In recent years, an explosion of new discoveries has left little doubt that many long-standing views about life, our world, and our bodies have to change. The reason is simple: The ideas are wrong. New scientific evidence has given us new ways to think about the perennial questions of life, including where we’ve come from, how long we’ve been here, how we can best survive the unprecedented crises that face our world today, and what we can do now to make things better.
While the new discoveries give us hope, we still have a problem: the time historically needed for us to weave these discoveries into the accepted way of thinking may be longer than the time that’s available to us to solve the crises. The general rule for the lag time between a scientific discovery and its review, publication, and acceptance — before it shows up in the textbooks — can be as much as eight to ten years, and sometimes even longer. And this is where the problem becomes obvious.
The best minds of today tell us in no uncertain terms that we are facing multiple crises posing threats of unprecedented magnitude, and that each of these crises must be dealt with immediately. We simply don’t have eight to ten years to figure out and head off emerging threats of climate change, terrorism, and a nuclear arms race in the Middle East. These are issues that must be addressed now.
Our old ways of thinking — which include believing in survival of the fittest, the need for competition, and our separation from nature — have brought us to the brink of disaster. We are living at a time in history when we must confront the potential loss of all that we cherish as a civilization. At the same time, a new way of seeing the world, based upon a growing body of
scientific evidence, is filling in missing pieces of our knowledge and changing the way we think about ourselves.
In light of the new evidence regarding near–ice age civilizations, the false assumptions of human evolution, the origin and role of war in our past, and the undue emphasis on competition in our lives today, we must rethink the most basic beliefs that lie at the core of the decisions we make and the way we live.
The Good News and the Bad News
During the last years of the Cold War, I had a front row seat as a senior systems designer in the defense industry to one of the most frightening times in the history of the world, and the thinking that led to it. During the 44 years of the most potentially lethal, yet undeclared, war in human history, the super powers of the United States and the former Soviet Union did something that seems unthinkable to any rationally-minded person today.
They spent the time, energy, and human resources to develop and stockpile somewhere in the neighborhood of 65,000 nuclear weapons — a combined arsenal with the power to microwave the Earth, and everything on it, many times over.
There is a common thread that links the rationale that led to the cold war and many of the crises that face us today. They all stem from a way of thinking that has dominated much of the modern world since the beginning of the scientific era about 300 years ago. They’re based in the false scientific assumptions suggesting that we are somehow separate from the Earth, separate from one another, and that the nature that gives us life is based upon violent competition and survival of the strongest.
Fortunately, new discoveries have revealed that each of these assumptions is absolutely false.
Unfortunately, however, there is a reluctance to reflect such new discoveries in mainstream science, mainstream media, traditional classrooms and conventional textbooks. In other words, we’re still teaching our young people the false assumptions of an obsolete way of thinking based in struggle, competition, and war.
So while we no longer face the nuclear threat that we did in the 1980s, the thinking that made the wars and suffering of the 20th Century and the crises of the 21st Century possible is still in place. This fact is vital to us right now for one simple reason: The best minds of today tell us clearly that we’re facing the greatest number and magnitude of crises in recorded history, and that if left unresolved, each crisis threatens our very existence!
Our Clear and Present Danger
The journal Scientific American released a special edition (vol. 293, no. 3, Sept. 2005) to inform the world of the critical situation that we find ourselves in today. The title, Crossroads for Planet Earth, says it all. The way we solve the simultaneous crises that include...
• our response to climate change
• the unsustainable and growing levels of extreme poverty
• the emergence of new diseases
• the growing shortages of food and fresh drinking water
• the growing chasm between extreme wealth and extreme poverty
• the unsustainable demand for energy
will chart the greatest destiny, or seal the darkest fate, of our global family that is estimated to reach a staggering 8 billion people by 2025.
For the first time in human history the future of our entire species rests upon the choices of a single generation — us — and the choices are being made within a small window of time — now.
The key is the way we address the crises of our time is based in the way we think of ourselves and the world. Maybe it’s no coincidence that today, after three centuries of using the scientific method to answer the most basic questions about ourselves, the world has found itself facing the greatest crises of war, suffering, and disease in recorded history!
Our old ways of thinking — which include believing in the need for competition, our separation from nature, and the Darwinian tenet “let the strongest live and the weakest die” have brought us to the brink of disaster. Clearly, the thinking that led to the war and suffering of the 20th century, including the Cold War, is not the thinking that we want the delicate choices of our survival based upon!
How can we possibly know what to choose — what policies to create, what laws to pass, or how to build sustainable economies and bridge the issues that are tearing at the fabric of our relationships and society — until we’ve answered the single question that lies at the very core of our existence. The question is simply this:
Who are we?
As individuals, as families, as nations, and as a combined human civilization, our answer to this deceptively simple question creates the lens through which we see ourselves, our world, and make the choices of our lives, our future, and our survival. When we embrace the discoveries of modern science — the truths of our past on Earth, our planet’s cycles of change, and the role these play in our lives — then we’ll understand what we’re really up against, what our options are, and what choices are available.
In recent years, an explosion of new discoveries throughout the sciences has left little doubt that many long-standing views about life, our world, and our bodies have to change. The reason is simple: The ideas are wrong. In light of the new evidence regarding near–ice age civilizations, the false assumptions of human evolution, the origin and role of war in our past, and the undue emphasis on competition in our lives today, we must rethink the most basic scientific beliefs that lie at the core of the decisions we make and the way we live. This is where the new deep truths of science come in.
During a conversation with Albert Einstein, Nobel Prize–winning physicist Niels Bohr once shared his insight into our deep and mysterious relationship regarding what we think of as “truth.” In clear and eloquent terms he stated “It is the hallmark of any deep truth that its negation is also a deep truth.”
In other words it’s what Bohr called the “negation” of old scientific assumptions (meaning discoveries that no longer make sense in the presence of new evidence) that makes the opposite of those assumptions a deep truth. And this is where the news of recent scientific discoveries becomes a proverbial double-edged sword.
The good news is that new information gives us an updated and presumably more correct way of thinking about things. The downside is that entire paradigms have already been built upon the false assumptions. Everything from the curricula approved by school boards and taught in our classrooms; to the careers of teachers, authors, and academics whose lives have been devoted to teaching the paradigm — along with the political decisions and policies that have been made into law in the highest courts of the land — is based upon what is accepted as “true” in our culture.
We may discover our beliefs about global warming, the role of competition in global economies, when we choose to save a life, when we choose to take a life and the reasons for war, for example, fall precisely into this category of deep truth.
As we face the greatest number and magnitude of crises in recorded history, the facts revealed by six areas of discovery radically change the way we’ve been led to think about our world and ourselves in the past. They include:
— Deep Truth 1: Our ability to defuse the crises threatening our lives and our world hinges upon our willingness to accept what science is revealing about our origins and history.
— Deep Truth 2: The reluctance of mainstream educational systems to reflect new discoveries, and explore new theories, keeps us stuck in obsolete beliefs that fail to address the greatest crises of human history.
— Deep Truth 3: New discoveries of advanced civilizations dating to near the end of the last ice age provide insights into solving the crises in our time, that our ancestors also faced in theirs.
— Deep Truth 4: A growing body of scientific data from multiple disciplines, gathered using new technology, provides evidence beyond any reason-able doubt that humankind reflects a design put into place at once, rather than a life-form emerging randomly through an evolutionary process over a long period of time.
— Deep Truth 5: Over 400 peer-reviewed studies have concluded that violent competition and war directly contradict our deepest instincts of cooperation and nurturing. In other words, at the core of our truest nature we simply are not “wired” for war!
— Deep Truth 6: The key to addressing the crises threatening our survival lies in building partnerships based upon mutual aid and cooperation to adapt to the changes, rather than in pointing fingers and assigning blame, which makes such vital alliances difficult.
The best science of our time, when it is married to the wisdom of our past, confirms that we still have the ways and means to shift our time of crises into a time of emergence. We can create a new world based upon actionable and sustainable principles based in the core understanding of our deepest truths. The key is simply this: the better we know ourselves, the clearer the choices in our lives become. No one knows for certain what the future holds. But no matter which challenges await us or which choices we’ll be faced with, one thing is absolutely certain:
Knowing who we are and understanding our relationship to one another, as well as to the world beyond, gives us the evolutionary edge to tip the scales of life and balance in our favor. And it all begins with our awareness of the deepest truths of our existence, and how we rely on those truths each day for every choice in our lives.
Gregg Braden is a New York Times best-selling author, a former Senior Computer Systems Designer for Martin Marietta Aerospace, former Computer Geologist for Phillips Petroleum, and the first Technical Operations Manager for Cisco Systems. For over 25 years he has searched high mountain villages, remote monasteries, and forgotten texts to bridge their life-giving secrets with the best science of today. His work has led to the cutting-edge books such as The Divine Matrix, The Spontaneous Healing of Belief, Fractal Time, and his newly-published book, Deep Truth (Hay House) now available at your local bookstore. Visit: www.greggbraden.com