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The book focuses on the way that each nation's past clouds its responses to current events - leading to narrow nationalism, cover-ups, fear, strange deals and actions that don't necessarily lead to the best outcomes. This creates a conflict between official policy and the intuitive knowings of the collective, public unconscious. It's as if today's crises expose this internal conflict - so addressing the internal conflict can assist in resolving today's crises.
The author proposes that a deep-level agenda for the 21st Century has already kicked in, and defining events expose this agenda and face us with big choices, leading us toward a necessary world truth process. A process of uncovering a way forward that is acceptable to everyone, worldwide.
The book is about the hidden feelings of nations and peoples, the human side of the globalisation process, the healing and community-building process the world needs to go through, the future, and ways the world can move forward from here. It contains potted histories of four nations - Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq and Britain - showing how nations get hurt and what they can do about it.
Loaded with insights into today's events and the hidden dynamics behind them, the book suggests new ways of conducting international relations based on process more than policy. We do not know what the future holds, or even exactly what we must do, yet we must engage with the prompts that events confront us with, using them as guides for current and future action - at people-level and on a global level.
Readable and engaging, this is a page-turner which will help make you aware that there's much more to today's news than meets the eye. There's far more we can do about the future than we normally think - or are told. It's about defining moments, the gulf between government policy and deeper human feelings, and giving greater credence to these strangely knowing intuitions than we have done so far.
It ranges through nationalism, globalisation, collective psychology, civil wars, Iraq, terrorism, cultural conflict, imperialism, AIDS, democracy and hosts of other itchy questions.
This book has a strange way of confirming things many readers already half-know, adding revealing insights on top. It's for anyone concerned about the state of the world, whether you're 'just a face in the crowd', an observer of current affairs or a policy-planner 'at the top'.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
I have been involved with history, international relations, inner growth and peace-and-reconciliation ever since I was young - ever since I was beaten up for refusing to take sides in the Protestant-Catholic rivalries in my then home-city of Liverpool in the early 1960s.
As a young man I was involved in flower power and student politics (LSE), embarking on a path of searching, study, social engagement and community leadership that I've followed ever since.
As a teacher, writer, webmaster, adviser and educationalist, I have struggled with and ruminated over conflict between peoples, and schisms between politics and reality, seeking solutions to a Big Question: why will the world not resolve its problems more willingly and constructively? What will make humanity wake up to its situation before it is too late?
These questions are more pressing today than three decades ago. It has gone from Vietnam to Iraq and the threat of crisis to their actuality. I've been finding clues from professors, Tibetan lamas, visionaries, aid-workers, people in the street, refugees, political commentators and allsorts, but none possessed a whole answer, only a viewpoint.
I don't have a neat Grand Plan to propose - and as the human aspect of globalisation takes its course, grand plans become increasingly implausible and viewpoints diverge and proliferate. Yet current events and the deeper questions they expose seem to me to reveal answers and clarify ways forward - but to see them we must 'think outside the box', particularly our own box.
This book outlines what I have seen. A visionary book with a panoramic view, it is nevertheless anchored in actual events and issues of recent years and practical strategies for the future. Around the Millennium we unconsciously crossed a great divide where the past and the future met, and the future became an increasing cause of our present situation.
I propose that hidden feelings voiced fitfully by the world public contain the necessary clues and solutions. It's a question of translating these into action and official policy. We're heading for a crunch between policy and public intuition - between people and large organisations.
This is not just a question of voter democracy, but something much deeper - the nature of our new world civilisation. It concerns the shifting centre of gravity of world public awareness, of bottom-line human values and the intensifying grating between current events, popular feeling and global policy. We're in for an 'interesting time' in coming decades!
For me, this book represents a summation of all I have learned in my quest to resolve the psychological and spiritual questions of my own life, of insights gained from the social and educational projects I have created and run, of my studies of history and world affairs, and of the many social, political and ecological issues and people I have been involved with.
It is a book of personally-sourced insights, yet the sheer number of people who tell me I speak for them implies there's something more going on here. My lack of affiliation to political parties, economic vested interests, academic schools of thought or popular movements allows me a rare freedom of insight and expression few better-known commentators possess.
I'm not into lambasting politicians, corporations or any other of the usual targets, and I'm not into negative criticism - whether at the top or bottom of thee ladder, we're all in the same boat and all responsible. I'm on the side of sanity, humanity and longterm thinking.
I hope this book, whatever your viewpoint or background, adds something to your understanding of the enormity, and the concealed simplicity, of our world's problems today. May it be like a blast of multivitamins in a time which is rather under-nourishing as far as constructive solutions are concerned.
Since then, he has been involved in Buddhism, mountaineering, childbirth, the book trade, three educational ventures, aid, community and inter-cultural projects, counselling, teaching and public speaking. He is the author of several books and creator of many websites, known for his original ideas and deep and wide perspective. He lives with his family in Glastonbury, England.
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