Re: Dialog re/ memes & transformation of consciousness…


Richard Moore

Bcc: contributors

Date: Mon, 11 Mar 2002 16:01:32 -0800 (PST)
From: Jessica Markland <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: Dialog re/ memes & transformation of consciousness...
To: •••@••.•••
Cc: •••@••.•••

    Jay Fenello wrote to rkm:
    > In order to fix our system, we'll need a new consciousness
    among the people -- one that can see through the illusion as
    presented by the corporate media.
    rkm responded:
    > I suggest that the ~process~ by which such a consciousness
    propagates will be every bit as much part of the revolution
    as the ~content~ of the consciousness. And I don't mean


I can't tell you how "spot on" I think this is. In fact I
think it might qualify as one of the memes Jay is looking

I shall be sending it far and wide. All of us just haven't
been seeing the wood for the trees. This is going to be big.

Thank you, Jessica


Dear Jessica,

Many thanks for your comments and for your enthusiasm. I'm
very glad that you make a point of circulating items more
widely when you find them useful.  The Internet is a tool
that will not always be available to us, and we need to make
best use of it while we can.  The People's Mass Media - a
flickering flame of democratic communications in the midst
of New World Order Orwellian doublespeak brainwashing.

Yet Internet, like most tools, is two-edged.  Television,
for example, was originally heralded as a great force for
democracy - able to inform the citizenry better than ever
before.  In practice we find that TV serves to narrow the
band of public understanding rather than expanding it.  With
Internet, the danger is that our actions become virtual,
that the Internet itself becomes the universe of our
activism.  We must use the tool to escape from the tool, to
move on to a higher level of effectiveness.

The Internet is certainly the ideal tool for circulating
memes.  If it's a good meme, people can pick it up and move
it along.  If it's very good, this process becomes
exponential... spreads everywhere.  If it's not a good meme,
it dies - the people's selection process.  But if the memes
don't help us escape from the medium, the consequence is
just so many bits passing over our wires and across our

all the best to you,

From: "Kay Dayss" <•••@••.•••>
To: "Richard K. Moore" <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: Dialog re/ memes & transformation of consciousness...
Date: Fri, 8 Mar 2002 20:02:41 -0800

Thank you, Richard! Brilliant message. I agree with you.
Jean Houston (author of many books and my mentor) also
believes that it is about PROCESS.

I am starting Seattle Wisdom School in September which is
basically a community gathering place. I am in the process
of putting up a Web site to explain what SWS is all about,
and I would like to have your permission to post the
following note from you on the site in an "Email Wisdom
Anthology" section.

SWS is an experiment in how we might come together. I too
feel that the first action step is that the people need to
come together. We have that in the conversation cafes and
such, but I believe that a couple of hours just isn't
enough. SWS will be a nine-month program with a full weekend
gathering each month along with informal meetings on the
internet between the weekends.

Coming together is also the key to SEEING that we can come
to consensus and can take powerful action together.

I'm hoping to have the Web site up in the next week or so.
Right now I'm looking for feedback. ... It's empty right
now, but here's the URL for the future:

Kay Dayss


Dear Kay,

I wish you the best of luck in your admirable endeavor.

warm regards,

Date:   Tue, 12 Mar 2002 16:19:33 +0200
Subject: Re: Dialog re/ memes & transformation of consciousness...
From:   Vesa Kanninen <•••@••.•••>
To:     <•••@••.•••>

  rkm > The one big meme, the one that will actually begin the
  > electrifying process of change, is one of action.  It's when
  > communities actually begin to come together and find a
  > common voice, a voice that expresses their own collective
  > wisdom.  The actual words of that voice are secondary, the
  > problem is not one of correct ideology.  The world is wide
  > and there will be many solutions to problems. Viva la
  > cultural difference!

Dear Richard,

I do agree with your point about the "process"-nature of the
needed change - it is indeed a political change. However, I
don't see the solution as quite so simple as you put it in
the above quote. As a planner, I agree that experts such as
I are not really needed - other than, in reality, for
setting action underway, and mediating between the locals
and (still) existing institutions. But that's beside the
point. My point is that often there is NOT a singular
"voice" within a community, so "the actual words of that
voice" are not secondary, since there are contradictory
words, and then action taken is another action made
impossible. While there is scope for different solutions
across the communities, within one community decisions have
to be made. If it were not that way, these things would have
been solved long ago!

Or did you mean something else?


Vesa Kanninen
Vantaa, Finland


Dear Vesa,

Many thanks for your thoughtful comments.  

I certainly agree with your characterization: "...often
there is NOT a singular 'voice' within a community".  I'd go
further and say there is ALWAYS disagreement in any
community about what the solutions are and even what the
problems are.  Not only that, but there is little interest
shown in finding a way to overcome these differences, nor
hope that it is even possible.

Our political system and even our activist efforts take it
as a given that communities will never agree, will never
have a common voice.  Instead, efforts are made to build
temporary coalitions of the like-minded, to outnumber the
'others' with support for this or that proposal. In general,
such coalition-building efforts ignore communities - the
coalitions are 'at large' in some larger electoral unit.

I suggested that communities need to "begin to come together
and find a common voice".  I don't mean that we can 'find' a
common voice already existing, the way you might 'find'
something valuable lying on the sidewalk.  Rather I mean
that we must ~actively~ seek and find a common voice, in the
sense that we say a person 'finds' their courage.  Such
'finding' is not passive, but requires the following of
an appropriate path of discovery.

The path to a 'common voice' lies through face-to-face
dialog, and until we have more practice, it must be a
facilitated dialog.  Our culture teaches us to be
individualistic, and we have very little experience working
productively as groups or communities.  Our modern cultures
have been like this for so long, that we tend to think of it
as 'human nature' - "People just never agree, that's how
people are.  That's why we need governments and hierarchies
to make decisions for us."

The truth is rather the other way around.  Elites need us to
be divided so that they can rule us by means of hierarchies.
For 10,000 years we have been domesticated to subjugation. 
If sheep can believe, they perhaps believe it is natural to
live within fences.  We have the capacity to know better.

You say, "I don't see the solution as quite so simple as you
put it...".  What I'm talking about may sound simple, but it
is far from being simple.  ** Returning to our roots, as
free human beings in charge of our own destiny. ** Learning
again to function in that way. **  Such would be a
revolutionary transformation of consciousness.  It would be
our collective escape from the hierarchical walls that
imprison us.  It would be a BIG DEAL.

Is such a thing possible?  I don't know. But I am convinced
there is no other path that has any hope of saving the world
and humanity from further disaster.  The current regime is
the ultimate evolution of social hierarchy, and it is
turning very ugly.  There will never be a more opportune
time for the people of the world to come together and 'find'
their common cause and their common voice.

One particular 'community' that has had some success in
finding a common voice is the 'anti-globalization' movement.
That is good.  A common voice of any kind shows that there
is some kind of collective consciousness at work. The
movement has developed the ability to function and respond
as an entity bigger than the individual - without resorting
to hierarchical methods and without people compromising
their values.  And this has not required everyone in the
movement to have identical values or beliefs.  That is a very
important fact to notice.

Unfortunately, this emerging 'collective consciousness' is
fixated at a primitive level of political thinking.  It is
so far hopelessly naive.  It thinks protests can accomplish
something.  It is using the tactics of a previous historical
era, before globalization - when social reform was still part
of the officially sanctioned political game.  In order to be
part of the solution, instead of part of the background
noise, the movement consciousness must smarten up
politically.  It must become revolutionary not only in its
vision of possible futures, but in its understanding of how
change can take place in today's world.  

Thanks again for sharing your thinking with us,