Sometime in the history of our world there was a moment
where an animalian consciousness experienced the first active inward
encounter with representation. Long ago, some animal or
group had an experience — and instead of experiencing
it they trapped parts of it in a bubble that could be sustained,
and painted little transports of meaning and relation on these ‘memory-precursors’.
Before this moment, there was no way to relate with experience
formally — it could not be reliably cached —
perhaps because that form of memory did not yet exist except as
Wherever and whenever this memory-thing happened,
those it happened to probably died a lot before they sustained
or transmitted anything useful to others of their kind. The reason
is that what they encountered was alien, and hypnotic —
it replicated itself into new forms and shapes within its host like
an explosion that kept speeding up, and was exploding into
new ways and domains. This ‘knowledge’ stuff literally
invented new dimensions in which it could exist, be elaborated,
and ‘mean things’.
For us, and to the social groups we are part of and
exist with(in), very rapid change in a direction away from what
we are habituated to is often considered by the other members to
be evil, bad — or disease. The individual animals
susceptible to this bizarre disease were probably chomping at the
bit to express it into their social rings, much as we do
in the modern moment — with knowledge, gossip, and ‘news’.
But their peers did not experience this as the arrival of enlightenment.
To the uninitiated, this strange ‘extra thing’ was something
to avoid, attack, or flee from.
The common early outcomes for those who embodied and
experienced these ‘new ways of knowing’ had a lot to
do with being executed by those they had once considered their
peers, much as in our story of the crucifixion of Christ. In
the beginning, there weren’t any complex stories involved.
Early representationals on Earth were treated like poison
— and what they carried was, in fact, alien. Later, in our
own time, this trend would reverse, and the representationals would
start attacking their precursors — the poetically-minded beings
we call ‘children’. Not surprisingly, the parable of
the crucified Christ is easily mapped to the life and circumstance
of every human child. From my own experience and understanding living
in the Western United States during the late 20th and early 21st
century, I would surmise that this is more true in the modern moment
than ever in human history.
It is clearly evident that some ‘ways of knowing’
actively abhor the biosphere, and all forms or assemblies
of organism in general. Perhaps more surprising is that a vast
portion of the ways of knowing we commonly credential actively
abhor human beings, and hate or attack all human children —
merely by the nature of their character and function in the imaginal
and real worlds. Why would we select or empower such modes, when
an infinite garden of choices are immediately at hand?
There are a lot of interesting and unexplored questions
relating to the rise and embodiment of complex representational
sentience in our species. Some of them have to do with ‘what
had to occur elsewhere for this to happen and sustain itself?’,
and others that I am fond of pursuing have to do with ‘is
there a better sort?’. In other words — are there existing
examples of more intelligent intelligence, and more sentient sentience
— than the human models and examples we are accustomed to?
Rather than form a bunch of theories about this, and ride you around
with me providing evidence, I want to provide you with direct access
to the answers — experiential access. To accomplish that,
we’re going to need to do some traveling over related terrains
and stories together.
Following something more alike with the real story
of the arisal of human sentience ends up being like reading science-fiction
from our own distant future. We do not yet possess metaphors or
even ways of speaking about some of the most important
elements we must explore or examine. An example I consider striking
is that we don’t possess a common general metaphor for ‘a
way of knowing that eats those who know this way’.
Unfortunately, our most common and familiar modes
are of precisely this species. To understand this, and to have access
to some alternatives, we have to playfully explore some history
that is fictional — in that it is not fact — yet it
is not merely invention, either. Lest we doubt the veracity of such
a scheme, let us remain cognizant of a caveat as we proceed: it
is possible for a general idea to be many factors more
accurate...than any specific idea.
Early in the cognitive development of our kind of
animal, Earth was so richly and diversely thriving in every possible
domain of biocognitive form and relation that a sort of magical
hyperconnective potential was generated and nurtured. This ‘feedback
result’ of a generally unified organism found a place to go
— it burst the membrane where it had been building up and
complexifying and found egress into one of Earth’s animalforms:
ours. A sort of invisible membrane which had been filling up over
vast eons of terrestrial time was suddenly overcome with abundance,
and a new dimension of organismal reality and relation was born
in our distant ancestors. Their inheritance was at least in part
the dividend of the incredible complexity of local animalian sentience
they were immersed and co-emerging with.
Since that inception of our unique form of animal
on our world, any modulation in the organismal biome, causes immediate
responsive change in the cogniscium of human sentience, because
although we consider these separable universes they are a unity.
If the biome thrives, the biocognitive reflection emerging in our
species thrives in synchrony. If we attack and poison our nursery
— our minds, hearts, emotions and bodies suffer the scalarly
amplifying echo of the results in the biosphere. Terrestrial animals
are instances of a biosphere. Not merely divisions of —
but up-to-date, complete, and very complexly unique instances of
the entire relational history of our planet.
It is my hope we will one day soon have the opportunity
to sincerely understand the implications and opportunities inherent
in the fact that we have more important kinds and dimensions
of ancestors than the one we think of when we think of ‘our
ancestor-species’. For example, we have cognitive ancestors
— and most of these exist in domains that we don’t even
have metaphors to discuss. We also have kinds and forms of physical
ancestor that our science is too young to deliver cogent models
of. Yet this does not mean such models are not close at hand.
Though we don’t yet possess reasonably accurate
container-ideas to allow us to see where we came here from, and
where we might be going, and why — we do have anciently conserved
potentials that will lead us directly into experiential encounter
with the gardens in which the answers we seek are alive. By this
I mean to imply that the answers are, in every case, living answers.
This makes them rather unlike our abstract ideas and ways of modeling
them. Almost entirely unlike.
As an embryo we experience and express a recapitulation
of what is probably the entirety of Earth’s organismal history.
I suspect that in each instance, and at every scale this recapitulation
is at once unique, and complete. We’re taught to
consider this primarily from a Physicalist perspective: we credential
and authorize that which is physically obvious as most important
to speak of, explore, and understand. Thus what we follow credentials
superficial changes over changes in content or activity,
and we enthrone the physical evolution of species as something
akin to what is most accurately and significantly recapitulated
in our ontology, genesis and birth.
So we’re encouraged to believe reality
to be more like what we see around us or find with our physical
and methodological tools of exploration — rather than credentialing
something which exceeds physical manifestation, or from which physical
manifestation proceeds. From our thus-chosen positions and perspectives
we supposedly accrue the potential to obtain ‘objective’
knowledge about our evolution and universe.
There’s no essential problem with this idea,
if it is commonly treated and experienced as one
amongst many freely accessible toys and ways of exploring
and assembling the potentials of human knowledge into tangible reality
and experience. The problem in human history, and our modern moment
most particularly, is that an incredibly small number of
profoundly impoverished ways of knowing have become the rulers,
measurers, credentialers and arbiters not only of knowledge, but
of human and animalian experience on Earth.
It is as if our species somehow encountered an alien
and ‘very (cognitively) sticky’ toy. One end of this
toy is covered in sharp blades that cut off part of you and make
it into their likeness. The other end is covered in flowers —
if you sniff them, you grow a new flower, which is more like you.
The problem in our relations with this toy is that animals are attracted
to shiny things — in general. And in the inner domains where
‘we got stuck to this thing’, the wrong end is very
shiny, while the other end looks ‘boringly natural’,
so to speak. Generally, we simply do not have the opportunity, support,
models or access that would empower us to pay enough attention to
the portion of the knowledge-toy that causes us to grow into more
of what we are, rather than more of what the ‘strangely over-reproductive’
We might progressively observe that for at least the
last 5000 years of human history, we’ve been hypnotically
fascinated with an erroneous and deadly perspective of relation
with knowing, and its transports and results. The
‘shiny’ part of knowledge — formal knowledge and
systems — is not only more attractive to our form of animalian
sentience, but each successive contact with it causes us to devalue
any other form of relation. Over a short period of time, this becomes
like having put on a pair of sunglasses that erase all memory of
the Sun, the sunglasses, that you’re wearing them, and that
it’s possible to remove them. Each time you put them on, they
subtly convince you to wear them longer, and never take
them off. An easy way to accomplish this is substitution: taking
off the glasses results in a feeling like terror, which, in our
example, is easily translated into ‘evil’.
In the realm of sentience, knowledge, emotion and
cognition, in our real experience and the history of our species,
a single essential error in how we relate to metaphor can result
in a scalarly amplifying wave of atrocity. And these elements
are the foundations of our human agreements, our cultures, and our
Proceeding from a basis in broken relation that abhors
what our world is, and what we are — forms of knowing
and their outcome-products have been unleashing a can of whup-ass
on our people and planet and species for thousands of billions of
animalian generations. This is not a matter of human nature
— but is instead something we might usefully model as being
a matter of a trap that breaks our relations with our own sentience
and connectivity. We’ve accidentally become ‘obligate
endosymbionts’ with ways of relation that co-opt our own momentums
and potentials in order to sustain themselves, and their presence
and activity occludes an entire garden of far more useful and friendly
ways — ways that would erase themselves to support our real
progress, for example.
Like a waterfall of occlusion, gaining speed and flow-amplitude
in exponential steps that each come faster and more furiously we
have been tricked by one of our toys into sacrificing every possible
human and animalian birthright. The result of this ‘accident’
is a self-amplifying obligation to coerce our unwilling yet constant
service to ideas that eat our world, and rape the minds
and hope of our species into something more like a broken machine
than a living destiny. The entire shape and character of any species
such as ours is extremely vulnerable to interventions of these sorts
— from nothing more than artifacts of our own representational
Until very recently, we possessed no common lenses
to enlighten these terrains, or to offer us access that would allow
us to attend these accidents of our position together. Such impossible
toys are now in our grasp, because a new form of knowledge
is about to emerge, and its purpose is not to copy itself, or become
a library of theories. This sort of knowledge acts as an antidote
to the slavery we have blindly suffered at the hands of frozen ideas.
It grows rapidly, and then dissolves — leading to a direct
experience of the sources of knowledge, a living and moving experience...
rather than one of tokens, experts...and books of theory.
Contact, instead of codicil.
We will gain no advantage from any activism that
creates dogmas and bureaucracies of itself — and must instead
assemble new ways of learning and knowing together. Ways which by
their changing and playful nature empower us to lift each other
into a place of direct experiential access to new experiences and
expression of mutual uplift, exploration, and the celebration of
the real potentials of our anciently conserved and miraculously
elaborated organismal sentience.
We are cognitive animals, in a hypercognitive
environment. Our human activisms will fail, unless they can
address the sources of our ancient confusions and failures to discover
the clearly present ways and means of mutual prosperity inherent
in the problems our broken access magnifies into our experience
Perhaps we might thus agree that we desire an activism
so general, that it’s different from anything we’ve
ever considered or been exposed to. Possibly even something that
doesn’t have or require a name. A game of activism
so like what we are and become that rather than fashioning us into
the likeness of some model it proposes — it empowers us to
choose and celebrate together that which we actually are and
All of human activism has arisen primarily in opposition
to broken ways of knowing — employed and empowered by people
who agree to believe ideas. But these ideas are ‘cached
tokens’ of the experience of distant others. If circumstance
is even moderately different according to the moment and the place
— this ‘belief’ is too often far more logically
false than what literalists might refer to as ‘the false position
We’re about to assemble a form of activism with
the potential to overwhelm the source of human atrocity
— because rather than wasting time in opposing anything
— it empowers us to become more than models of some idea.
I am also certain we will experience this together, learning in
ways beyond the possibilities of our wildest and most hopeful imaginings.
When we have unity, access to our birthrights, and the protection
of our unique human, personal and cultural diversity we accrue the
power to openly oppose atrocity without reference to or memory of
combat. We can now explore and become something together that there
is no modern model even vaguely alike with — an experience
of unity so liberating that its momentum gains speed and
effect at unopposable velocities.
Most of our confusion and suffering at the hands of
our foibles is the result of an accident. It’s the kind of
an accident we’ve never heard a decent story about
— and hearing a few radically alters our potential to notice
and interact together with novel domains of co-operative play. Since
no one had any way to speak of this accident, or the time before
it, the best thing we have are badly mistranslated analogs. When
we get to play with toys of knowing that are more like what we are
and represent, the way our minds arrange and experience knowledge
My personal sense is this comprises an entirely unexplored
universe of human potential, primarily in the domain of an incredible
new way of learning — and of human unity in mutual exploration
— that will lead us to terrains of knowledge so vast an unexpected
that they could entirely re-write most of what we consider to be
fact within the next 5 years. Science, religion, and philosophies
— are about to face an insurmountable opponent to their primacy
and credentialing-power: pure organismal sentience, in liberated
And this is what ‘Life’ is actually about.
All of organismal reality is ‘attempting to recapitulate something’
in the same way our own genesis and experience as an embryo was
recapitulating all of the terrestrial genesis of life. Something
is being assembled by and with(in) physical organismal expression
and activity...that is not physical at all in the way we would match
with this idea. It is hyperconnective, self-elaborative, and it
plays a unityGame that binds all participants ever more closely
into something we have no metaphor of: Our world is a distributed
[a multiply atemporal psybiocognitive hyperstructure]
And all of this has a lot to do with how we know,
what we know, and what we can do with and about these gardens...in
a radically new way: a way that makes new ways, instead of trying
to preserve itself and children of itself at all costs.