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  • Writer's pictureSarah Drew

Evolutionary Culture

Updated: Dec 10, 2023

"The only thing constant is change." - Heraclitus

We are not a static species, nor are we, in our mortal form, an omniscient species despite our cities of grandeur, our civilizations of might and wonder; we are fragile, our material bodies subjugated to death and finite existence, our creations consumed by time. 


We are interdependent with all life, with the ecosystems of Mother Earth. We are interconnected with the entirety of consciousness itself. Yet, in the aggregate, in this historical moment, human beings are causing great harm to the web of life through our negligence, consumption, greed, and extractive industries that have pushed us past carrying capacity. 


We destroy our own kind either directly through the ravages of war or through the slow death of social inequality and poverty, which has the wealthiest 1% of the world owning half the world's wealth. Our collective impact has brought numerous species to the edge of extinction, an operating cost of our current civilization. It is not sustainable. 


As one civilization dies, another is born, with Death and Birth tightly bound in a lover's embrace. 


There are universal laws that bring all things back into balance, and when a species over consumes, when a civilization is out of balance, there is creation, destruction, and rebirth. This blueprint is encoded into our ancient myths. Smoke signals across time, a memory of what is possible, an aspiration deep in our collective consciousness, a SEED waiting to flower fully. 


We carry within us the SEEDS of change and evolution, calibration and renewal, SEEDS of hope and remembrance, light signals for these tumultuous times we are in. 

In the Buddhist context, these seeds are bodhicitta, the potential for awakening that resides in every human being, that regenerates awakening, empathy, and compassion for the benefit of all beings. 


These SEEDS are expressed as new forms of art and culture, a deep remembrance of how humans can live in harmony with each other and create modes of living that consider the well-being of future generations and the happiness of all. 

These SEEDS are a remembrance of civilizations, a state of being awake, compassionate, and loving in their very essence, which understands our interconnectivity to all life and each other. If we harm another, we are hurting ourselves. 


In a recent talk, Buddhist scholar Robert Thurman illuminates the Buddhist understanding that the pure land, Shambala, is not some distant realm or dream but is with us all at all times, a state of being, a shared realization and state of consciousness that is just a blink away, a small calibration by degree, from where we sit and breath right now. This is a "place and a state" of our collectively awakened bodhicitta, the seed, the root from which all creations of enlightened culture evolutionary culture flower. 


Homo Sapiens are young, from what we can tell, some 200,000 to 300,000 years of habitation on our 4.5 billion-year-old planet. We are infants, children in the big picture, and it is easy to conjecture that we are one of many sentient species in but one of many worlds. The luminous and illuminating Buddhist Mahayana text, the Avatamsaka Sutra, explores the potential and path of bodhisattvas and buddhas and the birth and death of worlds, billions of worlds, beyond counting all co-existent, a reminder of what could be and what indeed may be when we have the eyes to see. 


Although in our current times, many of us may have fallen under the spell that hunger and starvation, violence and degradation are our birthrights and that it makes sense to rape the earth or to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on war instead of food, medicine, and education, this is but a spell, a persistent spell, but like all fevers of delusion it has an end, that in this case is catalyzed through the doors of compassion, courage, and collective awakening. If we choose this course and dedicate ourselves to this collective action, we can transform and bring sweet medicine to "those wounds that will not heal." This will take vigilance, courage, and compassion for others and ourselves. 


In truth, we carry the dream seeds of the future inside us, and it is replicated through the ethers in each word we say, action, and thought. We are the active architects of the future, the agents of change. 


What is your offering? What is our offering together? 


I am inspired by the many extraordinary souls gathering at this time, so many of us are courageously changing our cultural narrative and flowering the SEEDS of renewal and remembrance. 


*Individuals and communities committed to the well-being of all beings now and through time.


*Those who are committing to Inner and Outer Peace. 


*Those equally compassionate with themselves and others. 


It is time. We are here. 


I look forward to hearing from you in the comments below. I am grateful we are on this journey together.

Share your wisdom in the comments below.

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Explore More:

Read Sarah Drew's novel Gaia Codex: View website | Purchase the book

Robert Thurman - Infinite Life | Purchase | View website

Avatamsaka Sutra | Purchase

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