Proceedings of the 51st Annual Meeting of the ISSS - 2007, Tokyo, Japan, Papers: 51st Annual Meeting

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Transception: The Dharma of Evolutionary Guidance Media

Dana Klisanin

Abstract


We have at the present moment, communication technology that can be as powerful, in a creative sense, as the Atomic bomb was in the destructive sense. And remarkably, our children are some of its most fluent and ardent manipulators. Unfortunately, the stories and games being created for them are encouraging many of the values that contribute to social inequality and environment destruction. It is our challenge, as their stewards, to design communication technologies that will enable them to play and learn, while offering them real-life lessons in compassion. Systems scholar, Joanna Macy, presented the similarities between the systems view of reality and core Buddhist teachings in her groundbreaking book Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory: The Dharma of Natural Systems – using the parallels Macy demonstrated as a catalyst, this paper introduces transception – cyberception infused with compassion – considered a key component in evolutionary guidance media. The development of evolutionary guidance media was one of the final areas of research supervised by the late pioneer of evolutionary guidance systems, Bela H. Banathy. Specific examples of transception are presented through introducing key components of Project Milky Way, an experiment currently underway that was encouraged by Banathy as a means to test the theory of evolutionary guidance media in action. The experiment is designed such that it will allow the most privileged children (generally those with computers) the opportunity to share their wealth with those less fortunate. And, as Negroponte’s One Laptop Per Child initiative takes off, these same children will be able to communicate with children in the developing countries. Through transception, the children will be able to play, learn, and compassionately work together to become part of the solution to social injustice and environmental degradation. The paper concludes by suggesting that a generation of children who have come-of-age with transception at their fingertips would be better able to face the challenges they have inherited and more capable of making decisions that include concern for all beings, rather than those based on a NIMBY (i.e., not-in-my-backyard) mentality.

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