Trusting the Patterns of the Universe

Hear Dan read this post.

Recent­ly, I’ve been help­ing my friend, San­dra Sault Poul­son (Real­Trust Con­sult­ing), with a sus­tain­abil­i­ty effort called Eco­topia 2012. She is co-lead­ing the effort with her col­league, David John­ston. The idea is to help West Coast cities col­lab­o­rate in a process of spi­ral­ing par­tic­i­pa­tion, with an aim to spread prac­tices that sup­port “the pre­cious­ness of life on earth and the well-being of all liv­ing things present and future.” Their vision includes a series of West Coast World’s Fairs that bring every­one togeth­er to learn about sus­tain­abil­i­ty, and it also includes cre­at­ing under­ly­ing infra­struc­tures that sup­port a long-term civic com­mit­ment to sus­tain­abil­i­ty. All this, based on a new, shared, con­scious­ness of inter­de­pen­dence. You can read more about the vision for Eco­topia 2012 by down­load­ing the pdf ver­sion of the Ear­ly Prospec­tus here. (I had a chance to pro­vide a lit­tle graph­ics support).

The mag­nif­i­cent thing about this vision is that it is based on deep prin­ci­ples, espe­cial­ly one San­dra calls: trust­ing in the pat­terns of the Uni­verse. With­out that prin­ci­ple of benev­o­lent sup­port, how could any­one under­take such a com­plex project; how could any­one, as San­dra has, start­ing from ground zero and with lit­tle finan­cial sup­port, apply such a pro­found per­son­al com­mit­ment? Her exam­ple inspires those around her to go deep­er into their own expres­sion of the ways we all can help cre­ate a bet­ter world.

One sto­ry exem­pli­fies in a lit­tle way — as a frac­tal — this big­ger prin­ci­ple of trust. San­dra and I thought we had com­plet­ed the Ear­ly Prospec­tus and took it to the print­er. Oops! We were told there was no way to effec­tive­ly print what we had pro­duced with­out expand­ing it from ten to twelve pages — and it had to be done by tomor­row! Well, what came first was not the thought, “Ohmy­god, We’re in cri­sis!” but an almost humor­ous real­iza­tion that the Uni­verse had just stepped in to tell us that our work was not yet com­plete. So there we were, and with­in a few moments ideas began to pour forth about what to do with the two emp­ty pages we had been grant­ed as a gift. What we had been sure was whole sud­den­ly demand­ed trans­for­ma­tion. Ulti­mate­ly we added a cen­ter spread, pages 6–7, that defined some of how Eco­topia 2012 mea­sures success.…And, of course, now we can­not imag­ine the Prospec­tus with­out these pages. I haven’t had this much cre­ative, last-minute fun in ages. But, you see, it was­n’t just San­dra or I work­ing on those pages…it was also some­thing greater.

It seems to me that benev­o­lence is con­stant­ly try­ing to step in. There are so many chal­lenges to be sure. We can all end-up “punch-drunk” from any num­ber of loss­es and set-backs we have to endure. We may be weary, and we may be wary. We all have a long way to go. But when we har­bor the wound­ed con­vic­tion that life will nev­er bring us hap­pi­ness, in reply, indeed the Uni­verse will bring us exact­ly what our view of it dic­tates. If I believe as a leader I am doomed to be alone, I will live my self-prophe­cy. If I believe life is a war, I will cre­ate one. We can­not mus­cle our way into a gen­uine­ly good life or the right kind of influ­ence. They are to be received, and per­haps in forms that are a total sur­prise. And for that we need open­ness, Major Open­ness, that calls us to look into the con­vic­tions that con­trol us.

Our unruly, hid­den con­vic­tions are exact­ly what block the flow, our need to have things and peo­ple a cer­tain way — our way. That’s not, I believe, what nature or com­mu­ni­ty or the divine forces that touch our lives are about. If there is a con­scious­ness that can sus­tain us gen­er­a­tion to gen­er­a­tion, it will be one that bal­ances our agency with a much deep­er, truer lev­el of trust in those uni­ver­sal pat­terns. And this may not be easy for us, giv­en how pen­e­trat­ing has been our con­di­tion­ing, and how much mis­ery we have cre­at­ed for our­selves and oth­ers on this plan­et in the name of our control.

It’s a very lucky thing, you know, that we prob­a­bly all still have two pages miss­ing in our lives, too, and serendip­i­tous­ly we get to fill them in (and two pages after that, and two more, and two more…). We all have the chance to tap into the cre­ative spir­it that under­lies all of life and call forth out of our­selves what will come. So if your per­son­al Prospec­tus isn’t yet com­plete, I ask then, how will you — in part­ner­ship with the Uni­verse — fill it in?

As to Eco­topia 2012, per­haps as you review the Ear­ly Prospec­tus, a call will be there for you, too. If you would like to help out, please be in touch.

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