Monday, March 24, 2014

Global Ethics and Sustainability

Forty years ago, I experienced an event in my personal life that I didn't know anything about at the time it happened. It's called Nirvikalpa-samadhi. The experience added a new dimension to my consciousness. The next several years were extraordinary as my mind and body adjusted to this new condition that had awakened in me.

I had to leave college because there was a continual conceptual flow in my mind that had nothing to do with school. I needed to give it time and I couldn't focus on my studies. To his day, this awakened energy continues to circulate within me.

One of the aspects of the change was that I began to compose a scheme for an accounting of philosophy and the nature of being. As I began to divide reality into its constituent parts, I read the works of Ouspensky and others who had done the same. Over the years, I found that almost every culture has created an articulation of a system of belief at one point or another to account for all of reality and how it is integrated.

I discovered the I Ching and the Tarot, and found similarities to them in meso-America. All mystics who are affected by the awakening of kundalini find this strange compulsion to organize reality into some sort of holistic system. At this point, I have assembled a holistic system, combining Western scientific understanding with the ancient Chinese system of the I Ching.

A few weeks ago, I found myself in New York City, selected to speak at the annual Conference of the World Federation of UNESCO Clubs, Centers, and Associations (WFUCA). My friends in the organization had invited me to speak on Global Ethics and Sustainability, an offshoot of my interest in global sustainability. Several hours before my speech I still had to compose it.
Ambassador Murata, Guy Djoken, and the author
From a natural flow, I produced Four Principles of Global Ethics: 
Respect For Diversity
  1. Acknowledgement of Human Rights 
  2. Acceptance of Personal Responsibility 
  3. Compassion for all Beings 
In diversity, we need to realize that there are many cultures and many paths to God. No religion has a monopoly on God, though several try to claim one. In fact, some religions seem to have abandoned the mystical message of their founder and instead focus on prosaic morality and organizational operations.

Human Rights are universal and stem from the pursuit of justice, the basis for all legal systems. In so many places in the world, individuals are subverted by powerful persons and interests. Idealism is important for ethical behavior and this is ignored in places where journalists are imprisoned or killed, where women are victimized, children are used as sex slaves, ethnic minorities are denied equal treatment, the poor are relegated to living on the streets, and where plants and animals are driven into extinction with no thought for the health of our ecosystems and the future of humanity.

Personal responsibility must be assumed if truth is ever to prevail in the public arena. No dictator can admit to a mistake, instead they blame and punish others while their societies devolve into desperation and chaos, heedless that "pride cometh before a fall." True humility is the sign of a great leader. We owe it to future generations not to leave behind a world filled with toxic waste, nuclear weapons and waste, and a diminished and ailing global ecosystem.

Finally, compassion for all beings is in some sense not about others but about one's self. This is a fundamental tenet of Buddhism, but is found in the character and the teachings of all founders of religions. If we allow ourselves to feel compassion for others, then we can absorb the truth of the world around us. That truth is blocked by the failure to keep the heart open, our natural state of being.

I presented these basic values in a slide show. Happily for me, they were very well received. I was very impressed by the assembled group and all the creative thinking that went into the presentation and discussion of these issues on world-wide basis. I came away more hopeful about the future of our planet.

No comments:

Post a Comment