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“Towards a New World View”

This post refers to the text “Towards a New World View: Conversations on the Leading Edge” edited by Russell E. DiCarlo, published in 1996.

Clearly this isn’t an overly recent book and it isn’t one that seems to have much of a following from what I can gather online, but it’s a nice starting point for considering how we live and the kinds of reasoning behind that.

The book takes a conversational format and explores what was ‘new thinking’ back in the late nineties and still remains pretty far from generally accepted ideas today. Russell E. DiCarlo interviews people from across the fields of human activity – history, philosophy, medicine, psychology, science, business and education, among others. He takes an intelligent, open minded, curious, informed approach to exploring these areas of interest and enquiry, and in doing so he raises so many fascinating and beautiful questions and possibilities.

For me, as I say, it’s a great starting point for looking at what ideas, assumptions and beliefs underpin an individual world view and how we might go about taking a more conscious role in crafting how we look at the world and our existence within it.

With books like this published before the widespread advent of technology, what I find particularly valuable is that the impending transformation of society is anticipated but discussed within a time where people still engaged mainly with more tangible ideas and approaches to life. Often with writing after the spread of technology this sense of groundedness disappears, as people respond to specific realities or try to understand the rapidly-changing phenomena of modern life.

As with podcasts, the interview format adds a beautiful human dimension to this quest for knowledge – between the lines of the questioning, the exploration of ideas and the paths these conversations take, real human beings with genuine concerns and insight and an often passionate faith in the potential of the future emerge. It comes across as a real celebration of humanity and also models a wonderful form of communication – a process of mutual discovery rather than an attempt to convince.

There are also firm calls to more awakened engagement with our way of living and the risks and pitfalls that could be approaching. There are conversations around crisis and chaos and the breakdown of civilisation, but also of potential paths to take through that – I see much of this as building bridges from where we were to where we are and where we are hopefully heading.

Overall it’s deeply empowering: that we all have a role to play, that our participation in life matters and that if we open our minds and loosen our rigid judgements there can be room for a very inclusive and progressive future.

I haven’t done it justice, but I love this book simply in terms of raising reasonable questions many of us may not have thought to ask.

Reference: “Towards a New World View: Conversations on the Leading Edge”, Russell E. DiCarlo, Publisher (UK) Floris Books. A selection of interviews also seems to have been made available through the healthy.net website.

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