Do you let your light shine?

Hi Laurie

I have a slightly different definition of enlightenment, and yours is part of it.

For me enlightenment means bringing light, in all dimensions.
For me, light means being able to “see” what is there, as distinct from the stories about what is there that we get from our culture.
For me, a big part of seeing is being willing to question everything, to learn enough of all the tools of observation and analysis that I can make useful modifications to the model of reality in my head that is my experiential reality.

Part of that is seeing that we are all connected in many different ways.
We can also be separate in many different ways.
We can be cooperative.
We can be competitive.

It seems that we are primed by evolution to be highly cooperative in times of plenty, and highly competitive in times of scarcity.

We seem to have adopted a societal model of value in our market based system of money that is fundamentally based in scarcity, and actually has no value for any universal abundance.

This basis in scarcity has a tendency to force people into competitive modes, rather than encouraging people into cooperative behaviour.

There can be a place for money, and it needs to be outside the domain of survival needs – they need to be guaranteed to everyone, no exceptions – including education and healthcare and housing and communications (as well as the obvious needs of air, water and food).

So yeah – I shine my light into nooks and crannies that most others leave alone, I shine it in the dark and unexplored places, I shine it on the obvious things and ask why are they obvious – and what I see often is far from what most others see.

Then I do what I can to share as much of the information as possible with others, which is another aspect of light.

In one of the deepest senses, Einstein revealed to us that light is essentially packets of information frozen in time, that give us the illusion of time we have.
The deeper world of the very tiny, the world of the quantum, is very strange indeed.

So Yes – I am all for light, and enlightenment, and cooperation in the deepest of senses.
We are all extremely complex beings, far more reliant on cooperation than we are on competition.

Our social structures need to change from the current myopic focus on competition, to one that focuses on the many levels of cooperation present and required. One of the higher levels of cooperation is essentially captured in the word “love”.

And we must never forget that raw cooperation is vulnerable to cheats. It is the duty of all of us, who wish to sustain cooperation (Love) to punish cheats, neither too harshly nor too softly, but just enough to remove all the benefit they made by cheating, plus a little bit more, then welcome them back to the cooperative. If the punishment does not fit the crime, to very tight tolerances, then it breaks the system. Robert Axelrod did some amazing work on this from the Games Theory perspective, and Elinor Ostrom did a huge amount of work on the same subject from an economic perspective, and the sorts of stable social systems that can and have evolved, if it is done well.

Fascinating subject!

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see
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