Sharing The Wisdom Of My Last Paragraphs On Globalization

Categories: Globalization

Ninety-one heads of state attended the memorial service for Nelson Mandela in South Africa.  Pope Francis was not among them; nevertheless he belonged to the scene by being the Man of the Year on the front page of Time Magazine.  Both Mandela and the Pope cast a vast shadow on the departing era; both also became shining symbols for a different kind of an era–the lights at the end of the tunnel of human endeavor.  The memorial service was a station for Mandela’s body on the way to his final burial place, but it also was a testimony that while the heads of state represented a whim of the people in the last election in their assorted states, Mandela and the Pope had already started to pave the way to a world with no borders.  Both opened the gates to a world that is not shaped by political boundaries and that is not driven by a mind-set emanating from the existence of such boundaries.  The relationship between politically bonded bodies is characterized by power vectors–that is, by confrontation, which can bring forth the worst qualities in human nature.  However, Mandela and Pope Francis injected into our daily, mundane life, the boundless elements of ethics and humanism, not only as heart’s desire ideals but as leading elements in politics and religion.  Tens of thousands attended the memorial ceremony because Mandela proved that ethical approach can work and when practiced it even might turn us into better human beings.

My articles about globalization have never been inundated by a plethora of readers and the majority of my website visitors have been interested more in the articles about Israel rather than those on globalization.  It makes sense, as Israel is almost constantly in the news, while globalization is conceived mainly through the skewed lens of multinational companies.  Nonetheless, it’s the process of globalization that is going to change our life.  Looking back at my articles about globalization it seems to me that, matter of fact, I said it all in my 1955 “Towards a World with No Yesterdays,” article, while all my other articles on globalization are mainly variations on the same theme.  I would like to cite here just a few lines from this article, comments about Thomas Lovejoy’s and Lewis Thomas’ view of our globe as a living organism: “A view of the globe as one living organism calls not only for the elimination of borderlines between different national entities but also for complete reevaluation of the nature and scope of concepts like privacy, copyrights and national sovereignty which can obstruct the free flow of relevant information and hinder the organism’s well-being and growth.”

Our current problem is that instead of treating the globe as one whole entity we try to solve the ongoing crises, from economy to education, within the defunct framework of individual bonded states…an obsolete structure that no longer works but nevertheless, manages to impede the free flow of feedback information.  Nelson Mandela and Pope Francis seem to me to be torch bearers, heralding the coming of a new global era that could be driven by ethical and humanistic approaches.

Considering all this I decided that it might be a good idea to share with you the insights included in the last paragraphs of at least most of my articles about globalization:                                                 

“We are now on the threshold of a new era which is very different from those in our familiar habitat. Yet, we do not come empty-handed as we bring with us a valuable trove of experience. We know that love, compassion, cooperation and consideration do work. But probably the most important insight we bring with us is the awareness that we are at the beginning and not the end of the road, that humanity is very young, that our understanding is scant and that, although we have no knowledge of the future, we are in the privileged position of taking part in shaping it.”
(Ethics For The 21st Century)                        
A keynote speech presented at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington on the occasion of the awarding of the International Albert Schweitzer Prizes, March 1989

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“We may not have a blueprint for the future but we know enough in order to have a future. Again, as on the foothills of Sinai, we are asked to choose between a beclouded path through which we may be resculpted in the image of God or risk demise by the brute forces of ignorance and bigotry. Now again we are asked to choose: Death while embracing the figures of the past, or life – rising out of the shadows of this bygone past.”
(Towards A World with No Yesterdays)            
1995 on my previous website, 2008 on this one

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“In my personal opinion the watershed that symbolizes the separation between the old and the new eras is the global reaction in 1977 to the passing away, in the same weak, of both Princess Diana and Mother Theresa.  The global grief on the death of Princess Diana surpassed national borders while that on Mother Theresa erased the boundaries between traditional religions.  The global bereavement symbolizes the movement towards a unified world with no national or religious boundaries.  Diana symbolized the ancient figure of the Sacred Virgin that identifies with the suffering of the miserable and rejected, while Mother Theresa signified the universal love to all people as human beings.  The global reaction to their death points, at least in my opinion, to the beginning of the end of national states and particular religions.”
(Values Shock)

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“The challenge we are facing now calls for adapting a new way of thought and conduct in every area. The American Constitution is a masterpiece of 18th century genius but it is no more fitting as a framework for life in the 21st century. The expectations from presidents and representatives to solve the mounting problems facing us today are not realistic because the patterns of their actions and responsibility fitted a completely different mold. The Constitution is constructed on the principle of relationships between independent bodies, but the leading principle of any social and political order should now be based on interdependency and interconnectedness.”
(Social Values for the 21st Century)

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“The traditional American dream of each generation doing better financially than the last deteriorated into an ideology that supports all forms of atrocious behavior to the advantage of those who have.  Globalization brings on the challenge of living with new technologies of communication by producing new global social and political theories with a new definition of man and “people,” based on completely new layer of social and ethical values.  Moving to the next stage in human evolution is a necessity if we want to further preserve life.”
(Follow The Money…)

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“The global system changes constantly and the more we are individually and collectively integrated in it, the more we ourselves change when different interested entities find answers to problems in their various fields of interest.  We are now in the midst, more accurately, at the beginning, of a process of transition to a new stage in human evolution that will force us to adapt, in all aspects, to a completely new kind of an environment.  Also we are bound to constantly change according to the nature and level of the dialogues in which we personally shall take part. On the other hand, as long as we continue to cling to the order set by people who used horse and buggy for their transportation, the more is the likelihood that we shall soon experience a rising wave of violence and devastation.”
(A Visit to the Pundit’s Wonderland)

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“The world is in turmoil, to a large extent, because the old social and political road signs lead nowhere, except to chaos.  Because the landscape has completely changed there are no road signs fit for a transition period and no instruction manual for the new destination. The vehicles that supposedly represents the people and their interests, parliaments or congress, are presumably there but they are kept alive mostly for the benefit of inept or corrupt representatives who too often work for the benefit of large corporations, rather than the people.  It therefore is in their interest to keep the artificial structure of a sovereign state because such a structure presumably justifies elections within definite borders that allow the individual members of political institutions to legally accept mammoth [election] donations that enable the existence of the traditional, but now, inept institutions.  Instead of defining individual nations by their unique culture, language, literature, folk traditions and history, the concept of sovereign states drives them in the direction of jingoism, xenophobia and armed conflicts.”
(The World Is In Turmoil)

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“After the current crisis or collapse, we are bound to find ourselves in terra incognita, experiencing a new stage in human evolution.  The effects will probably not be radically significant on the Individual level; the atoms are the same in the most primitive and most sophisticated structures.  Human beings will most likely be the same, falling in and out of love, benevolent or mean, and still be affected by poetry written even five thousand years ago, but the cultural and other essential factors will radically differ.  The social body will face different problems and the answers will lead to continuous changes in approach, sensitivities and attitudes.  And if we accept the new Neo-Lamarckian, four dimensional assumptions on evolution, in the long run we may even witness differences also in human characteristics.”
(On The Edge of the “World of the Dialogue”)

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“Mega churches are much too big to form a cult and too large to take over the social functions that characterized the traditional churches.  Yet, they answer a need and therefore manage to attract mega crowds.  There is security in numbers and scores of people form a mass that as such carries very distinctive attributes of its own, dissolving individual characteristics of each person in the crowd.  To traditional churches people come as individuals.  In mega churches a throng of people commonly behaves in unison as one, often frenzied, a body that succumbs to the influence of whoever occupies the podium or the pulpit – ministers, pop musicians or political orators.  Such churches answer a need that stems from insecurity and inability to rely on one’s own judgment and take responsibility on one’s own actions, the masses that fill the mega churches in America may very well be driven by a compulsion to escape from freedom.”
(Mega Churches – Escape from Freedom?)

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“Past traditions tell us that only people with a good heart and pure intentions can safely cross the border into the realm of the unknown.  But our culture is no longer equipped with the means to create “good people” in the traditional sense, because we left behind those means when we entered modern technological society.  I doubt weather an attempt to change the course by trying to reestablish old values could succeed at this point, because the foundations of humanistic traditions are so terribly eroded.  I can therefore sympathize with the seventy-nine-year-old H.G. Wells who, at the ebb of his life, felt that: Homo Sapiens, as he has been pleased to call himself, is in his present form played out. The stars in their course have turned against him and he has to give place to some other animal better adapted to face the fate that closes on more and more swiftly upon mankind. That new animal may be an entirely alien strain, or it may arise as a new modification of the hominidae, and even a direct continuation of the human phylum, but it will certainly not be human.”                                                                                                            
(Utopias and Counter Utopias)

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“The contemporary states of exception are presumably imposed in order to secure the existence of impertinent national democratic regimes. Regimes that are no longer relevant because they cannot solve problems caused by the globalization process, especially in its current skewed form as shaped by international corporations.  However, it seems that the real role of the states of exception on the global stage is to obliterate the concept of national states (a concept that is hardly two hundred years old) in order to pave the way for a more comprehensive process of globalization.”
(“States of Exception” in the Process of Globalization)

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“We are moving not into an ideal world but rather to a world in which, hopefully, we learn to deal with our current problems.  A world that for sure, will give rise to new problems, and so on and so forth, as long as we’ll exist. We are moving from the known into the cloud of the unknown, and we can only hope that we’ll get there.”
(The Advantage of Total Collapse)

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“Not wishing to repeat myself too often I would like to end this article with a citation from my 2004 article Democracy Demoded: Our novel political theory should stem from a notion of Mankind as one whole, conceiving all humanity as a complex, multifaceted organism, in which each limb has individual memories and functions but all share in a common consciousness or awareness.  “All mankind,” said the preaching poet,” is of one Author, and is one volume; No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the Continent, a part of the main.” In order to have a future we have to creatively think the future. The signposts are clear and sound. The leading concept and key word is holism — holistic and global mode of thought and action. History taught us that in human society, as in all natural systems, the level of freedom, responsibility and independence expands with the growing complexity of the structure. Such was the case with the transfer from family to tribe, city to state, states to empires and now — globalization. The fact is that the more complex the system is the more likely is the freedom of movement and choice of its individual parts and its ability to absorb more varied forms of information. Political nationalism was mainly a product of the 19th century; it fitted the mechanical worldview of the time but nothing can be more incongruous with the way we understand the world today.”
(Crush and Explode)

Author: Moshe Amon