TED Conversations

Mark Hurych


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Anticipating that we are in the Anthropocene, How shall we proceed?

I am exploring the big question of how we shall proceed as a human family. I am attempting to allow this question to be explored and restated from as many different perspectives as possible. It is difficult to talk about the purpose without being overwhelmed with doom. I've found many individuals, as in the examples from TED talks, approaching these concerns from very different perspectives. I want to promote that open-ended open-mindedness with this question. Large scale and small scale. What can we do with our Internet? What can we do with our capacity to empathize? What can we do with our creative potential at making games out of things? What can we do politically? ...educationally? ....parenting? ...at work? ...with neighbors? ...with humor? ...with paradigm shifts? ...mentoring and setting an example? ...?


Closing Statement from Mark Hurych

The final answer is that we need to go to square one, back to the drawing board. We need new ways of connecting and celebrating our solutions as we find them. Our tribes or "in" groups need to expand to include all humanity.

Extinction episodes do not look good for large species such as ours, so we need to take our motives to a place where we can engage in the greater good for the long long term.

Excellent isolated solutions continue to pop up. They need support and scaling up. We are threatening our own mother Earth. While our brains have enlarged (last 10,000 years) our thriving senses have shrunk, or been ignored. Crops, houses, and domesticated animals grounded us in security but also robbed us of the perspective of our own participation in nature.

We are of nature and we can and must harness our knowledge for the collective good of the biosphere.

Now let's get out there and win this one for the millennia to come!

"Physical fitness" is a wonderful term. What about loving fitness, eusociality fitness, relationship fitness, tribal upgrade fitness, innovative fitness, acceptance fitness, wisdom fitness, inspiring fitness, supportive fitness, cradle-to-cradle fitness, sustainability fitness...

...and on and on until we've got integrated planet fitness.

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  • Apr 8 2012: Learning along with everyone else. I agree, empathy is the key. Of course, the hard part is to bring it about. In a zero sum society, your loss is my gain. In an abundance society without empathy it's, " wow, there's a lot of stuff, I'm going to get as much of the surplus as possible for me". The "tragedy of the commons" goes hyper wave. The circular argument that I got what I got because I worked hard and deserve it and they haven't got because they didn't is extremely difficult to crack. "why should I help other people when they'll just suck it up and beg for more?" likewise, the belief that the world is going to hell stimulates many people to be MORE selfish because people are afraid and want to pack rat away their emergency stockpile. Fear is a big component of a lack of empathy. Unfortunately, many of our institutions use fear to reinforce themselves, to bind their members to their grouping. Reduce fear and empathy might increase.
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      Apr 10 2012: Kenny Danielson
      Let's test a thought experiment in both directions: 1) Reducing fear leads to more empathic relationships between humans. I'm thinking stronger bonds improve relationships among members of a synergistic integrated global community. So why not equally apply the reverse?  It may take a leap of imagination. Now let's suppose 2) risking more empathic relationships reduces fear. If both hold true then we have a positive feedback loop which may lead to a positive tipping point.  Humanity would become self-integrating and self-perpetuating. 
      • Apr 11 2012: I suppose thats what most religions and philosophies have proposed. I like the saying, "be the change you wish to see". I don't know if "tough love" is the same!
      • Apr 11 2012: Just broke a tooth so ill get back to you;(

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