In the paragraphs below I am sharing some basic details about an educational model I came up with to describe a more complete view of human development. For lack of a better name, I’m referring to it through the acronym E.P.I.C. which stands for: Emotional, Physical, Intellectual, and Consciousness. In GESET part 2 I have described the dangerous trends and threats to human life which I’ve discovered in my research. The E.P.I.C. model and the ideas I propose are of an ethical educational nature because I believe that through knowledge and ethical education, we can provide/inspire solutions to each one of the 3 elements encompassed in the process responsible for the creation of the dangerous GESET trends:
Human ego (source) -> Money (incentive/cause) -> Human Behaviour (effect) -> GESET threat (after-effect)
Given the distinct nature of each one of the issues leading to GESET threats, for each one of the 3 core problems I propose 3 distinct educational models as potential solutions:
- Potential Solution 1 for the human ego problem: the E.P.I.C. Human Development model – presented below.
- Potential Solution 2 for the money (financial system) problem: Biomimetics economic model.
- Potential Solution 3 for the self-damaging human behaviour problem: Ethicality leadership model.
Solution 1 for the human ego problem: the E.P.I.C. Human Development model:
If you’re wondering why I chose the word “epic” to describe my human development model, the story is as follows: many years ago it didn’t have a name, it was just my way of experiencing life. However, around 2012 I called it “TrinityOne 3+1” as it seemed appropriate (3 obvious elements + 1 “hidden” element). However, as years passed by and I kept developing it and experimenting with it in my life, I wanted to come up with a name which has good meaning in multiple languages. And after a lot of trial and error, I settled on “epic” after joking about it during a wordplay. 🙂 Now what does this E.P.I.C. model actually mean, and how do I imagine that E.P.I.C. human development model is going to solve the colossal human ego problem!?
Carl Gustav Jung (Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who founded analytical psychology) described in unprecedented detail the elements which form the conscious and the unconscious human intellect (I). Following his research, he described in his writings the journey an individual should embark on IF s/he wants to reach wholeness (Authenticity). Jung proposed that the ultimate goal of self-realization is to pull an individual to the highest possible experience (which is a spiritual one, not a material one). On the other hand, Jung concluded that if a person does not proceed toward self-awareness and self-knowledge, neurotic symptoms may arise. Symptoms are widely defined, including, for instance, phobias, psychosis, and depression. And once this happens, a person ‘steps’ into Sigmund Freud‘s research area: psychoanalysis – a clinical method for treating mental disorders, psychopathology.
Abraham Harold Maslow (American psychology professor) was a humanistic psychologist who created in 1943 the now famous “Maslow’s hierarchy of needs“. Maslow studied the healthiest 1% of the college student population, and the individuals he called ‘exemplary people’ such as Albert Einstein, Jane Addams, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Frederick Douglass, rather than mentally ill or neurotic people. Maslow positioned his work as a vital complement to Sigmund Freud’s work, and he focused his research on the positive potential in human beings (as opposed to Freud who “supplied us the sick half of psychology and we must now fill it out with the healthy half”).
The reason why I’m referencing these 3 psychology titans is because my own work integrates elements from Jung and Maslow’s research, while taking into consideration some of Freud’s conclusions. I’m presenting here my E.P.I.C. model as a potential solution to the hyperinflated human-ego problem; and its important to note that my model and my research which led to it, leverage Jung and Maslow’s priceless work – and as such it is part of the same ‘preventive’ category. While I consider Freud’s work as useful in post-discovery applications (after a problem/disorder has arisen/been created), I am convinced that the real cure for effectively fixing this ego problem “at its root” is in continuously acting to PREVENT the worst from arising in the first place (instead of stimulating it like we do today..). And the way I suggest we prevent ego-related disorders is by leveraging Jung and Maslow’s work in our education system to put individuals on a life-long personal development path, and in parallel, by using a guiding model like E.P.I.C. for life balance and a more complete human development:
E = Emotional (The heart)
It is long said that “Emotions make us Human”. A mother’s emotions affect her unborn child (ref). Therefore we first experience the world through our mother’s emotions and after we’re born we experience the world through our own emotions. As such, if a mother has various disorders (genetical, psychological or emotional), it’s likely that she will pass them on to her child/ren, and the child/ren will most likely grow up developing similar or more disorders. While I consider our Dark_Triad society to be guilty of producing and perpetuating these disorders (and not women!), it is logical to start the process of positive change by first educating all girls and women (not just mothers or potential mothers) on how to understand and balance their own emotions. After millennia of being purposefully kept by men in the shadows of men, in the last half a century, women have finally earned equal rights. This is a very good thing, however, given the fact that this recognition of equality happened only in the law books, and the ego of men didn’t actually recognize women as equals in real life, something unnatural happened: in the struggle for equal rights, vain men have ‘infected’ the natural socially-collaborative women with the unnatural (for them) ‘competition virus’ which has its source in the male ego. The lack of real equality, and the lack of respect for our distinct human nature, plus the continuous development of materialistic ego-driven pursuits – which has ignored and twisted emotional needs – has significantly contributed to bringing us on the current destructive GESET trends. It’s very obvious that this is not working, so let’s try something else:
In order to achieve a balanced emotional development, we need emotional education and emotional security. As such we must take into consideration Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and develop a society which recognizes and respects the true and distinct nature of women and men, and automatically fulfills the psychological and safety needs of all girls and women in the society (first), and of all boys and men in the society (second) – I am referring to the bottom 2 layers in the hierarchy of needs. While I’m specifically focusing on women first, I’m not suggesting to switch from a patriarchal society to a matriarchal one. And I am surely not suggesting that we make all men work only for the benefit of women in the society. I am simply suggesting that we must prioritize women’s education and women’s emotional needs over men’s ego-driven pursuits, by leveraging our distinct male-female capabilities, and by fulfilling the natural needs of our species in a priority-ranked equal way. Basically, we’d be educating ourselves how to perpetuate the much-craved balance at individual and collective level, how to create equality, and most important: how to create sustainability for our species.
- Starting point: Emotional Intelligence education.
- Developing point: Empathy and compassion development.
- Maintenance point: Continuous EQ development.
- Main takeaway: Develop the emotions to become a good-hearted human being.
P = Physical (The body)
Leonardo da Vinci‘s Vitruvian Man requires no introduction. The geometrical human proportions identified by Leonardo and by those who preceded him, are proof that Nature respects some very specific “programming” when it comes to building our Physical reality (i.e. fractals). In 2011 I wrote a post which described my understanding of Nature’s physical ratios, including those found in the human body. Now considering almost all of us at birth are naturally well-proportioned and healthy, all we have to do during our lifetime is to remain well-proportioned and healthy. However, this simple responsibility is a major challenge in today’s profit-driven consumerist society. It’s very obvious that this is not working, so let’s try something else:
First and foremost we must fulfill the emotional requirements described in the previous section as this solution relies on emotional security and healthy intellectual development (which is facilitated by healthy emotional development). Physical development without intellectual control and emotional balance is disastrous – as seen in the world today.
Once emotional and psychological needs are assured, the physical development plan can be put into action – what I mean by this is: everything between simply starting a sports activity (physically developing oneself), to participating in the Olympics (excelling at developing oneself). However, in my opinion physical development doesn’t peak at the Olympics. From a cultural perspective, it peaks in complex things like marriage (contributing to the development of another), and from a human species perspective, it peaks at the conception of a child (physically creating another life). Therefore from a physical sustainability perspective, I argue that the responsibility to create another healthy life is much higher than the responsibility of a sports(wo)man to train healthy and beat Olympic records.
- Starting point: Education in physical health, Biology, Nutrition, Sports (“Mens sana in corpore sano”). Choosing a sport or an appropriate physical activity.
- Developing point: Healthy nutrition + practicing physical activities from very light to moderate intensity.
- Maintenance point: Health monitoring, healthy nutrition, appropriate sporting activities.
- Main takeaway: Develop the body to remain a well-proportioned and healthy human being.
I = Intellectual (The mind)
In 2014 I wrote “Ethical Human Education, Wisdom & Evolution“. This is an essential read for this “I” category because now I’m picking up where I left off. The motto of my blog (“If curiosity cures boredom, what cures curiosity?“) is also essential in what follows because I consider curiosity as the most essential quality in intellectual development. And I’m not the only one (+HBR, Neuroscience, A.I. etc).
My curiosity may very well get me killed one day. When I mixed curiosity with some physical adventures, it literally almost got me killed a few times in my life, and I’m genuinely surprised I’m still alive after a few very close calls (accidents and incidents). However, while I have no idea why I am so curious to experiment and learn, I can easily recognize that curiosity is the very reason why I know that I know nothing. If it wasn’t for my curiosity which pushed my own limits and forced me to explore the world, I wouldn’t have been able to reach such an enlightening paradox. After reading what I just wrote, a very obvious question popped into my mind: if the result of pursuing my curiosity leads to “nothing”, then why bother to pursue learning in the first place?
The answer is obvious but only after the mind wins the battle over the ego. The ego is an intellectual parasite which is the greatest obstacle in developing one’s own intelligence and keeps an individual in a fake realm of “know it all” – which in reality is just arrogance and ignorance. Socrates believed that wrongdoing and unethical behaviour resulted from ignorance and lack of knowledge. I completely agree. And since I am writing all this with the hope that it may one day become/inspire ethical solutions to the GESET threats, I will focus on the practicality of knowledge to create sustainability and to combat ignorance (including wrongdoings & threats).
Therefore since I identified the source of the GESET chaos in the word as the human ego, and Socrates attributed unethical behaviour to the ignorance of the ego, it’s very obvious that the solution is ethical education meant to develop us intellectually and to overcome the ego-parasite which holds us from evolution, self-development and from creating an ethical and sustainable society for us and the generations to come. If we don’t do this, and we somehow survive the GESET threats, we will inevitably develop the tech to colonize space and also inevitably we humans will be the next generation of cancerous parasites infecting the galaxy/universe in our attempt to achieve this materialistic “infinite growth”. I don’t know about you, but when the time comes to greet other intelligent species, I want us to feel proud we belong to an intelligent one, not a parasitic one which pumps resources, dumps trash and wastes life till there is nothing left, not even itself.
It’s very obvious that what we’re doing is not working, so let’s try something else. Let’s be curious, not ignorant. Let’s learn how to actually be intelligent and how to create sustainability for our species. I envision the E.P.I.C. model as a complete educational framework to be used in developing a more complete and ethical individual. Whenever I catch a break from earning money to pay the bills, I will work to develop a benchmark methodology to calculate the E.P.I.C. quotient for an individual – as opposed to the very limited IQ test. Until then, we could work on the following points:
- Starting point: curiosity, verbal communication, books, online and formal education.
- Developing point: Greek Philosophy, Science, Quora, TED, MOOC, NoExcuseList, AcademicEarth…
- Maintenance point: Self-education, autodidactism.
- Main takeaway: Develop the intellect to understand what is possible.
C = Consciousness (The Self)
“Whatever you are physically…male or female, strong or weak, ill or healthy–all those things matter less than what your heart contains. If you have the soul of a warrior, you are a warrior. All those other things, they are the glass that contains the lamp, but you are the light inside.” Cassandra Clare
For now, this topic is still in the non-scientific category. And until science manages to identify and quantify Consciousness as this new state of matter proposed by Prof Max Tegmark, I am compelled to continue to consider everything that follows in the Spiritual category where its defined as Higher Consciousness. Now to be clear, I don’t know how to explain my own Consciousness other than through the entity spiritually referred to as the “Soul”. I also don’t know how to describe it, quantify it or present it. The only thing that I can do, is feel it. And the sensorial receptor for this feeling is completely distinct from all other +19 physical senses. That being written, I will now subjectively recommend the exploration of this Higher Consciousness with the purpose to gain a drop of wisdom, or if we’re really brave, enlightenment. But…how?
- From a perspective which is as scientific as it gets, we could follow Jung’s teachings on dealing with the darkness to uncover the Self– but only IF one wants to reach wholeness (Authenticity).
- From a purely Spiritual perspective, we could follow the teachings of our respective culture, belief system, or religion – but only IF these teachings are ethical = do not cause damage to self, others, and the environment.
- Finally, from a purely subjective perspective, we could follow our intuition – as long as this does NOT cause damage to self, others, and the environment.
There are many ways we can stimulate within us all the positive elements mentioned in Jung’s work which lead to Authenticity, and in Maslow’s work which lead to Self-actualization and Transcendence. However, we need ethical education to be able to make the right choice. Once we have the education, all that remains is the choice IF we want to focus on ethical development, on the sustainability of our species, and on preventing ego-caused disorders, OR on developing disorders due to ignorance, arrogance, vanity, narcissism, megalomania, greed and other negative and destructive selfish desires. Our time here is limited, our resources are finite and given our technology, we have the power to build or destroy the future of our species. The collective choice is ours to make at an individual level. I hope we choose to grow, evolve and become enlighten…(kinda like Master Oogway from one of my favorite movies 🙂 )
In the next post: