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Thursday, October 12th, 2006

On Intelligence (a Book Review)

Coert Visser

Jeff HawkinsWe often routinely talk about intelligence and we attempt to measure it for a variety of purposes. But how well do we know what it is? Jeff Hawkins is one of the first people to present a specific and comprehesensive theory of intelligence with a leading role for the human neocortex. Hawkins starts by stating that Human intelligence is fundamentally different from what a computer does.

But isn’t artifical intelligence (AI) a good metaphor for human intelligence? No, says Hawkins. In AI a computer is taught to solve problems belonging to a specific domain based on a large set of data and rules. In comparison to human intelligence, AI systems are very limited. They are only good for the one thing they were designed for. Teaching an AI based system to perform a task like catching a ball is hard because it would require vast amounts of data and complicated algorithms to capture the complex features of the environment. A human would have little difficulty with solving such everyday problems much easier and quicker.

Ok, but aren’t neural networks then a good approximation of human intelligence? Although they are indeed an improvement to AI and have made possible some very practical tools they are still very different to human intelligence. Not only are human brains structurally much more complicated, there are clear functional differences too. For instance, in a neural network information flows only one direction while in the human brain there is a constant flow of information in two directions.

Well, isn’t the brain then like a parallel computer in which billions of cells are concurrently computing? Is parallel computing what makes human so fast in solving complex problems like catching a ball? No, says the author. He explains that a human being can perform significant tasks within much less time than a second. Neurons are so slow that in that fraction of a second they can only traverse a chain of 100 neurons long. Computers can do nothing useful in so few steps. How can a human being accomplish it?

All right, human intelligence is different from what our computers do. What, then, is it? I’ll try to summarize Hawkin’s theory.

The neocortex constantly receives sequences of patterns of information, which it stores by creating so-called invariant representations (memories independent of details). These representations allow you to handle variations in the world automatically. For instance, you can still recognize your friends face although she is wearing a new hairstyle.

All memories are stored in the synaptic connections between neurons. Although there is a vast amount of information stored in the neocortex only a few things are actively remembered at one time. This is so because a system, called “autoassociative memory” takes care that only the particular part of the memory is activated which is relevant to the current situation (the patterns that are currently flowing in the brain). On the basis of these activated memory patterns predictions are made–without us being aware of it–about what will happen next. The incoming patterns are compared to and combined with the patterns provided by memory result in your perception of a situation. So, what you perceive is not only based on what your eyes, ears, etc tell you. In fact, theses senses give you fuzzy and partial information. Only when combined with the activated patterns from your memory, you get a consistent perception.

The hierarchical structure of the neocortex plays an important role in perception and learning. Low regions in the structure of the neocortex make low-level predictions (about concreet information like colour, time, tone, etc) about what they expect to encounter next, while higher-level regions make higher-level predictions (about more abstract things. Understanding something means that the neocortex prediction fits with the new sensory input. Whenever neocortex patterns and sensory patterns conflict, there is confusion and your attention is drawn to this error. The error is then sent up to higher neocortex regions to check if the situation can be understood on a higher level. In other words: are there patterns to be found somewhere else in the neocortex, which do fit to the current sensory input?

Learning roughly takes place as follows. During repetitive learning memories of the world first form in higher regions of the cortex but as your learn they are reformed in lower parts of the cortical hierarchy. So, well-learned patterns are represented low in the cortex while new information is sent to higher parts. Slowly but surely the neocortex builds in itself a representation of the world it encounters. Hawkins:
“The real world’s nested structure is mirrored by the nested structure of your cortex.”

This model explains well the efficiency and great speed of the human brain while dealing with complex tasks of a familiar kind. The downside is that we are not seeing and hearing precisely what is happening. When someone is talking we by definition don’t fully listen to what he says. Instead, we constantly predict what he will say next and as long as there seems to be a fit between prediction and incoming sensory information our attention remains rather low. Only when he will say something, which is actively conflicting with our prediction, we will pay attention.

The author takes his model one step further by saying that even the motor system is prediction driven. In other words, the human neocortex directs behavior to satisfy its predictions. Hawkins says that predicting something is literally the start of how we do it. Remembering, predicting, perceiving and doing are all very intertwined.

I think this is a fascinating and stimulating book. Many questions about intelligence remain unanswered but I believe this book to be a step forward in our quest to understand intelligence. The author predicts we can soon build intelligence in computersystems by using the principles of the neocortex. He is optimistic about what will happen once we succeed in this. He (reasonably convincing) argues these systems will be useful for humanity and not a threat.


Reposted from Solution-Focused Change. Coert Visser (coert.visser@planet.nl) is a consultant, coach and trainer using a positive change approach. This approach is focused on simply helping individuals, teams and organizations to make progress in the direction of their own choice. Coert wrote many articles and a few books. Buy Jeff Hawkin’s ON INTELLIGENCE.

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Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

The following is an essay penned in 2005.


Our Ignorance of Intelligence

Aaron Clauset

A recent article in the New York Times, which is itself a review of a review article that recently appeared in Nature Neuroscience Reviews by the oddly named Avian Brain Nomenclature Consortium, about the incredible intelligence of certain bird species has prompted me to dump some thoughts about the abstract quality of intelligence, and more importantly, where it comes from. Having also recently finished reading On Intelligence by Jeff Hawkins (yes, that one), I’ve returned to my once and future fascination with that ephemeral and elusive quality that is “intelligence”. We’ll return to that shortly, but first let’s hear some amazing things, from the NYTimes article, about what smart birds can do.

“Magpies, at an earlier age than any other creature tested, develop an understanding of the fact that when an object disappears behind a curtain, it has not vanished.

At a university campus in Japan, carrion crows line up patiently at the curb waiting for a traffic light to turn red. When cars stop, they hop into the crosswalk, place walnuts from nearby trees onto the road and hop back to the curb. After the light changes and cars run over the nuts, the crows wait until it is safe and hop back out for the food.

Pigeons can memorize up to 725 different visual patterns, and are capable of what looks like deception. Pigeons will pretend to have found a food source, lead other birds to it and then sneak back to the true source.

Parrots, some researchers report, can converse with humans, invent syntax and teach other parrots what they know. Researchers have claimed that Alex, an African gray, can grasp important aspects of number, color concepts, the difference between presence and absence, and physical properties of objects like their shapes and materials. He can sound out letters the same way a child does.”

Amazing. What is even more surprising is that the structure of the avian brain is not like the mammalian brain at all. In mammals (and especially so in humans), the so-called lower regions of the brain have been enveloped by a thin sheet of cortical cells called the neo-cortex. This sheet is the base of human intelligence and is incredibly plastic. Further, it’s assumed most of the control for many basic functions like breathing and hunger. The neocortex’s pre-eminence is what allows people to consciously starve themselves to death. Arguably, it’s the seat of free will (which I will blog about on a later date).

So how is it that birds, without a neocortex, can be so intelligent? Apparently, they have evolved an set of neurological clusters that are functionally equivalent to the mammal’s neocortex, and this allow them to learn and predict complex phenomena. The equivalence is an important point in support of the belief that intelligence is independent of the substrate on which it is based; here, we mean specifically the types of supporting structures, but this independence is a founding principle of the dream of artificial intelligence (which is itself a bit of a misnomer). If there is more than one way that brains can create intelligent behavior, it is reasonable to wonder if there is more than one kind of substance from which to build those intelligent structures, e.g., transitors and other silicon parts.

It is this idea of independence that lies at the heart of Hawkins’
“On Intelligence”, in which he discusses his dream of eventually understanding the algorithm that runs on top of the neurological structures in the neocortex. Once we understand that algorithm, he dreams that humans will coexist with and cultivate a new species of intelligent machines that never get cranky, never have to sleep and can take care of mundanities like driving humans around, and crunching through data. Certainly a seductive and utopian future, quite unlike the uninterestingly, technophobic, distopian futures that Hollywood dreams up (at some point, I’ll blog about popular culture’s obsession with technophobia and its connection with the ancient fear of the unknown).

But can we reasonably expect that the engine of science, which has certainly made some astonishing advances in recent years, will eventually unravel the secret of intelligence? Occasionally, my less scientifically-minded friends have asked me to make my prediction on this topic (see previous reference to the fear-of-the-unknown). My response is, and will continue to be, that
“intelligence” is, first of all, a completely ill-defined term as whenever we make machines do something surprisingly clever, critics just change the definition of intelligence. But excepting that slipperiness, I do not think we will realize Hawkins’ dream of intelligent machines within my lifetime, and perhaps not within my children’s either. What the human brain does is phenomenally complicated, and we are just now beginning to understand its most basic functions, let alone understand how they interact or even how they adapt over time. Combined with the complicated relationship between genetics and brain-structure (another interesting question: how does the genome store the algorithms that allow the brain to learn?), it seems like the quest of understanding human intelligence will keep many scientists employed for many many years. That all being said, I would love to be proved wrong.


Visit the author’s website.

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Monday, September 25th, 2006

In 1914 after four years of concentrated yoga at Pondicherry, Sri Aurobindo launched Arya, a 64 page monthly review. For the next six and a half years this became the vehicle for most of his most important writings, which appeared in serialised form. These included The Life Divine, The Synthesis of Yoga, Essays on The Gita, The Secret of The Veda, Hymns to the Mystic Fire, The Upanishads, The Foundations of Indian Culture, War and Self-determination, The Human Cycle, The Ideal of Human Unity, and The Future Poetry. Sri Aurobindo however revised some of these works before they were published in book form. The following is an excerpt from The Ideal of Human Unity.


Towards Human Unity

Sri Aurobindo

The surfaces of life are easy to understand; their laws, characteristic movements, practical utilities are ready to our hand and we can seize on them and turn them to account with a sufficient facility and rapidity. But they do not carry us very far. They suffice for an active superficial life from day to day, but they do not solve the great problems of existence. On the other hand, the knowledge of life’s profundities, its potent secrets, its great, hidden, all-determining laws is exceedingly difficult to us. We have found no plummet that can fathom these depths; they seem to us a vague, indeterminate movement, a profound obscurity from which the mind recoils willingly to play with the fret and foam and facile radiances of the surface. Yet it is these depths and their unseen forces that we ought to know if we would understand existence; on the surface we get only Nature’s secondary rules and practical bye-laws which help us to tide over the difficulties of the moment and to organise empirically without understanding them her continual transitions.

Nothing is more obscure to humanity or less seized by its understanding, whether in the power that moves it or the sense of the aim towards which it moves, than its own communal and collective life. Sociology does not help us, for it only gives us the general story of the past and the external conditions under which communities have survived. History teaches us nothing; it is a confused torrent of events and personalities or a kaleidoscope of changing institutions. We do not seize the real sense of all this change and this continual streaming forward of human life in the channels of Time. What we do seize are current or recurrent phenomena, facile generalisations, partial ideas. We talk of democracy, aristocracy and autocracy, collectivism and individualism, imperialism and nationalism, the State and the commune, capitalism and labour; we advance hasty generalisations and make absolute systems which are positively announced today only to be abandoned perforce tomorrow; we espouse causes and ardent enthusiasms whose triumph turns to an early disillusionment and then forsake them for others, perhaps for those that we have taken so much trouble to destroy. For a whole century mankind thirsts and battles after liberty and earns it with a bitter expense of toil, tears and blood; the century that enjoys without having fought for it turns away as from a puerile illusion and is ready to renounce the depreciated gain as the price of some new good. And all this happens because our whole thought and action with regard to our collective life is shallow and empirical; it does not seek for, it does not base itself on a firm, profound and complete knowledge. The moral is not the vanity of human life, of its ardours and enthusiasms and of the ideals it pursues, but the necessity of a wiser, larger, more patient search after its true law and aim.

Today the ideal of human unity is more or less vaguely making its way to the front of our consciousness. The emergence of an ideal in human thought is always the sign of an intention in Nature, but not always of an intention to accomplish; sometimes it indicates only an attempt which is predestined to temporary failure. For Nature is slow and patient in her methods. She takes up ideas and half carries them out, then drops them by the wayside to resume them in some future era with a better combination. She tempts humanity, her thinking instrument, and tests how far it is ready for the harmony she has imagined; she allows and incites man to attempt and fail, so that he may learn and succeed better another time. Still the ideal, having once made its way to the front of thought, must certainly be attempted, and this ideal of human unity is likely to figure largely among the determining forces of the future; for the intellectual and material circumstances of the age have prepared and almost impose it, especially the scientific discoveries which have made our earth so small that its vastest kingdoms seem now no more than the provinces of a single country.

But this very commodity of the material circumstances may bring about the failure of the ideal; for when material circumstances favour a great change, but the heart and mind of the race are not really ready — especially the heart — failure may be predicted, unless indeed men are wise in time and accept the inner change along with the external readjustment. But at present the human intellect has been so much mechanised by physical Science that it is likely to attempt the revolution it is beginning to envisage principally or solely through mechanical means, through social and political adjustments. Now it is not by social and political devices, or at any rate not by these, chiefly or only, that the unity of the human race can be enduringly or fruitfully accomplished.

It must be remembered that a greater social or political unity is not necessarily a boon in itself; it is only worth pursuing in so far as it provides a means and a framework for a better, richer, more happy and puissant individual and collective life. But hitherto the experience of mankind has not favoured the view that huge aggregations, closely united and strictly organised, are favourable to a rich and puissant human life. It would seem rather that collective life is more at ease with itself, more genial, varied, fruitful when it can concentrate itself in small spaces and simpler organisms.

If we consider the past of humanity so far as it is known to us, we find that the interesting periods of human life, the scenes in which it has been most richly lived and has left behind it the most precious fruits, were precisely those ages and countries in which humanity was able to organise itself in little independent centres acting intimately upon each other but not fused into a single unity. Modern Europe owes two-thirds of its civilisation to three such supreme moments of human history, the religious life of the congeries of tribes which called itself Israel and, subsequently, of the little nation of the Jews, the many-sided life of the small Greek city states, the similar, though more restricted, artistic and intellectual life of mediaeval Italy. Nor was any age in Asia so rich in energy, so well worth living in, so productive of the best and most enduring fruits as that heroic period of India when she was divided into small kingdoms, many of them no larger than a modern district. Her most wonderful activities, her most vigorous and enduring work, that which, if we had to make a choice, we should keep at the sacrifice of all else, belonged to that period; the second best came afterwards in larger, but still comparatively small, nations and kingdoms like those of the Pallavas, Chalukyas, Pandyas, Cholas and Cheras. In comparison she received little from the greater empires that rose and fell within her borders, the Moghul, the Gupta or the Maurya — little indeed except political and administrative organisation, some fine art and literature and a certain amount of lasting work in other kinds, not always of the best quality. Their impulse was rather towards elaborate organisation than original, stimulating and creative.

Nevertheless, in this regime of the small city state or of regional cultures, there was always a defect which compelled a tendency towards large organisations. The defect was a characteristic of impermanence, often of disorder, especially of defencelessness against the onslaught of larger organisations, even of an insufficient capacity for widespread material well-being. Therefore this earlier form of collective life tended to disappear and give place to the organisation of nations, kingdoms and empires.

And here we notice, first, that it is the groupments of smaller nations which have had the most intense life and not the huge States and colossal empires. Collective life diffusing itself in too vast spaces seems to lose intensity and productiveness. Europe has lived in England, France, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, the small States of Germany — all her later civilisation and progress evolved itself there, not in the huge mass of the Holy Roman or the Russian Empire. We see a similar phenomenon in the social and political field when we compare the intense life and activity of Europe in its many nations acting richly upon each other, rapidly progressing by quick creative steps and sometimes by bounds, with the great masses of Asia, her long periods of immobility in which wars and revolutions seem to be small, temporary and usually unproductive episodes, her centuries of religious, philosophic and artistic reveries, her tendency towards an increasing isolation and a final stagnancy of the outward life.

Secondly, we note that in this organisation of nations and kingdoms those which have had the most vigorous life have gained it by a sort of artificial concentration of the vitality into some head, centre or capital, London, Paris, Rome. By this device Nature, while acquiring the benefits of a larger organisation and more perfect unity, preserves to some extent that equally precious power of fruitful concentration in a small space and into a closely packed activity which she had possessed in her more primitive system of the city state or petty kingdom. But this advantage was purchased by the condemnation of the rest of the organisation, the district, the provincial town, the village to a dull, petty and somnolent life in strange contrast with the vital intensity of the urbs or metropolis.

The Roman Empire is the historic example of an organisation of unity which transcended the limits of the nation, and its advantages and disadvantages are there perfectly typified. The advantages are admirable organisation, peace, wide-spread security, order and material well-being; the disadvantage is that the individual, the city, the region sacrifice their independent life and become mechanical parts of a machine: life loses its colour, richness, variety, freedom and victorious impulse towards creation. The organisation is great and admirable, but the individual dwindles and is overpowered and overshadowed; and eventually by the smallness and feebleness of the individual the huge organism inevitably and slowly loses even its great conservative vitality and dies of an increasing stagnation. Even while outwardly whole and untouched, the structure has become rotten and begins to crack and dissolve at the first shock from outside. Such organisations, such periods are immensely useful for conservation, even as the Roman Empire served to consolidate the gains of the rich centuries that preceded it. But they arrest life and growth.

We see, then, what is likely to happen if there were a social, administrative and political unification of mankind, such as some have begun to dream of nowadays. A tremendous organisation would be needed under which both individual and regional life would be crushed, dwarfed, deprived of their necessary freedom like a plant without rain and wind and sunlight, and this would mean for humanity, after perhaps one first outburst of satisfied and joyous activity, a long period of mere conservation, increasing stagnancy and ultimately decay.

Yet the unity of mankind is evidently a part of nature’s eventual scheme and must come about. Only it must be under other conditions and with safeguards which will keep the race intact in the roots of its vitality, richly diverse in its oneness.

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Tuesday, September 12th, 2006

The following is a preview from my new book on Understanding Human Intelligence which will be available very soon. …


Understanding Dual Mind

Timothy Wilken, MD

Human intelligence science has revealed that our enormous intelligence is the result of possessing dual minds. These dual minds create virtual models of a dual world in which we live. Most of us don’t know we have dual minds and almost all of us don’t know we live in a dual world. We live in two worlds all of the time.

Let us begin by examining the world created by the space-mind. The space-mind thinks in pictures and codes those pictures with feelings. The space-mind is in charge of survival. So it needs to know what the world is really like. Boy if you are in your space-mind, you better live in the real world. Right? Ever play dodge ball? When I was a kid, dodge ball was a big game. I don’t know whether they even play it any more. You go into the gym and line up against the wall and somebody throws a volleyball at you at high speed. Right? You dodge it Right? You better know where the ball really is or you are going to get hit. Ever play snow ball fights? Same thing right? You better know where those snowballs really are or you’re going to get hit. The space-mind has to know where things are in space. Where they really are. When I’m teaching this lesson to a group of students I’ll suddenly toss a pencil to someone sitting in the first row, and it’s amazing, they almost always catch it. One hand will fly up and catch the unexpected object. Their space-mind reflex puts their hand up. The space-mind has to know what’s real and what’s really going on or you don’t survive. If there is a tiger in this room I had better know it’s here. So the space mind makes a picture of reality from its sense images and feelings. That’s picture of reality is what I call the world of “is”.

The world of “is” is the way things really are. And, at its very best this picture of reality approaches the “real” world. Now we don’t have a perfect picture of the universe the way it really is. But our space-mind is pretty good. It keeps me from running into the walls and safe in high speed motor traffic. My student in the front row demonstrated his ability to catch the pencil perfectly when it came flying through the air unexpectedly.

The Time-mind thinks in words and forms those words into opinions. The time-mind is into becoming, its interested in cause and effect, it is always predicting the future based on its understanding of the past. So the time-mind forms an opinion of reality from words and thoughts. This opinion of reality is what I call the world of “ought to be”.

Our time-mind uses all of its cause and effect knowledge to predict the way things “ought to be”. And we are always carrying our opinions of how it “out to be” with us at all times. Seven o’clock in the evening, and I run out of milk. So I get in my car and go down to Seven-Eleven only to discover they’re closed. “Damn it! That’s not the way it ought to be!” My space-mind shows me a picture of a closed store  —  the world the way it is. My time-mind tells me in words,“That’s not the way it ought to be.”And, so my space-mind prepares my body to fight. I discuss this dual world more completely elsewhere.

Now let us examine how the space-mind and time-mind make their decisions which is very different.

Let us begin by examining how the space-mind makes its decisions. Remember the animal mind is a Space-mind. He moves toward pleasure and away from pain—toward good space—away from bad space. My cat comes running when he hears the automatic can opener. He jumps into my lap to get a good rub. He runs away when hears the bark of a dog. Or the slam of a door.

The space-mind has only one goal—survival. Once achieved, the space-mind is content. It has no need to become, no need for achievement, no need to accomplish anything more than survival. My house cat once he has obtained shelter and good food has no need to do anything more. He is willing to lie by the fire, day after day, year after year—totally content with his full belly and his masters stroking hand. But if he encounters pain he gets away from it as fast as is possible. And few animals move as fast a “scalded cat”.

Space-mind Deciding

The space-mind’s purpose is to secure survival for the body. When it’s decisions produce high survival it feels pleasure. When its decisions produce low survival it feels pain. The space-mind tries to guide the organism towards pleasure and away from pain.

SpaceMind:  

Very high survival is called ecstasy. Sexual orgasm feels very good because reproduction of the organism is the most powerful form of biological survival. Very low survival is called agony. So this is how the space-mind makes all its decisions. It moves towards pleasure and away from pain. The space-mind is concerned about being. Survival is being. Is my being pleasurable or painful.

Time-mind Deciding

The time-mind works in totally different fashion. The time-mind is concerned about becoming. To become somebody, I need to understand. And, if I understand something I know what it means. So understanding, allows me to develop meaning in my life. Meaning and becoming are tied integrally to understanding.

Understanding leads us to predict what will happen and with accurate prediction, I can control. We humans judge our lives by how the events in our world compare to our predictions. So if nothing is going the way I predict it should—If nothing is the way it ought to be, I feel depressed.

Depression results when our lives are not working as we predict they should. I predict a well deserved raise in my salary, but instead I get fired. I predict the pleasure and enjoyment of a brand new car, but I buy a lemon. I predict my wife will throw me a surprise birthday party, but she doesn’t even remember my birthday.

When life does not occur as I predict it should, I am disappointed. When my experiences do not become what I expect they should, I am depressed. And, just the opposite, when things go the way I predict they should, I am satisfied and excited. I predicted I would win the award as an outstanding employee, and I won the award. I predicted I should get a new car, and I did and its even nicer than I imagined. I wanted my spouse to celebrate my birthday, and she threw me a marvelous party with all my friends.

TimeMind:  

Now let us examining the spectrum of our prediction accuracy. We can have very low prediction accuracy—very low meaning. Life can be depressing.

We can have low prediction accuracy—low meaning. Life can be disappointing.

We can have high predictive accuracy—high meaning. Life can be satisfying.

We can have very high predictive accuracy—very high meaning. Life can be exciting.

Things are going the way I predict they should be going. My life is meaningful. I am becoming a success. I feel in control.

Dual Mind Deciding

Now if we can examine the dual-mind as a unified entity. Happiness is when my life is both pleasurable andsatisfying. I feel joyous when my life is both ecstatic and exciting. And sadness is when my life is disappointing and painful. Or in the extreme when its agonous and depressing.

DualMind:  

This model then explains how all humans make all their decisions. But which path I will follow to achieve happiness depends on how I think the world works. Synergic science shows there are three types of humans to be found in our present world.

Adversaries believe there is not enough for everyone and only the physically strong will survive. They believe humans are coercively dependent on others, and they best understand the language of force.

Neutralists believe there is enough for everyone, if only you work hard enough and take care of yourself. They believe humans are financial independent and should be self-sufficient unless they are too lazy or defective. They best understand the language of money.

And, finally a new type of human is still emerging. Synergists believe there is enough for everyone but only if we work together and act responsibly. They believe humans are interdependent and can only obtain sufficiency by working together as community. Synergists best understand the language of love.

But, to be successful in our present world, the synergist must understand all three languages and know when to use them. Synergists must sometimes use the language of force, and sometimes the language of money, it depends on whom they are talking to. However, when synergists are seeking allies—when synergists are seeking to build community—they must speak the language of love.

We believe that you should, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”What is it that most of us want others to do unto us? Synergic scientists answer this question as follows: Help and support others as you would wish them to help and support you.  Or, more simply, “Treat others the way they want to be treated.” 

Synergists are trying to heal the wounds inflected by those who don’t understand how the world could work. This then is the essential challenge to the synergists. Can we work together and act responsibly in time to save our ourselves on this planet? … Only by helping each other.


Read about the Dual World created by the Dual Mind.

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Tuesday, August 29th, 2006


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Tuesday, August 22nd, 2006

Reposted from the SynEARTH Archives, the following is excerpted from the book Real Love.


More Truth about Relationships

Greg Baer, MD

We can do a lot more to improve our relationships when we truly understand what a relationship is. A relationship is the natural result of people making independent choices.

Independent Choices

We need to discuss the two important phrases in the definition of a relationship. First “independent choices.”

Everyone has the right to choose what they say and do.

That is the Law of Choice. It’s the most fundamental principle of relationships. Nothing is more important than our ability to choose for ourselves. Imagine what our lives would be like if that were taken from us. We wouldn’t be individuals at all, only tools in the hands of those who made our choices for us.

A painting is composed of countless individual brush strokes. Similarly, who we are is a result of all the choices we have made over a lifetime. Every decision has made us more alone or loved, angry or happy, weak or strong. In our infancy, other people applied those strokes to the canvas of our lives, but with time, we increasingly took the brush into our own hands. From all those choices, we’ve created a canvas with a unique color, which includes our personality and style, our needs and fears, and even our Getting and Protecting Behaviors.

Natural Result – Mixing Colors

When we mix blue and yellow paint, the natural result is green. Green isn’t something we hope for or even work for. It just happens every time we mix blue and yellow. Similarly, relationships naturally result from the blending of the colors of each partner, colors produced by the choices each partner has made independently over a lifetime. If I’m yellow and you’re blue, our relationship will be green. It doesn’t matter that I want our relationship to be orange, or that you want it to be turquoise. The result will be green.

Our relationships are therefore often not what we expect or want them to be, just as expectations and desires are completely irrelevant when mixing two colors of paint. Relationships can only be the result of the choices we’ve already made. If two people have been unconditionally loved and have made a lifetime of unconditionally loving choices, they will have a mutually loving relationship. However, if they have not been unconditionally loved, they will choose to get Imitation Love and protect themselves, and the result of those choices in a relationship cannot be loving. It can only be the natural result of the interaction of all their Getting and Protecting Behaviors — and that is never happiness.

The Purpose of Relationships

As we talk about relationships, it’s helpful to understand the only useful purpose of any relationship: receiving and giving Real Love. There is no greater joy than being loved and loving others. Nothing else comes close. Any relationship that doesn’t contribute to feeling loved or loving others is a waste of time and happiness.

Choices

Joan was angry as she spoke about her husband Tyler to a wise friend. Remember that a wise man is anyone who feels sufficiently loved in a given moment that he or she can unconditionally accept and love another person (2:10). I’ll be using the term “wise man” a lot. We can all learn to find wise men and women for ourselves. They’re everywhere, and we’ll talk more about that in Chapter 12.

Joan: “The man lives like a pig. He throws his stuff all over the floor, and then I have to clean up after him. I’ve talked to him about it a million times, but he never listens.”

Wise man: “So you want Tyler to be neater and more considerate of you. Is that right?”

Joan: “Yes.”

Wise man: “Then your relationship is doomed. Relationships result from the choices people make independently. Tyler has chosen to be a pig, and he gets to make that choice, even if it’s inconvenient for you. He’s almost certainly been a pig all his life, long before he met you. But that doesn’t make you a helpless victim here. You still have your own choice to make.”

Joan: “What choice do I have?”

Wise man: “As I see it, you can make one of three:

(1) live with the pig and like it;

(2) live with the pig and hate it; or

(3) leave the pig.”

Joan: “But . . .”

Wise man: “There is no ‘but.’ You want a fourth choice, to stop him from being a pig. But that would violate Tyler’s right to choose. A world without choice would be a horrible place for everyone. You only get to make choices that involve your behavior, not his.”

Most of us are like Joan. We’re dissatisfied with our partners for many reasons, and we want to change them. But relationships are not determined by what we want from our partners. They’re determined by the choices that we and our partners have already made independently. …


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Tuesday, August 8th, 2006

Reposted from the SynEARTH Archives, the following is excerpted from the book Real Love.


The Truth about Relationships

Greg Baer, MD

What do we have in life that’s more important than the relationships with the people around us? But where do we learn how to develop those relationships? Who sits down with us and teaches us how to share ourselves with other people? We certainly don’t learn it in school. We learn algebra, history, and English instead. With relationships, we learn by the painful process of trial and error. Is it then any wonder that we make so many mistakes? It is any surprise that our relationships fail so often?

Most relationships are doomed from the start. Two people who don’t have what it takes to be happy come together and expect their partner to supply them with what they need. That’s impossible — two unhappy and incomplete people cannot make each other happy, nor can they create a fulfilling relationship. But they still have those unreasonable expectations, and when they don’t get what they want from each other, they become frustrated and angry.

So what’s missing? What do we need to be happy? From birth the thing we all want most is to feel loved. But not just any kind of love will do. We need Real Love — unconditional love — where people care about our happiness with no thought for what they might get for themselves. It’s Real Love when people don’t get disappointed or angry when we make our foolish mistakes, even when we inconvenience them personally. Very few of us ever got that kind of love. Instead, people loved us when we were “good,” when we did what they wanted us to do. People smiled at us and praised us when we were clean, quiet, obedient, grateful, and didn’t fight with our sister. But when we made mistakes, made messes, made too much noise in the car, fought with our sister, got bad grades, dragged dirt across the clean floor, and were otherwise inconvenient, we didn’t hear the same kind words or see the same smiles that we did when we were good. Although no one meant to tell us this, we quickly learned that we were loved conditionally.

Unfortunately, conditional love leaves us feeling empty and alone. It feels worthless because we have to earn it. In effect, we have to buy conditional love with our behavior. Without Real Love, we never feel genuinely happy and complete. We then try to fill our emptiness with money, praise, approval, power, sex, and other pleasures, but those things never bring us the real happiness we’re looking for. We also establish relationships with people, hoping that they will bring us the happiness we’re missing, but if they don’t have Real Love to offer, they can’t help us, either. And we can’t bring any genuine happiness into their lives.

That’s why relationships struggle and fail. Two people without Real Love can’t possibly have a truly loving relationship. The Truth About Relationships teaches us the simple steps that we all can take to find Real Love and loving relationships. 

What Goes Wrong In Relationships

Relationships fail all around us every day — between spouses, lovers, siblings, friends, co-workers, and so on. But despite the abundance of self-assured finger-pointing, the people involved rarely have any idea what actually went wrong, and they prove that as they blindly repeat the same mistakes over and over. Most people seem to be caught in an endless cycle of disappointment and unhappiness as they associate with other human beings.

When Christopher and Lisa met, they fell in love immediately. Six months later they got married and fully expected to be ecstatically happy for the rest of their lives. But in the first year of their marriage, there were already signs that the magic of their relationship was escaping them. They began to find fault with each other over little things. Roses and kisses were gradually replaced by expectations and disappointments, each of which left a wound and then a scar. Slowly, the excitement of being in love became a distant memory.

What happened here? How did the hopes and dreams of these delightful people get lost? Christopher and Lisa poured their whole hearts into making their relationship work. They didn’t hold anything back — as most people don’t — and still they failed. Understanding this is critical, because what happened with this couple is typical of what happens in virtually all unhappy relationships — between lovers, family members, people in the workplace, and so on. We’ve all had the experience of starting relationships that seemed promising and hopeful, only to have something go wrong that we didn’t understand, leaving us feeling disappointed or worse. Until we do understand what happens in these situations, we’re doomed to repeat the process again and again.

What Happened? The Lie

As I discuss relationships throughout the book, I will refer to the participants in any interaction, however brief, as “partners.”

As Lisa became increasingly unhappy in her marriage, she naturally blamed Christopher. We all tend to blame our partners — spouses, friends, children, even complete strangers — when we get upset, mostly because that’s what we’ve seen everyone around us do. All our lives, we’ve heard countless variations on these statements: “You make me so mad,”and “He (or she) makes me angry.” We’ve heard those claims so many times that we’ve come to completely accept the notion that other people determine how we feel. If someone does something to inconvenience us or fails to do what we want, we immediately believe that they make us feel disappointed or angry.

But that belief is a lie, a lie we unintentionally use to relieve our own sense of helplessness and confusion when we feel bad and need someone to blame. Until we see that, we cannot learn to have loving and lasting relationships.

What Really Happened? The Truth

It’s quite understandable that Lisa made Christopher responsible for the unhappiness she felt in their marriage. He was certainly the closest available person to blame. But that still doesn’t mean he caused her feelings. The truth is Lisa was unhappy before she got married. Christopher didn’t do anything to make Lisa unhappy. He didn’t beat her, or yell at her, or abuse her in any way. Christopher simply failed to provide what Lisa needed to make her happy, and when he failed, she blamed him for both the disappointment of their marriage and for the unhappiness she felt long before they met.

That’s what happens in most relationships. When our partners fail to make us happy, we blame them for all the unhappiness in our lives, including the unhappiness we carried with us from the many years before we ever knew them. We make our partners scapegoats for everything we don’t like. How terribly unfair that is, and what an awful effect that has on any relationship.

Imagine that after a violent storm and shipwreck, you and I are stranded on a barren island in the middle of the ocean. After a week with nothing to eat, I begin to complain that you aren’t doing enough to provide food for me, and the hungrier I become, the more I whine. Not an hour goes by that I don’t remind you that I’m starving, and that you are to blame.

You must think I’m insane. Did you cause my hunger? Of course not. I’m starving because there was a storm that wrecked our ship and left us stranded on an island without food — and you had nothing to do with any of that.

And so it is with relationships. When we’re unhappy in a relationship, our misery is not the fault of our partner. We’re unhappy because we’re starving. We’re missing the one ingredient most essential to genuine happiness, and it was missing long before we met our partner.

What We All Really Need

What we all need most – the one thing which creates happiness and fulfilling relationships — is Real Love, or unconditional love. It really is that simple. When we learn what Real Love is and when we find it, our unhappiness disappears just as surely as hunger vanishes in the presence of food. Loving relationships then become natural and effortless. I’ll be talking a great deal more about how to find Real Love in the following chapters.

Blaming and Demands

My blaming you for my hunger after the shipwreck was not only inaccurate, but ineffective — it did nothing to help our predicament. It is a simple fact that two starving people with no source of food can’t give each other what they need. No amount of expectation, disappointment, blaming, anger, or manipulation can change that.

And again, it’s the same with relationships. When we’re unhappy in a relationship, all the anger and blaming that we commonly exchange with our partners are completely wasteful and destructive. And it’s foolish to insist that our partner promised to make us happy — as in a marriage vow. Our demands don’t magically make them capable of doing anything.

Two people who are emotionally and spiritually starving in a relationship simply cannot make each other happy, no matter how hard they try. Each of them must find that one thing — Real Love — without which genuine happiness and loving relationships are quite impossible.

Abusive Relationships

Although I used the example of a non-abusive relationship with Christopher and Lisa, I recognize that many people are involved in verbally, physically, sexually, and emotionally abusive relationships. Even in those circumstances, the absence of unconditional love is still the primary problem, and Real Love is the prescription for everyone who wishes to find genuine happiness and loving relationships.


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Saturday, July 29th, 2006

Originally published in 2002. These articles explain the steps necessary for peace on Earth.


We continue with the sixth in our SafeEARTH series. See: 1) Beyond Crime and Punishment, 2) Synergic Containment: Protecting Children, 3) Synergic Containment: Science & Rationale, 4) Synergic Containment: Protecting Community  and 5) Synergic Disarmament: Wisdom, we shouldn’t have!


Reactions to Synergic Containment

Response by Arthur Noll
Subject: Synergic Containment
 
Hello Arthur,
 
Thanks for reading and thinking about my work.
Hi Timothy,
 
Obviously an adult can physically contain a child, or smaller and weaker adult.  Several fit adults can contain a single fit adult.  But  those who are aware of the destruction by the majority of humanity, and see the great need to contain it, are a small minority.  We are not going to physically contain the majority of people. I do think that this minority could mentally contain them, if we worked together on it.  I think mental containment would lead to explosions and not education and reform, but I see nothing else to do. Either outcome would ultimately stop the long term destruction, and allow healing to begin.
This is a very interesting idea! Mental containment. I think you are right that a group of rational and moral individuals could be effective in responding to irrationality and morality, by surrounding the perpetrator with rational responses. I think that it could also generate peer pressure in a positive way. Today in our adversary-neutral culture, we most just ignore stupidity without challenge. This is clearly a mistake.
I don’t know if you saw my recent exchange with Jack Dingler on energy resources.  I quit arguing with him because he clearly was not going to be reasonable about the subject, even though he is one of the more powerful thinkers on the list, often quite rational.  His last post insisted that there was no reason that people who lie, cheat and steal would not survive well, even though I had given reasons why.  (Internal lies weaken the group internally, external lies create and sustain enemies that can weaken the group externally)  He wrote as if I had said nothing.  To mentally contain such thinking, I need help, I am too busy with other matters of sustaining my life in this crazy world to make such an effort of refuting such denial.  Yet there was no one reading that exchange that offered any help.  If people agree with me, they aren’t trying very hard to contain such thinking.  I suspect that many really agree with him,  lying, cheating and stealing is the way to get big in this world, it is silently condoned in many ways.  But containment is indeed what is needed.  Wherever irrational thought like this springs up, it needs to be contained, arrested, because it is destructive to all if it is acted on, and thought precedes action.
Good point and well said! Thanks for the note,
 
Timothy

Response by Hank Burroughs
Subject: Regarding  Synergic Containment: A Mechanism for Protecting Humanity
 
Hank,
 
Sorry it has taken me so long to reply to your note.
 
Hank: This is a very interesting proposal and obviously took considerable thought.  I have not seen any other comments so will try to present mine.  The idea of a safe Earth is very appealing.  I did much of my Masters degree work on intentional communities and Skinnerarian Behavior modification   That is the first thing that popped into my mind as I read Timothy ideas.  This was followed by thoughts of the Communist Chinese “justice” system and their social controls like one child per family.  This may be the only hope for Homo sapiens but I certainly hope not.
 
Maybe after several generations we could produce a group of people that would function as Timothy plans but I don’t think I will be here to see it.  Even B. F. Skinner realized it would take special education of the children to have them think in a social fashion with the group’s needs first.  We certainly see example of this in some actions today.  The actions of the passengers on 9/11 who caused the plane they were on to crash before it could hurt people in a building on the ground is a good example.  This is an extreme example but does show the  desired attitude.
 
I agree that the challenge may be to improve humanity so that they can function comfortably in a synergic fashion. I see community classes for both children and adults so the principles of synergic relationship can be learned and practiced. I expect once individuals begin to practice synergy they will discover is an easy and comfortable life style. Think of how you feel when you are working well with good friends and family and lots of mutual respect.
 
Hank: I think that these same people would react very strongly against the key ideas of Timothy’s proposal.  The idea of giving so much power to an “elite” group is the opposite of what the United States is all about.  I can think of no example to support the select group (Doctors, psychiatrists, teachers, etc.) as being able to make incorruptible decisions in all cases. 
 
Synergists are not an “elite”group. They are just very nice people. They believe in working together. In helping others. They are opposed to adversity and neutrality. They want a win-win-win-win world. Where you win, I win, Community wins, and the planet wins.
 
Hank: In fact,  I think there was a war fought around  1776 to prevent such a concentration of power.  Our system of government has produced a better life for more people than any other in the history of the world.  It is not perfect but I doubt if any system devised by Man will be perfect.  The biggest problem stems from the sheer size of the economic-political system.  Many things need to be controlled on a nationwide or even a world wide basis but most people object to a one world government.
 
Today we still pretend we live in the majority rule democracy founded in 1776, but this is only an illusion today. As Jay Hanson has explained we live in dollarocracy. One Dollar = One Vote.
 
I agree we are in need of a one world government. I would suggest a synocracy. Power is not concentrated in synocracy it is distributed. Decision does not in the hands of a few people it is equally in the hands of all members of the synergic organization. Take a look at Ortegrity to see how this might work.
 
Hank: I  personally feel that the coming energy crunch will take care of many of the world’s problems by reducing the total population thereby reducing the pressure on natural resources.  It is the job of this list to devise a plan for a sustainable lifestyle to get some people through the “dieoff”.  If our plans are successful, maybe they can include the necessary behavior modifications needed to be able to use Timothy’s ideas.  It is kind of like Dean’s remark that we will only have people in our community who are healthy because they have always lead an optimal lifestyle.  This will be great for our as yet unborn ancestors if we and our current offspring can start changing the way we live.  Even getting a smoke free restaurant seat is still not possible in some states.  Laws outlawing the use of alcohol just succeeded in producing a “mob” controlled situation that exist even today with our drug problems.
 
I am even now moving to focus on my contribution here. I am soon to publish a new book explaining human intelligence. Being developed in parallel with this book, is a course for teaching individuals how to optimize their personal intelligence and stablize in what is called the synergic mode of thinking. The result of this achievement will be a shortcut to synergy.
 
One of my areas of interest and study is human intelligence science. The reason human intelligence is so powerful is because of the synergic relationship between two powerful minds�the space mind and the time mind. This “dual mind” intelligence is capable of generating four distinct levels of knowingInformation, Knowledge, Wisdom, and Oneness. I am currently completing a new book on Understanding Human Intelligence which will explain the Dual Mind and the four levels of knowing which it produces.
 
A simple metaphor for these four levels of knowing are:
Information is KnowWhere. Where do I go in space to survive. Where do I get water, food, shelter?
Knowledge is KnowWhen. When do I act in time to encourage or stop a sequence of events.
Wisdom is KnowHow. How do many different temporal sequences fit together to create spatial complexity.
And, Oneness is KnowWhy. Why do things happen the way they do? What is the consequence of complexity?
A human with information would know they should avoid a nuclear explosion. Where can I go to be safe.
 
A human with knowledge could learn to detonate a nuclear weapon. When to a push the button and in what sequence to trigger the bomb.
 
A person with wisdom could invent and design a nuclear weapon. How do the laws of physics work together and what temporal sequences must I create to allow nuclear fission or fusion to occur.
 
A person with oneness, would know that nuclear weapons should never be invented or manufactured. What are the consequences of using nuclear power as weapons? What happens when such weapons are common? What happens if they fall into the hands of those dominated anger and ignorance. Why would it be a bad idea to create nuclear weapons?
 
With our new understanding of human intelligence, it will soon be possible for many humans to learn to understand their minds and began accessing the higher levels of knowing. As they do they will gain increasing understanding of sequence and consequence.
 
Hank: I thank Timothy for his efforts thinking about the future but would really like to have that kind of effort put into coming up with usable techniques for building our sustainable ecovillages and regional centers.  The wife and I visited the Civano community of Tucson yesterday.  It is suppose to be a cutting edge example for a better Earth friendly way to live.  Except for the narrow streets, tiny lots, and the 2 X 6 construction it is a flop.  Hey, Oregon has required 2 X 6 construction for over 30 years for all new homes!!  The houses are not designed for passive solar gain, all have modern air conditioning, and there seemed to be very few homes with solar hot water and only two with photovoltaic panels.  There was one straw bale and one rastra house.  The sales people said that the purchasers would not pay for the more Earth friendly and sustainable features.  I don’t suppose that the subsidized rates from the power and gas companies had anything to do with their decisions.  Each new owner gets guaranteed low rates for at least 5 years.  Many of the owners did not expect to be there much longer then that according to the sales people we talked with.  There were 36 small townhouse type homes on their own lots which sold out in less then 10 months.  The profit was so low that the builders went to bigger homes which are selling just as well.  Something about supply and demand!
 
This is a very important focus. I will support this as much as I can.
 
There are many obstacles to making a sustainable ecovillage but I think Mike Reynolds of Earthship fame has the right idea.  A person or very small group decide what they want, buy some land, and start working on their project step by step.  He has done this with three communities in northern New Mexico and now has basic approval for people to build Earthships there.  I do not propose the Earthship style as the solution to a sustainable ecovillage because it depends on waste products from society for the building materials.  While this would work for a short time, eventually the supply of used tires and pop cans will run out.  Therefore,  what will the 7th generation use?   The basic idea of a self-contained building with its own food, water, and waste recycling system are excellent.  This could probably be expanded to the small village level.  It would rule out living any place with less than about 10 inches of rainfall .
 
The ideas we saw at Arcosanti also had some merit.  The concentration of the people into a small “footprint” so leaving more open space for food production and esthetic value sounded good.  The village did not use air conditioning and was reported to be uncomfortably warm in the summer and a little chilly in the winter.  We stayed over night in one of the earth-sheltered guess rooms.  It was quite comfortable this time of year.   I do not believe that building with all that concrete would be sustainable because of the energy needed to make cement and iron rebar .  Again with a reduced population maybe we could build enough buildings to last for several hundred years.  At least, Dr Solari is smart enough to build on very “poor” land, leaving the best land to grow crops.
 
If the group is interested, I could also report on our visits to people building with straw bales and earth plasters and the fun we had at Biosphere 2 learning about a very different vision of the future.  Biosphere 2 did show how to raise food in a sustainable fashion but the 200 million dollars for their dome may be hard for the average group of 8 people to come by.
 
I am interested. I will soon begin the division of labor at SusCom. All of this work should be helpful.
 
Enough for now and thanks to all who read this far.  Please let’s have some comments from others on this list.  Sure would like some feedback even if it is negative.
 
Thanks for reading and thinking about my work.
 
Timothy
 

In response to Hank’s note above, Arthur Noll writes:
 

I share some of your feelings, Hank.  People would resist it.  People do resist it.  Though the logic of not wanting an elite to make decisions would be a faulty logic, as we have an elite at present who make laws and decisions.  There is a considerable concentration of power in this “democratic” system.  Dollars are votes in the present system, and dollars are highly concentrated to a minority of people.  I think that people  see changing that elite to a different group as unnecessarily risky, would not consider doing it until the present elite clearly has totally messed up the job.  Abstract arguments that the system is faulty and headed for disaster mean little to most people, at least in my experience.  They shrug and go on with their present situation.
I’ve had similar thoughts about using the castoff parts of this society to do things.  I feel it needs to be clearly understood that doing this is not sustainable, but as a way to get by for the present, it is useful.  I have sometimes thought of present humanity as a sort of natural disaster, like a massive volcano that has spewed up millions of tons of metals and plastics.  I don’t plan my life around such events going on forever, or teach children that it can be expected to go on, and minimize buying new stuff since it just feeds the destructive flow, but since this event has also destroyed many traditional sources of materials, I often use junk materials for building with.  My motorized bicycle is on the road again, it is nearly completely made of junked parts.  The engine was a weed eater engine being thrown away, that still runs fine.  The roller drive is an old skateboard wheel.  The various pieces of metal are mostly salvage.  The bicycle itself was rescued from a trash heap.  I haul a trailer with it that is made of recycled wood and bicycle wheels and metal from a trashed bed frame.  We need to be adaptable to the circumstances we find ourselves in.
I would like to contain this “volcano”, but physically it is impossible.  I see the possibility of mental containment of the thinking that drives it, but only when enough people see the need to do so.  Just as what I wrote at the beginning about changing elites.  Many people see the destruction, but say it is worth it, that the destruction isn’t so bad compared to what the technology can do.  It will only be when enough see that what the technology can do is not sustainable, that they will see that it is not worth it. Sustainable systems destroyed, for rusty and broken machines,  in the end.  Including my bicycle and motor.  I will use it, and other things, but I will not call them the future.  The future will be living things, muscle and bone and quiet, not fire and steel and noise.

Arthur Noll


Response by Chris Lucas
Subject: Synergic Containment
Chris: There are many good things in this series from Timothy but getting to such a Utopia could be harder than it seems.

The point about the individual being allowed to hurt society (with junk mail etc.) is very true and shows a level of stupidity and lack of common sense that I find incredible. Such nonsense is making all our ‘quality-of-lives’ terrible – and it isn’t all about safety !

The idea that harm loses freedom of action for the perpetrator is I think vital, there are no rights at all in a society without responsibilities and the legal idiocy being perpetrated today doesn’t change that.

Defining ‘harm’ however is tricky. This cannot mean just physical harm, but needs to include psychological harm also (noise, mental cruelty and so one). But if we do this then we leave open all sorts of loopholes for presumed ‘hurts’ (he looked ‘nastily’ at me – I want ‘compensation’), a good dose of common sense is needed here !

Tim: I agree that all of this must be applied with humility, humour, and common sense.

I like the Asimov-style ‘laws’ of the Plato-like ‘Life Trust Guardians’ but think we need to add two more:

0) A Life Trust Guardian may not injure the planet or, through inaction, allow the planet to come to harm.

3) A Life Trust Guardian may not injure property or other lifeforms or, through inaction, allow property or other lifeforms to come to harm, except where that would conflict with the Second Law.

The first protects the world from rogue societies (America ?), the second prevents destructive vandalism (by individuals or corporations). I’d thus modify the 1st to read:


1) A Life Trust Guardian may not injure humanity, or through inaction, allow humanity to come to harm, except where that would conflict with the Zeroth Law.
Tim: I agree this would be more complete. I had been thinking about similar changes to include protecting the Earth, Natural Resources, and Life (non-human), your suggestions are excellent.

Restitution is another issue where today’s culture fails miserably. Here in U.K. (at least) crimes often result in fines – but the money doesn’t compensate the victim, only lines the State pocket ! Most victims remain worst off after
‘justice’ is done than they were before, whilst the criminals are often better off (4 star ensuite ‘hotel’ accommodation…) than they were before – the incentive system is totally wrong !

One of the main problems with these Guardians however is that they are expected to be saints, rather unrealistic ! Humans are pretty poor at such behaviours, so who guards the Guardians ? For example, who decides what is ‘harm’ and what is not ? Is ‘humanity’ more threatened by Bin Laden or by America’s drug addiction with money ?

(for why see:
http://www.timedollar.org/nmtap/Concept_money_drug.htm )

Or by subversive literature – “out with the Guardians” (it could perhaps be argued that the ‘police’ cause more actual harm to society than those
‘criminalized’). It seems to be assumed that the ‘harm’/’not-harm’ distinction is a fixed barrier and easily defined, but it is not. There are many dimensions to ‘harm to humanity’ and each is a fuzzy variable.

Tim: I have addressed the problem of how to protect ourselves from the police (Synergic Containment Officers) in today’s posting.
Protecting Us from the Police

Some will argue that we need a private right to weapons to protect us from the police. This argument misses the point. In an earlier article of this SafeEARTH series, I introduced the concept of the Life Trust Guardians and their enforcement arm the Synergic Containment Officers.
 
Life Trust Guardians and Synergic Containment Officers are not the police, they are synergists. They will be well educated and trained. They will understand the powerful tools they use and the consequence of both the use and missuse of those tools. Remember, synergists believe that we should work together and act responsibly to make the world work for everyone. Synergy means working together�operating together as in Co-Operation� laboring together as in Co-Laboration�acting together as in Co-Action. The goal of synergic union is to accomplish a larger or more difficult task than can be accomplished by individuals working separately. Synergists are committed to a world where I win, you win, others win and the Earth wins. Win-Win-Win-Win.

Best of the Best

Synergic Containment Officers are Life Trust Guardians. The Life Trust will seek to attract the best of the best as candidates for Trust Guardianship. Once selected these Trust Guardians would have greater trusteeship privileges with concomitant authority and responsibilities for and to the Life Trust.  

Trust Guardian Candidates should have repeatedly demonstrated both personal and public honesty, and should have a history demonstrating synergic morality and behavior. In the future, Universities will offer degrees in Trustegrity and Guardian Science to prepare those young humans to desire to serve Humanity as Community. A careful selection process will be developed to select the very best which could include Trust Guardian Academies.

It is apparent that the responsibilities of Trust Guardians will be great. They of course are not allowed to hurt anyone through their control of the Synergic Trusts. But in addition they are required to protect and conserve the Synergic Trusts. Further, they are required to help others and to insure that all humans have the basic needs of life �both survival and meaning. This is a binding obligation. Failure to meet these obligations results in the immediate loss of Synergic Trustee privileges. The Life Trust Guardians will be charged with protecting Humanity as Community, and Humanity as Individuals.

Chris: The containment strategy suggested ‘nothing goes in’ seems sensible, suspending privileges (what Win called “Incentives As A Preferred Instrument of Corporate and Public Policy”) is a prime incentive (comply or starve!). We have today I think an almost totally inverted system of incentives that reward anti-social behaviour (e.g. corporate greed and bullying, being a ‘billionaire’ while others starve – would the Guardians target this I wonder ?). This needs to be addressed in a more systemic manner, not assuming all values and societies are disjoint (“One Planet and One People” as I have said previously).

The idea that there will be no lawyers will not be popular ! As perhaps the most lucrative
‘cash-cow’ milking profession and the support for political power for most of your legislators this should kill the whole idea stone dead for the foreseeable future I think ;-

Whilst a commitment to
‘truth’ sounds good, I must point out that there is no such thing. All
‘truths’ (other than tautologies) are probabilistic issues (in science as elsewhere). In any issue involving humans there is always doubt, always a ‘get-out-clause’ hence the ‘reasonable doubt’ clauses in legal arguments. What I ‘believe’ is the truth may be nothing like it at all, and that goes for anything everyone says or does – ‘Self-delusion is Us’ !

Tim: Finding the near truth is all we can hope for. But good men and women doing their best with humility, humour, common sense, love and compassion should do a much better than what passes for justice today.

Another related issue is that Guardians are said to only get involved when injury is ‘deliberate’. But this is inadequate, does corporate neglect in not recalling faulty cars (since it would affect profits/sales) and resultant carnage count as deliberate ? ‘They’ can’t be ‘proved’ to have ‘deliberately’ caused the crashes – or does this come under ‘or by inaction’ ? Again this is all probabilistic. I’d vote ‘guilty’ (to some extent) if a wise judgement could have predicted the effect. But the world is not totally
‘safe’, even if we do not intend harm, is anyone ‘responsible’ for say mining accidents or falling from scaffolds – it’s a bit of a minefield (another good example !).

Tim: I am throwing out a model. We can work together to make it better.

The idea the Guardians share responsibility with released criminals (if they re-offend) should stop anyone ever being released – bureaucrats always protect their backs you know… Public standards cannot be higher for Guardians than for the rest of us, as they are only human too…

Tim: The Synergic Guardians are just as responsible for keeping someone in too long and releasing someone too early. I think this can be dealt with using the Circles of Safety.
Circles of Safety
 
Imagine a large rehabilitation containment community structured within concentric circles. The highest security would exist within the central circle. As you moved outward from the center the level of security would diminish and level of freedom for those contained would increase.
 
In a system with 7 containment zones, as seen in the following diagram, the central zone would be highest security-lowest freedom for containees.
IMAGE ProtectingHumanity16.jpg.
Within the central zone would be humanity�s most dangerous individuals. Caring for these individuals would be humanities best Adversary Behavioral Medicine Specialists including Physicians, Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Rehabilitationists, and Maximum Security Containment Officers.
 
As individuals improved with treatment, and demonstrated safer and more responsible behavior they could migrate outward to the next containment zone. Each zone would require further treatment and education, and continuing observation. Only when a contained individual has demonstrated successful adaptation within a zone for a prescribed period of time could they migrate outward to the next level.
 
Each zone outward would bring more freedom and with it more responsibility. Zone seven would be 100% secure with no freedom or responsibility. The outermost or Zone One would be very minimally secure the containees experiencing nearly full freedom and high responsibility. Those in outermost or Zone 1 are trusted to remain voluntarily within that zone until they completed their program
 
Any adversary event which resulted in loss of life would mandate central or Zone Seven containment. As example if minimum time in zone 7 was three years and two years in every other zone. The minimal time of containment for such an event would be 15 years. And what happens after 15 years? Only if the individual contained demonstrated success at every zone with no adversarily behavior for 15 years. Then and only then would they be eligible for release back into human society. And if they could not demonstrate that they were cured, they would never be released.
 
Incurable adversary behavior would result in Life Containment. Adversary behavior is an illness that endangers others. You only get a release if you are well and are no longer a threat to public safety.
 
Public Safety is paramount � the amount of time spent within containment is meaningless.

Chris: The Waco affair illustrated this. When people are ‘put in charge’ in crisis situations the public expect them to ‘act’. When those put in charge are gun-toting state thugs i.e. adversarial types whose very language revolves around war vocabulary, i.e. siege) then they will ‘act’ the only way they know how. Why are we surprised at the outcome ? The
‘boss’ has his job/ego to protect, and ‘no-result’ isn’t a socially acceptable solution in terms of U.S. society (a culture of ‘instant’ solutions and short attention span, at least in its portrayal over here ;-). The FBI acted completely ‘in character’.

Tim: We are talking about a different class of people with a different value system.

As for the question of how Guardians are chosen… Well all I can say to that is that I would find it difficult to choose a single person to fulfil than role, and certainly none of our current methods of ‘appointing’ public officials would lead me to expect any less corruption or incompetance than is apparent in todays ‘public servants’ (whose behaviour is neither public nor serving !!).

Tim: Hear! Hear!
Chris Lucas clucas@calresco.org
CALResCo Group Manchester U.K. http://www.calresco.org/

Response from Arthur Noll

Subject: Synergic Containment

Many good points, Chris. 

As always, I feel it comes back to survival of the fittest, or shall we say in this case of humanity, survival of the best view of the truth?  As you say, there are many versions of the truth out there.  People are right now betting their lives on their version of truth.

They can’t all be right, unless those that think that many realities exist simultaneously are right.  Not something that I agree with.  If we make our reality, or many realities exist, then the “reality” of past scientists should still be alive, and it is not, it is only in the history books.  Who survives, has the real truth.  Many people try to hedge their bets, and not fully commit to anything, wanting more information, more time to make up their minds.  Yet hedging is a position in itself.  It can totally fail just as other positions can.  I find it curious that many who claim to hedge, really aren’t collecting more information, aren’t doing experiments to resolve the situation.  They are really hiding behind the idea of hedging, since hedging is widely seen as intelligent behavior.  They are unable to logically defend their present position, but liking it, holding to it with the pretense of gathering more information.  Whatever information does come to them,  however, is never enough.  Such people are very apt to exclaim at how terribly complicated everything is.  Yet they have no trouble deciding that they will keep their jobs, houses, other possessions.  In this “terribly, terribly complex world”, this is somehow not a complicated decision that might be wrong.  You would expect someone who was truly troubled by the complexity of things to have tried many things, and have very little, as opposed to the constancy of view needed to accumulate and keep material wealth.  “Ye shall know them by their works”.

And “answer yes or no, anything else comes of evil”.  We can always answer yes or no, even if we don’t know the answer to a question, we can definitely say we don’t know.  And in many situations, we can then go on to truly gather information that allows us to make a yes or no answer with confidence.  People who constantly say, “I don’t know”, often really mean, ” I don’t want to know”.  They might not even be aware that they really don’t want to know.  People often lie to themselves, and believe the lie. Science has been the process of filtering out false views through experience.  It works over time, large majorities of people have come to basic agreements on many things, yet often a generation had to die out before a position became unanimous.  People whose viewpoints were cumbersome and gave uneven results,  eventually died out without making converts to their position.  The present situation should work out in similar fashion.  Whole communities of thought will die out without reproduction, not simply because of inability to make converts, but because people just die and their children and students die as well.  They made the wrong bet, had a faulty view of reality.

All of which is, of course, my version of the truth.  If it is made up of lies I have made up to suit myself, and isn’t based on reality, then it will fail me eventually, and no one should listen.  If that were the case, however, someone ought to be able to point out the discrepancy in my thinking…

Arthur

Response from Scott McCall

Subject: Synergic Disarmament

Dear Scott,

Thanks for reading and thinking about my ideas. You wrote:
I read your article  on Synergic Disarmament. I found it quite interesting.
 
I’ve thought about it, and think that perhaps conflict and war will always be. Doesn’t conflict drive evolution? without conflict and war, as bad as they can be, I believe humanity would stagnate. I think no matter how much we all try to make the world safe and prosperous for everyone, there will always be an element big enough to threaten any peace and stability we have achieved.
Our current world is dominated by adversary-neutral society. I am talking about the transition to a synergic society. As I have written elsewhere, What do synergists believe? :

We believe that we must learn to work together. This means we must become synergic humans. Synergy means working together�operating together as in Co-Operation� laboring together as in Co-Laboration�acting together as in Co-Action. The goal of synergic union is to accomplish a larger or more difficult task than can be accomplished by individuals working separately. We are committed to a world where I win, you win, others win and the Earth wins. Win-Win-Win-Win.

We believe there are three types of humans to be found in our present world. Which type you are depends on what you believe about how the world works.

Adversaries believe there is not enough for everyone and only the physically strong will survive. They believe humans are coercively dependent on others, and they best understand the language of force.

Neutralists believe there is enough for everyone, if only you work hard enough and take care of yourself. They believe humans are financial independent and should be self-sufficient unless they are too lazy or defective. They best understand the language of money.

And, finally a new type of human is still emerging. Synergists believe there is enough for everyone but only if we work together and act responsibly. They believe humans are interdependent and can only obtain sufficiency by working together as community. Synergists best understand the language of love.

But, to be successful in our present world, the synergist must understand all three languages and know when to use them. Synergists must sometimes use the language of force, and sometimes the language of money, it depends on whom they are talking to. However, when synergists are seeking allies�when synergists are seeking to build community�they must speak the language of love.

We believe that you should, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”What is it that most of us want others to do unto us? Synergic scientists answer this question as follows: Help and support others as you would wish them to help and support you.  Or, more simply, “Treat others the way they want to be treated.” 

Synergists are trying to heal the wounds inflected by those who don’t understand how the world could work. This then is the essential challenge to the synergists. Can we work together and act responsibly in time to save our ourselves on this planet? … Only by helping each other

You next write:

Scott: The internet, for example grows stronger and stronger, more secure, and more ingrained in our lives. Hackers, who most consider malicious, are responsible for the level of security and protection we have currently with the internet. Day by day, as viruses spread and hackers test the limits, they actually ensure a secure and strong internet for all of us. Otherwise our infrastructure would be weak and untested against the inevitable mischief that is unleashed upon it.
 
If there were no hackers, some nutcase, say 10 years from now, could bring down the entire internet because there was never any hacking. Without the intelligence and persistence of hackers constantly searching for any weakness, our information infrastructure we rely upon more and more would be destined for destruction.

As you sow, so shall your reap! If we sow adversity, we will reap adversity. If we sow neutrality, we will reap neutrality. And, if we sow synergy, we will reap synergy.

The internet is more resistant to adversary attacks today, because it has successfully reacted and adjusted to the adversary attacks of the hackers. Do you really think we should thank the hackers for making the internet more secure from hacking. If so then should we thank the wife beaters for allowing us to build domestic shelters?

 How about a world where people don’t hurt each other. Why don’t we try to build a world like that?
Scott:  9/11 will change america forever. And I can’t say it wont be for the better in maybe 50-100 years. Every conflict has a winner. The winner may take casualties, but the experience strengthens those who survive the fight. I belive the civilized world will survive.
 
As much as I would like to see peace and never see war first hand, I belive that no nation or world consensus can stop war and conflict. There will always be that miniscule seed of opposition that is strong enough to test our strength.

I understand your feelings and beliefs, but the problem of adversity must be solved. Since human knowing can grow without limit, and human tools can become evermore powerful without limit. We reach a point, where leveraged adversity. Adversity leveraged with knowing and tools, becomes so powerful it threatens the survival of all life on the planet. That time is now!

I dont think it means that America or the civilized world are doomed. I think that ‘al quaida n company’ are the necessary evil we can never completely eliminate and will test our will endlessly.
 
I do belive that perhaps there is a point where we overcome conflict and guide our own evolution through conscious choice through genetic engineering, rather than through bloody conflict. Unfortunatley, the thought of humans controlling our evolutionary destiny is some seriously scary shit! It has already begun…
 
The future IS, and has always been, WEIRD and SCARY.
 
Take care,
 
Scott

I agree, the world is a very dangerous place. We have huge problems and adversity will not help us solve them. We humans must grow up. The genetic manipulation you talk about makes my point. What happens when someone creates a truely dangerous virus, toxin, or plague?

Thanks for writing,

Timothy

Follow up to Scott McCall’s above letter
 
Hey Scott,
 
You wrote:
I have always believed in the potential within us all. I suppose that I too am a synergist. I think that a synergic future is where us humans are supposed to be headed. How do we deal with the never ending supply of ignornant and violent poeple? It seems so impossible to change perceptions of people, especially those who are noneducated, poor, and desperate.

We must slowly educate all who are open to learn. We must live as synergists. Help when ever we can. Try not to hurt or ignore.

I think perhaps the Internet is our sort of “embrionic synergic back-bone”. It’s the information nervous system of humanity, in its still early stage. It is destined to evolve into something that probbably none of us can imagine.

I am with you here. I think that as humanity begins to earnestly work together it will be internet that connects us and allows to co-ordinate our actions.

Maybe the only way we will truly become a synergic society is when humanity faces a universal threat like a nice sized asteroid, alien invasion, or a rapid, out-of-control climate change that forces everyone to work together.

I think we are already facing that universal threat. I think it is our collective ignorance. I wonder if we will wake up in time ?

Do you think in 500 years we’ll be the BORG? lol

Well the BORG are an adversary race. So not like the BORG. Will we be as connected as they?  Will we incorporate machine intelligence and tools within our bodys? I think we just might. Certainly a lot of good scientists think so.

Thanks for writing,

Timothy


Scott McCall Final Comment

heeh I never thought about a “good borg”…. of course!

thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts!

scott

Front Page

Tuesday, July 25th, 2006

Originally published in 2002. This article explains the steps necessary for peace on Earth.


We continue with the fifth in our SafeEARTH series. See: 1) Beyond Crime and Punishment, 2) Synergic Containment: Protecting Children, 3) Synergic Containment: Science & Rationale, and 4) Synergic Containment: Protecting Community


Synergic Disarmament

(Circa 2002) Interestingly, the recent advent of the Washington D.C. area sniper has brought renewed interest in the subject of weapons and their role in our present society. We are reminded that today, weapons are very easily available to just about anyone that wants them. And, while the technology to track these weapons and even the ammunition used within them is easily possible, we don’t do it, since this might infringe on the American citizen’s Right to bear Arms.

In a synergic society there is no need to be armed. Even within our present adversary-neutral society, weapons in the hands of law abiding “good” citizens seem to bring society little benefit. And certainly, weapons in the hands of criminals and predators bring great harm to the public. Any scientific analysis of the role of weapons in modern America would reveal that weapons are not only plentiful and easily available, but that they are also very powerful.

One gift of  human intelligence is that it allows humanity to create knowing without limit. Every generation knows more than the previous generation. When humans incorporate their knowing into artifacts, they are called tools. Unlimited knowing produces unlimited tools. Every generation has more powerful tools than the previous one.

As I have explained elsewhere, we humans always have three options in relating to others. We can help each other, we can ignore each other, or we can hurt each other. When tools are used to hurt others, we are call them weapons.

Now humans have been making weapons for a long time. Weapons are tools designed to hurt or kill others. As our human knowing has grown, we have always quickly incorporated that knowing into our new weapons. And as a result, weapons have and continue to grow evermore powerful.

Lieutenant Colonel Dave Grossman writing in the Evolution of Weaponry explains:

Humans have proven themselves to be infinitely ingenious at creating and using devices to overcome their limitations. From one perspective human history can be seen as a series of ever-more-efficient devices to help humans communicate, travel, trade, work, and even to think. Similarly, the history of violence, peace, and conflict can be seen as the history, or the evolution, of a series of ever-more-efficient devices to enable humans to kill and dominate their fellow human beings.

The concept of an “evolution” of weaponry is very appropriate, since the battlefield is the ultimate realm of Darwinian natural selection. With few exceptions, any weapon or system that survives for any length of time does so because of its utility. Nothing survives for long on the battlefield simply because of superstition. Anything that is effective is copied and perpetuated, anything ineffective results in death, defeat, and extinction. There are fads and remnants (the military equivalent of the appendix), but over the long run, everything happens for a reason, and a valid theory of weapons evolution must make these reasons clear, explaining all extinctions and all survivals. …

Weapons’ lethality (in peace and war) is a factor of the effectiveness of the weapons used to kill and of the ability of available medical technology to save lives. Thus, weapons’ lethality can be thought of as a contest between weapons’ effectiveness (the state of technology trying to kill you) and medical effectiveness (the state of technology trying to save you). Like weapons’ lethality, the difference between murder (killing someone) and aggravated assault (trying to kill someone) is also largely a factor of the effectiveness of available weapons vs. the effectiveness of available medical life-saving technology.

Throughout most of human history the effectiveness of weapons available for domestic violence was basically stable, a relative constant. The relative effectiveness of swords, axes, and blunt objects has been basically unchanged, and killing (as an act of passion vs. a pre-meditated act like poisoning or leaving a bomb) was only possible at close-range by stabbing, hacking, and beating.

Bows were kept unstrung, not in a state of readiness for an act of passion. It required premeditation plus training plus strength to kill with a bow. Early, muzzle-loading gunpowder weapons were also often not kept in a state of readiness. It required time, training, and premeditation to load and shoot such a weapon. Once loaded, the humidity in the air could seep into the gunpowder and the load could become unreliable. Only in the late 19th century, with widespread introduction of breech-loading, brass cartridges was a true act of passion possible with state-of-the-art weapons technology. Powerful weapons could now be kept in state of readiness (i.e., loaded), and they now required minimal strength or training to use.

ca. 1700 B.C. Chariots provide key form of mobility advantage in ancient warfare
ca. 400 B.C. Greek phalanx slows the chariots, since horses consistently refuse to hurl themselves into a hedge of sharp projecting spears
ca. 100 B.C. Roman system (pilum, swords, training, professionalism, leadership)
ca. 900 A.D. Mounted knight (stirrup greatly enhances utility of mounted warfare)
ca. 1350 Gunpowder (cannon) in warfare (Battle of Crecy, 1346)
ca. 1400 Widespread application of long bow defeats mounted knights ( Battle of Agincourt, I4I5)
ca. 1600 Gunpowder (small arms) in warfare, defeats aIl body armor (30 Years War & English Civil War)
ca. 1800 Shrapnel (exploding artillery shells), ultimately creates renewed need for helmets (ca. 1915)
ca. 1850 Percussion caps permit all-weather use of small arms
ca. 1870 Breech loading, cartridge firing rifles, and pistols™
ca. 1915 Machine gun
ca. 1915 Gas warfare
ca. 1915 Tanks
ca. 1915 Aircraft
ca. 1915 Self-loading (automatic) rifles and pistols
ca. 1940 Strategic bombing of population centers
ca. 1945 Nuclear weapons
ca. 1960 Large scale introduction of operant conditioning in training to enable killing in soldiers
ca. 1970 Precision guided munitions

This then is our real problem. Weapons in our modern society are not only too plentiful and too easily available, but they are also way too powerful and easy to use.

Speaking just this week, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said, “Looking at what was overwhelming force a decade or two decades ago, today you can have overwhelming force, conceivably, with lesser numbers because the lethality is equal to or greater than before,” he said. It has been a mistake, he added, to measure the quantity of forces required for a mission and “fail to look at lethality, where you end up with precision-guided munitions which can give you 10 times the lethality that a dumb weapon might, as an example.” 


Wisdom, we shouldn’t have!

Timothy Wilken, MD

One of my areas of interest and study is human intelligence science. The reason human intelligence is so powerful is because of the synergic relationship between two powerful minds—the space mind and the time mind. This “dual mind” intelligence is capable of generating four distinct levels of knowingInformation, Knowledge, Wisdom, and Oneness. I am currently completing a new book on Understanding Human Intelligence which will explain the Dual Mind and the four levels of knowing which it produces.
 
A simple metaphor for these four levels of knowing are:
Information is KnowWhere. Where do I go in space to survive. Where do I get water, food, shelter?
Knowledge is KnowWhen. When do I act in time to encourage or stop a sequence of events.
Wisdom is KnowHow. How do many different temporal sequences fit together to create spatial complexity.
And, Oneness is KnowWhy. Why do things happen the way they do? What is the consequence of complexity?
A human with information would know they should avoid a nuclear explosion. Where can I go to be safe.
 
A human with knowledge could learn to detonate a nuclear weapon. When to a push the button and in what sequence to trigger the bomb.
 
A person with wisdom could invent and design a nuclear weapon. How do the laws of physics work together and what temporal sequences must I create to allow nuclear fission or fusion to occur.
 
A person with oneness, would know that nuclear weapons should never be invented or manufactured. What are the consequences of using nuclear power as weapons? What happens when such weapons are common? What happens if they fall into the hands of those dominated anger and ignorance. Why would it be a bad idea to create nuclear weapons?
 
With our new understanding of human intelligence, it will soon be possible for many humans to learn to understand their minds and began accessing the higher levels of knowing. As they do they will gain increasing understanding of sequence and consequence. But, today most humans live their lives in the level of Information with only occasional visits to the level of  Knowledge. Educated people with high literacy, good understanding of mathematics and science may live their lives equally in the levels of Information and Knowledge with occasional flashes of genius in the level of Wisdom. Inventors, innovators, and what we commonly call creative geniuses live in Information and Knowledge, but have learned to easily visit the level of Wisdom. But, so far only a handful of human geniuses have learned to access Oneness.
 
Tools Contain Embedded Knowing
 
Recall from the introduction, that tools are artifacts made from matter-energy that contain embedded knowing. And, as there is no limit to human knowing, there is also no limit to the amount of knowing that can be embedded in an artifact. That is why we have such powerful tools. Today’s tools commonly contain embedded information, knowledge and wisdom.
 
Think of the power of the tools we humans use everyday—a Boeing 747 airplane, our automobiles, the internet, computers, cell phones, televisions, household appliances, the tools in our garages and at our places of work. The knowing in these tools multiply our human power by orders of magnitude. They allow us to do what was considered impossible just a few years ago. It is the power of the knowing embedded in these tools that give them their power.
 
Using Tools without Understanding
 
You don’t have to be wise to use a tool full of wisdom. You don’t even have to be knowledgeable to use such a tool. Many of our fast food restaurants, use picture icons of the food and drinks on the buttons of the check out computers, so that the illiterate and innumerate humans working there can operate the computers without reading, adding or subtracting. The computer even tells the operator the correct amount of change to return to the customer.
 
However, there is risk in using tools you don’t understand. Remember, “a little knowing can be a dangerous thing.” Today, we commonly put enormously powerful tools into the hands of those who do not understand them. This means the risk of these tools being used in an unsafe manner is high.
 
And since weapons are just tools that are specifically designed to hurt or kill, they are among the most dangerous tools  in our present world. Today, weapons are easily available to anyone who desires them. They can be purchased legally by any adult who passes a background check for a criminal record. If you are not a convicted felon, you can legally purchase all the weapons and ammunition you desire. You are not legally required to be literate, numerate, or have any knowledge of science or physics.
 
You are not required to demonstrate any knowledge of weapons or the consequence of their use or misuse, before becoming armed. And of course, there is no psychological screening to determine if you are stable and responsible.
 
As to felons, minors, or non-citizens—anyone wishing to avoid the background check of legal purchase—they can easily purchase weapons  illegally in almost any town in America.
 
Why are weapons  so easily available ?
 
We don’t let just anyone operate a nuclear powerplant, a 767 Boeing Airliner, or for that matter an automobile, without some training, education and testing. But we will sell a gun to anyone who can afford it. After all we just want to make money. And, of course every American possesses the Right to Bear Arms. The second amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” (1791)
 
The result of America’s policy of easy availability of weapons is reflected in these grim statistics from the CDC:
The National Center for Injury Prevention and Control reports that in 1999, there were 28,874 firearm-related deaths in the United States. By contrast, there were only 19 firearm-related deaths in Japan in 1998. Gun possession is prohibited in Japan.
 
Rates of homicide among American youths 15-19 years of age reached record-high levels in the latter half of the 1980s and continue to be among the highest ever recorded in the US for this age group. Between 1985 and 1991, annual homicide rates among males 15-19 years old increased 154 percent.
  • In 2001, homicide was still the second leading cause of death among 15- to 24-year-olds overall. In this age group, it is the leading cause of death for African Americans, the second leading cause of death for Hispanic Americans, and the third leading cause of death for Native Americans (CDC 2001).
     
  • In 1999, 4,998 youths ages 15 to 24 were murdered – an average of 14 per day (CDC 2001).
     
  • Guns are a factor in most youth homicides. In 1999, 81% of homicide victims ages 15 to 24 were killed with firearms (CDC 2001).
It must be obvious to the reader, that manufacturing unlimited tools and unlimited weapons, and then placing them in the hands of ignorance is foolish.
 
Humanity as Community
 
Synergic society seeks to protect humanity as community and humanity as individuals. No responsible parent would allow a four year old child to use a blow torch, a power saw, or a nail gun unsupervised. No responsible parent would allow a ten year old to drive the family car on the interstate highway.
 
Why not? Because these tools are just too powerful to be used without adequate knowledge, education and training.
 

Wisdom, they shouldn’t have.

 
This is our problem today. People have wisdom, they shouldn’t have. They have access to enormously powerful tools and weapons—tools and weapons containing embedded wisdom—that they are shouldn’t have access too.
 
The Saudi terrorists that attacked America on  September 11, were not geniuses. None of them could have invented a Boeing 767 or even a cell phone. None of them could have even explained how these tools even worked. However, they were allowed to use deceit, and threat of force to gain control of these enormously powerful tools, and then use these tools as weapons to bring down the World Trade Towers and damage the Pentagon.
 
By embedding wisdom into tools and then selling those tools to anyone with money, we endanger humanity as individuals and humanity as community.
 
Today, we need a higher standard. Most advanced tools today contain embedded wisdom. This is powerful KnowHow. Those who use such tools need to well trained and intelligent enough to understand the consequence of using such powerful tools. Access to powerful tools (tools leveraged with wisdom) that could potentially harm others must be controlled. Only those humans who demonstrate: 1) the knowledge for the safe use of the tool, 2) an understanding of consequence of that tool’s use and misuse, and 3) a history of responsibility, should be allowed access to them. 
 
Iraq & Saddam Hussein
 
How many Nobel Prizes have been awarded to Iraq in science, physics, biology, or medicine? How many for Peace?
 
Did Iraqi scientists invent the automobile? The airplane? The telephone? The radio? The television? The computer? If they don’t have the intelligence to invent or even manufacture any of these tools, how did they get them?
 
They bought them with money. 
 
Where did they get the money? They got it by selling the oil discovered under the desert they live on. Did they discover the oil themselves? No it was discovered by engineers from the West. What makes this oil even theirs? An accident of birth and the mistaken belief that oil is property.
 
As I have discussed elsewhere, the land and natural resources are wealth provided to us by God and Nature. The sunshine, air, water, land, minerals, and the earth itself all come to us freely. The Earth’s land and natural resources are not products of the human mind or body. They existed long before life and humankind even emerged on our planet. There exists no moral or rational basis for any individual to claim them as Property. If a claim of ownership can be made at all, it must be a claim on behalf of all humanity both the living and those yet unborn.The Iraqis have no moral or rational basis to even claim ownership of the oil. It is only our mistaken belief that oil is property, and specifically the property of those who happen to be living over the deposit that allows this fiction to fly.
 
Did the Iraqis invent and manufacture oil drilling and refining technology? No, they bought this technology with money loaned to them by Western banks based on future repayment once the oil was extracted.
 
If you take away the oil money, and limit them to those tools invented and manufactured in Iraq, there would be no danger to anyone. Saddam Hussein would have been impaled on a sharp stick long ago.
 
We Americans must recogize that we have flooded the world with billions of high powered tools and weapons in order to make money. All the great democracies are guilty. But, the biggest exporter of tools and weapons in the history of the planet is the United States. We Americans are the most guilty. We have basically sold these tools and weapons to anyone with the money to buy them. That has been our only criteria.
 
Now let us look once again at the second amendment to the U.S. Constitution, it reads: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Somehow, we have focused on the right of the people to keep and bear arms, but have overlooked the founding fathers purpose in writing the second amendment: that of insuring “a well-regulated Militia“. A mob with guns is not a “well-regulated Militia.”
 
Public Safety requires responsible use of powerful tools and weapons. We need to recognize the potential danger in the use of tools and weapons in our present society. We must establish some standard of knowledge, training, and responsibility as a prerequisite to gaining access to these tools and weapons.
 
Protecting Us from the Police

Some will argue that we need a private right to weapons to protect us from the police. This argument misses the point. In an earlier article of this SafeEARTH series, I introduced the concept of the Life Trust Guardians and their enforcement arm the Synergic Containment Officers.
 
Life Trust Guardians and Synergic Containment Officers are not the police, they are synergists. They will be well educated and trained. They will understand the powerful tools they use and the consequence of both the use and missuse of those tools. Remember, synergists believe that we should work together and act responsibly to make the world work for everyone. Synergy means working together—operating together as in Co-Operation— laboring together as in Co-Laboration—acting together as in Co-Action. The goal of synergic union is to accomplish a larger or more difficult task than can be accomplished by individuals working separately. Synergists are committed to a world where I win, you win, others win and the Earth wins. Win-Win-Win-Win.

Best of the Best

Synergic Containment Officers are Life Trust Guardians. The Life Trust will seek to attract the best of the best as candidates for Trust Guardianship. Once selected these Trust Guardians would have greater trusteeship privileges with concomitant authority and responsibilities for and to the Life Trust.  

Trust Guardian Candidates should have repeatedly demonstrated both personal and public honesty, and should have a history demonstrating synergic morality and behavior. In the future, Universities will offer degrees in Trustegrity and Guardian Science to prepare those young humans to desire to serve Humanity as Community. A careful selection process will be developed to select the very best which could include Trust Guardian Academies.

It is apparent that the responsibilities of Trust Guardians will be great. They of course are not allowed to hurt anyone through their control of the Synergic Trusts. But in addition they are required to protect and conserve the Synergic Trusts. Further, they are required to help others and to insure that all humans have the basic needs of life —both survival and meaning. This is a binding obligation. Failure to meet these obligations results in the immediate loss of Synergic Trustee privileges. The Life Trust Guardians will be charged with protecting Humanity as Community, and Humanity as Individuals.

Public safety is paramount. No human has the right to injure another human with an adversary action. Once such an event has occurred, those responsible will be contained, they will be monitored and their freedom restricted until such time as the Life Trust Guardians have determined that they are safe without monitoring or restriction. This process is described more completely in Synergic Containment: Science & Rationale and Synergic Containment: Branch Davidian Compound, Waco, TX.
 
If the Life Trust Guardians release them from monitoring or restrictions, and they hurt someone else with another adversary action, then the Life Trust Guardians involved in their release will share responsibility with them for that adversary event. Life Trust Guardians are held accountable for failure to protect the public. This is a much higher standard then offered by today’s criminal injustice system.
 
No Knives, No Guns, No Killing!

One hundred and twenty years ago the American West was a vast, open area brimming with natural resources and opportunity. Cow towns and mining camps sprung up across the landscape. From around the world, millions of people flocked to the Western territories with the hope of making a better life for themselves. Many came to find gold or silver. Others came to open saloons, general stores, and other small businesses. And still others came to steal from the productive members of the west.

It was in such a setting that Wyatt Earp lived and worked. Like many of his time, he skipped from one boom town to another, always optimistic that his fortune awaited at the end of another long, dusty ride. And in nearly every town he invariably found himself called upon to bring law and order to what was previously anarchy. Earp’s exploits in taming lawless cow towns and mining camps and his bravery in facing ruthless killers—particularly at the OK Corral in Tombstone, Arizona—make him one of the great figures of the American West. While the movies make much of the gunfights and use of intimidation in the streets of Dodge City. Earp’s greatest tool was the prohibition of weapons within the city limits. His rule was simple: “no knives, no guns, no killings.”

The history of the American West, is in large part the struggle to overcome  adversity. Earp’s discovery of a mechanism to insure public safety spread. By the summer of 1876, Denver was slightly larger than Dallas, although not a mite different as far as being fronted by the inevitable plankwalks and halter-polished hitch rails. A sign posted at the edge of town warned: “No guns in town.” This law was strictly enforced.

Zone of Safety

What Wyatt Earp achieved with his “No Guns in Town” law was the creation of a zone of safety. Within city limits there could be no guns. Apparently Earp understood that “guns do kill people.” Guns are weapons. By excluding them from the town, he was using a principle of synergic containment and disarmament.

We need to create a zone of safety. And, then we can begin to extend that zone. We need to protect those within the zone and isolate those outside the zone. This is how the immune system in our body works. The skin is the boundary for the body. Its job is to isolate all adversity from the interior. We need to create a skin around our safety zone. That isolates all adversity from the interior.

Within the safety zone, there should be no tolerance of adversity. None!

No violence would be allowed. No weapons would be allowed. Violation would result in expulsion from the safety zone. Committed Adversaries would be expelled from synergic community. They would be expelled from the zone of safety. And that zone of safety is not anonymous. Everyone is the zone is know. The immune system of our bodies knows every cell. Unknowns are presumed to be adversaries until proven otherwise. Freedom and privacy is available to all who do not hurt others. Injure someone and forfeit both.

It is time to put away the adversary way.There is no need for weapons in the zone of safety. In civilized community, the simple possession of a weapon is an adversary act. It must be surrendered immediately and voluntarily, or you leave the zone of safety.

Living in the zone of safety is not a right, it is a privilege available to civilized humanity. Civilized humans do not want or need weapons.

I believe it is time to create and then extend zones of safety. This is the only way the Israelis can make their people safe. No knives, no guns, no killings! None. The same is true for all nations. Except for small arms in the hands of Synergic Containment Officers charged with protecting both Humanity as Individuals and Humanity as Community, it is time to put away all weapons.

Pandora’s Box
 
What do we do now? Now that these powerful tools and weapons are in the hands of ignorance and anger, how do we get them back.

We must begin by regaining control of all those tools and weapons that threaten humanity. Our message to Saddam Hussein, and all who would act to harm humanity. If you want peace lay down your weapons. All of them. This must be our message to all those who are armed.

It is time for a complete and total disarmament. Within the human body reside 40 trillion individual cells, none are armed except the immune cells. Within a synergic organization which could reside all of humanity presently 6.3 billion humans. None would be armed except Synergic Containment Officers.

Universal Disarmament

During a period of moratorium, all humans would be expected to surrender all weapons into the custody of the Life Trust Guardians. A few of these weapons would go into museums, some would be be made available to the public within Earth Trust hunting parks and designated sport weapons clubs. Humans who desire to use weapons to hunt and kill animals may do so only within designated hunting parks managed by the Earth Trust Guardians and regulated by the Synergic Containment Officers.

Those humans who desire to use weapons for sport shooting may do so only through designated sport weapon clubs which are regulated and monitored by the Synergic Containment Officers. All weapons must be kept on the premises of the sports clubs, or within the grounds of the hunting parks. These weapons will be montored and accounted for under strict Life Trust Guardian guidelines.

However, the vast majority of weapons would be destroyed and scraped. Once the moratorium expires, the possession of a weapon outside of a permitted location is prohibited, and is by definition an adversary event. The Life Trust Guardians will dispense Containment Officers to confiscate the weapon or weapons and take those responsible into custody. Those individuals found responsible for weapons possession would be subject to the same public safety process as any other human found responsible for an adversary event including rehabilitation, education, restitution, and prevention of future adversary events.

How dangerous would the Washington D.C. sniper be without a gun and ammuntion? How dangerous would Saddam Hussein be without his weapons?


Read more by Timothy Wilken: 1) A Synergic Future 2) Protecting Humanity 3) Beyond War

Read Lt. Col. Dave Grossman’s: 1) Aggression and Violence 2) Evolution of Weaponry  3) Psychological Effects of Combat.

Front Page

Tuesday, July 18th, 2006

The following article originally posted in 2002 warrants re-consideration as 2006 humanity hurdles toward what could be the LAST WORLD WAR!


Synergic Containment

Protecting Community

Timothy Wilken, MD

Synergic Containment Officers are responsible for containment of adversary events.

AdvEv:  

Their first task will be to contain the adversary event, and prevent the event from spreading further into community and involving new victims. 

ContainedEvent:  

Containment is about protecting both the victim and the aggressor. Synergic society does not view the perpetrators as bad or criminal. However, they certainly recognize that they are dangerous. Recall from our initial discussion of using synergic containment to protect children, we are seeking to contain and protect all the individuals caught up in an adversary event—both victims and perpetrators.

Synergic Rescue 

Once the adversary event has been contained, the second task of the Synergic Containment Officers becomes to safely rescue all of the individuals caught up in the event. This rescue is prioritized. First to be rescued are victims at greatest risk for further harm, then victims at lower risk. Once the victims are safe, the synergic containment officers will begin their rescue of the perpetrators.

 Synergic Disarmament

If those perpetrating the adversary event have weapons, they must be disarmed. Today, the danger of adversary events is greatly magnified by access to weapons. We humans are Time-binders. That means as a species we can create knowledge without limit. When we incorporate knowledge into matter-energy it is called a tool. Because knowledge can grow without limit, tools can also grow without limit. When tools are used to hurt others, they are called weapons. In our modern world, we have created ever more powerful weapons. These weapons are not safe in the hands of ignorance.

Once the perpetrators of an adversary event are contained, their victims rescued, then they will be disarmed, this must be effected before they can be rescued.

How would this work in the real world?  Let us examine a real situation.

The Adversary Containment of the Branch Davidian Church, Waco, TX

Most Americans recall this incident from 1993. The following are the facts as reported by PBS:FRONTLINE:

Sunday, February 28, 1993: At about 9:30 a.m. agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms attempt to execute arrest and search warrants against David KORESH and the Branch Davidian compound as part of an investigation into illegal possession of firearms and explosives there. Gunfire erupts. Four ATF agents are killed and 16 are wounded. An undetermined number of Davidians are killed and injured. Within a few hours, the FBI becomes the lead agency for resolving the standoff.

The FBI would institute a siege of the compound that would last 51 days.

After 51 days of standoff, Attorney General Janet Reno authorized a tear gas attack. Reno has cited a number of factors to explain why she endorsed the tear-gas plan. She has said that she had concluded that negotiations with the Branch Davidians were indefinitely stalemated, that the FBI’s hostage rescue team on duty at Waco was becoming fatigued, that the security perimeter established by the FBI around the compound was endangered and that the children inside the compound were at risk because of deteriorating sanitary conditions and the potential for sexual and physical abuse.

Monday, April 19, 1993: At 6:02 a.m., two FBI combat engineering vehicles, or CEVs, begin inserting gas into the compound through spray nozzles attached to a boom. At 6:04 a.m., the Davidians start shooting, and the FBI begin deploying Bradley vehicles to insert ferret rounds through the windows. At 6:31, the HRT reports that the entire building is being gassed. At about 7 a.m., RENO and senior advisors go to the FBI situation room. At 7:30, a CEV breaches the front side of the building on the first floor as it injects gas, and at 7:58 a.m., gas is inserted in the second floor of the back-right corner of the building. The FBI calls for more gas from outside Waco, and at 9:20 a.m., 48 more ferret rounds arrive from Houston.

At 11:40 a.m., the last ferret rounds are delivered. At 11:45 a.m., a wall on the right-rear side of the building collapses. At 12:07 p.m., There is the start of “simultaneous fires at three or more different locations within the compound.” Fire quickly consumes the compound.

TanksWaco:

According to medical examiners who performed the autopsies, CS gas did not directly kill any of the more than 80 Branch Davidians, including 22 children, who died in the fire on April 19. … Other experts have told FRONTLINE that CS gas may have totally incapacitated the children and others so that when the fire occurred, it would have rendered them incapable of escape. (4)

Synergic Containment of the Branch Davidian Church

This is not a criticism of the federal officers who were involved in the Adversary Containment at the Branch Davidian Church (BDC). Clearly the members of that church were heavily armed and dangerous. Four Federal ATF officers lost their lives and 16 were wounded in the first encounter on February 28. I would suggest that the mechanism of adversary containment is more dangerous for both the containment officers and for those being contained.

As a thought experiment, how would synergic containment work differently than adversary containment?

Remember, the goal of synergic containment is the protection of both humanity as community, and humanity as individuals. This goal could best be achieved by isolation of the BDC members and then disarming them. Once they were disarmed they would be taken into protective custody. All custody by Synergic Containment Officers is protective. Their mission is protection.

It was strongly suspected and later confirmed that the Branch Davidian members were heavily armed and dangerous. A Synergic Containment Force would act cautiously. They would encircle and establish a strong perimeter completely surrounding the compound. This perimeter would well back from the compound outside of rifle range. 

ContBDC:  

Remember the three tasks of the Synergic Containment Officers–contain, rescue, disarm.

Once the perimeter is contained the next step is the creation of one or more rescue corridors. These are protected passages to points as close to the center of the adversary event as possible to facilitate the rescue of individuals caught up in the event.

RescueCorridor:  

In addition to observation from the perimeter and rescue corridor, the compound under be put under continuous observation from closer, but well protected observation sites, and communication established with the Church members. The church members would be unable to militarily engage the Containment Force without leaving the protection of their compound.

Those within the compound would then be ordered to put down their weapons and move out to the perimeter to voluntarily enter into protective custody. Those being contained would have a short time to voluntarily surrender. If there was no response, or a hostile response, the Synergic Containment Force would begin Containment Isolation of  the compound.

Once Containment Isolation is implemented, nothing goes in. Access to electricity, television, telephone, water, food and all outside supplies are a privilege to members of community in good standing. That privilege is suspended. Nothing goes in. Every thing would stop! Then the Containment Force would sit back and wait for them to come out.

Any unarmed member of the church could leave anytime by simply presenting to the rescue corridor for safe escort to the perimeter where they could voluntarily enter protective custody. Once out, no one goes back in unless and until Synergic Containment is lifted.

The compound would not be stormed or attacked in anyway. No barrage of noise, loud music, or teargas. They would be left to themselves without phones, television, newspapers, mail, electricity, water, etc.etc.. They are not being punished. The benefits of community are being suspended until they cease all adversity. I expect that most of the members would have come out and surrendered. Perhaps not all.

Once each day, the containment force would explicitly communicate with the contained adversaries, reminding them that safety, food, water, shelter and medical care wait for them at the perimeter. It would be made clear that to exit the containment zone, they need only put down their weapons and present to the rescue corridor, or perimeter. Any individual—adult or child—that did so would be given protection including water, food, medical care and shelter.

Why would they give up?

In today’s world, criminals that have been adversarily contained by the police feel they have nothing to lose. They may be surrounded by heavily armed swat teams looking to take them out with a long range shot. If they survive capture, they face trial, imprisonment, and sentences range from a few years to life in prison and can even be put to death by the state for a capital crime. This leads to an environment where trapped criminals may feel they have nothing to lose by shooting it out with the police.

Within Synergic Society, the Life Trust Guardians Division of Public Safety works differently. Once those caught up in an adversary event are contained and are in protective custody, the rest of the public safety process unfolds:


Scientific Investigation and Analysis of the Adversary Event

The Life Trust Guardians will assign public safety scientists to investigate and scientifically analyze the adversary event. These Science Officers are responsible for determining the true facts of the adversary event.

Remember mistakes are caused by ignorance, even those mistakes that injure people and seem deliberate. Science Officers will seek to determine what were the causes of the mistakes that led to the adversary event, and what specifically needs to be learned by the responsible parties to prevent further adversary events.

It is also their mission to determine who were the individuals responsible for the event. Those individuals who freely admit their responsibility for an adversary event will enter directly into the Education and Restitution phase. Those individuals accused of adversary action claiming innocence are entitled to a responsibility hearing.

Responsibility Hearing

Conducted by Hearing Officers, this is an evidentiary process which includes the scientific interrogation of both the alleged adversaries and the victims of the adversary event. The responsibility hearing differs from a criminal trial in significant ways. First, the end result of the responsibility hearing does not lead to punishment, it leads to education, rehabilitation, and restitution. Secondly, it is not an adversarial procedure. There is no prosecutor and no defense. No one is trying to hurt anyone in this process. The Responsibility Hearing is to determine the truth.

The needs and the safety of humanity as community takes precedent over the needs and safety of humanity as individuals. Truth has a higher value then fairness. Since no one is going to be punished, all parties are required to tell the truth. No human has the right to hurt another human. Public safety is paramount, and the truth will be the determining factor.

All parties may be interrogated by the Life Trust Guardians’ Hearing Officers utilizing any scientific techniques that are safe and effective. This could include hypnosis, lie detector technology, drug augmented interrogation, and new technologies and techniques not yet invented. In a synergic culture, you can be required to testify against yourself, or your spouse. There are no privileged conversations between lawyers and clients because there are no lawyers and clients. The truth will out. The purpose of the Fourth and Fifth Amendments to the American Constitution were to protect Free and Independent Citizens from an Adversary State. It was thought that if you could be made to testify against yourself, you could be tortured to confess to crimes you did not commit. This of course was true in an Adversary world with an Adversary State.

In a synergic culture, all Synergic Trust Guardians are held to the highest standards — they cannot hurt others, and in fact must help others. This standard applies as well to the Life Trust Guardians’ Containment, Science, and Hearing Officers.

If the officers of the Life Trust Guardians injure others in the course of their duties, they are subject to the same rules of public safety and are 100% responsible for their actions. They cannot torture anyone. They are also required to tell the truth and are also subject to scientific interrogation if accused of hurting others.

This commitment to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth eliminates all of today’s legal loop holes that allows dangerous committed criminals to be released back to the public streets and have access to new victims. Once the Responsibility Hearing has been concluded and it has been determined who was responsible, the next phase of the process can begin.

Rehabilitation and Education of those Responsible 

Within a synergic society, Rehabilitation Officers are responsible for this phase. These Officers include Physicians, Psychiatrists, Psychologists and Teachers. Adversary behavior in a synergic culture is viewed as a psychiatric disease or adversary mental illness. Those responsible for dangerous and/or severe adversary events would be required to undergo extensive psychiatric and psychological evaluation to determine the extent of their adversary mental illness. They would then enter into a comprehensive treatment program.

If they were deemed a continuing public safety risk, they would surrender their freedom during treatment. No human has the right to hurt another human. They would remain incarcerated until they were cured. If they were never cured, they would never be released. As our knowledge of adversary mental disorders improved and as new techniques and therapies were created, we would gain in our ability to successfully treat and cure these disorders.

Once their adversary illnesses, were deemed cured, they would move forward to the educational program. Here they would join other individuals found free of adversary mental illness. In this educational phase, all individuals deemed responsible for an adversary event would undergo a program specifically designed for them to correct the errors and mistakes that led to their specific adversary event.  Once they completed their educational phase they would be  tested.

Rehabilitation Testing of those Responsible

These tests are to verify that those responsible have learned how to avoid future Adversary Events. Once the Rehabilitation Officers find an individual has fully recovered and is no longer a threat to the public safety. Once they have completed the program and demonstrated the understanding and knowledge necessary to avoid such events in the future, they would move on to the restitution phase.

Restitution Agreements by those Responsible

In a synergic culture where not hurting others is required, and helping others is highly encouraged, restitution will be an important and common phenomena. Most of the time injuries to others will be accidental. All humans will make mistakes and often those mistakes will hurt others. Restitution is the mechanism of repair. We can’t always fix things, but we can always sincerely apologize and offer restitution.

The Life Trust Guardianship only gets involved when the injuries are deliberately caused by adversary actions. Following successful rehabilitation and education, documented with successful testing, then monitored restitution is mandatory.

Prevention of Future Adversary Events

Public safety is paramount. No human has the right to injure another human with an adversary action. Once such an event has occurred and you are found responsible you may be monitored and your freedom restricted until such time as the Life Trust Guardians have determined that you are safe without monitoring or restriction.

If the Life Trust Guardians release you from monitoring or restrictions and you hurt someone else in the future with another adversary action, then the Life Trust Guardians and the specific Officers involved in your release share responsibility with you for the adversary event. They are held accountable for failure to protect the public. This is a much higher standard then offered by today’s criminal justice system.

Prevention Agreements for Future Monitoring and Restrictions

Here, Rehabilitation Officers in co-laboration with the Prevention Officers will work together to determine what specific level of monitoring, surveillance, and personal freedom restrictions are necessary for the public safety. Because these officers share responsibility for future events with the perpetrators it is in their best interest to get it right. All terms and conditions will be negotiated in this phase. The responsible adversaries will take an active role in this negotiation. They will voluntarily enter into the Prevention Agreements as a condition for restoration of community privileges.  Periodically, reviews would occur and terms and conditions modified as appropriate. 

Future Monitoring

The final phase of the Rule of Public Safety is the responsibility of the Prevention Officers. In a synergic culture, humans found responsible for adversary actions even terrible adversary actions are not criminals. They are not felons. They are not punished. But they are contained. Life Trust Guardians will utilize the most advanced containment technology available — this could include implanted transponders and continuous monitoring systems.Whenever possible the responsible adversaries will be allowed to return to their lives and families. Even when incarcerated to the extent possible their lives will be normalized. This is discussed further in Protecting Humanity.


waco:  

But, what about those members of the Branch Davidian Church who refuse to surrender? What if they don’t give up? Will Synergic Containment Officers ever storm such a compound?

The situation that faced the Federal Officers of the ATF and FBI in Waco Texas in 1993, was very dangerous. In the first encounter the ATF lost 4 officers dead and 16 wounded.
 
Many of the male members of BDC were military trained and all were  heavily armed. Most were barricaded inside a steel reinforced concrete bunker with high powered weapons and lots of ammunition. Dr. Rodney Crow, Chief of Identification Service who surveyed the killing field after the fire in 1993 said:

There were weapons everywhere. I don’t remember moving a body that didn’t have a gun melted to it, intertwined with it, between the legs, under the arm or in close proximity. … The women were probably more immersed in the weapons than anyone else, because there was so much weaponry inside the bunker. It was like sea shells on a beach, but they were spent casings and spent bullets. If you had rubber gloves and tried to smooth it away, you’d tear your gloves away from the bullet points that are unexploded, or unspent ammunition. Then as you went through layer after layer, you came upon weapons that were totally burned. Until we got down to the floor, and it was mint condition ammunition there. Ammunition boxes not even singed. … They stored the weapons in the safest place. Then on top of the bunker is where the 50-caliber was found.(5)

As those who have participated in WAR know, storming a well fortified bunker is very dangerous. Would Synergic Containment Officers ever storm such a bunker. I don’t know, but I hope not. 

The Texas Rangers who collected the weapons after the fire reported that in addition to the 50-caliber machine gun, they found  60 M-16 machine guns, 60 AK-47 assault rifles, about 30 AR-15 assault rifles, several .50-caliber sniper rifles and dozens of pistols.

Perhaps a better question is, Why were the members of this church allowed to buy hundreds of military weapons and such enormous quantities of military grade ammunition?

As you sow, so shall you reap.

Now certainly, the 22 children who died at Waco were innocent, and their deaths were tragic. I can’t imagine how they could have been protected by assaulting the compound with more high powered weapons. Even today, there remains much controversy as to whether the FBI’s actions of pushing the assault may have contributed to the children’s deaths. We may never know, but I don’t think that would be the case with Synergic Containment. A synergic force would have simply waited them out. As they got more and more hungry, thirsty and weaker, I expect most of them would have come out.

Would Synergic Containment prevent the leaders of the Branch Davidian Church from killing all the members and then committing suicide as  happened in Jonestown?

No! Not as I have described synergic containment here.

The purpose of Synergic Containment is the protection of Humanity as Community and Humanity as Individuals. When those two goals conflict, then the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one.

Sometimes Containment Officers will risk their lives to rescue victims or hostages, but they will always do it cautiously and with great care. They will do it when they believe success if possible.

As for the children in Waco, unfortunately, their mothers and fathers failed to protect them. And, the ATF and FBI failed to protect them. That is indeed sad. I would hope that we could learn something from the mistakes that were made.

Synergic Containment of Iraq

You can’t cure adversity with adversity. As we watch the night and day
‘mares’ that serves as daily life for the Israeli and Palestinian peoples, we must see that “an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth”does not work.

I agree with President Bush that Saddam Hussein is a dangerous man. I agree that he must be contained and rendered impotent—incapable of hurting others. But, I differ with Bush on the method.

ConIraq:  

How would one Synergically Contain a rogue nation? For now, I leave that as a mental exercise for the reader.


The SafeEARTH series. See: 1) Beyond Crime and Punishment, 2) Synergic Containment: Protecting Children, 3)  Synergic Containment: Science & Rationale, 4) Synergic Containment: Protecting Community and 5) Synergic Disarmament—Wisdom, we shouldn’t have!

Also see Reaction to Synergic Containment.