Episode 36: Paul Hawken – Part 2 of Blessed Unrest – How the Largest Movement in the World Came Into Being and Why No One Saw It Coming
As Margaret Mead observed: “For the human species to evolve, the conversation must deepen”. As I say on Living Dialogues: “Dialogue is the language of Evolutionary Transformation – integrating and going beyond our indigenous and modern minds, to an awareness that we are active co-creators of an all-pervasive living reality, in ever-evolving dialogue with the cosmos itself”. In this dialogue, Paul and I talk about key world historical events we have experienced that helped generate the numberless organizations and projects that have spontaneously sprung up worldwide, and that are catalogued in a “living taxonomy of human organizations” in the very exciting new website www.wiserearth.org which Paul describes in depth. Wikipedia-like, but beyond that in its transparency and accountability, www.wiserearth.org is truly our ongoing evolutionary creation; and we are all invited to “the table which has been set for us to celebrate together” in Rumi’s words.
“If you have lost a sense of direction in your life, if despair dogs your every step, pick up a pencil and pick up this book. Paul Hawken, without a trace of self-importance, impales a very dark room on the beam of a very bright light here. In his hands, the civil society movement reveals itself as the action that has replaced the talk.” -- Barry Lopez, author of Resistance and Artic Dreams
“Blessed Unrest is a beautiful, soulful, crucial book. It is a manifesto of hope for the 21st century grounded squarely in the hearts of engaged people around the planet. Paul Hawken testifies on behalf of this “movement with no name” with his charismatic intelligence and insight. This book makes the invisible visible. I believe Hawken when he says we are part of the Earth’s immune system each time we exercise our active compassion in the name of social justice and ecological health. I love this book. It is a field guide for all that is possible.” -- Terry Tempest Williams, author of The Open Space of Democracy
“Paul Hawken has written an important and significant book – intelligent, compelling, moving, and hopeful. In the broad sweep of a history of diffuse and seemingly unconnected events and people he has found emergent pattern. That pattern, amazing simultaneously in its intricacy and simplicity, gives clarity to the direction humankind is moving in its struggle for survival. Read and regain a sense of optimism for our grandchildren’s grandchildren; and be motivated to ensure that they inherit a restored earth and an equitable society.” -- Ray Anderson, CEO of Interface and author of Mid-Course Correction
I’m Paul Hawken, the author of Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement in the World Came Into Being and Why No One Saw It Coming. One of the aspects and the expressions of this Movement is Living Dialogues, which you’re listening to right now. And I urge you to continue to do so to build this Movement.
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To order a full transcript of this program, or a CD or MP3 of the complete dialogue with myself and Paul Hawken, you can contact me at my website: www.livingdialogues.com or at [email protected]. Many thanks again for your attentive deep listening in helping co-create this program. All the best, Duncan
Paul Hawken: I’m Paul Hawken the author of Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement in the World Came into Being and Why No One Saw it Coming. One of the aspects in the expression of this movement is living dialogues which you are listening to right now and I urge you to continue to do so to build this movement.
Duncan Campbell: From time in memorial, beginning with indigenous councils and ancient wisdom traditions, through the work of Western visionaries such as Plato, Galileo and quantum physicist David Bohm. Mutually participatory dialogue has been seen as the key to evolving and transforming consciousness, evoking a flow of meaning, a dia flow of logos meaning beyond what any one individual can bring through alone.
So join us now as together with you the active deep listener, we evoke and engage in Living Dialogues.
Welcome once again to Living Dialogues, I’m your host Duncan Campbell and again I’m really delighted to have my friend Paul Hawken as my guest. Author of the Ecology of Commerce, co author of Natural Capitalism and author of most recently of Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement in the World Came into Being and Why No One Saw it Coming. It’s an incredible resource. It’s an inspiring and deeply researched and illuminating read.
Paul is known to many of you as a leading environmentalist, entrepreneur and journalist. He is also the architect and leading proponent of reform with respect to ecological practices. He currently operates a non profit organization after having had successful businesses such as Arowan [sp] and Smith Hawken and he lives on Cascade Creek in Northern California.
You can visit his website at Paulhawken.com and also blessedunrest.com. So Paul what a treat to have you here in the studio again.
Paul Hawken: Thank you.
Duncan Campbell: One of the things I thought we might do is begin at the beginning with your quotation from Martha Gram which becomes the title of the book on Blessed Unrest perhaps I’ll just read that because I think it is a very interesting, vital thematic that runs through the entire work.
This is Martha Gram speaking to Agnes DeMelle, “there is vitally, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action. And because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction. A blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the other.”
We compare that with John Muir’s comment which you lead into your first paragraph from his first book “My First Summer in the Sierra”. This is John Muir, “No Sierra landscape that I have seen holds anything truly dead or dull. Everything is perfectly clean and pure and full of divine lessons. When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.”
So I think one of the great things about your work Paul is that you have such an immense range and you pick out quotations from people that maybe names that are familiar to us but you have unique and interesting quotations that you find that express something that maybe a little different than what we’re used to. Still obviously in concert with the personality but nonetheless bringing out a fresh and new perspective.
When I read the one on John Muir I remember in terms of his relationship with nature that famous of image of him up in the tree during the lightning storm when the electrical energy all around him shaking his fist. Bring on your best and feeling like Julia Butterfly Hill felt in Luna during the great storm that almost killed her when the branch of Luna saved her and brought her back to the little platform 180 feet up. She said, “I felt completely transformed in my DNA. Totally transformed so that when I came down from that tree, I was a different person. I no longer had fear. I no longer operated out of separateness. I felt in a sense remade. I felt whole.”
I think the same thing happened to John Muir and you had epiphanic experiences like that yourself starting when you were a young person and your relationship with nature was where you felt really at home.
Paul Hawken: It is and probably will always remain so. I think all of us and any of us who take the time to be in nature, not to go tromping to it or go on racing through it on mountain bikes. Nothing wrong with that, I do that but when you slow down and slow down in a way you open yourself to the unexpected, to the unseen.
I’ll give you some examples. One is that there are nights when I’ve left my house and walked all night through the mountains. Just all night and not going to sleep and I highly recommend it to people. Walk all night with just water and quietly and see what you see and see who shows up. Being a Visitos in New Mexico and there’s a refuge up there, a Buddhist retreat but about four miles away there is a place where there is obviously there’s a lot of scat from the mustangs, wild horses released by the Spanish hundreds of years ago and they’re extraordinary, extraordinary creatures. Strong and their coats are just beautiful.
I went up there with some friends to see them in the moonlight. It was a full moon, glowed in the dark, bare feet in the darkness and the moon came up. There was this valley which is obviously where they go during the day, there’s no question about it. I went there. We waited to see the mustangs and at one point I realized, this is the stupidest thing I have ever done. No horse in its right mind will be at the low point at night where it can be prey. It’s up there on top looking down at us. I asked my friends to stay there and I circled around and on the other side of this little vale, not even a valley where is this [indecipherable] that sort of chomped off, munched to horse height. You can see under it and above that is a very thick undergrowth that you can’t penetrate. I had a flashlight, I was going to walk around it and all of a sudden I could feel something following me.
Whenever I stopped, it stopped. When I ran, it ran. It was following me. Probably a cat but as I went around on the other side to the valley, I hadn’t realized that the mustang would not be there. I took my flashlight and I aerated into the undergrowth. You can see every color, sort, shape and size and narrowness of eyeball there was and there they all were.
This is the wonderful thing that happens when you go out. It isn’t prearranged. It isn’t scheduled. It isn’t in a camp ground. It’s not in a camper. It is not to ascend a mountain or prove yourself physically on the rock face but it’s actually to just go in there and do what Muir and so many else have done, like Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. Which is just sit there and be the metaphysical hunter if you will and to hunt well you have to be absolutely still and quiet and wait and wait and still wait. Because they all know you are there and it takes a long time.
When I lived in Visitos, when I was a care taker there for awhile, there was nobody there. All the creatures disappeared and then they came back and within a month, when I changed the feeders for the hummingbirds, they would land on my head and shoulders. Soon as there’s people in the valley who were coming then all the animals disappeared.
There are these enormously moving experiences that are available to all of us that are right within reach. Even where I live in Sausalito, you can go to this trail Tennessee Valley that thousands of people use on a weekend. If you go there on weekday and you go there at night and then go to the beach and then walk back and then just wait. You’ll hear the coyotes. There are three troops there and they’ll start calling to each other.
The big owls, barn owls come out and fly around. If you lie down in the meadows at dusk, you can see the lights of San Francisco glowing above the hillside. You lie down in the meadow at dusk and just lay flat, spread eagle looking up and the owls will come down and sweep over you to check you out because they’re there in the eucalyptus and cypress waiting for their prey. These things are available to us at all times.
Duncan Campbell: So beautifully said Paul. What it brings to my mind is one of the most lovely memories I have that imprinted itself deeply on me when I was in my late twenties. A friend of mine who was an astrophysicist that I knew from our time at Harvard together, I was out on Colorado Springs and he came and picked me up around eight o’clock in the morning. We went up to hike in Rocky Mountain National Park. It was so beautiful. We just kept hiking higher and higher and higher, one lake after another. Sure enough by the time it came to go home, this was fortunately in the summer time, we were so far up that it took us until four or five in the morning to get back to the car.
I’ll never forget it. It was one of the most magnificent times I’ve ever spent coming down along the river and then just sitting there in the moonlight. The land itself had such a power, the elements, the water, the land itself, not only the plant substances or the tree presence, or animals often in the shadows but the land itself and the water.
Years later, I was taking to Barry Lopez and I came across a passage that I reminded him of in Artic Dreams where he said beautifully, “the land itself is an animal that contains all animals.” This is often overlooked in our modern and post modern mind. Even Buddhism in a sense talking about prayers that we make for the end of suffering of all sentient beings, sometimes there’s this sense of the dividing line between conscious and unconsciousness is sentience but in a certain way I think that also leads to an anthropomorphism.
You practice Buddhism, so have I. I think culturally, it’s a modern mind phenomenon. It’s not an indigenous mind phenomenon. It does many good things in terms of awakening people to a clarity about the habitual mind patterns that are modern and post modern culture can put us into to keep us asleep so Buddha of course means awake. But beyond that there is a living universe in which the stars themselves, the universe itself, communicates. It’s a kind of intelligence. In that alone essence of being, laying on the ground, spread eagle at dusk, one of the magical in between times. You can access this kind of consciousness and it does speak to you in ways that are epiphanic and as you put and that you never forget.
Paul Hawken: One of the tenets of the book is that in fact that we have, many people’s ideas, not mine specific to this movement that is that we have a collective intelligence that is manifesting itself and we do not see and identify. That is this movement, this largest movement in the world, which we have not, and do not see coming. What I’m saying is this is humanity’s immune response to political corruption, economic disease and ecological degradation.
We tend to keep, in spite of our best effort to look for a singular movement, a leader, something, some great person who will arise, religious, political or otherwise who is going to lead the way Moses like to the promise land, away from the lies and the paranoia and the fear and the inequities. Inequities I should say are really the modern political system and what I’m saying is while we are looking one way, if we look the other way, what we are seeing is available to us, just like other things are if we look, is that humanity has created the largest socio movement in history.
It consists of over a million organizations who are addressing social justice, human rights and ecological restoration. It is really an astonishing things that humans are doing collectively without control, without management, without a top down system, with no underlying thesis under it except these values that we hold common across culture, across time, across tribe, across every country in the world. These are deeply, deeply humane values and the reason I called the movement is simply is if you look at the abouts, the purposes, the principles, in other words, what is it that forms each of these organizations and were you able to read them in sequence on a wall or in hallway somewhere. Long enough, big enough to read a million of them, you will find that by and large and in fact if not totally, they are all different but they do not contradict themselves.
This is what has never happened. Generally values are displayed and expressed from some person’s, some charismatic vertebrae male.
Duncan Campbell: A prophetic voice.
Paul Hawken: A prophetic male and it goes down if you will to the people. That becomes a schism and people fight about what he or she might have meant and this movement is completely the opposite.
Duncan Campbell: It’s beautifully stated. I had a vision myself that just blossomed in my mind around 1991, 1992 in which I was shown that the old form of consciousness, being awaken through the hierarchical structures that you described was over and it was said in a sense that the heir of Moses on the mountain is finished. Of one person usually as you put it, a male going to the top of the metaphorical mountain, getting the download from the Creator, Spirit God, whatever we might want to call it and then coming down and essentially franchising it. People arguing over the names God as Rummy said so beautifully, “is a source of so much conflict our the world.”
That was finished and that evolution itself was calling forth out of that stage. A new stage of awareness which would be a diamond like consciousness of infinite facets where each one of us was a facet of this beautiful diamond consciousness that could only be midwifed by all of us together. It was not possible for it to come into existence on the part of any one prophet, or any one set of concepts of ideas. Beyond that, the evolution itself was demanding this, this was an imperative that was coming out in dialectical evolutionary organic fashion from the process of the evolution of consciousness itself.
We were given an opportunity as the human species to either evolve with creation and evolutionary impulse itself and be able to go beyond the either or neo cortex rationalistic brain level and open up into a much larger consciousness where we could hold the unity principle with all the diversity at the same time without conflict and with appreciation and awe and wonder and respect. This was entirely possible but if we couldn’t reach critical mass, if we kept on this path of environmental degradation and what Richard Dawkins called “the selfish gene” and so on. That in fact we could fall back into the evolutionary muck as another failed evolutionary manifestation as so many hundreds and thousands of species have in the past. So the choice was really ours to awaken together and go forward together or to remain stuck in this old paradigm.
In 1992 when I was at the Earth Summit, we saw some of the NGOs caught in the old paradigm. Some of the leaders in a sense were too long in Washington, too long in the lobbying realm and had absorbed you might say the systemic, I don’t want to be harsh but a systemic toxin as way of interrelating. They became out of touch with the vitality that originally inspired them to do the kind of work that they were doing. They became absorbed into the system. There is some necessity that the people in this movement maintain a grass root separation from the ordinary roots of power. That they remain connected to this larger intelligence which is available as you put it beautifully, at all times even as you say in the San Francisco area. You can walk from your house, you don’t have to be living up in Eureka or in some remote rural area. You can find a place where ever you are, where you can access that energy.
The final thing I want to say on this is that I remember around that time, ’91-’92 I was very despaired at myself and very, very deeply depressed and I just spoke with a friend of mine who had been influenced by Arne Ness and the deep ecology movement. She has been teaching this in the university and so on. She said well Duncan you’ve analyzed the human realm completely accurately, if you just stick to the human realm there is no real cause for hope because the system is very powerful. It’s very difficult to see clearly for people from within in but I’ve come to feel that there are other forms of intelligence in the universe that want to work with us in this evolutionary process. They come through plant spirits. They come through animal, they come through the land itself and they’re there. That’s the first thing that keeps me going she said.
The second thing is I’ve learned to live with and appreciate the wisdom of uncertainty. It’s what you’re calling that staying open that if we cultivate the communication with a larger living universe, it will keep us vital and it will keep the creative juices flowing and give us inspiration in times of despair. Secondly, to live in that open field that Rummy talks about is the way to receive the gift of creation and evolution itself and all of these manifestations that you’re estimating to be maybe a million, maybe two million organizations out there forming this kind of mycelial network on the planet which the media is completely not even aware of, much less telling people about it.
How do these people communicate? You’ve given a great gift, I’d say in your book. Your gift, I’d say is your book is like a written Woodstock. I remember being at Woodstock, that one of the great things about it was we realized we weren’t alone. When I was in law school, I thought maybe five people out of 1500, I could talk to in a certain way and all of a sudden, let a thousand, hundred thousand, five hundred thousand, million flowers bloomed. In fact Richie Havens who was at Woodstock wrote in his biography They Can’t Hide Us Anymore.
Your book is such a great gift because I’d say I’m looking at it right now and physically almost a third of the book, your appendix is a list of all of these resources, all of these other people that are feeling the same way that many of us are. That you in a very poetic inspiring way have put down in this book. Terrific. I want to thank you for that.
Paul Hawken: To go back to the Annie Ness thing, when I say people ask me whether I’m optimistic or pessimistic and my response is always the same which is that if you look at the data and your optimistic then you’re not very good at science and you might want to look again. You cannot be optimistic and look at the data. On the other hand and this is a little different from what your friend said, I actually feel like if you look at the people who are in this movement and you’re not optimistic then you don’t have a heart because it’s really rather extraordinary, the fierceness, the courageousness, the heart which is being manifest here.
Duncan Campbell: Let me clarify really quickly, the way I expressed it, why you are saying that, but actually what we were talking about the human realm, we are really talking about the received realm from the media of people.
Paul Hawken: There you go.
Duncan Campbell: People who are in this organization, that realm we found no hope. We had to turn to each other and so it’s a minor correction there.
Paul Hawken: Humanity is organizing itself from the bottom up because the top is corrupt and the [indecipherable] is quite extraordinary. The last part of the book is actually not resources, it’s actually a taxonomy. It’s what the Debuse [sp] family did in Paris.
Duncan Campbell: Yes it is.
Paul Hawken: We got turned on it ever since. What we did, or I did is we took a look at the mission statements of 1500 organizations in the world and every country, every island, every sovereignty and let them tell us or the book what do they do? We came up with 414 categories, 20,000 tags and subcategories and it is a 50,000 word taxonomy of this movement.
Really what it is, is this brilliant reflection of what humanity is creating in the 21st century. It is a curriculum for the 21st century. Any university or college that really want to speak to these times would do well to replicate it in all respects because this is what we know we have to address. These are the salient issues of our time. It’s so important for people to look at it, it’s not that they should read it word for word but what’s important I think is that they can let go of the cloak of the tags of environmental and social justice which really mean nothing. They’ve been used so much. Underneath this is rich, rich world of genius, of innovation, of ideas that really embodies and typifies this movement. That’s why I wanted to put it in the last part of the book so that people would have an appreciation for the amazing culture and reinvention of democracy this occurring from the bottom up.
Duncan Campbell: And that’s one of the real benefits of this book. It’s so stimulating and enriching. Just page after page, read with your beautiful prose style, the history that does go back hundreds of years and we can put what we have in our current situation into a much deeper perspective. If we go back to Woodstock, we barely go back four decades and you go back four or five centuries and more and show how this expression that’s now coming to a crest at the wave is beginning to crest here in this movement and it’s swelling at the very least. It comes from a very deep and profound resonance of human consciousness with it’s own true nature.
I’m thinking now of one of the crest that we saw in Woodstock was when I was dialoguing with Richie Havens a few years ago when he published his autobiography. He explained why he chose the title of his autobiography which was They Can’t Hide Us Anymore. It was a phrase that had occurred to him when he was in the helicopter, being taken from the motel over to the stage because they’d had electrical problems with the sound system and all the roads were clogged with cars. A huge unexpected swell of people had showed up at this rock concert. All the fences were down and Mike Lang the organizer came and said, “Richie, you’ve got to on. You’re just a one man show. We can handle the amplification of your sound while we get everything else ready.” The natives are getting restless and so and so.
They put him in a helicopter, a huey helicopter, the irony was not lost on him he said it was the same helicopter that the national guard was taking him in it that was being used in Vietnam. He went over field after field after field. He said there were well over a million people there, maybe a million and a half people. It was only reported at 500,000 and he said “they can’t hide us anymore.” He had the proof, the vision, and the confirmation. Almost surprising that there was actually something happening that was not as many of us felt just an isolated instances in our own lives and a few friends. There was something much vaster that was going on in the culture and it gave a huge momentum to that impulse.
Your book is participating in a similar way. Where you have for the first time, visioned and seen and catalogued a brought forward what is happening all over the world. I think it becomes in itself an activating force for our immune system. I love how your etymological research turned up that the fact that immune means ready to serve. I think that’s the impulse that we’re all feeling. We’re ready to serve a higher aspiration that’s been awaken in us for sometime and is now getting confirmed.
I think of other events in history such as Vaclav Havel saying that he was as amazed as anybody else when the velvet revolution took place in 1989 in Czechoslovakia. They had all gathered in Wenceslas square almost routinely to celebrate a fallen hero of what had been a protest movement there. But no one expected that anything other than that was going to happen and as they looked into each other’s faces all of sudden spontaneously they said, “we’re not going to take this anymore.” All of a sudden it was over in one day. Even Vaclav Havel who have been working on it for so long said he didn’t see it coming.
Winnie Mandela was interviewed by a newspaper in Johannesburg three weeks before Nelson Mandela was released and said he will never be released in this lifetime. Three weeks later they were reunited outside the prison. The wall in Berlin came down. Yeltsin wound up being a hero when he stood up to the people that kidnapped Gorbachev. That happened overnight. I happened to be there in the streets of Russia at that time. I can tell you it was a 24 hour total flip turn around that no one saw coming.
What you are doing here Paul is that you are giving people hope to persevere and continue because when that tipping point occurs, it will surprise many people because none of the people in the media have seen it coming.
Paul Hawken: Right and because corporate media is where it’s going to tip or tip away.
Duncan Campbell: Well you know they will cover it. I got to tell you one little quick story that I found out when I did a program on Woodstock ’94 and how it really devolved at the very people in the generation that had been at Woodstock, at the same generation which is now the PepsiCo generation and PolyGram that were putting it on. There was a completely manufactured event and a mockery of what had happened in 1969. I happened to be there too and I saw this. That had really be co opted and the thing that was interesting was when I did this program, someone called in and said, “You know Duncan, the New York Times had an article on Woodstock in 1969. They had missed the story so bad it was like when the New York Times had a reporter at Kitty Hawk and did not see the Wright Brothers playing take off, basically said it did not get airborne because their imagination was not able to hold that possibility.”
I went back and looked up the microfilm and there it was New York Times report with Richard Reeves in a suit at Woodstock was a “nightmare in the Catskills.” Then they apologized two weeks later when they caught on so the media of course will be the last to respond but only when some great event happens where this movement comes into a more dramatic public perception. But for those people that want to get the early word, who wants to get wised up, we might say through wiserearth.org Paul’s new website that he has put out for everyone to collaborate on. Get this beautiful book Blessed Unrest.
At this point Paul what I’d like to invite you to do is to go beyond the book as a companion piece and talk a little bit about wiserearth.org and what makes that unique and interesting to people as a website.
Paul Hawken: Well wiser stands for World Index Social Environmental Responsibility.
Duncan Campbell: The anagram as you cleverly have done once before over there means “we” right?
Paul Hawken: Yeah and site itself is the first online relational database that is out of the book both in structure and text. That is it’s more than a wiki, you can actually change the structure and once you log on then you’re a member and you can basically drive the content. Unlike wikipedia, you have to show up that is, you have to be Duncan Campbell…
Duncan Campbell: Accountable.
Paul Hawken: Yeah accountable and then everything you do on the side is transparent to everyone else just like you can go to the website and see all eight or 900 changes that I’ve made and when I made them and what the changes were. We’re trying to model what we want the world to be like which is transparency and accountability but at the same time what you can do is 105 or 6000 organizations right now and you can add organizations of your own or others. You can add some profiles. You can add resources, events, and jobs.
We did create this taxonomy which you mentioned Duncan which is published in the book but is really the spine, the vertebrae, it is the database or part of the structure of the site. It has 114 categories and 20,000 key words. Basically by tagging yourself using the taxonomy, or your organization or event or so forth, it’s very easy for you to find organizations of people in your neighborhood, region or others that have the same or similar interests. There’s so many ways in which people can connect and collaborate which you cannot do right now.
Right now you can go to wiser earth, type in water and find 9,600 organizations, then you go click on a drawn out, drop down menu and you can find all water foundations in the world, so far in the database about 500. You do one more to educational foundation with respect to water and you’ll find 300 and then you can type in France and you’ll find the tree that’s under France that are educational water foundation that are international.
It’s click, click, click, click, click, you can find out who is doing what where and for no other reason I do suggest and urge people just to go on to it to browse. Just to look at who is out there and what they’re doing and if you just go to organizations and just look at the recent addition, just the ones that were added in the last hour or two and just click on them, it is marvelously instructive in terms of this movement.
You kind of know it, but what I think we didn’t know is how big this is. We have a trailer, we show names of organizations, Duncan you’ve seen it. It’s just name after name after name scrolling up the screen as fast as you can read them.
Duncan Campbell: It was very dramatic too watching it because as fast as you can read them then when you accelerate it, the number it turned into almost something out of the Vedas where there is the famous story where Shiva is incomparably infinite where Vishnu and Brahma are on their various respective mounts riding around this great column that seems infinite up and infinite down and that’s what happens when you stream everything on your video.
Paul Hawken: We stream it that way so that people don’t have to sit there. I showed this in my talks because at the rate of scrolls which is about as fast as you can read it, you would have to sit there for 24 hours a day for months to see the name of every organization in the world that’s working on social environmental issues.
Duncan Campbell: That was very impressive and all of a sudden it became that column going by at light speed and you thought wow you’d have to sit here for a month, 24 hours a day and that’s an enormous amount. It’s almost beyond what the mind can comprehend. The great inspiring aspect of it as you say, more organizations are linking every hour so you can watch it every two or three days and you’re seeing a growing, organic movement for real right in front of your eyes. It’s not people giving speeches and saying wouldn’t it be nice if we could all change our lifestyles and do this or that. People are actually doing it and we just don’t know about it. And when we know about it, really gives us that sense of they just can’t hide us anymore. It gives you a sense of resonance and amplification to your own personal inclinations and it confirms you in the action that you’re taking and it activates all sorts of creative juices and ideas but primarily it makes you realize that you are a part of a living universe, greater than yourself and such a wonderful antidote there to consumer culture.
We are so assaulted on our senses and our psyche by the very nature of the modern and post modern mind in it’s separative and expert oriented, disassociated situation where the advertising that we’re exposed to day after day is designed to keep you fragmented so that you’ll keep consuming. But there is that blessedness when you can feel part of a larger unity and you access the energy of the universe. It’s like Joseph Campbell said that if you find the grail, is when you align yourself with the energies of the natural world and of the universe so that the limitless energy of the universe flows into time through you.
Sometimes people call that an ecstatic experience or a mystical experience but it is actually at our fingertips in every moment. As Blake said you can see the universe in a grain of sand. Reading your book can actually activate that sense of unity which in turn gives birth to an optimism and an energetic that wants to participate.
For full transcript, please contact Duncan Campbell