In This Issue
Editorial: Minds Toward the Future by Tom Lombardo
Online Course on the Virtues: Tolerance
New Book: How Universities Can Help Create a Wiser World by Nicholas Maxwell
New Video: The Psychology of the Future
New Video: Science Fiction
New Video: Contemporary Trends
Living Wisely by Lee Beaumont
Wisdom Research: University of Chicago
Wisdom Page & Futurodyssey Archives
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Tom Lombardo
Director of The Wisdom Page & the Center for Future Consciousness 

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Wisdom Page Updates
February, 2014

This Month's Highlights  




Included in this month's issue of the Wisdom Page Updates are:  

  • Editorial: Minds Toward the Future by Tom Lombardo
  • Virtue of the Month: Tolerance
  • New Book: How Universities Can Help Create a Wiser World by Nicholas Maxwell
  • New Video: The Psychology of the Future - Flourishing in the Flow of Evolution
  • New Video: Science Fiction - The Mythology of the Future
  • New Video: Contemporary Trends and Theories and Paradigms of the Future
  • New Book Review: Sacred Economics - Reviewed by Lee Beaumont
  • Living Wisely by Lee Beaumont
  • Wisdom Research at the University of Chicago    
  • Wisdom Page and Futurodyssey Archives 


Minds Toward the Future 
by Tom Lombardo   

This fall I wrote an article for Educause--a journal on technology and higher education. The article appeared in the November/December 2013 issue. Below is an expanded version of this article.

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Minds Toward the Future: 

Evolving the Wise Cyborg 




Human Reality and the Ubiquity of Change


Alvin Toffler, author of Future Shock and numerous other well-known books on the future, stated that everyone is a futurist. We all think about the future, imagining and evaluating possibilities, setting goals, making plans, and implementing strategies for realizing our preferable or desirable futures. Educators deliberate and debate the future of education, both regarding where we see things heading, based on observable trends, as well as where we think education should be heading, based on our educational values and ideals.


Instead of focusing upon some particular technology, strategy, or pedagogical system and its potential impact, for better or worse, on the future of education, I am going to outline a general philosophy for the future of education, one that includes technology but places it within a more expansive and holistic framework. This philosophy identifies a preferable future direction for education, but realistically anchors itself to certain fundamental features of contemporary affairs, human psychology, and more broadly, the human condition.


In a nutshell, our central ideal for the future of education should be to facilitate the development of technologically empowered wisdom-wisdom being synonymous with what I call "heightened future consciousness"--thus enabling our students to flourish and realize a good future within the evolutionary, accelerative flow of human reality. 


To explain in more detail and depth this proposal, I'll begin with the reality of the human condition. We live in a world of pervasive and accelerative change: All the major dimensions of human reality, from the scientific and technological to the environmental, social, economic, and psychological are in transformation, and based on various long term historical and scientific studies, the rate of change appears to be accelerating. As some argue, evolution is accelerating. 


Though many of us may feel overpowered, confused, and stressed out by the pace of change in our modern world, and may fight against it, longing for the "good old days" when things did not move so fast, our scientific understanding indicates that evolution and change are fundamental to the universe, and human reality is a natural expression of this overall dynamic trajectory of things; in fact, we are the cutting-edge architects of the multi-faceted wave of global transformation. 


We may view global accelerative change as something happening around us--as an external phenomenon that we have to contend with--yet the life stream of individual consciousness is itself transformative: Each of us moves through developmental stages, grows through learning and self-reflection, and even undergoes periodic shifts in self-identity, both professional and personal, as we progress through life. The depth, span, and complexity of growth and change within the individual conscious human mind seems to be evolving through human history.


We are the architects of global evolution and change because we are intrinsically conscious agents of evolution and change; it is built into our psychology. 


There would be no need to think about the future, if today were basically the same as yesterday. But if we can predict with some level of certainty anything about the future, it is that it will be different from the past, and surprisingly so. And it is the change that inevitably comes that pushes us into considering the future, for if we don't, we will find ourselves with skills and mindsets that are irrelevant, if not counter-productive, to the challenges and issues that come at us.


Being realistic about the future, it is better to thoughtfully guide the multi-dimensional processes of evolution and change, including those within ourselves, than to resist or deny them. And for a variety of psychological reasons, it is better to be informed and proactive agents guiding change, than to be passive adapters reacting to change. We should take this to heart, as educators, when we consider not only how we will guide the future of education but what capacities we should strive to strengthen in our students as well. 

Read the Entire Article

Virtue of the Month
Continuing our online course on the virtues, this month's virtue is tolerance. Tolerance preserves the dignity of each person as it accommodates and explores a rich diversity in ideas, cultures, and beliefs through civil discourse and dialogue. Tolerance is a prerequisite to exercising the liberties of free speech and freedom of religion. While tolerance is essential in the realm of opinion, and has no place in the realm of fact.


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The course includes Instructions for contacting the instructor. In addition, the Wikiversity platform encourages your participation in improving the course.  Comments on each page are welcome on the accompanying  "Talk" page, accessed via the "Discuss" tab.

We want to hear from you.

If you are interested in participating in a forum of active students to discuss assignments and share your thoughts, please let us know and we will work to provide a space for that. Also, we would like to be able to provide conscientious students a completion certificate at the end of the course, but we have not yet decided how best to assess completion. What are your ideas?

We certainly hope you continue to enjoy this tour of the virtues.

Leland Beaumont

New Published Book by Nicholas Maxwell

How Universities Can Help Create a Wiser World: 
The Urgent Need for an Academic Revolution 

As Nicholas Maxwell, member of the Wisdom Page Advisory Board, states, "In the book I argue that, in order to create a wiser world, it is essential that we bring about a revolution in universities around the world so that they become rationally devoted to helping us solve problems of living, above all our grave global problems.  The emphasis of this book is on how and why transforming universities in this way really would make a difference, for the better, in the great world beyond academe."
New Video: The Psychology of the Future - Flourishing in the Flow of Evolution
by Tom Lombardo


As part of my work for the Center for Future Consciousness, this last month I created three new educational videos that can be accessed on You Tube. Here they are. 



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We create a good future--defined as flourishing in the flow of evolution--through the heightening of future consciousness, which is achieved by developing a core set of character virtues, most notably and centrally wisdom. 


This three-part video is an introduction to the psychology of heightened future consciousness and wisdom, covering all the basic psychological processes, such as emotion, motivation, thinking, creativity, and the self, involved in future consciousness, as well as the key character virtues, such as self-responsibility, hope, courage, and tenacity, involved in wisdom and creating a good future.  


Watch Video


New Video
Science Fiction: 
The Mythology of the Future
by Tom Lombardo


Science fiction is the most popular and influential form of contemporary thinking about the future; it generates holistic future consciousness, engaging our imagination, thoughts, emotions, values, and senses. 


This three-part video provides a concise introductory history of science fiction, from Shelley and Wells to Vinge and Baxter, highlighting key authors, books, topics, and themes, and encompassing both literature and cinema. The strengths and values of science fiction as the most influential form of contemporary future consciousness are described. 


New Video
Contemporary Trends and Theories and Paradigms of the Future
by Tom Lombardo


This three-part video covers general global trends, issues, and themes in the 20th and early 21st Centuries, highlighting the accelerative thrust of change over the last one hundred years, and optimistic versus pessimistic interpretations of the global transformation. 


The video provides a concise review of theories, trends, and possibilities in science, technology, the environment, space exploration, globalization, economics, education, the family, psychology, culture and ethics, and religion, and closes with an integrative summary and prognosis for the future of humanity.



New Book Review

Sacred Economics: Money, Gift, and Society in the Age of Transition

by Charles Eisenstein

Reviewed by Lee Beaumont


This book is full of good ideas for transforming the obsolete elements of our economic systems into a truly modern economy. Author Charles Eisenstein begins this bold and well written book examining why innovation, labor saving devices, and all of the earth's bounty fail to deliver prosperity to most of the people.

Living Wisely 
by Lee Beaumont

What are the steps that any of us can take, starting now, to live more wisely? Lee Beaumont, one of the Wisdom Page Advisory Board members, provides a systematic and highly thoughtful approach to this question. As part of the Global Circle Initiative. 

Wisdom Research: 
University of Chicago


Recent essays and research reports on the Wisdom Research at the University of Chicago website highlight such diverse topics as wisdom and education, servant leadership, the art of presence, gratitude, Plato's Symposium, and character strengths and virtues in positive psychology. One can read the essays and articles and subscribe to the regular newsletter on the website

Futurodyssey &
Wisdom Page Updates:
Newsletters and Archives

Beginning last fall (2012), I began publishing two newsletters: the revitalized and redesigned
Wisdom Page Updates and 
Futurodyssey (the monthly publication of the
Center for Future Consciousness).  So readers can view earlier issues, both newsletters now have
Archive Pages. View the Wisdom Page Updates Archive Page; view the Futurodyssey Archive Page. The reader can subscribe to the Wisdom Page Updates on The Wisdom Page Contact Page; the reader can subscribe to the
Futurodyssey newsletter by going to the CFC website 

That's it for this month:

An editorial on wisdom, evolution, the future, and education; a new book by Nicholas Maxwell; tolerance as the virtue of the month; new videos on heightened future consciousness, science fiction, and contemporary trends and futurist theories; living wisely; a new book review on Sacred Economics; and new writings and research reported by the University of Chicago Wisdom center. Special thanks to Lee Beaumont for providing a number of contributions to this issue. 


Tom Lombardo