Henry Baum writes:

"Until you offer some practical ideas about how the
transition will work, much of this is an intellectual exercise. Invigorating,
thought-provoking, but of limited utilitarian value to the 6 billion other
people who don't have the time, resources, or inclination to consider these
ideas. Beyond "time for change," it's also time to be pragmatic, or these ideas
are only going to appeal to a New Age minority. These ideas are transformative
and inspiring, but that's only half the equation."

Henry, I appreciate the comment, although I do feel I have
offered many practical ideas about the transition in my past work. Here I will
once again seek to encapsulate various aspects of my thesis into a practical
program. For those who want to follow my line of reasoning, a number of books
have been critical: Multitude by Antonio Negri and Michael Hardt, On Revolution
by Hannah Arendt, Spontaneous Evolution by Steve Bhaerman and Bruce Lipton,
Conscious Evolution by Barbara Marx Hubbard, Utopia or Oblivion and Operation
Spaceship Earth
by Buckminster Fuller, The Future of Money by Bernard Lietaer,
The End of Money and the Future of Civilization by Tom Greco, Cradle to Cradle
by William McDonogue, Mediated by Tom DeZengotita, The Spell of the Sensuous by
David Abrams, etc. Not to mention works by Marx ("The Jewish Question"),
Rousseau ("The Origins of Inequality"), Gandhi, Macchiavelli, and so on.

Essentially, the plan is to simultaneously work within and
outside of the system as it exists, to bring about a rapid transmutation of
this system so that it serves humanity as a whole and safeguards the planetary
environment through long-term stewardship.

 

Business

Think of corporations as nascent organs in the collective
body of humanity. A media company is akin to the species' perceptual and
cognitive capacities; an energy company is like its blood; a waste treatment
company like its liver; etc. As Lipton and Bhaerman discuss in Spontaneous
Evolution
, immature eco-systems are characterized by competition and
aggression, while mature eco-systems are symbiotic and cooperative. We find a
great example of this in our own bodies, made up of hordes of micro-organisms
that learned to work together for the greater good of the whole, many millions
of years ago. You don't see our liver cells invading our pancreas, etc. SE
proposes that humanity is on the verge of recognizing itself as collective
organism, a planetized species consciousness: This is what our meshing together
through communication technology points toward.

Corporations are the most powerful agents for transforming
matter and energy, for taking concept and idea and realizing it in tangible
form, that human beings have ever devised. The development of the corporate form
in the 17th Century was a great evolutionary leap. However, we now need to
reach a collective realization of the design flaw in how corporations currently
function so we can redirect them from being agents of planetary destruction to
cooperative entities that work for the good of the planet and safeguard the
future for our descendants.

Essentially, corporations are "artificial life forms" that
we have constructed out of legal code and financial data and let loose on the
planet. However, we have constructed a set of game rules for them that are
suicidal for the earth. We have given corporations one single prime directive:
to maximize share-holder value, no matter what. If a corporation doesn't do
this, it dies. Therefore, being artificial life forms, that is exactly what they
seek to do. According to this program, if there is an expensive environmental
restriction, they will seek to overturn it. If there is government regulation,
they will do anything to corrupt it: This is built into their nature, according
to the rules we constructed for them, to be profit-making machines.

Because of this intrinsic design error, no superficial
reform of the current system is going to be truly effective. We have to
consciously redesign the game rules so that all corporations function according
to different prime directives: they need to have an ecological and cooperative
ethos built into their operational logic from the start. This doesn't mean that
current protests against hydro-fracking, genetically modified organisms, etc,
should be interrupted: In fact, victories in these areas will help to move us
to the next point in the struggle, where the need for this deeper transition
becomes generally accepted, something that enough of us will fight for,
unremittingly, until we bring it about. Also, the efforts from within
corporations to make them more sustainable are also valuable — but won't be
truly effective until the game rules of the system are changed.

 

Financial System

Concurrent with the growth of the awareness that the
corporate system is a planetary suicide machine as currently designed, we also
need to undertake a far-reaching transformation of the financial system, and
consciously redesign "money" (the token of how value is exchanged) so that it
functions to enhance local communities, protects resources, safeguards the
commons, and so on. Evolver recently published two books on this subject:
Sacred Economics by Charles Eisenstein and What Comes After Money?, an
anthology of essays originally published in Reality Sandwich: I deeply recommend
them!

"Money" is a not a neutral tool — or something natural and
inevitable — it is an instrument that has been designed according to certain
values and beliefs, to support particular ends. The ruse of the fractional
reserve banking system and the "Federal Reserve" (which is neither federal or a
reserve) has been exposed. Our financial system creates artificial scarcity and
enforces cutthroat competition (as the joke has it, how do people in Hollywood
say, "Fuck you?" "Trust me."). The entire financial system is a debt pyramid, a
Ponzi Scheme, with a currency that has been delinked from all tangible
resources and functions entirely virtually. In fact, the global financial
system died on the operating table in 2008, and since then, the ruling banking
elite has been seeking to artificially resuscitate it by creating trillions of
imaginary credits and pumping them into it. Bankers are now running European
countries — with former members of Goldman Sachs installed as rulers in Greece
and Spain — in an increasingly desperate effort to keep this system of tyranny
and debt-peonage afloat.

There is no reason that consortiums of local businesses
cannot get together to create their own credit system based on tangible goods
and issue zero-interest loans, as Greco proposes. Lietaer proposes a global
trading currency, the Terra, indexed to a basket of real-world goods and
resources that decline in value over time. Therefore such a currency would lose
value the longer it is held — it would have what is called a "demarrage"
charge, as many currencies did in the past. If you found yourself
with an abundance of this resource, instead of seeking to horde it you would be
best off sharing it generously with your community, as people would then
remember you did them a good turn, and would do the same for you when they
attained temporary abundance.

Once again, to look at the biological metaphor, our cells
use energy in the form of ATP: No cell can store a huge surplus of this energy,
the energy transmits through the whole system and is available for all cells to
use as needed for the tasks they are required to fulfill for the good of the
whole.

Eisenstein, in his remarkable book, proposes a currency that
has its value linked to the health of the commons: To that which should belong
to all of us, which we should seek to protect — such as clean air, clean water,
wildlife, wetlands, etc. In the same way having a currency linked to gold leads
people to tear gold out of mountains and rocks, a currency indexed to what we
hold in common could lead people to value that most of all.

In the near term, we can participate actively in creating
and working with local currencies: Even creating a time-share among a group of
friends who are willing to help look after each other's kids, or a community
currency that supports sharing and cooperation. At the same time, agitating for
financial reform is good — as long as we realize it is not good enough, since
what is required is systemic change. Since banking is essentially a virtual system,
there is no reason a better virtual system can't be created that functions
according to the alternative principles proposed here: At some point, an
instant switch-over can be made — perhaps when the current financial system
finally tanks.

The point in all of these areas is not to reject the current
system and thus cut ourselves off from being effective. It is to utilize the
tools and techniques of the current system to bring about its transmutation
into a new social form.

 

Industry

There was a time, not long ago, when few people believed
that humans would ever be able to create a flying machine. Today, we tend to
believe that industry has to create toxic waste and pollution that degrades the
biosphere and our own bodies, to bring us the products we crave. However, as
Cradle to Cradle explores, it is quite possible that all of our industrial
systems could be redesigned to create no toxic effluents — so that everything
we create feeds back into the eco-system and even supports its flourishing.

Do we see any examples of such a perfected technology? Of
course we do! It is called nature. Nature creates no waste. As Buckminster
Fuller realized, humans need a "design revolution" so that all of our design
and industry is reinvented to follow nature's no-waste, less-is-more,
hyper-efficient principles. I propose that the destiny of humanity — if we
choose to survive as a species — is to reintegrate with nature — to become
"supra-nature," in a sense — at a higher order of being and knowing. In doing
this, we redesign all of our industrial technologies so they do no harm to the
biosphere. Perhaps this will take many decades to accomplish fully, but it
first has to become an ideal that we recognize as possible and then
collectively seek to realize.

 

Energy

The question of energy is, of course, an important one. We
are already seeing cars and vehicles able to function on electricity created
from solar power, from hydrogen or water hydrolysis. In my film, we converted a
scooter to run on water hydrolysis with energy from a solar panel providing the
electrical charge. The interesting point is that the entire fleet of 600
million currently existing internal combustion vehicles could be repurposed to
function on water hydrolysis by adding tanks to them. This could be an amazing
opportunity for Detroit to reinvigorate its factory system to provide these
conversions for all vehicles currently existing in the US.

Beyond even that, there is the legitimate potential for
energy that is unlimited in supply, produced from drawing upon the quantum
fluctuations in the vacuum, as the new movie Thrive explores. Personally, I
also believe that galactic civilizations frequently visit the earth in
different kinds of ships that exist at different levels of materiality, and
these ships are not coming here powered by coal or plutonium. They are using
some kind of anti-gravity or Zero Point energy system, which means that such a
form of energy does exist and is potentially available to us. It may also be
that humans have accessed and used this form of energy in past times, in
Egyptian and Atlantean epochs, as Nassim Haramein and Graham Hancock, among
many others, have proposed. It may also be that development and public
distribution of this kind of energy awareness has been actively suppressed by
elements within the control system, but this is no longer the case, as the
information is now coming out in so many ways and from so many sources, that it
is uncontrollable.

In the near term, then, we should continue the push for
alternative energy solutions, while also furthering public discussion on
transformative energy possibilities that could be used to rapidly elevate the
living conditions of humanity as a whole. Some people might develop prototypes
for companies that retrofit current vehicles for hydrolysis, etc.

 

Work

As we give up the system of artificial scarcity that forces
people to labor incessantly in order to support themselves, like gerbils on a
wheel or rats in a maze, we will transition out of our current construct of
work, into a different realization of life's purpose and meaning. As
Buckminster Fuller realized, most of the work that people currently do has a
negative value and actually subtracts from the real economy — the natural
economy — of the earth. For someone to drive to an office, sit indoors all day
thus becoming sickly, use Styrofoam cups and toner cartridges and wear out
computers built out of "conflict minerals," is just a negative from the mother
planet's accounting. If people were, instead, subsidized to live in home
communities where they were encouraged to grow their own organic food, have
deeper multi-generational ties, and create festive spectacles and ceremonies
(what tribal people did, and do, with their time), this would be of much
greater benefit to the earth, as well as creating a happier and more fulfilled
humanity.

Deep down, nobody wants a "job" to occupy their time: People
want a mission to inspire them and bring out their deepest soul capacities. I
have yet to meet a child who wasn't a magician, artist, seer, and shaman, all
wrapped into one. The current system is idiotic, as it snuffs out our vital and
creative impulses in order to turn us into zombies staring vacantly into
screens and even believing we prefer these virtual spectacles to true human and
spiritual communion with each other and the earth.

So, in the future, following Fuller's brilliant insights, I
believe that everyone will receive a living subsidy — enough food to eat, a
decent place to live — in order to pursue their inclinations and creative
drives to the Nth degree. That in fact would be the proper and sensible use of
our technical genius, rather than what we do now, which is use most of our
intelligence to thwart our deepest potential from becoming manifest. At the
same time, some will feel called upon to excel, produce and create, more than
others — and this will also be natural and right, with a greater reward for the
achievement in terms of social prestige and access to resources for making new
things, but greater talent won't be rewarded as excessively and inequitably as
it is today. In a world of cooperation and abundance, that will seem foolish
and unnecessary. Ultimately, creativity is its own reward.

 

Agriculture

It has been well-demonstrated that organic and permaculture based
approaches to agriculture produce a higher yield of edible crops and are much
less destructive to land and soil than industrial or "mono-cultural" systems of
food-production. They are also more labor intensive and require a deeper level
of forethought, care, and skill. We should transition quickly back to a global
system of organic and permaculture based agriculture, using heirloom and
traditional seed stock. The interactive technology of the Internet can be
utilized to do global training sessions in these techniques, with local experts
going from place to place to educate different cultures on the best practices
that have been discovered.

There is no reason for people to be starving on this earth.
I interviewed the director of Pro Natura, a non-profit. They have developed an
alfalfa leaf extract that can provide a human being's basic nutritional needs
for a few dollars a year. In my film, we spoke to aquaponics experts who noted
that 80% of New York City's nutritional needs could be fulfilled from within
the city's boundaries through rooftop aquaponic gardens. We saw in Cuba what
happened when subsidies from the USSR were withdrawn: Instead of starving, they
undertook a massive urban farming initiative, and are in better environmental
shape than most countries on earth today, with a more secure food supply. In
the US, the average morsel of food comes from 2,000 miles away, which is
absurdly wasteful.

I think we are only beginning to reckon with the effect of
nutrition on human consciousness: I know this is a process I am exploring in my
own life. The revolution in practices related to food and nutrition and the
evolution of consciousness are the same process, in material and immaterial
form.

Therefore, we should be fighting against Monsanto, ADM, the
subsidization of chemically polluting industrial agriculture, while many of us
learn to grow our own food, create gardens, or at least buy from local organic
farms or join CSAs, etc. More community permaculture projects would be great!

 

Media 

One the biggest logjams we currently face is the horrific
condition of contemporary mass media, which is a consciousness control system
that keeps the mass of people, the multitude, in a stupefied state of cynicism and
passivity, hooked on alienated spectacles like sports and Hollywood films that
have no relationship to their real lives or future potential. The mass media —
from Fox to The New York Times to Conde Nast — is a part of the corporate
military industrial complex. It is designed to suppress and limit awareness.

In Multitude, Negri and Hardt discuss how we have shifted
from Marx's time when "material production" (of goods) was most important or
"hegemonic," to a time when immaterial production (of images, memes, ideas,
ways that affective relationships are constructed and defined, etc) have become
hegemonic (Facebook and Twitter being great examples). Now, in a system where
immaterial production has become hegemonic, what, ultimately, is being
produced? For Negri and Hardt, the answer is "subjectivity." The mass media
machine is a factory for producing a particular form of human subjectivity —
passive, consumerist, at the same time, through the cunning distortion of the
concepts of individuality and the construct of the "hipster rebel," believing
itself to be superior, knowing, to have chosen its apolitical alienation as the
most individual gesture and statement it could make — and making other options
or ways of being invisible. Consider the the media for sale and on view at an
airport, and you will get what I mean.

In other words, the mass media produces and reproduces a
certain level or form or frequency of human consciousness, and standardizes and
homogenizes us through its continual beaming of this frequency. Now, this is
not all bad: In fact, this standardization and homogenization of consciousness
is part of what we needed to attain our next level of species being. Try to
imagine a bunch of noble Masai warriors lining up for airport security
screening, to get a sense of what I mean. The effect of transnational
postmodern capitalism in standardizing the planetary consciousness is a
necessary phase that provides the ground for another stage in our realization
of human being-ness. Lewis Mumford noted that we needed to integrate the
lessons of the machine realm — its impersonality, standardization, and
functionality, etc — so that we could become more deeply human, more truly
humane. Because we are all meshed together now in this way, we can potentially
all hold hands and take the next jump together, when unavoidable and necessary.

In my own work, I have been particularly working in this
arena of media to help bring about the necessary transition through an opening
and liberation of awareness in many fields. When I found the traditional mass
media organs were barred to me, I worked with a team to create an alternative
media and educational system, Evolver.net, which is still growing and
developing. We now offer interactive webinars, Evolver Intensives (www.evolverintensives.com ), and books (www.evolvereditions.com), and a web
magazine (www.realitysandwich.com ), and have a social network that is
intended to facilitate building a planetary community of people who share an
understanding of the process of change now underway (www.evolver.net — Evolver
Social Movement on Facebook).

Once again, the approach is not an "either or" but a "both
and": Work within the traditional media structures if possible, while seeking
to construct an alternative media infrastructure that uses all of the
techniques of marketing and advertising if possible to disseminate an
alternative vision and a set of tangible practices that people can access from
wherever they are. DIY media; alternative media going viral through Youtube,
Facebook, or Vimeo: all of this is part of the process now underway, which is
breaking down old hierarchies and has the potential to create a new open-source
media democracy.

 

Social Networks and the Political System

When we review our history, we find that whenever a profound
new media technology is born, there is a paradigm shift in political and social
organization. For instance, you couldn't have had far-flung Empire until you
had writing and a standardized code of law; you couldn't have had the modern
democratic nation state until you had the printing press, which was necessary
to distribute enough information about current events that people could vote.
We now have a new form of media technology that is fully interactive, and this
points toward creating a new political and social organization, which I tend to
think of as "direct democracy," or what the anthropologist Pierre Claustres
called "Society without a State."

Our current system of government was designed in the 18th
Century to run on 18th Century technology: it is designed for horse and buggy
speeds in an era of super-computers. There is no reason that "we the people"
couldn't participate continuously in the democratic process, through constant
referendums, votes, educational campaigns, and public debate. There is also no
reason that the government is not entirely transparent to us: There is no
reason we shouldn't know everything about who supports our elected officials,
where their money comes from, to whom they owe fealty based on their past track
records, and so on. Most people don't know that congress people are actually
permitted insider trading that is forbidden to traders on Wall Street, for
instance.

We see the evolution of social networks leading to civil
insurrections and overturning across the world, most famously in the recent
"Arab Spring," and the emergence of the global Occupy movement. Unfortunately,
as we have seen in Egypt and elsewhere, while Twitter and Facebook are
fantastic tools for getting people to join forces for a cause, they are not
built to facilitate the next level of necessary reinvention and reconstruction
of our currently semi-moribund democratic system. We therefore require a new
social network that is built to be an instrument for democratic
decision-making. This would require a track-back system for discussion forums
where evidence could be organized in tree-like structures on any important
subject so we don't always have to return to "ground zero" or get thrown off
course by corporate disinformation or the subterfuge of private interests. For
instance, take a subject like genetically modified organisms, all the evidence
for and against could be organized in a transparent system that reveals the
source of all statements, the ideological position of the speaker, etc. In this
way, it should be possible to always track back to the set point of what is
established and necessary for anyone to understand, outside of any bias. For
instance, in the case of GMOs, the problem of a lack of a precautionary
principle, as we don't truly know what the effect of a mutation will be generations
down the line, or whether a mutation in a plant — such as forced sterility —
can jump to other species. Also, we need to be able to explore the full
efficacy of an industrial or technocratic approach compared to other
solution-based approaches, with evidence provided from various research
initiatives. This type of "reason tree" should be instantly available to us in
all areas, so we can make naturally informed decisions.

The Occupy movement is currently foundering on the issue of
consensus-based decision-making, and needs to shift into a framework that
recognizes the exercise of "rational" — as opposed to "irrational" — authority:
Rational authority is limited to an area of specialization and achievement that
an individual has reached through a training process. Very interesting efforts
to in a sense "automate" the bestowal of authority in group collaborative
processes are being made: one of them is Shareef Beshay's Better Means system,
which provides an infrastructure for working teams to rate their own and each
other's performance, based on achieving tangible results.

As with the logjam in the financial system, we can address
the current political impasse through the construction of new social networks
that create a direct democratic infrastructure, that can be utilized first be
early adaptors, and eventually by everyone, on a planetary scale, when we
require it and when the time is right.

Through interactive media and social networks, a global
retraining and re-imprinting can be undertaken, to rapidly bring about a new
awareness of our interrelatedness with the biosphere as a totality, and to
provide intensive and rapid education in ways of being and doing that support
this realization.

My model does not propose a violent overturning of the
present political system, but a plan to rapidly supercede it by building,
iterating, and releasing the virtual infrastructure for the "civilization2.0"
we all know in our hearts is possible, and that we need for the sake of our own
lives and our children's children's children. 

 


Pacification

Another urgent need is the demilitarization and
decolonization of the human mind, and a collective movement toward
pacification. We have the models of Gandhi and Martin Luther King to consider:
How the desire for peace can move from a passive wish to an unstinting demand,
backed up by nonviolent action. We have begun to see a resurgence of this form
of activism in the Occupy movement: It seems to be something that is welling up
from the collective consciousness of humanity, part of our collective immune
system response to the parasitic predation of the dominator complex that is now
underway.

If a spiritual revolution were to occur in the United
States, first and foremost, that involved a realization of love and divinity as
a living presence on earth, then we could potentially convert our far-flung
network of military bases into re-training centers for nonviolent
communication, meditation, permaculture techniques, and other modalities that
support rapid pacification. I think it is quite possible that this spiritual
revolution is the destiny of our country: you could feel the first tone in this
new octave of cooperative human being-ness sounding out in the Occupy zones.
The pendulum swing of contracting consciousness had to go all of the way in the
other direction so it could come back with sufficient force to break through
the "mind-forgd manacles" that hold us in a certain set of limiting beliefs and
ideological inertia. As I have written elsewhere, the advanced consciousness
that emerged in the 1960s — anthemized in the music of the Beatles, etc. — was a
presentiment of the new form of species being that will soon become the common
property of humanity as a whole.

To bring about the pacification of human consciousness,
meditation is a powerful tool. Experiments with Transcendental Meditation
demonstrated that a sufficiently large number of meditators in a particular
locale were able to significantly reduce the rates of violent crime in the
Washington DC area and other places. Now, why was this experiment
discontinued?! Why not make it a permanent, ongoing "experiment" taking place
everywhere all at once. TM now absurdly costs thousands of dollars to learn
"officially": I recommend making this and all other such modalities freely
available and mass-distributable through Internet-based training programs that
thousands or millions of people can access at once.

 

Bioremediation

This was explored at length in my film, 2012: Time for
Change
, which streams on Netflix or can be bought at www.2012timeforchange.com. An extraordinary repository of beneficial projects can be found by going to
bfi.org and looking through the proposals for the annual Challenge Grant:
Bioremediation will be the growth economy of the future, once we transition to
a new paradigm in which the exchange of value is redesigned to support the
health of the environment and the strength of the commons. We should be using
natural systems to heal nature — as John Todd and Paul Stamets are doing.

We will also need to do massive collective work to reverse
deforestation, desertification, mitigate climate change, and preserve
biodiversity: I believe that this can be undertaken as a multigenerational
initiative that will be recognized as a sacred trust, and a joyful, devotional
act toward the Mother who gives us life, breath, body, and soul.

 

The Commons

I look toward the end of the concept of private property and
intellectual property in general: This may take a few generations to
accomplish, but I believe it is our destiny, and could actually happen much
faster, once realization is
attained by those who make up the "tipping point". Aboriginal people
and nomadic people don't have a traditional concept of private ownership:
However they have a concept of something like "usufruct," meaning that while
you are actually using something productively, you have the right to continue
using it, and nobody can take it away from you.

I think intellectual property laws are anathema to human
creativity, and patently absurd. Shakespeare was only capable of being so
amazing because he could take other plays that were lying around and revise
them as he saw fit.

We are currently seeing a movement in this direction with
the "Creative Commons" licenses, etcetera, plus with the crumbling of the
capacity of the media industries to stop people from copying and reproducing
whatever they want: Information wants to be free: Let's make it free.
Obviously, this process needs to run in parallel with the other aspects of the
transition described earlier: toward subsidization, shift in the work culture
and transformation of industry and the media. We don't want the artists to be
shafted while the corporate system morphs into a new insidious form, which is a
current tendency, at least superficially.

 


A Snake Shedding Its Skin

We could look at the whole process through biological
metaphors: One is that of a snake shedding its skin. The texture of the old
skin of our current civilization needs to hold together long enough, as this
new skin — of mythology, paradigm, social and technological praxis — meshes
together beneath it.

Another popular metaphor is "caterpillar to butterfly": the
few imaginal cells that propagate the reconfiguring code that transmutes the
biotic goop of the caterpillar into a gorgeous winged being: Changing from
rapacious consumer to elegant pollinator, while gaining the added dimension of
flight.

Henry, please let me know if this satisfies your request for
tangible applications of my ideas and how we can make it happen in the short
period of time now available to us.

If you would like me to drill down deeper in any area,
please let me know and I will be happy to do it.

 

Image by SidPix, courtesy of Creative Commons license.