Evolution of Empathy and the Third Industrial Revolution

Will human civilization make the transition to global sustainability?  Or are we doomed to collapse and possibly even extinction as a species?  I have grappled with this question for years as I journeyed through the intellectual landscapes of Earth System Science, cognitive science, and complex adaptive systems.  And now it is clear that I am not alone on this journey.

This video is a talk given by Jeremy Rifkin at the British Royal Society about what he calls the Empathic Civilization.  Note how he describes a fundamental shift in how we think about human nature — inspired by the revolution now unfolding in the cognitive sciences — while casting a story of cultural evolution through which new energy production regimes meld with new communication technologies to birth new stages of consciousness.

Powerful and enlightening!

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