“In order to understand the nature of our universe as well as the role SAND is performing with respect to the evolution of the universe, it is helpful to remember that seven million years ago we were identical to chimpanzees. Think of building San Francisco with the consciousness of a chimp. Take it further. Four billion years ago our planet was molten rock. That molten rock became chimpanzees. The crowning achievement of four centuries of modern science is our discovery of this innate, pervasive, astonishing, self-transcending creative power of matter. But modern English fails us here. To call it “matter” is to dump centuries of dualistic consciousness on it. Let’s call it creative energy and say it again: the magnificent achievement of empirically based, mathematical science is the stunning realization that we have been constructed by, and that we dwell within, ultimate creative energy.
“One of the fundamental spiritual, social, and ecological challenges of our time is learning how to live into what we know. If we could experience in a direct way how every cow and fir tree required fourteen billion years of creativity to be here, our relationships with them and with all others would change. But the vast majority of us, certainly including myself, do not know how to experience the universe at this level in an ongoing way. No one does. No humans in the history of humanity had this knowledge, which means no humans in history had to learn how to be a human being as a mode of cosmic creativity. That’s one of the reasons we come to SAND. Our community is one of the nodes where a new form of humanity is struggling to come forth. We are groping forward, comparing notes, sharing insights, awakening experience, deepening consciousness. We are the universe carrying out one of its greatest leaps in being.
“Brian Thomas Swimme is a professor at the California Institute of Integral Studies, in San Francisco, where he teaches evolutionary cosmology to graduate students in the Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness program.”