­tion evolv­ing through us. We are the great cre­ative process, express­ing itself unique­ly through each of us. We are the uni­verse in per­son.”— Bar­bara Marx Hub­bard

To get our­selves onto a path of sus­tain­abil­i­ty, the cur­rent sta­tus quo will have to expe­ri­ence a kind of death. And, in par­tic­u­lar, we will wit­ness death to the oil industry—itself an indus­try of death, drudg­ing up deposits that’ve been dead for about 60 mil­lion years and burn­ing that death in our engines and pow­er plants.

“So we stand for life. Let’s pow­er a new civ­i­liza­tion based on a liv­ing sun, based on the liv­ing wind, based on the liv­ing imag­i­na­tion of our chil­dren and based on the clean­li­ness, and the puri­ty, and the sacred­ness of our water.”
— Van Jones, speak­ing at a Dako­ta Access Pipeline protest

Regen­er­a­tive change begins with learn­ing how to lessen our excess­es and lis­ten to the  wis­dom liv­ing and breath­ing all around us. We should go forth with rev­er­ence for life, the almighty force that con­tin­u­ous­ly finds the most spec­tac­u­lar and beau­ti­ful ways to exist.

We believe that, as a species, we are only just begin­ning to come into our con­scious­ness. And yet, we tend to be pret­ty proud of our­selves already, with some good enough rea­sons. In the space of a geo­log­i­cal blink, we’ve estab­lished our­selves as the pre-emi­nent life-forms on Earth. We even named our­selves “homo sapi­ens”, Latin for “wise man”. Takes a lot of con­fi­dence to call our­selves wise, espe­cial­ly when we quite often act like fools. What we des­per­ate­ly need is humil­i­ty. Our lack of humil­i­ty is evi­denced by how we scar nat­ur­al land­scapes to fit our out­sized needs. Fur­ther proof appears in a hazy night sky, where light pol­lu­tion from noc­tur­nal human activ­i­ty com­pro­mis­es a view of the cos­mos.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the cos­mos from “Oedi­pus Aegyp­ti­a­cus”, Athana­sius Kircher, 1652

Dur­ing this time of seem­ing­ly end­less tech­no­log­i­cal accel­er­a­tion, we should remain mind­ful that we’re still strug­gling to grasp some basic fun­da­men­tal truths. We still need to learn how to live peace­ful­ly and sus­tain­ably on this plan­et. We should rec­og­nize the nat­ur­al wis­dom we’re los­ing in our rapid expan­sion across land and through irre­spon­si­ble use of resources. We must also show greater appre­ci­a­tion for the ancient wis­doms of indige­nous com­mu­ni­ties being mar­gin­al­ized in the name of progress.

We feel oblig­at­ed to acknowl­edge that our com­mand of sci­ence is still nascent. We are still so far from any­thing that could tru­ly be described as an advanced species. This recog­ni­tion of our rel­a­tive infan­cy should be a fur­ther call for humil­i­ty in the pres­ence of nature. Our tech­no­log­i­cal abil­i­ty is not in doubt, but how we choose to use it is often ques­tion­able. How else might we focus our tech­no­log­i­cal efforts? As writer Anand Girid­haradas said in response to the devel­op­ment of a super­son­ic jet, “What would that kind of resource of trea­sure and also of intel­lect do if it were deployed to think about pub­lic trans­porta­tion in Amer­i­ca? What would that do if it were deployed to think about the cli­mate change prob­lem?”13

Humans have moved from a pre­dom­i­nant­ly agrar­i­an glob­al soci­ety, focused on grow­ing an abun­dance of food and cash crops, into a large­ly com­mer­cial soci­ety, focused on grow­ing prof­it mar­gins for any­thing that can be sold. Com­mod­i­fi­ca­tion seeps into all avenues of life. This is hard­ly an ide­al sit­u­a­tion. We won­der more what humanity’s next glob­al shift might entail. Our incli­na­tion is that a mis­use of resources could be cur­tailed by first rec­og­niz­ing the rela­tion between our resource use, and the over­all health of our plan­et and its diverse species.

We do not believe a slick mobile app or iter­a­tive algo­rithm will offer the solu­tions to our larg­er soci­etal prob­lems. Rather, we think it’s cru­cial we look out­side of our screens and start imag­in­ing large-scale changes in how we expe­ri­ence our place in the world. What will it take to stop rely­ing on fos­sil fuels for our cars and air­planes and to trav­el with zero emis­sions instead? Coun­tries, like Nor­way, have demon­strat­ed a com­mit­ment to answer­ing this ques­tion in their pledge to achieve zero-emis­sions air trav­el by 2040.14 For the time being, hydro­gen fuel cell pow­er is pro­vid­ing inroads into deal­ing with this mas­sive world­wide issue, but this advance­ment amounts to a baby step in the jour­ney toward com­plete sus­tain­abil­i­ty. Sure­ly, we can all con­tin­ue to exer­cise our imag­i­na­tions more effec­tive­ly toward tack­ling this exis­ten­tial threat to our species and plan­et.

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Recognize Interconnectivity

Future Generations Have Us as Their ­Ancestors

How we act mat­ters. What we say mat­ters. What we think affects every­thing. We are respon­si­ble for pass­ing along a world in decent shape for the ones who come after us.

As par­ents are respon­si­ble for car­ing for their chil­dren, so too are the adults of every gen­er­a­tion also respon­si­ble for car­ing for the world that they leave to their grand­chil­dren and great-grand­chil­dren.

Con­fu­cius, Ency­clo­pe­dia Bri­tan­ni­ca

We all only get one life. We get to make as many mis­takes as we need. We also get this one shot to ensure we have con­tributed pos­i­tive­ly to the con­di­tions of our plan­et and soci­ety for the peo­ple who will inher­it both when we pass on. How we treat our­selves, how we treat oth­ers, how we go about our var­i­ous affairs, the lives we choose to live out, all of these deci­sions have an impact on the over­all mood and real­i­ty sur­round­ing each per­son. We have no clue what it’s like to inhab­it some­one else’s body or mind. All we can do is prac­tice empa­thy and com­pas­sion for oth­ers, and do our best to main­tain a base­line iden­ti­ty that is open enough to care for life.

Life is teem­ing with val­ue. This val­ue is not able to be bro­ken up into units of mea­sure­ment. This val­ue is total. Genomes and all. Each of us is as a uni­verse unto our­selves. Each of us is a con­stel­la­tion of galax­ies swirling around oth­er con­stel­la­tions of galax­ies.

Math­e­mat­i­cal­ly speak­ing, the arrow of time points in more than one direc­tion. The more we rec­og­nize our place with­in a con­tin­u­um of time, the more we can rec­og­nize the respon­si­bil­i­ty that liv­ing entails, the less self­ish we can become, and the more we can accom­plish alto­geth­er.

Think­ing of future gen­er­a­tions as actu­al­ly our lit­tle sis­ters and broth­ers, or sons and daugh­ters, imme­di­ate­ly expands one’s per­spec­tive. Across cul­tures it’s com­mon to find forms of cer­e­mo­ni­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion with one’s ances­tors, to sum­mon insights and strength from fam­i­ly his­to­ry and the con­nec­tions between lives. The ven­er­a­tion of ances­tors through rit­u­al prac­tice has been fun­da­men­tal to Chi­nese folk reli­gion for mil­len­nia and is com­ple­men­tary to Con­fu­cian ideals of fil­ial piety. In Indone­sia, the dead are pre­served and even dis­played once a year in a kind of res­ur­rec­tion. There’s a con­nec­tion being traced between those who came before and those who live now. We should always be look­ing for a way to hon­or the expe­ri­ence of those who have passed.

Native Amer­i­cans protest con­struc­tion of the Dako­ta Access Pipeline

Com­mu­ni­cat­ing with our ances­tors places us in the past. We reach back to gain wis­dom or strength to then take with us into our jour­ney ahead. Although the knowl­edge of the future might be less clear, we can also find ways to speak to future gen­er­a­tions. Per­haps the sim­plest place to start is to offer wish­es and place inten­tions to your future self. As we envi­sion the out­lines of a future state of exis­tence, we must also cre­ate more aware­ness of our present con­di­tion and think about how best these present and future selves are con­nect­ed. We can rather eas­i­ly con­struct mes­sages to our future descen­dants. Ask your­self, if you were to talk with one of your great-great-grand­chil­dren, what would be most impor­tant to com­mu­ni­cate?

“We change so much that maybe the alien we go in search of is our­selves.”
— Astro­naut Yvonne Cagle15

One of the most fre­quent­ly relat­ed mes­sages between fam­i­ly mem­bers is love for one anoth­er. An extreme­ly uncon­ven­tion­al exam­ple of a rel­a­tive from the dis­tant future shar­ing a mes­sage of love and col­lec­tive uplift, can be wit­nessed in how an Amer­i­can man, named Dar­ryl Anka, chan­nels an extra-ter­res­tri­al being named Bashar. The name Bashar has its roots in Ara­bic, in which it means “bringer of good news, or good tid­ings”. In con­nec­tion with the mean­ing of this name, Bashar deliv­ers mes­sages per­tain­ing to the pos­i­tive syn­chronic­i­ty of a cos­mic civ­i­liza­tion 300 years in our future. These trans­mis­sions elic­it an idea about how today’s human species might play a role in help­ing to make way for a future state of extra-ter­res­tri­al har­mo­nious, sus­tain­able co-exis­tence. While we, as observers of these trans­mis­sions, might dis­agree about the valid­i­ty or details of Bashar’s com­mu­ni­ca­tions, we are more than will­ing to embrace a future-ori­ent­ed mind­set.

“With our eyes, we can’t real­ly per­ceive infrared or ultra­vi­o­let light, but we have instru­ments that can do that for us and allow us to peer at some­thing that our sens­es can’t nat­u­ral­ly pick up. Bashar’s peo­ple have the abil­i­ty to do that nat­u­ral­ly. They’ve devel­oped and evolved to the point where they can per­ceive oth­er dimen­sions with their own actu­al sens­es, and that’s one of the rea­sons why he can make con­nec­tions to his past self, which is me, because for them, time and space is not as rigid or fixed as it is at this point for us. But we’re evolv­ing to a point where we’re gain­ing the same kind of flex­i­bil­i­ty that his civ­i­liza­tion already expe­ri­ences.” Dar­ryl Anka

The idea of retro-fore­cast­ing thoughts and ideas from the future back to our present cir­cum­stances, is one applic­a­ble tech­nique for the prac­tice of inno­va­tion. By adopt­ing a future-based per­spec­tive to con­sid­er the present moment, we are able to see our­selves in a new light. Ide­al­ly, we can learn to more effec­tive­ly con­sid­er our cur­rent exis­tence as an inte­gral part of an infi­nite evo­lu­tion.

Space Colony, Rick Guidice, 1970

Max Grüter