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Human Evolution Enters an Exciting New Phase

December 03, 2012 By: seeta Category: Science/Technology, Spirituality

From Wired:

If you could escape the human time scale for a moment, and regard evolution from the perspective of deep time, in which the last 10,000 years are a short chapter in a long saga, you’d say: Things are pretty wild right now.

In the most massive study of genetic variation yet, researchers estimated the age of more than one million variants, or changes to our DNA code, found across human populations. The vast majority proved to be quite young. The chronologies tell a story of evolutionary dynamics in recent human history, a period characterized by both narrow reproductive bottlenecks and sudden, enormous population growth.

The evolutionary dynamics of these features resulted in a flood of new genetic variation, accumulating so fast that natural selection hasn’t caught up yet. As a species, we are freshly bursting with the raw material of evolution.

“Most of the mutations that we found arose in the last 200 generations or so. There hasn’t been much time for random change or deterministic change through natural selection,” said geneticist Joshua Akey of the University of Washington, co-author of the Nov. 28 Nature study. “We have a repository of all this new variation for humanity to use as a substrate. In a way, we’re more evolvable now than at any time in our history.”

All Life is Interrelated

November 11, 2012 By: seeta Category: Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Intersectionality, Spirituality

On this Veterans’ Day, let us say thank you to all who served and protected us. And let us remember MLK’s words that, indeed, all life is interrelated, in the hope that one day the concepts of warfare and subjugation will be obsolete:

It really boils down to this: that all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. We are made to live together because of the interrelated structure of reality. Did you ever stop to think that you can’t leave for your job in the morning without being dependent on most of the world? You get up in the morning and go to the bathroom and reach over for the sponge, and that’s handed to you by a Pacific islander. You reach for a bar of soap, and that’s given to you at the hands of a Frenchman. And then you go into the kitchen to drink your coffee for the morning, and that’s poured into your cup by a South American. And maybe you want tea: that’s poured into your cup by a Chinese. Or maybe you’re desirous of having cocoa for breakfast, and that’s poured into your cup by a West African. And then you reach over for your toast, and that’s given to you at the hands of an English-speaking farmer, not to mention the baker. And before you finish eating breakfast in the morning, you’ve depended on more than half the world. This is the way our universe is structured; this is its interrelated quality. We aren’t going to have peace on Earth until we recognize this basic fact of the interrelated structure of all reality.

~ Martin Luther King Jr.
From a Christmas Sermon on Peace, 1967

The Most Important Image Ever Taken

November 10, 2012 By: seeta Category: Science/Technology, Spirituality


“I believe our future depends on how well we know this Cosmos in which we float like a mote of dust in the morning sky.” ― Carl Sagan

On Gratitude, Politics, Staying Sane and Human Consciousness

January 08, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Civil Rights

On Gratitude, Politics, Staying Sane and Human Consciousness
by Seeta Persaud

“I believe our future depends powerfully on how well we understand this Cosmos in which we float like a mote of dust in the morning sky.” — Carl Sagan

Happy New Year friends! I hope you had a glorious and restful holiday season. 2011 was a year rife with many personal changes and challenges, for which I am grateful. Though the economy is showing some signs of recovery, poverty in America has been on the rise as a result of GOP economic terrorism in the form of de-regulation, an epidemic of white-collar crime, the foreclosure crisis, the for-profit prison system and voter disenfranchisement, and an economic system premised on race stratification.

As 2012 is a presidential election year, the darkest side of humanity will make itself prominent and loud in the form of the GOP political party — a party opposed to the evolution of human consciousness, good governance, an economic system based on abundance, and a socio-economic system based on solidarity rather than fear of the other.

I believe that the GOP is a party seeing its last days. The GOP embodies everything that is antithetical to gratitude, love, humanity, and oneness. Instead, the GOP chooses to embrace greed, oligarchy, hate, dehumanization, power and domination over other groups of people.

The Democratic party is not without its own problems, mind you, but it is the most viable progressive political party, one that is evolving to reflect America’s demographics and one that more sincerely embraces the aspirational goals codified in the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

There is no doubt that we must do everything to GOTV and fight against GOP voter suppression efforts this year. And we must do everything possible to keep our sanity as this presidential election season gets underway.

One way to access our higher selves is to practice the act of gratitude for the interrelated nature of life. As MLK said:

It really boils down to this: that all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. We are made to live together because of the interrelated structure of reality.

Did you ever stop to think that you can’t leave for your job in the morning without being dependent on most of the world? You get up in the morning and go to the bathroom and reach over for the sponge, and that’s handed to you by a Pacific islander. You reach for a bar of soap, and that’s given to you at the hands of a Frenchman. And then you go into the kitchen to drink your coffee for the morning, and that’s poured into your cup by a South American. And maybe you want tea: that’s poured into your cup by a Chinese. Or maybe you’re desirous of having cocoa for breakfast, and that’s poured into your cup by a West African. And then you reach over for your toast, and that’s given to you at the hands of an English-speaking farmer, not to mention the baker. And before you finish eating breakfast in the morning, you’ve depended on more than half the world.

This is the way our universe is structured; this is its interrelated quality. We aren’t going to have peace on Earth until we recognize this basic fact of the interrelated structure of all reality.”

~ Martin Luther King Jr.
From a Christmas Sermon on Peace, 1967

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