What is Conscious Evolution?
Evolution is really a process of co-evolution. Evolution is a function of inter-dependence and impermanence, nothing ever evolves alone. People speak of the ‘evolution’ of a particular species such as bees or humans. Yet in reality nothing evolves alone.
The concept of the selfish gene and survival of the fittest is a very single sided vision of what is a seamless weave, an evolutionary dance that is ongoing creation.
No organism is actually separate from its environmental milieu, a fish is also the ocean, it is 70% ocean plus 30% of the things it has eaten, all modified into a new temporary vortex of living organic matter and bio-energy.
A flowering plant could only evolve along with the pollinating insects, each totally dependent, interdependent with each other. Both flower and insect are the process of interdependent co-evolution. Arguably they are simply two expressions of the weave that evolution is.
All of life is the process of interdependent co-evolution.
Organisms are not separate from their environment. The flow of water, minerals and atmospheric gases are also what that organism is. It is what we are.
Changes in the environment certainly influence an organism’s survival, natural selection is accurate here. As environmental conditions change, and they do, then the genetic material that offers an advantage in those changed conditions will be selected for.
Survival is not simply to the fittest individual though, it is to the fittest community, the fittest gene-pool, the community with the best epigenetic expressions of their genes and to those whose changed behaviours are then supported by the successive genetic mutations that lifts them along the web of co-evolution.
Humans dramatically change our environment. We have a whole new geological epoch named after us because we have carved out a new human geography and ecology, it is the age of humanity, the Anthropocene.
Yet this is nearly all anthropocentric, all about us, benefiting only us. Benefit to other species or the planet is rarely even secondary, mostly it’s non-existent.
We are deeply engaged in unconscious, unaware co-evolution as we transform the world around us and affect the survival of countless individuals and species.
This is the geological age of the Anthropocene, the age where the main factor affecting ecological change is us. As we affect our environment we affect which genes of our genes are selected for.
We could, of course, make our environment so hostile that only cockroaches and Cyborgs could survive! We are on track for that.
We could also pay attention to the key ecological tipping points such as oceanic acidification and atmospheric CO2 levels as well as the key-points of conscious evolution, as in my book Protecting Planet Earth, and start to work towards stewardship of this planet instead of destruction and degradation.
We are either in unconscious evolution or Conscious Evolution as a species.
Which do you choose?
Which do we choose collectively?
The role of breathwork and conscious evolution
Conscious Breathwork takes us into greater awareness of who and what we really are, as well as our conscious and unconscious motivations.
In a world where people are consumers raised in hotbeds of inadequacy and low-esteem, after all the immaculate deity forms and photoshopped models consistently remind us of, then buying adequacy and esteem off the shelf is what is left. Except the infinite merchandise neither salves the inadequate self-story, neither is it infinite!
Conscious evolution is a step forwards out of this psychology, out of consumption, into adequacy, sovereignty and planetary stewardship.
The disciplined, aware mind and heart is a step into conscious evolution – we become the direction that our species inexorably moves into.
Dinosaurs are extinct.
The less than conscious elements of human behaviour including, childhood adversity, neglect, abuse, un-love, the enactment of shadow and narcissistic greed, unconscious consumption and over-consumption, though prevalent today, will also fade as we evolve.
We will simply stop doing these nasty behaviours as a species. Eventually. One way or another.
The leading edges of consciousness include the practices of clearing up shadow, resolving ego states into transparency, and creating lives of optimal flow, including systemic realisation.
Systemic realisation is ‘getting it’, that plants and us, and all of life are an inseparable, interconnected, interdependent web and living from this place.
The leading edge of consciousness also includes rising into transpersonal depth and living from this place. This is where deep breathwork and meditation takes us.
This is where the practices of Embody Evolution take us.
From here life is known as the scintillating miracle it is. We find gratitude as the root of every breath and every moment of this precious life.
The chaos of impermanence, the fact that everything is volatile, uncertain, unforeseeable changing, chaotic, ambivalent and unknown becomes a source of excitement instead of a source of fear and anxiety.
We can land in the grace of the unknown and the unknowable, the inconceivable vastness, and this itself is perfect, wherever it goes, as we live, and even as we die.
It is from this depth that we can really work together as we know we are in it together. One life force flowing as us all.
The process is what matters most.
Gradually, as we keep bringing our attention back to the breath through the course of the day, over many years, all the other unconscious processes of body-mind become transparent.
The deep old emotions stored in the body, the patterns of cyclical thought and obsession, the stories we tell ourselves about who we are and everyone else is, the meanings we create about our worth and others worth – begin to disintegrate.
All of these and the grand meanings we make up about the structure, nature and workings of this vast and inconceivable universe – everything becomes transparent.
Transparent means our hidden motivations and underlying beliefs, limiting or otherwise become seen to us and others.
Gradually, as we practice, over the days and over the years, we clean up our shadows, take responsibility for our lives and start to play a role in the stewardship of our planetary home. We recognise that life is an interdependent weave and that we are this, that we depend on forests, on moss, on grass, on algae. WE GET IT.
I was taught to pay attention to breath continuously by one of my teachers. Maybe start making it your life practice?
Eventually conscious breath pervades your dreams and even deep sleep and you know the continuity of consciousness through the states of waking, dreaming and deep sleep.
Start the journey to personal sovereignty and collective stewardship today with making the unconscious conscious, begin with making this breath conscious, this one, now this one, and then this one.
We do it together.