Why the Chan-Zuckerberg philanthropic venture and the Islamic-State terrorist actions are so alike, and why you cannot see it.
By Eh’den Biber
Mark Zuckerberg is the poster boy of what success seems like in the 21st century. A highly talented and intelligent young man, who managed to create a technological platform that has transformed one of the most important human activity – communicating and interacting with each other.
It was no wonder why everyone seems to have hailed and/or criticised the decision Mark and his wife Priscilla Chan made as they announced their intention to donate almost all of their fortune to a philanthropic venture called “The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative”. Like a drug addict who knows his addiction patterns are sponsoring his drug dealer expensive car and jewellery, people recognised that their inability to stop using Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram is the root source of Mark’s fortune. What we experienced was a collective “hey dude, it’s my money!” moment.
ONE question seems to have escaped the general public discussion – was Mark and his wife conscious when they made the decision to donate so much money? Most of the people who will read such question will respond with a “wha?????” because our definition of consciousness is based on our perception of it. We think that when we are running things via our problem-solving state we are conscious, that when we are asleep we are not, and that when we are drunk, or drugged, or crazy we loose our conscious state. It is very much driven by our false sense of self that is biologically tuned to kick in somewhere in our early childhood. “I” is this thing I call “I” – what I been told I was before I started telling myself who I am, and what I’ve been telling myself who “I” was ever since that, till today. I’m a boy or a girl, I’m smart or stupid, I’m good or bad, I love myself or I hate myself. I, I, I, I, I… What a beautiful story teller our false sense of self is.
Like a cat who is unable to recognise his own image in a mirror, we are unable to recognise our true self when we are in our problem-solving state. In that state, we are characters in a story constructed by our minds, trapped in a virtual reality that we have no ability to recognise. This false-sense-of-self is what makes us do things – from horrific acts of terror and manslaughter to decisions to contribute our fortune to others. The truth of the matter is that our problem solving state is actually the most dream-like state we can be in, and the more we get involved in it, the more we extend our fantasy to whatever direction our minds tells us it should go. Dreams of destruction and conquer envisioned by terrorists seems different than dreams of creating deeper levels of hallucinations via virtual reality technology – but they are still dreams.
Our problem-solving state puts our attention on the external, which is our false-sense-of-self story. We spend our energy debating the intention of Mark and his wife, or debating whether or not we should bomb the Islamic state, or trying to figure out what angle is going to make us look better when we post our selfie image on one of Mark’s platforms. Instead of your ego asking itself (and the super-ego) if this is good or this is bad, you can embrace the is’ness of it all and start discovering who you really are. As my friend Mark Grundland love saying: “The answer is yes. Now let’s change the question”.
Now is the time to ask the right question: WHO AM I? Now is a time to discover love.
Awareness is (the) everything (that you are)