An increasing number of people are becoming aware that humanity is approaching a threshold in its history and, even though we may not agree as to how this change will come about, we can’t deny that maintaining the status quo is no longer an option. From climate change, space weather to financial turbulence and social unrest, the signs of change are becoming more and more obvious. The stories about how this is going to affect and where will it lead us varies as much as there are people thinking about it. For some this observation is only a recent one, while others have been aware enough to see it coming for years and even decades.
Such is the case of Barbara Marx Hubbard, who back in 1966 during a contemplative walk had a vision about the future of humanity. Ever since, she has dedicated her life to gain a greater understanding of such vision and advocate for what she calls “Conscious Evolution” — evolution by choice, not by chance.
Barbara Marx Hubbard has written seven books and is an icon within the New Age movement. She is the co-founder and chair of the Foundation for Conscious Evolution. In 1984 her name was placed in nomination for the vice presidency of the United States on the Democratic ticket. The theme of her campaign was “To Fulfill the Dream, a Campaign for a Positive Future.”
Her most recent and ambitious project, co-produced with The Shift Network, is a global multi-media event in December this year entitled, “Birth 2012: Co-Creating a Planetary Shift in Time,” which aims to unify 100 million people worldwide “in heart coherence and social synergy” to birth a new “evolved” era and a “universal humanity.”
SuperConsciousness had the privilege to speak with Marx Hubbard about her life and some of her concepts and visions for the future of humanity.
SuperConsciousness: The idea of 2012 as the birthing of a new humanity started with a vision you had more than forty years ago. Can you tell us about what that vision was and how it came about?
Barbara Marx Hubbard: I had been reading the philosopher Reinhold Niebuhr on the subject of community, and he was quoting from Saint Paul that famous quote, “All men are members of one body, and everybody is equally important.” Because it was Christian terminology, they called it "the body of Christ”, and I was not a Christian, I was more of an evolutionary. As I was taking a walk in 1966, and thinking about this idea that all people are members of one body, I asked the universe a question: What story could we tell that's important to the world as the story of the birth of Christ? What story, if we knew it, would so affect human culture as the story of the birth of Christ? I realized the story of the birth of Christ was a story. Nobody knows what happened really.
With that question, I suddenly was catapulted into space, like an astronaut. I saw earth as a living system. We are all members of it. We are struggling to coordinate ourselves as one body. Our planetary body was running out of energy, struggling to breathe. I felt the pain of war, hunger, torture, fear. That signal of pain was so great we stopped. It was like 9/11 when there was suddenly empathy for the suffering of so many, but we did not cultivate that caring. We didn’t get the message. We reacted in fear and war. But during my vision, we stopped. There was a flood of empathy, love, flowing through the planet just like there is now when we hear of a tsunami or earthquake.
Then a spirituality arose from within us, an inner voice of God. It was no longer an external expression. It was an inner experience, and everyone heard it in their own language. It overcame the religious separation. Then there was a sense of healing engendered by the love and spirituality. Then something new happened. I saw different cultural, social, innovations connect — new energy sources, new ways of education, new ways of healing. I saw, in that instant, humanity as one body connecting as a whole with its new capacities, its spirituality, its empathy turned on. In that new field a response arose in my consciousness: "Our story is a birth of humanity, as a co-evolving, co-creative species. What Jesus and all the great avatars came to tell us is true, we are one, we are whole, we are good, we are universal, we are being born. Go tell the story, Barbara."
A profound vocation awoke in me inspired by the experience of ourselves becoming one coordinated, globally resonant, planetary culture. The very cells of my being were turned on. I have great faithfulness in attempting, in every way that I can, to tell the story that we are evolving towards an emergent, co-creative universal species.
SC: Within this vision you mentioned a signal that made us stop and there are certainly already many alarming signals telling us that we have to change our ways. Do you think there would still be a larger signal in the future or is it going to be a gradual and slow wake up as it has been so far?
BMH: I think the signals are getting more intense because the information that's coming in, particularly, about global warming, climate change, resource depletion, species extinctions, are very dangerous problems. People who are scientifically based are saying, "It could be a disaster for the human species, for our whole civilization and other species as well." We don’t know the timing of that, but that information is coming in, and on December 21st — the culture has picked that date out of Mayan and other prophecies — there is a sense that something is ending. The media is projecting images of doomsday in film, television, books.
In truth, something is going wrong, but it’s also true that something good, loving, creative and innovative is being born. When those of us who are involved in creative and loving actions connect, to that degree we'll have a more gentle birth toward the next stage of evolution. This is the purpose of our work in Birth 2012 and Beyond.
SC: From one of the videos that are referred to in the book, called Humanity Ascending, I loved that metaphor about the caterpillar and the imaginal cells. Can you refer to that image for our readers and we will include the link to the video for everyone to watch?
BMH: It's a very good metaphor. The imaginal cells in the body of the caterpillar are recognized by the caterpillar at first as foreign and they're destroyed by the caterpillar's defense system. This is actually true. Many of our great people were killed. In the caterpillar more and more imaginal cells proliferate and then the caterpillar gives up. It can't get rid of them all. So what happens is these imaginal cells begin to build a new body that is becoming the still invisible butterfly. At some point there's a signal, and they consume the body of the dying caterpillar to become the butterfly. At some other point, there's another signal and they come right out of that chrysalis as a new organism. It's metamorphosis.
There are a lot of us who think that if you were to connect all the new organic capacities in our spiritual, social body right now, we'd see the outline of a new culture, a butterfly species — a universal species. I think that is right where we are, but we need the imagery, the participation, the celebration. I feel like I'm an imaginal cell in the body of a caterpillar saying, “It's just about time to come out and see who we are.”
When those of us who are involved in creative and loving actions connect, to that degree we'll have a more gentle birth toward the next stage of evolution. This is the purpose of our work in Birth 2012 and Beyond.
SC: That's the main message in "Birth 2012 and Beyond."
BMH: Yes, that's exactly the message, “Conscious Evolution." And what that means is evolution by choice, not chance. What we are able to do now as a species, because we're aware of the crisis, the more aware we are, the more we might do something creative about it. We want to encourage people to connect their own creativity and love, to see if it can help shift the consciousness of people on earth. That's it.
SC: Conscious Evolution is a central concept in your vision. Can you talk about the “three Cs” and “three Ss”, that help better define how you understand this concept?
BMH: The first C is "cosmogenesis." This was first realized in the 1960s by discovering the background radiation of the original flaring force, and it's been called "The Big Bang.” There's a lot of scientific research on the veracity of this. The thought is that from apparently nothing at all came an evolving universe. The universe is evolving now, evolving through us. Instead of the image of a static or eternal universe, we received the image of an evolving universe, and that changed the metaphysics of everything. It has taken a while to catch up with it. Some of the older cosmologies are like flat earth cosmologies. You can't be holding onto these ideas if you understand that the universe is evolving. That is the first C, the discovery of cosmogenesis. The cosmos is evolving, and is now evolving through us.
The second C is "crisis," global warming, overpopulation, and pollution. We have never faced them at this scale before. We are being forced to wake up to survive.
The third C is "capacities," the capacities of spiritual evolution, personal evolution and, particularly, technological evolution like biotech, nanotech, quantum computing, robotics, space travel. All of that collectively makes for capacities we used to call powers of "God." So those are the three Cs.
The three Ss are how do we respond to this? One S is spiritual, we respond spiritually, feeling the rise of spirit within. The second S is "social," our vocations are enlarged. We are motivated to create projects and innovations that can make for a more sustainable, peaceful, compassionate world. The third S is "scientific/ technological”. We have to start guiding the powers of science and technology from commercial or military use toward an evolutionary life-oriented action. When we envision all our new powers moving toward life, you actually see the emergence of a new species, a universal co-creative humanity.
SC: Another central concept in the book is called “vocational arousal” and you say that the secret is more about finding out what you want to give than getting what you want. What do you mean by that?
BMH: Vocational arousal is the idea that everybody has a unique creative expression, just like everybody has a genetic code, everyone has a genius code, which is your unique creativity. I don’t mean just specially gifted people, I mean everybody. Vocational arousal happens when that unique creativity inside you starts to be turned on. You know that phrase, "We get turned on," well you get turned on by sexual attraction, but you also get turned on by vocational attraction. Let's say I meet somebody who really loves what I do. You know what, I get attracted to that person, and if I love what that person does, we decide to co-create something, like even this particular interview with you. I have a desire to communicate, you have a desire to communicate too, and talk to people and create something that other people can work with.
We want to encourage people to connect their own creativity and love, to see if it can help shift the consciousness of people on earth.
We are in a vocational arousal moment. It's fulfilling our own creative impulse by joining, and it overcomes a sense of competing with each other, because you find where the synergy is. I give what I most want to give, you are receiving what you most want, and so on, so you get turned on to your creativity.
SC: You also talk about the importance of cooperation in evolution.
BMH: Evolution selects for what cooperates best, and you can see it in the pattern of ever more complex systems, from single cell to multicellular. Multicells were able to be more complex and more intelligent than the single cell, and then you get large-scale animals. They are clearly more intelligent, have more consciousness and freedom than just a tiny little organism. And on the way on up to humans, we are more and more complex in our brain/mind capability, and now we're in a planet that's more and more complex, where all the different parts are connecting. We are on internet, which I think is the new planetary nervous system. The complexity leads to a jump in consciousness and freedom, and a jump in interiority or internal interconnectivity, empathy and love.
SC: What is it you do to develop that connection with your interior? How do you make that jump?
BMH: Every morning I get up early and do something that I call "the evolutionary chakra meditation." I think of the origin of creation, the mind of God, and I imagine a core of that intelligence running through the formation of energy, matter, life, and so forth, and then bring it into my own body, up to the lower chakras. I ask that core to evolve me, and as it goes into the base chakra, I get more secure. As it goes through the generative organs, I move to regeneration, and into the power and emotional centers, then into the heart as a feeling of pure love for everyone and everything, then I move into vocation, life purpose. I take the core of the spiral through my heart, and see if it helps me, guide me to what it is I'm called to do that is my particular calling. Now I'm 82 years old, so I have gone through a lot. I get guidance, and I write in my journal. I ask questions, turn off my mental mind and go to my higher mind and receive deeper understanding, deeper intuition. I think everybody should have some type of inner sanctuary where they just are with themselves and allow this to happen.
We have to start guiding the powers of science and technology from commercial or military use toward an evolutionary life-oriented action. When we envision all our new powers moving toward life, you actually see the emergence of a new species, a universal co-creative humanity.
SC: In the short film “Humanity Ascending” you have a phrase that says, “We could speed up time with our capacity to learn.” Within the perspective of evolution beginning at the Big Bang to the vision you have about the future of humanity, and being referred to as a futurist, how do you understand time?
BMH: There is developmental time, which is like from a fertilized egg you get a baby. That definitely takes, I would say, the word, "duration." So the universe has a duration of an unfolding process. I see time as a duration of the unfolding of evolution and then also realize that at the quantum level there is no time and we're all connected throughout the universe, so they're both true, simultaneously.
SC: In your vision about a new birth for humanity you see us becoming universal humans. What does this mean for us? Do you perceive that we will be coming in contact with other civilizations in the universe?
BMH: It's logically consistent with trillions of planets in the universe that there would be other planets with life. The planetary culture that we have is very immature. We're still in the womb, fighting with each other. We don’t have a shared consciousness. We are very, very young. My own feeling is that when we connect and resonate at a certain frequency, our nervous system and our shared consciousness will turn on and we'll know what else is in the universe. We have to grow up to find out. That's what I feel.
SC: Would you like to add anything?
BMH: I would like to tell people about the Agents of Conscious Evolution training, which gives people a model for participating in this whole story. I would like people to know about that. By going to Birth2012.com, just click on ACE and you'll get it. We now have over 3000 Agents of Conscious Evolution (ACEs) forming a global community of conscious evolutionaries working together for self and social transformation.
One of the efforts that we're doing for "Birth 2012" is to advise people everywhere to form little circles and hubs of people attracted to wanting to connect and give their gift as part of the planetary birth celebration. My book, Birth 2012 and Beyond, gives some guidelines. It's a call as to how to do this.
I see time as a duration of the unfolding of evolution and then also realize that at the quantum level there is no time and we're all connected throughout the universe, so they're both true, simultaneously.
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