“Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.”
~H.G. Wells, The Outline of History
“We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive.”
“Personal transformation can and does have global effects. As we go, so goes the world, for the world is us. The revolution that will save the world is ultimately a personal one.”
How do we save the world? Well, we can’t. At least not literally…but hear me out. The Sun is going to go nova in around 5 billion years, absorbing the Earth and anything that remains on it back into the fires of hydrogen and helium from whence it was forged. The question is…will our descendants live on in any form at that time, and where will they go? That is a question that we cannot possibly answer from this side of that horizon, but we can give them a fighting chance.
In order for the human race (or whatever the human species evolves into) to survive into the cosmic ages to come, we first have the incredibly difficult task of surviving the present moment in our history. This has always been our task and greatest challenge since the beginnings of time: to survive. It is instilled in our genes and has shaped our entire evolution for billions of years. Whether or not we make it does not matter in the whole scheme of things, but my point is this: we have a grand experiment going here, a happy accident in which a species evolved consciousness to the point that it can take part in its own evolution and destiny, and it would be a shame to see that go to waste. I say we keep the game going as long as possible, just for the fun of it, just to see what happens when stardust wakes up.
So how do we keep civilization going? How do we “save the world”? I’m glad you asked. It’s kinda the whole point of this website.
1) Be Awesome.
Our human world is made of up individuals, working together, or at least, existing together. Our culture as a whole is the sum total of all of the individual contributions and actions of its people. The government is in debt because it is made up of indiviuals, who are people just like us with self interests, and most people are notoriously good at spending more money than they earn and living in denial about that. Billions of people live with poverty and hunger while billions of others live in comfort and excess, even throwing away tons and tons of food every day. The planet is currently facing one of the biggest mass extinctions of species it has ever seen, and guess who’s the major cause of that? These things go on because humans are notoriously good at shirking responsibility and remaining deaf and mute about the world’s problems. Our planet may await a distant fiery death, but right now it is our home, and we need it. Unfortunately, we’re pretty busy making a dreadful mess of the place, and apparently no one is coming to save us.
But there is hope, and it starts with you. Simply be awesome. I’m serious. Take responsibility for your own life. See past the illusion and learn as much as you can about the Universe and your place in it. Use the example of your higher self as your guide. Employ logic and reason as tools to help you find truth, and use wisdom, mindfulness and compassion to help you improve yourself and navigate the moral landscape of life.
2) Have Conversations.
As you begin to take charge of and improve your own small corner of the world as well as your self, you will begin to become an example for others around you. This is the most important thing you can do: Be the change you want to see in the world. Good ideas are very contagious, and our world desperately needs a good idea like this one right now. If you are being the most efficient, intelligent, compassionate and badass person you can possibly be, you WILL see start to see happiness and success in your life, and those around you will begin to look up to you more and more. This is your sphere of influence. Use it wisely.
The most important thing you can do at this point is to have conversations with people. Have the difficult conversations with people that need to be had, and don’t be afraid to call people out on their bullshit. Discuss what you’re learning, throw good ideas out there and see if they stick. Encourage and help people to better themselves. Be honest with the people you interact with, and don’t be afraid to discuss your ideas with others, even if your opinions differ dramatically. If you have a respectful conversation with someone who sits on the other side of the fence, you both will learn something valuable, and the world will be better for it. Remember, the world is just made up of individuals, and the more people you help wake up, the more people there will be out there waking others up, thus increasing the consciousness of the world as a whole.
3) Fight Apathy.
Apathy is defined as “a state of indifference, or the suppression of emotions such as concern, excitement, motivation and passion. An apathetic individual has an absence of interest in or concern about emotional, social, spiritual, philosophical and/or physical life.” Apathy is a disturbingly widespread mental disfunction, and it is killing us. Those that don’t care consequently don’t care to do anything to make positive change. We are all guilty of this emotion, but it goes beyond simple laziness and fatigue. Apathy is on the rise, and not just among the youth but in all generations, because of four main factors:
1. People lack meaning or purpose in their lives, or that meaning and purpose is distorted by faulty thinking. This is a problem that has a solution. Please read my blog post about it here.
2. Individuals feel powerless. The system has been designed this way, to give less power to the individual and more power to the institution. It does not have to be this way, and I will be posting about long-term solutions to this problem in the future. For now, you do have power and influence over your mind, your life, and the lives of those you come into contact with. Cultivate those relationships as much as possible. Also, taking more responsibility for positive change in your community can be deeply rewarding and empowering. Long-lasting change often occurs from the bottom up rather than the top down. Donate time, money, your vote, your signature on a petition (take a look at www.change.org) or whatever resources you have towards causes that you feel are making a positive difference.
3. Our society is becoming distracted and desensitized. Whether it’s money problems, personal problems, relationship problems, anxiety about war and the economy, video games, over-saturation of the media, reality TV, mindless entertainment, the dark wormholes of the internet, porn, commercialism, consumerism, drugs, alcohol, prescriptions or pain pills– we are tuning out, and again, the system is designed that way. Now I’m not saying that entertainment and technology are bad things, but when they are stuffed down our throats at all moments of the day they can become crippling addictions that leave us powerless, mindless, and controllable, which brings me to my next point:
4. Our society is being dumbed down. We know so much less but about so much more than our earlier ancestors. With all of the complexities of modern life it can be daunting comprehending just a fraction of it, much less the whole picture. Not to mention that massive amounts of information are constantly being spewed at us from countless sources, and unfortunately, most of it is insignificant, misleading or just flat out wrong. No wonder we’re apathetic. But it is possible to gain enough understanding of this world to not only stop destroying it, but to thrive with it. The secret lies at the heart of all change, and it has always been the most crucial factor determining the survival or extinction of any society. I’m talking about education.
4) Educate the Masses.
In order to save the world, our world as we know it, I believe that we must all be on the same page. Every person in every village in every land on the globe. Education starts in the womb and stops when we take our last breath, and it is the key to everything. It’s why I started this blog. And what kind of shape are we in? Our child-rearing skills are laughable. Our public education system is terrible. Our collegiate education system is suffering. Our adult educational system is practically non-existent. Billions of people in the world can’t read. We suck at this, people. But we used to be good at this, and we can be good at it again, even to the point of ensuring that every single person on the planet is as properly educated as everyone else. Can you imagine how badass we could be as a united, global society of educated humans who share common knowledge but encourage individual search for truth, questioning, and understanding?
I believe that religion is one of the biggest culprits of spreading misinformation and apathy, which is why I spent so much time discussing the pitfalls of religion, the innacuracies of our religious dogmas, what happens when we die, and the existence of Gods in my earlier posts in this series. I believe these big questions are something we will have to come to terms with if we are to ensure the survival of our little human species experiment on this planet.
And what lies beyond that? You can look at each member of the human race as a single cell of a giant neural network. Just like when you unite the conflicting parts of your brain to find happiness and your higher self, what could we achieve if the individual cells of humanity all worked well together? We would be akin to the Earth’s brain cells, literally a planet waking up. And if we travel into the wilderness of the stars, and perhaps make contact with others like us out there, we would then be creating a neural network between stars….the galaxy would literally be waking up.
Perhaps that is the truth that we have been struggling with for so long regarding God. Perhaps we ARE God, the intelligence of the Universe, in the earliest stages of waking up. Perhaps God is not an all-knowing creator, but an ever-learning consciousness that we create instead. And if we, acting together, become a God for this particular universe, will we choose to be gods of hate or of love, creation or destruction?
Can we save our world as we know it, our little civilization of stardust? We can try. But it’s up to you.
You’ve been feeling it. Open your eyes now. It’s time to Wake Up.
Prev: Finding Yourself
***This post concludes my 21– part series on how to save the world, entitled “Wake Up.” I am indebted to you, faithful reader, for taking the time to consider what I have to say. Please feel free to improve upon the information you have found here and pay forward anything that may have helped you towards others who are also searching. Best of luck to you on this journey.