Charles Eisenstein delivers his readers a fundamental blow to their conception of the world in his book The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible. He begins by outlaying the framework for which modern humankind abides by in a series of questions that are considered “life’s most basic”. Eisenstein explains how current worldview thinking is oriented about an individualistic, materialistic and evolutionary mindset. He argues how humans relate to the world currently by thinking we are all separate beings created to serve a self interested mass of neuropsychology also known as the brain which dictates our thoughts and behavior. Following true scientific form, this worldview breaks life down into the simplest of explanations. Unfortunately for readers, this view may be incredibly pessimistic as it highlights the destruction of nature, widespread poverty and other major problems which seem to be increasing in scope as time passes.
He suggests a new order of civilization which places a heavy emphasis on the interconnectedness of the universe. Much like the theory of collective consciousness, Eisenstein asserts that your being takes part in everyone else’s being and that this idea goes way farther than mere interdependence. He also claims that for a successful remodeling of old civilization to occur we must consider that everyone has a unique gift and that the purpose of life is to use these gifts to help others. He believes every act is very important to the cosmos as a whole and that we are “fundamentally unseperate from each other”. Obviously these ideas transcend current understanding and are quite counterintuitive ways of thinking.
He acknowledges several times that there is an element of idealism in this theory which can only be anchored by faith in other humans. Faith that others will act for the common good of the collective as opposed to the individual; the individual which Eisenstein claims does not technically exist. When humans can overcome this natural desire to serve the self, Eisenstein argues, we will begin to live life in a more pleasurable, fulfilling and less destructive life.
When I read the first chapter I was immediately captivated by his accuracy of the “separate world”. I thought he articulated precisely what mainstream society has been preaching for years and how it will eventually ruin the planet and ourselves. It may not be a cheery reality, but it is still the reality of how this world will collapse eventually if we continue to operate under the same set of assumptions and beliefs which govern societal priorities presently. His major suggestions for a new society also resonated with me as I hold the belief that everyone has a unique ability or gift to share with the world for its benefit. In fact, I thought that most of his characteristics were valid and if put into practice would increase the happiness and cleanliness of the world exponentially.