The world we live in has innumerable species coexisting together on the same planet, that provides for all. But does today’s world really work for all?
This past summer, Society 2045 had a series of interviews with change makers seeking to improve the way society works.
Society 2045 is a community of people from around the world seeking to co-discover a vision for the year 2045. The goal is to connect with leaders of emerging communities and movements across society and come together to co-create a better future.
In an interview with Shariff Abdullah, Director of Commonway Institute we talked about creating a world that works for all. Shariff is a consultant, speaker, author, and advocate for societal transformation.
Shariff came through a challenging childhood in Camden, New Jersey. It was a hard upbringing, but Sharif was able to move through it. He went to law school in Boston, practiced law for several years as an activist lawyer.
He then decided that he might do a lot more as a writer than as an activist. He was involved in the peacekeeping movement in Sri Lanka when they had their civil war down there and many other causes along the way.
In one of his latest books, called ‘The Chronicles of the Upheavals,’ he secures a vision for a positive future.
It Starts With You
The most crucial step towards solving a problem is to be able to recognize yourself as part of the problem. We are so used to pointing our fingers at others, saying things like “those guys over there need to change their consciousness.” That’s what most of us say when we talk about consciousness. Very few of us want to own that that we are an integral part of the problem.
Creating a world that works for all is not the same thing as saying, “I want the world to be a better place.” You cannot just go out on the street, pick up one cigarette, and put it in the trash can and think you have made the world a better place, and then go back and do whatever you feel like doing. Creating a world that works for all means that you must give up your position and look at the role of 20 or 30 different human beings from around the world. For example, a fisherman in Sri Lanka, a seamstress in Bangladesh or somebody who drives a truck for Amazon in the US. Then you must take 10 or 15000 other beings from different species, saying how the world works for that bird right there? How does the world work for that tree right over there?
Joanna Macy created something that she called ‘the council of all beings’ where you sit in a room, not as a human being — you get assigned an animal. You sit there as part of the fish nation, or you’re sitting there, part of the winged nation. We must learn how to do that. How to think on behalf of all species.
“We need to learn how to think and then act not as human beings but as citizens of the entire planet, along with all the other species.”
This is especially true since the metamorphosis we’re going through right now, is going to be so profound. The easy part is that we don’t have to do very much because mother earth herself is shifting the tables right under our feet.
What we’re trying to do is hold the line. What we’re trying to do is get all the fire trucks in the world to line up to keep the forest fires away from us. We are fighting just one battle.
We’ve lost it if we keep going the way we’re going. According to Shariff, we may not even be around for very long as a species, however mother earth will survive, no question about that. It’s just not about what we want, it’s about what the earth wants and needs.
The Current Scenario
What we see now is a society that works for almost no one. Take the tired, the poor, the hungry that are on the teeming shores of our streets right now. We say to people you can become part of a future and that future looks like a butterfly. We need to get over our caterpillar ways, and then we can go someplace. The resources for that to happen, exist right now in our society.
According to Shariff, all the world’s religions are like wells that are plugged into the same underground river. All the fundamentalists believe that their well is the only one that has water in it. They also believe that everybody else has poison, so the challenge is how we embrace the entire river, and that’s the function of how we work on blended consciousness.
We know how to blend consciousness. It’s just that each group is trying to blend consciousness for their group instead of for the whole. The only solution for us is to come together as one.
Shariff Abdullah’s vision for a more inclusive for all species world in 2045 is groundbreaking. It will be amazing if we are able to achieve his vision in the coming years. Check out the interview here: