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Podcast    H2'ed 5/5/15

Lee Van Ham: Blinded By Progress-- Breaking out of the illusion that holds us

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Broadcast 5/5/2015 at 13:36:28 (4 Listens, 3 Downloads, 1527 Itunes)
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Lee Van Ham is author of the book Blinded by Progress-- breaking out of the Illusion that Holds us, and is a co-founder of Jubilee Economics, a non profit focused on one-earth living.

"The frog does not drink up the pond in which it lives."

Sioux proverb

Rough Interview Notes

What's this book about?

I wanted to understand more deeply, that as a country, we continue live lifestyles and create business models and economics that require more than one planet.

Rob: The oneearth story is being told by indigenous people.

Rob: You refer to multiearthism. What do you mean by that?

It's a belief system-- an economic system, a way of looking at nature-- when we look at a human being as primarily a consumer or a low paid laborer, and if we all treat them as always looking for the best, most convenient buy, without altruistic considerations--

The whole realm of behavioral economics shows and as Riane Eisler shows in Real Worth of Nations, there is so much sharing and altruism-- In the multiearth there's a very reductionist view of humans. Same with nature-- it's there for our use--

Ken Burn's series says that National Parks are one of America's best ideas. The thing that First People's would criticize is that human beings don't live there-- we either dominate or set aside. We have the idea that nature is wild and needs to be civilized. Luther STanding Bear said, "we didn't know the west was wild until the white man came and told us."

Rob: DO you live a one earth lifestyle?

No. If everyone lived like I do, it would take 3.5 planets-- based on global ecology network calculator. I'm not there. I'm on a quest to get there. I want to. Being a oneearther is more than our ecological footprint, it's our worldview. The only way I can get to a one earth footprint is through a collaborative effort-- this shows the importance of systems thinking and action.

Will need different kinds of energy, transportation, food systems, economic structures. The planet needs to be the context within which all these systems function. But they can't do it with an endless growth cycle.

Rob: You talk about the idea of paradigm. Where does that fit in your book?

Multiearth and one earth are conflicting paradigms.

In one earth paradigm progress is circular

in multi earth paradigm progress is linear

Rob: What do you mean linear?

take iPhones-- the assumption is each new version comes out-- that each one is better, that each is progressing as we develop and it is going to get us to a certain point.

the whole industrial age is essentially age of linear progress where you get things more convenient, more accessible. However, we need to look at the idea that the industrial process is based on extracting and producing as cheaply as possible with as much profit as possible.

Extraction, production, selling, consuming and waste--

Now there is talk about a circular economy where the waste has to be reclaimed by the person who extracted it.

circular means there would be no waste.

Rob: and there are now systems being developed that use waste for other businesses.

William McDonald developed this approach.

We hear about biomimicry-- mimicking nature-- like velcro-- biomimicry is usually about creating products, but where it is most needed is to create models that are circular,

Rob: You write about how the multi-earth view emphasizes individualism and oneearth view emphasizes the entire community of life.

Writings of Thomas Berry, Brian Swimme, Fritjof Capra

The development of consciousness-- one of the models I cite is the used by David Korten-- in his book, The Great Turning-- to get beyond the great ego consciousness-- the I and my and mine to get to social consciousness. Then he goes on to consciousness where we get to we, then to spirital consciousness where.

Rob: I have a meditation-- a mantra: I, you, we, one all-- in which I attempt to remember that I am connected to all.

The whole creational process shows that our civilization has a capacity that we haven't implemented yet-- a consciousness

I have been very influenced by the psychology of Carl Jung-- identity centers can be configured around our egos and our self

As children it's configured around our ego-- we need to have a sense of 'I' The problem rises when we don't continue to mature and evolve-- me and mine-- that kind of system holds us in an aborted state of conscious development. Jung says we can move into a topography of self that is much more integrated, thinking in terms of we and all of us, whereas ego gets scared to death by us.

Nature helps us, because nature does this very well-- where we are not just caught in this ego way of thinking. This is what Buddha found under the Boddhi tree, what Jesus knew when he began to be called the Christ Messiah, meaning that consciousness-- This is possible-- this interdependence, interconnectedness consciousness-- I am an I in relationship with many others. Our individual capacities are not diminished. They are more appreciated. There is a wholeness that we are really capable of. We experience that, but we just haven't made it normative. That is what we are capable of spiritually, economically-- earth is calling us to that. I believe we can help each other if we tell the story that way. If the best story is a rags to riches then there's a problem, but moving from I to we, to becoming part of the web of life-- that's what we need. Thomas Berry tells us we need to tell the story with greater enchantment.

Rob: I think James Cameron did it with his movie Avatar--

yes. there's a powerful moment when he says "I see you." That's what siddhartha said under the boddhi tree. Jesus gave sight to the blind-- and he wasn't talking about people without working eyes. He gave sight to people so they could see with new eyes.

Timeframes-- Multieartth looks at rewarding for those who act most quickly to gain advantage in economics or power. Oneearth rewards consideration of other species, future generations, natures seasons and earth's eco-region cycles.

Rob: multi earth vs. one earth worldview Religion and the sacred are different--

Can people people find one earth views in Judaism, Catholicism, evangelical Christianity.

religions have been more shaped by multiearth thinking than they have transformed it.

You say that multi earth has become a religion and progress as god.

Rob: Psychopaths

multiearrth system rewards psychopathic behavior-- it now rules the world-- There are studies of successful sociopath vs. a criminal one.

Rob: talk about breaking out of the illusion that holds us. What is the illusion?

That we can keep on living a multi earth paradigm, that we can do it by domination.

Rob: How do we break out of the illusion-- i

a change in consciousness-- a spiritual, psychological thing-- changing our story.

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Rob Kall Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect, connector and visionary. His work and his writing have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, the HuffingtonPost, Success, Discover and other media. 

Check out his platform at

He is the author of The Bottom-up Revolution; Mastering the Emerging World of Connectivity  

He's given talks and workshops to Fortune 500 execs and national medical and psychological organizations, and pioneered first-of-their-kind conferences in Positive Psychology, Brain Science and Story. He hosts some of the world's smartest, most interesting and powerful people on his Bottom Up Radio Show, and founded and publishes one of the top Google- ranked progressive news and opinion sites,

more detailed bio: 

Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind.  Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives  one person at a time was too slow, he founded which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big)  to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet and the Psychopathy Defense and Optimization (more...)

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