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#527#528#529#530 Episode #531 - Unite and Conquer 2
(One Global Family)



Sat 25 December 2010  Elisabet Sahtouris, Brian Willson, Alan Watts, Jonathan Balcombe, Anita Burke
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Download Hour1 Download Hour2This week we continue our series on the age of reunion. We start with Elisabet Sahtouris speaking on evolutionary leaps which spring from cooperation, the unification of formerly disparate organisms to create new life forms of massively greater complexity. Next Brian Willson recalls his unexpected empathic connection with a faceless victim of US napalm in Vietnam. In our second hour, we hear Jonathan Balcombe, author of Second Nature : The Inner Lives of Animals on the rich inner lives of animals, and why scientists are showing interest in them after ignoring them for so long. We conclude with a moving speech by Anita Burke on the role of forgiveness and love in changing corporate culture.
This week, a range of exhortations to become not dominators but lovers of the earth. Beyond "goodwill to all men" and "goodwill to all women", we reflect on the loftier aspiration of goodwill to all. In contrast to last week's review of how hierarchies sought to fashion and mold 'human resources', this week we continue our Unite and Conquer series, on how humans are overcoming barriers between one another, and between us and rest of the natural world.

We start by rebroadcasting a 2004 speech from episode 320 entitled The Biology of Globalization and subtitled, Crisis as Gifting Opportunity, given by evolutionary biologist, Elisabet Sahtouris to the International Conference on The Gift Economy. She speaks on the hidden aspect of evolution, not the minute changes which eventually lead to species differentiation, but the evolutionary leaps which occur when formerly separate organisms become so interdependent that they become effectively a single organism. Elisabet Sahtouris' opinion that the heart can triumph over the head is then supported by a personal account from Brian Willson, excerpted from a speech from episode 166. He tells how, after being drafted into the Vietnam war, he was on assignment to inspect the accuracy of US bombing missions. Staring into the eyes of a dying victim of US napalm, he heard a voice arise inside him, which cut through his training at a stroke and turned him implacably against the war.

Our second hour looks at enlarging our compassion beyond its socially encouraged limits. After a short clip of Alan Watts talking on the consciousness of animals, we hear from Jonathan Balcombe, author of The Secret Lives of Animals. His outlines the scale of human exploitation of the animal world - humans cultivate and kill almost 100,000,000,000 animals annually for their use, about all for food. He explains that behaviorist science is falling somewhat out of favor as regards animals. After a long time of being regarded as little more than insensate machines, research is being published into the inner lives, values, languages and culture of animals. He predicts that animal rights will be the civil rights issue of the 21th century.

We conclude the show with the keynote speech from the 2009 Gaining Ground Summit in Vancouver by Anita Burke. A former top executive for $hell Oil, she has an insider's view of the large corporations which are destroying the planet. Her moving speech on Reclaiming Corporate Culture is tangential to the normal discussion of corporations. She has no time for half measures; quoting Chris Hedges, she says that "We can cut our consumption of fossil fuels, we can use less water, we can banish plastic, we can install compact fluorescent light bulbs, we can compost in our back yards, but unless we dismantle the corporate state, all those actions will be just as ineffective as the ghost dance shirts donned by first nation warriors to protect themselves from the bullets of white soldiers at Wounded Knee." She notes that damage done to the US environment by households, as compared to by corporations, is minuscule - municipal waste is just 3% of the waste production in USA - and that nothing less than a radical reconstruction will suffice. She pursues the human aspect - the fact that most employees of corporations have consciences and families that they care about, and want to do the right thing. Concluding with a moving example of forgiveness from the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, she recommends that, coupled with a resolute determination to reclaim our sovereignty, a spirit of love and reconciliation is a suitable response to the "systems of cold evil" that determine corporate culture.
Thanks to Psychedelic Salon for the Alan Watts talk. to Mike McCormick for the Jonathan Balcombe interview and to Radio Ecoshock for the Anita Burke speech.
This episode follows on from episode 529, and is followed by episode 655.
This episode rebroadcasts content from 166 and 320..
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