For the lines which goes from egocentric to ethnocentric to worldcentric, mainly the cognitive (view) and moral (care), our leading collective edge seems to rapidly widen and deepen within the worldcentric.
Widening circles of care
For the care line, we see that…
Human rights is a given in the mainstream, at least in most modern western societies (with the exception of Bush, pushing ethnocentric/amber views to erode some of the worldcentric/orange focus on human rights, using fear as a driver.)
A concern for nonhuman species, ecosystems, the Earth as a whole, and future generations is emerging on a larger scale, with climate change and other well-publicized issues as a catalyst.
From we being all human beings alive today, it slowly grows to includes we as the Earth as a whole and future generations.
Moral line fed by the cognitive
And the widening circles of care and compassion is fed by the widening circles of the cognitive line. We know, from science and daily experience, that the Earth as a whole is a single seamless system, and that our own immediate health and well-being is intimately connected with the health and well-being of the larger social and ecological systems.
In today’s world, we cannot afford to not be concerned with the health and well-being of the larger whole, because it impacts us so directly locally.
As these circles widen, there is also a corresponding maturing and deepening coming from lived experience and new information. We become more familiar what it means, collectively and individually, to live from these widening circles of view and care.
Widening into the cosmoscentric
Another leading edge here is within the worldcentric, from the gaiacentric to the cosmoscentric phase. With the public interest in Star Trek and other sci-fi stories, and the public interest and participation in discovering planets and SETI (through PlanetQuest and SETI@home), this phase of the worldcentric is rapidly becoming more real.
For now, since we haven’t made contact with any galactic neighbors, it is mostly the cognitive line exploring the cosmoscentric. If there is contact one way or another, the moral line will be included.
And how will we react if there is contact? It will of course depend on the type of contact: detecting a distant signal will be very different from initiating a dialogue, which will be very different from – the far more unlikely – direct physical contact.
And it will also depend on where we are at the care line of development. At ethnocentric, we are more likely to react with suspicion and fear. At the deepening worldcentric, with interest and curiosity (although hopefully not naively).
Already now, by exploring the cognitive cosmoscentric through science and the Universe Story, and the cognitive and moral cosmoscentric through sci-fi, there are some benefits of the cosmocentric.
It helps unseat any assumptions of absolutes in who we are and how we view the world. It helps us open up for a sense of connection with and belonging to the universe as a whole. It helps us open up for a sense of awe of the enormity and beauty of the universe. It helps us open for how unbelievable and astonishing it is that anything exists at all.
Maybe most importantly, widening beyond the Earthcentric makes it easier for us to see the Earth as one small intimate whole. A miracle of life floating in the immensity of space.
It helps us deepen our care and concern for all of us – all humans, all beings, all ecosystems, the Earth as a whole, future generations.
(And then there is of course the kosmocentric, of realizing selflessness and that Existence has a center everywhere and nowhere.)