Transformation: The next stage of human evolution (Finding a new way to be in the world)

When we examine the evolutionary history of the human family we see a remarkable struggle to survive. For thousands of years human beings have labored to adapt to every climate and environment on our planet. As Homo sapiens have evolved, so have the technologies they have used to adapt to the difficult challenges that have confronted them both physically and psychologically. Today we can look back on human history, we can bear witness to the human families struggle to grow from hunters and gatherers to the modern industrialized farmers of today. We can see how we have continuously broadened our impact on the earth's environment. From using fishing techniques designed to feed families and small communities, to high tech fishing vessels that literally scour the planets oceans to feed whole nations. We have gone from living in rural small town communities to sprawling urban cities. Human beings have learned to exploit the earth's resources in their effort to bend the natural world to their will and purpose. In doing so, they have created a variety of technologies to aid them in their struggle, some with positive outcomes and some with very negative outcomes for themselves and their planet home.

We have adapted and flourished on the earth at the earth's great expense and now we have reached a critical juncture, a new transformative stage in our evolutionary process. We have reached an evolutionary crossroads that will either take us further in our development or cause our own self destruction, taking much of our planet with us.

As a species, we have been very blessed in this evolutionary process. In our struggle to survive we have developed a complex ability to think and reason. We have developed the ability to expand our conscious awareness and most importantly we have discovered our potential to love others and care for the world around us. With the gift of conscious awareness comes the knowledge and wisdom we need to go forward into the future with even greater understanding of who we are and what our divine purpose is on this planet. With our ability to love comes our responsibility to live with conscience and compassion. We have the intelligence to always know that the decisions we make, how we choose to live in the world will effect our entire planet home. We are now as a species capable of intelligently comprehending that all life is interconnected, understanding that we are all a part of each other and all life around us. As our awareness continues to develop, our fact based knowledge grows. We are ever more aware that what happens to the smallest, seemingly insignificant life forms on our planet has repercussions that effect us all. This is knowledge that cannot be ignored or put aside for future reference.

Our knowledge and awareness comes with a global responsibility that has profound significance for us all. It means that we are now at an evolutionary stage where our consciousness is capable of comprehending both the biological and the spiritual interconnectedness of the entire natural world. Some have chosen to aptly call this level of conscious awareness “Cosmic Consciousness”. Although the term sounds quite mystical, I believe that it is quite reasonably scientific. It means that we are now opening a new door in our evolutionary process, that we are just beginning to more fully understand our place in the universe. We are now more than ever before capable of comprehending the spiritual significance of life itself. Who knows what mysteries will be revealed in the future if we have a future. Who knows what wonders we will encounter as a species if we are able to survive and go on living. Wouldn’t it be a shame, wouldn't it be a great waste of life and spiritual blessings if we closed this wondrous door on ourselves just as it is beginning to open?

Up to now, we as a species have made every attempt to transform the earth to our will and purpose. We have evolved to the point where our knowledge and understanding of life demands that we must now transform ourselves to accommodate our planet, survival for all of us depends on it. This personal/individual transformation is the responsibility of each and every one of us. We have to ask ourselves in reflection, in the quiet and solitude of our own hearts, "Can I transform the way I view myself and my world? Can I transform my priorities, the way I live my life each day? Can I help all of humanity to transform, to find a new way to be in the world?"

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Sangha Without Borders is currently physically located in London, UK