Pioneering Deeper Truths
What is so attractive about pioneers? Perhaps it is because they are seeking deeper truths of what is possible, what is real, and what is true. And what it means to be human. For me, Rupert Sheldrake is a real pioneer.
For most of his 70 years, he has been seeking the truth of science. He has challenged Dogmas. Ideologies. Norms. Habits. Assumptions. He has been rejected by his peers as a result and is often seen as a ‘heretic’ by the what has become the ‘institution’ of science. To me he is a bit of brave hero that we should all pay attention to – especially those of us who are thinking about the power of aligning human cultures and behaviours to the natural rythyms of the universe, the planet and its life forms.
Here are five things that struck me about Sheldrake’s Pioneering Work:
1) Everything has a purpose, intention and consciousness - Appreciate it!
Everything, even the Universe, the Solar System, the Earth, electrons, has its own purpose, intention and consciousness – otherwise they would not be what they are. So, in this context how does the Earth’s conciousness shape our consciousness? How do we shape it? What if we saw organisations, projects such as the Finance Innovation Lab – as bodies of intention and consciousness? If this were the case, I think that we’d pay much more attention to the true inheritent nature of things and what it is naturally intended to be. We would judge less. We would have less expectation of others. We would appreciate more. We would be more intentional. Maybe we’d be more curious about our inter-relationships, our interdependencies and our place in the world. And thus, most importantly, perhaps we’d respect and love each other a bit more. We would live our full potential.
2) Life is full of attraction and repulsion – get over it!
Electrons do it. Planets do it. Humans do it. The fundamentals of life are based on attraction and repulsion. So with this truth, how can we learn to appreciate the things in ourselves that both are attractive and repulsive. How about also those things we see in other people? Other cultures? Other religions? If this were the norm, I have a sense that we would not be so hung up on ‘what we lack’, ‘what we need’ and given our need to consume natural resources to deal with our repulsiveness – I believe we would ultimately consume less material goods.
3) There are other forms of energy – tap into it!
The Chinese know this in Ch'i. The Indians know this in Dharma. Scientists know this in the Dark Energy that exists in the Universe. Given the scale of our ecological and societal challenges, I wonder what potential would be unlocked if we were tapped into other forms of energy? Is operating from the limitations generated by our rational mind enough? Don’t think so. Linking multiple energy sources to the power of intention and aligning to purpose fundamentals, I believe we would achieve, what Thomas Berry calls The Great Transition. Harnessing the full human potential is essential, and we should explore the full potential of tapping into various energy sources, beyond our rational and physical bodies.
4) The Laws of Nature are Not Fixed- flow with it!
Nature is always changing and nothing is ever fixed. Sure there are continued habits of solar systems, ecosystems, species, and humans which continue over time, giving the delusion of set ‘Laws’. However these, as Sheldrake points out, are merely repetition of habits. So how can we tap into these habits and when these habits are counter life thriving- how can we interrupt them and redirect them in a way that supports life. And how about human laws? Well of course, they are not fixed and are constantly changing too with the shifts of culture and habits. I wonder how, when it comes to laws that are no longer serving us - such as fiduciary duty- (which says its prudent to maximise financial returns even if this means maxing out our ecological capital upon which all life depends) we can interrupt and redirect these unhelpful habits? And even wider what are the general habits of the financial system that are deeply rooted which need attention?
5) Possibility is Impossible to Measure – so don’t smother it!
One of Sheldrake’s biggest challenges to Science is the need to constantly provide evidence to what is ‘real’. However for me, this is a great tension, especially if we are seeking to ‘create the new’, imagining future scenarios, exploring assumptions, staying open to what spontaneously pops up- all of what is needed to support transformational change and great breakthroughs. I don’t think Americas would have been discovered if Amerigio Vespucci was asked to evidence the fact that the America’s existed before he left. So if possibilities and potentials are not observable yet, how can we hold space open for inquiry, curiosity, and not knowing? How can we protect possibilities from the ‘lock down of knowing’ so that something becomes real? How can we appreciate the things that we can’t measure like personal chemistry, soul, and spirit? For me, it is the possibilities that give us the most hope in moving beyond our engrained (and often destructive) personal and cultural habits, behaviours and norms.
So thank you to Rupert for being the pioneer that you are – and for helping me see some deeper potential of the fundamentals of existence. Those of which will support me as a change agent to help align humanity to the natural pulses and flows of life.