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The Global Brain Awakens: Our Next Evolutionary Leap Hardcover – April, 1995
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"An insightful perspective." -- John Gray, author of Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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stands as one of the most profound and powerful books I've ever read. It literally changed the way I see the world and my place in it. I consider it one of the most important works of this decade maybe this century. -Dan Millman, author A remarkable vision of the action of the evolutionary life force in human affairs. Just what we need in order to respond positively to our time. -John Robbins, author Peter Russell has laid forth the evolutionary blueprint for the future. has come just in the nick of time.
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Throughout human history, there were instances where spiritual leaders spoke of the pure self. There are many theories, both philosophical and spiritual, that besides the skin-encapsulated ego, there is a pure self within everyone. However, this pure self is not the dominating reality of oneself because we are heavily affected by the interacting activities between ourself and the outside world in a conflicting situation. We are always trying to get what we need and want from the outside world, while defending ourselves from the intrusion of the outside world to our self-interest. To get to the pure self, one need to put aside the thoughts of everything of the material world. In fact, from a broad-based research, there were many cases where a person claimed that he suddenly saw the pure self. The general description has something in common: they all felt an unity between themselves and the whole world, or even the universe.
Peter Russel practices transcendental meditation TM. This is the main stream meditation method which is very popular and has it roots from India. He says that TM is one of many ways which could help people calm down, get rid of all thoughts, and find the pure self, even for a brief moment. He proposes that such ability to know the pure self could be seen from the teaching of many spiritual leaders. Examples are: Buddha spoke of Nirvana, Christ spoke of the Kingdom of Heaven, Laozhi spoke of heaven and man becoming one, etc. These spiritual leaders all tried to preach what they knew and the method to know the pure self. However, such techniques were hard to learn and all religions which grew from such teachings all fell into superstition and indoctrination.
The author sees the trend and suggests that as more and more people found the pure self through TM or other appropriate methods, a larger group of human minds will be linked spiritually. When such mind links reach a critical mass, the evolution leap to a global brain will occur. The human race will then evolve into a superorganism acting as a whole instead of 6.5 billion individuals.
I consider such conclusion highly biased and heavily leaned towards the author's background as a practitioner of meditation. I think the conditions for an evolution leap as he proposed are not on the side of the spiritual mind alone. The complexity of the human society is from diversity, organization and connectivity. In particular, connectivity of the human mind is now aided by the advance of communication technology in the form of computers, Internet and artificial intelligence. Studies of intelligence all point to the destination of the awakening of artificial intelligence called the Singularity, where the entire computer network becomes one conscious mind. Although there are many horror movies and sci-fi stories about the machines dominating human, I tend to think that human would increasing become dependent on the technology he creates and they eventually merged into one. We and the entire computer network and all the artificial intelligence within would evolve together into the global brain. This global brain would strive to preserve plant Earth as Gaia and then look outwards for opportunities away from Earth.
This book should be essential reading for all - especially youngsters of every race and religion. The contained message of hope is one of the few chances we have to make the future a better place for all.
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