Freedom Digital Library


Civilization and Beyond


A Metaconscious Mosaic
by J. Harmon Grahn

The essay series, Civilization and Beyond, has been prompted by thoughtful consideration of the human predicament on planet Earth, and how we residents "on the ground" might approach solving it. The Author believes he has discovered a generic approach which, if put into widespread practice by many individuals, may make a significant contribution toward ameliorating the very serious predicament in which all planetary residents find ourselves. Cutting to the punch line, in essence this approach ammounts to fomenting metaconsciousness. It is hoped the conscientious Reader will delve deeper to discover what this means, and why.

I would like to dedicate A Metaconscious Mosaic with profound gratitude, to Daniel Quinn, without whose inspiring insights this project would never have been undertaken. In response to A Pact With the Devil, one of the essays in the series, Dan wrote to me as follows:

Date: Friday, October 15, 2004 11:40
Subject: Re: An idea - and request for feedback


I certainly endorse your idea of fomenting metaconsciousness, though I can't say with complete certainty that I understand what you mean by metaconsciousness. No matter, I think I get the general idea.

As for your latest essay, I think it's admirable. Not everything in it is something I would say or could agree with, but why should it? Wayne C. Booth wrote: "To be fully human means in part to think one's own thoughts, to reach a point at which, whether one's ideas are different from or similar to other men's, they are one's own." You have obviously reached that point. I'm nothing but glad to see someone take my ideas and run with them in his own direction!

Best wishes,


Now this I regard as high praise – and a perfect example of fomenting metaconsciousness. If this can be encouraged, and repeated multifold, whereby many conscious, intelligent, and creative individuals express, as Daniel Quinn has, "nothing but glad[ness] to see someone take my ideas and run with them in his own direction!" – then we shall see the proliferation of metaconsciousness far and wide among humanity; with results, possibly, that may eventually surpass our most extravagant hopes. The essence of the idea is not that a large and reverent congregation should sit at the feet of one particularly conscious, intelligent, and creative individual, but that many conscious, intelligent, and creative individuals should share their creativity freely, enthusiastically, and joyfully, creating a veritable cascade of expanding, proliferating, exponentially multiplying consciousness, intelligence, and creativity. This, I submit, is how metaconsciousness is born!

The ideas developed in the Civilization and Beyond series of essays are presented in the order, and in the way in which they first occurred to the Author; which is not necessarily the most effective way of sharing them with other minds. The first eight essays are thus more in the way of "field notes" than they are an effective presentation of the ideas developed therein.

Accordingly, A Metaconscious Mosaic consists instead, of a mosaic of key ideas, each given its own page, and each of which relate to the others in multiple ways, and may be encountered and read in any order. It is in the nature of a mosaic that the "picture" does not emerge at once, but incrementally, as pieces are added and fit into place. Therefore, it matters not where one begins; the "picture" will emerge eventually, if one is persistent in "putting the pieces in place," in whatever order one encounters them.

Each page in A Metaconscious Mosaic is linked to this page, and to others relevant to its particular content; and as well to the source(s) of the page, and via footnotes to ancillary sources. Links in the mosaic pages, are rendered in a blue cast; visited links in a somewhat darker blue, rather than in the customary red that identifies links throughout much of the FDL – with the exception of this singular page, on which visited links are represented in dark red. These measures, it is hoped, will assist the Reader in keeping track of "where s/he's been," and "where s/he's going," in the course of exploring A Metaconscious Mosaic.

Following is an outline of the mosaic pages, arranged in an order sensible to the Author, although by no means in the only order in which they might reasonably be arranged. The intersted Reader is invited to start anywhere, and follow the embedded links wherever they may lead. If you would like to start with a summary overview, you might begin your exploration at The Bottom Line. Wherever you begin, may your metaconsciousness be richly expanded!


               Civilization and Beyond
                A Metaconscious Mosaic

 1. Existence

 2. Mythology

 3. The Gods

    3.1. Consciousness, Intelligence,
         and Creativity

    3.2. Metaconsciousness

         3.2.1. Human Metaconsciousness

         3.2.2. Metaconsciousness of the Gods

 4. Civilization

    4.1. History

    4.2. Leavers & Takers

    4.3. Pre-emptive Force

    4.4. Sovereignty

 5. Beyond Civilization

    5.1. The Tribe

    5.2. Walking Away

    5.3. Fomenting Metaconsciousness

    5.4. Prospects for Change:
         Good News, and Bad News

         5.4.1. The Bad News

         5.4.2. The Good News

    5.5. After the Crash

    5.6. Rebuilding the Leaver World

         5.6.1. The Free Energy Myth

         5.6.2. The Peak Oil Myth

 6. The Bottom Line

This essay is followed by a sequel, More About Metaconsciousness, 2/5/05.


Civilization and Beyond


  1. Civilization and Savagery – 5/25/04;

  2. Beyond Civilization or The Killer Meme – 6/20/04;

  3. The Tribal Ideal – 7/2/04;

  4. Leavers and Takers – 8/6/04;

  5. In the Hands of the Gods – 8/18/04.

  6. The Gods & the Law of Life – 9/9/04.

  7. The Metaconsciousness Myth – 9/22/04.

  8. A Pact With the Devil – 10/14/04.

  9. A Metaconscious Mosaic – 10/27/04.

  10. More About Metaconsciousness, Part I – 2/5/05.

  11. More About Metaconsciousness, Part II – 3/20/05.

Civilization and Beyond copyright 2004, 2005 by J. Harmon Grahn. Copying and redistribution, in whole or in part, are permitted in any medium provided this notice is included.


Civilization and Beyond