August, 2006
Vol. 5, Number 8
The SNS Press E–Zine presents new perspectives for a better future in society, politics, religion, education, self-awareness and human relations.

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This Month's Article

Parallel Universes

When people get really negative about the state of the world, I often say that I live on a different planet. On my planet there is beauty and the vast majority of people are good. I am surrounded by beauty — the beauty of nature, the beauty of people, and amazing human achievements. On my planet there is more that unites than divides people. I seldom meet a mean person, most want the same things out of life as I do, solutions to problems seem obviously simple, and the spirit of “god” is universal and can be worshiped without religion. I have even noticed that hostile or irritated people may change by treating them with friendliness. I am well aware of world problems, but "my planet" is not a world of unrealistic hopes and blind illusions; it is based on achievable ideals based on factual observations and confidence in human potential.

Many thousands of people all over the world are dedicated to solving the problems of people and our planet. Millions of others live their lives each day trying to be good people and good neighbors, helping others according to their abilities.

In terms of the world situation, we have war, religious and ethnic hatred, environmental pollution, epidemics, starvation, cruelty, and countless other conditions that threaten survival and human happiness. On my planet these can all be solved because they are the results of human choices. Wars are choices based on fear or the desire to control others. The conditions of homelessness, hunger and other human suffering are largely the results of choices — how leaders have set their priorities, how the nations of the world have chosen to use their resources.

Wars and hatred belong to the planet of fear. On the planet of fear choices are made based on fear. “Leaders” are chosen based on fear. Beliefs about the world are based on fear. The way money is spent and the way “god” is worshiped are based on fear. People are so obsessed by fear constantly bombarding them in media messages and propaganda that their psychology is shaped into a negative, hopeless worldview. With such a worldview. people make harmful choices. People who do not see a better future destroy the present.

The parallel universes are created by the existence of different worldviews. On one planet people are hopeful and make choices based on ideals for a better future. On the other, people are fearful and feel they can only survive and be happy if they control or destroy the people who are different than them. On the first planet people enjoy the beauty of diversity and value others. On the second, people feel threatened by beliefs different than their own, and only value people like themselves. On the first planet, people use their resources for creative, constructive works beneficial to the greater good. On the planet of fear, people selfishly cling to whatever they have and try to accumulate more even if it means hurting other people or nature.

Those inhabiting the planet of fear are suicidal and may or may not realize it. They are tearing down the fabric of civilization and nature and justify it with their negative rationalizations. They are very skilled in manipulating the stories that shape public opinion because only falsehood needs the hard sell to make it convincing. Nevertheless, no matter how negative and pessimistic people are, there is a good seed deep inside everyone’s subconscious, urging them to envision a better future. That is the “seed” in the genetic programming of all biological species that promotes survival.

Positive people do what comes naturally to them and are happy. They do not feel the need to advertise themselves or convince others. They let their works and their integrity speak for themselves. The people who inhabit the planet of beauty and optimism don’t seem to be as powerful as the merchants of fear, because they are not pushy. However, an optimistic outlook understands that it has what all people want.

Optimistic, idealistic people are those thinking about the future, those working to find better ways of living and fulfilling human potential. They are the ones who are developing a lifestyle that will not harm other people or nature. Fearful people perpetrate all destructive behavior, cruelty and negligence. Their numbers grow only to the degree that they can obsess others with their fear and thus control their choices even if those choices are suicidal.

The power of idealism is that it is the lifeline for which all people reach when they are feeling hopeless. Positive thinking is a result of inner growth and a sense of confidence. This cannot be forced on others, but only nurtured. Thus, people on the planet of hope serve others and are patient that eventually the planet of fear will disappear from their psychologies. When that happens people will make different choices and the world problems will begin to be solved.

Eventually the collective human psychology will reach the point where there will be a shift to optimism and idealistic leadership. When that happens there will be new choices made and new priorities for using our resources. Forgiveness will replace revenge, tolerance will replace hatred, and cooperation will replace selfishness. Hope will replace fear as a motivation for human behavior and people will see the beauty in life instead of the ugliness.

Parallel universes coexist because of the differences of human experience and development. In spite of all the threats to survival, there is still a planet of hope and beauty. The harmful behavior that needs to be changed in order to fulfill the beneficial potentials inherent in our planet and in human nature can only be done so through a foundation of optimism and idealism.

Since fear is the root of human failure and destructive behavior it can no longer be a cause for human choices. First, people must not follow any so-called “leader” in any field — political, religious, or economic — that uses words of fear to shape people’s choices. Next, they must start to change their perceptions so that they see the beauty that surrounds us. Then they must develop the tolerance that appreciates the benefits of diversity. They must develop the sense of confidence in their own worth that allows them to accept the worth of others. Lastly, they must work to heal those whose lives are painful due to deprivation and past cruelty and neglect.

In such a way will our universe change from a planet of fear and suffering to a planet of happiness and fulfillment. It can only happen as a result of human choice. Each individual has the power to shape the planet that we all call “home.” In a world of parallel universes humans must decide which prevails.

© 2006 Richard Sidy

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Related Articles about Consciousness and the Future:

Hope for the Future
Series on Leadership
Series on Global Consciousness
World Peace in Less Than a Month?
Can Idealism Solve Problems?

I Know I'm Not Alone — the wisdom of Michael Franti

Related Poems:

Making Friends
Take Heart
March Madness


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Archives 2005
Volumn 4
January: "Standing up for Humanity"
February: "The Wake of Disaster" – a poem
March: "Unity in Diversity
April: "Life is Calling"
May: "Entertainment" – a poem
June: "Thought and Imagination" part 1
July: "Thought and Imagination" part 2
August: "Imagination and Healing"
September: "Malice or Neglect? – Lessons of Katrina"
October: "Protecting Children"
November: "Intelligent Design or Evolution?"
December: "Building with one hand, destroying with the other"
Archives 2006
Volumn 5

January: "Conflict, Harmony, and Integrity"
February: "Satyagraha or Soul-force and Political Change"
March: "I Know I'm Not Alone - Wisdom of Michael Franti"
April: "Human Programming and Conflict Part I"
May: "Human Programming and Conflict Part II"
June: "Soccer Diplomacy"
July: "Sustainable Development is Nature's Way
August: "Parallel Universes"
September: "The News is not New"
October: "Legalizing Torture"
November: "Living Without an Enemy"
December: "Fast Food is really Slow Food"

Archives 2007
Volumn 6

January: "State of Fear"
February: Criminal Justice - "The Powerful Over the Weak"
March: "Culture Shock: The Good Life and Survival"
April: "March Madness"
May: "No Child Left Behind" Leaves Many Teachers Behind
June: "Personal Ecology"
July: Criminal Justice - "The Ethic of Custodianship"
August: "Exploring the Mind - part 1"
September: "Exploring the Mind - part 2: The Poetic Mind
October: "How Much Pain Can We Stand?"
November: "When Languages Disappear"
December: "Is it Enough to be Tolerant?"

Archives 2008
Volumn 7

January: "Beyond Ideology: Politics of the Future "
February: "Beyond the Bush Years"
March: "The Imaginary Economy - Part I
April: "The Imaginary Economy - Part II
May: Questions from Prison
June: "iGods and Connectivity"
July: "Energy Independence"
August: "Tribalism and the 2008 Elections
September: "Guilt, Shame and U.S. Justice"
October: "Have We Been Willing Slaves?"
November: "Are We Ready for the Future?"
December: "Are we done learning from pain?"

Archives 2009
Volumn 8

January: "Awakening"
February: "When Sacrifice is no Sacrifice"
March: "The Good New Days"
April: "The Power of Metaphor"
May: "The Conflict of Mythologies"
June: "The Time is Right"
July: "The New Anarchy"
August: "The Art of Living"
September: "Outrage"
October: "Are Women Becoming More Unhappy?

November: "Effect of the manufacturing culture on the American Psyche"
December: Who are the Real Game Changers?

Archives 2010
Volumn 9

January: The Music of Place
February: Earthquakes and Other Awakenings
March: Sense of Place, Sense of Self, Sense of Humanity
April: Why Do People Serve?
May: Decentralizing Food and Energy
June: Beyond Reading and Writing — Ecological literacy
July: Organization or Organism?
August: Fear and Cynicism = “Inter-fear-ance”
September: Are we afraid of our "Better Angels?"
October: Choosing Our Battles
November: Meeting the Need
December: A Living Canvas

Archives 2002: Vol. 1, Numbers 1-12
Read past articles including:
Hope for the Future
Six Part Series on Science and Religion
First Three Parts of the Series on Leadership
Archives 2003: Vol. 2, Numbers 1-12
Read past articles including:
Series on Leadership continued
Avoiding Dictatorship in a Free Society

Art and Politics
Living the Good Life

Teaching Teens
World Peace in Less Than a Month?
Archives 2004: Vol. 3, Numbers 1-12
Read past articles including:
Seven Part Series on Global Consciousness
Is "Liberal" a Dirty Word?
Can Idealism Solve Problems?
Peace on Earth, Goodwill to All
Poetry Diplomacy Science and Religion  Teen Help
Archives 2002 Archives 2003 Archives 2004
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