A symbol of a new beginning.


  • An Aide-Mémoire :
  • Jump Time (2000) - book 
  • Jean Houston
  • Shaping your Future in a World of Radical Change 

Reading time: 2½ mins.  

1 January 2012 

Dear Friends


If wisdom were offered me with this restriction, that I should keep it close and not communicate it, I would refuse the gift.

- Lucius Annaeus Seneca.  

On New Year's Day, I found a book enticing its readers to 'jump time'. The book was hidden away in a dark corner of the old bookcase unread, but with contents noted for future reference. That future is now upon us and below are the details of said book should you wish to explore further.

HOUSTON, JEAN, (2000), Jump Time: Shaping Your Future in a World of Radical Change, pub. New York, Jeremy P. Tarcher/Putnam 

Writing at the dawn of this new millennium (2000), Dr. Jean Houston wrote glowingly of the possibilities of the World Wide Web which, at the time of her research, were not fully realised or even realisable.  She said, 

"Energized by human consciousness, the web grants us a netted reality by which everything and everyone is woven into a fabric of information, ideas, experiences, further dissolving the membrane that kept peoples and cultures separate and insular."  HOUSTON, 2000

A Network of Pearls.
Houston points out that the idea of a web of energy linking all can be traced back two millennia to the second-century Buddhist Avatamska Sutra which 'contains a mystical vision of the ultimate energetic net'.  She paraphrases the beautiful story thus - 
"In the heaven of Indra there is said to be a network of pearls so arranged that if you look at one you see all the others reflected in it, and if you move in to any part of it, you set off the sound of bells that ring through every part of the network, though every part of reality.  In the same way, each person, each object in the world, is not merely itself, but involves every other person and object."  HOUSTON, 2000
Many of you will already be familiar with the Network of Pearls (more usually known as the Jewel Net of Indra) and may indeed see the World Wide Web as a present-day incarnation of this story. 
An infinite dance. 

As someone who has the privilege of speaking to groups of young people on a regular basis, there is something joyous about this confirmation that I'm on the right track when I introduce my audiences to the notion of the interconnectedness of all beings through the story of an infinite dance, the Jewel Net of Indra.

As of now, I can safely liken this age-old story from Hua-yen Budhism to travelling the energetic byeways of the Internet, an Internet seen as stretching and loosening the membranes that traditionally divide culture, languages, sciences, religions, nations, and races.  Here is Dr. Jean Houston - a visionary - on 'the global mind field':

"Every time we log on, we participate in the creation of the global mind field.  The planet is becoming self-conscious in all its parts through ourselves.  Electronic circuitry has so wired the planet that within a few years, just about everything that the human race is doing or has ever thought about will be available at our fingertips, our hands at play on the keyboard enabling the human spirit to come at us in resonance waves."  HOUSTON, 2000

Digital natives. 

In the year 2000, Dr. Houston was addressing a very different audience to the digitally-savvy students I meet on my travels today. They are a brand new breed, young people who have made the Internet their own and who have subsequently 'evolved into new kinds of beings with neural system and sensory receptors extending throughout space time'.  Digital natives? I rather think they are.

It's worth pointing out that many of us who grew up in the era of pen and ink are also doing quite nicely in embracing all the World Wide Web has to offer.  Those keyboard skills carefully honed to perfection in the schoolroom long ago certainly came into their own in the computer age.  Those on the cusp of change, please note: 

"This dance of metamorphosis is reciprocal; the Internet is changing us, even as we refine the technology that extends its reach."  HOUSTON, 2000.

Here's a far-reaching bit of advice worth taking seriously by those of a certain (or any) age (with or without keyboard skills),  

"The internet is an essential link to the outside world for the elderly. No one should be without a computer and basic email, Google, current affairs and online shopping skills."  SILVER MANIFESTO, THE TIMES, 2011

We may never be classed as digital natives, but it's never too late to learn. There's nothing to lose and everything to gain. Of course, I know that I'm largely preaching to the converted out here in cyberspace!  But, pass 'the knowledge' on ... jump time. 

Here are five specific questions posed by Dr. Houston in the year 2000.  They relate to her strong hunch concerning the activation of new or rarely used human potentials through the use of the Internet.  From this perspective, consider now twelve years on, 
  1. Does the Internet promote greater flexibility of thought or the ability to see patterns of connection more easily?
  2. What is its effect on the use of inner imageries?
  3. What is happening to visual, auditory, and kinesthetic thought?
  4. Are new frames of mind evolving?
  5. Does the amount of information on the Internet lead to overload? 

In relation to spirituality and technology, you might also like to ponder two far-reaching questions that affect us all,  

  • Is cyberspace engendering new mythical structures?
  • What is the future of consciousness on the Internet?
On another day, I will delve further into the narrative evidence related to the changes the World Wide Web has brought to  humankind.  The 'Internet and the Body' is seen as a good place to start the musings. Alternatively, the 'Internet and the Mind' might be a fruitful stepping off point. Remember this, "A happy ending is always possible if you are willing to keep the story moving to get there." COHEN, 2011

My New Year's Resolution 2012.

'Carpe diem: seize the day.'

Having now seized the day to my entire satisfaction and having run out of space (but not inspiration), l end with the quotation that sums up the World Wide Web for me as an elder of Planet Earth, "The noblest pleasure is in the joy of understanding."  And, who said that?  Leonardo da Vinci - of course.

Marian @ Krysan


As evidence of how people around the world gain from daily news inputs via email, here's a quotation received today re the Chinese government's investment in well-being.  

"After three decades of strong economic growth, China is now focusing on the well-being of her 1.3 billion citizens.  In the National People's Congress in March 2011, "well-being" became a keyword as many representatives argued that the central government should take the well-being of the people, rather than economic growth, as the highest priority."  SO & ZHANG, 2011 

This came via a Positive Psychology News email update.  This is a free resource of information available to all who happen by.  In the true spirit of the Internet, there are no strings attached and no payment involved.   

How's that for another example of the power of 'an Internet that can be seen as stretching and loosening the membranes that traditionally divide cultures, languages, sciences, religions, nations, and races'?  HOUSTON, 2000 

Congratulations to China for making the well-being of its people 'the highest priority'.  Watch this space ...



"Set your heart on doing good.  Do it over and over again, and you will be filled with joy.  A fool is happy until his mischief turns against him.  And a good man may suffer until his goodness flowers."
- The Dhammapada


SEE A WIRED WORLD for more ... 


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