Conscious evolution

September 28, 2009

“There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.” – Charles Darwin on Evolution, The Origin of Species, 1859

In a recently released movie Creation Charles Darwin undergoes a determined struggle on his journey to publish his theory of evolution which has quickly become a scientifically transformational piece of writing that laid foundations of still presently recognized outlook on how life came to be on this planet and how humanity has reached its current point in history. “What will happen if I can prove that god has no plan for us?” was running in Darwin’s head as the dominant religious paradigm and prevailing struggle between religion and science was making it difficult to be able to fully express what he has discovered. We have continued to develop as humanity and to an extent science and religion have learned to co-exist alongside each other despite coming from radically different paradigm about the world…

While theory of evolution is generally applied to living organisms, can it also be applied towards our ways of thinking, towards consciousness itself? Are there differing ways to see and explain the world that correspond to changing life-conditions and represent developing alternatives with a progressive tendency towards higher-order/increasingly complex ways of explaining the world?

Why are we here? Let’s take purpose of life for example, how did one of the oldest question of humanity evolved over time?

To dominate/exercise power. To serve god. To compete and calculate. To serve others. To follow own purpose in life. To serve nature/environment.

The answer to this question was developing over time, often co-existing and overlapping in the same time yet providing very different direction for representatives of the respective ways of living and being. In today’s world, you are likely to find strong advocates of all these different paradigms of existence, it is therefore clear that different evolutionary paradigms do not dissapear over time.

Now let us consider a possibility that we could commit to evolution itself as the purpose of life. That we are able to see evolution of our consciousness as a path, as a road that we are walking on, as a river that flows endlessly towards the horizon. We could then see clearly that we are on a journey and that all its parts are valid for they brought us to where we are as well as can inform where we go next. We would then be able to distill which ways of being on this planet are helpful and which unhelpful for the awaiting parts of our journey. We could also see that the road ahead is full of possibility and excitement and that it is a road that we have been brought here to walk…

Find below an extract from Evolutionary Manifesto by John Stewart who describes the possible next step on our evolutionary journey…

“Individuals will begin to emerge who see that evolution will progress further only if they commit to working consciously to advance the process; they will realize that this realization is itself an important step in the transition to conscious evolution; as part of this transition they will develop in themselves the capacity to free themselves from the dictates of their evolutionary past, becoming self-evolving beings, able to evolve in whatever directions are necessary to contribute positively to the future evolution of life in the universe; a unified and cooperative organization will emerge that comprises all the living processes that arose with them and all the technology, matter, energy and other resources available to them, eventually developing the capacity to adapt as a whole, transcending the particularities of its evolutionary past, becoming a self-evolving being in its own right, expanding in scale, linking up with other organizations of living processes that arose elsewhere, expanding in scale again and again, moving forever onwards and upwards, without end.” – John Stewart, Evolutionary Manifesto, 2008

What if we commit to evolution as our purpose? What if we commit to evolutionary energies that flow through us ever since we became conscious and that pull us upwards on the spiral of development? What if we become free from our evolutionary past by acknowledging its role in our evolutionary process and in illuminating helpful/unhelpful ways of existing on this planet? What if we embrace that possibilities for our future our endless as long as we keep evolving in harmony with all life and maintain the sustainable balance for everything we do? What if this is all just a beginning of a magnificient journey?

What if ?