Shifting From Exclusion To Inclusion
"Either everything is sacred, or nothing is." Einstein
Exclusive systems rest on the assumption of
absolute separation. They draw a line which includes some, and
excludes the rest. Exclusive concepts have dominated human history
for over 3500 years. The rise of empires, rooted in misogyny,
racism, and the destruction of nature, are expressions of this
exclusive perspective, an unbalanced preference for left brain
thinking. It allows the select to tyrannize the rest, with righteousness
When capitalism developed, exclusion was at
the core. To maximize profits for the owners, worker's wages
were minimized. At first, the quality of the product was important,
so maintaining skilled workers, reliable suppliers, and quality
raw materials, demanded social consideration from business. But
as corporations matured, and went international, the focus shifted
exclusively to the quantity of the bottom line return to the shareholders,
even ignoring the quality of the product. Modern management theory
now claims that it is a fiduciary betrayal of the shareholders
to give any consideration to the environment, the larger social
good, or the welfare of the workers.
In the last 40 years, the series of financial
crashes have acted as a pump, sucking value from the whole system
and concentrating toward the top. Financial indicators are now
similar to the levels just before the 2007 crash, suggesting another
cycle of the pump is about to begin.
Which brings us to this moment in time, when
eight people own as much wealth as the poorest half of the planet,
forcing 3 billion to live on less than $3 per day. The health
of the planet is deteriorating anywhere you choose to look, and
CEO's make 400 times the average working person, up from 20 times
a few decades ago. Some of the rage that elected Trump is white
men seeing that they are now part of the excluded masses. After
centuries of feeling that they were the select insiders, they
now experience what people of color and women have been struggled
with since the beginning of this country. The irony is that we
have all become included in the excluded, disposable group.
Nature has a socialist, inclusive bias, and
the exclusive assumption of absolute separation is an illusion.
Quantum physics shows that matter is fundamentally connected,
like waves on the surface of one ocean, and consciousness studies
show similar connection.
We are connected biologically as air breathers,
and share the fate of poor air quality. Depending on blood type,
your life can be saved by another person's blood, regardless of
race, gender, wealth, religion, or sexual orientation. The DNA
sequence that codes for the enzyme which metabolizes sugar in
our body, is identical to the DNA sequence in a maple tree. Every
human biochemical pathway was long ago expressed first by bacteria.
From the perspective of a hostile virus or bacterial, we are
meat pies, ripe for infestation.
At the planetary level, we are all at the mercy
of global economic forces and weather patterns. We are all exposed
to the radiation still coming from Fukushima, and all have traces
of agricultural poisons in our blood.
In his book "Perennial Philosophy",
Aldous Huxley looked at the spiritual traditions across the planet
to find common factors. There is a universal desire to transcend
self-ness, to experience our common humanity and our deep inclusive
nature. We are hard wired for compassion and empathy, with what
are called mirror neurons. The inclusive wisdom of the Golden
Rule is found in all religions. Unity is our birthright.
But we have been distracted for thousands of
years by a fearful belief in separation and exclusion. The lethal
consequences of that perspective are becoming more obvious every
day. It is time for humanity to wake up. Whether we like it
or not, whatever we have been taught, we are all connected. Will
we choose, by default, to be connected in poverty on a ravished
planet, as a result of this obsolete, lethal, exclusive socio/economic
concept? Or will we choose to evolve into real humanity, with
compassion for not only all people, but also all living beings
and the living planet?