A Quest for Cosmic Identity
“The cosmos is all that is, or ever was or ever will be”
- Carl Sagan
When the Voyager 1 probe was 3.7 billion miles from Earth, Carl Sagan made a request. He asked NASA to turn it around to snap a quick photograph. The result was a faint image of Earth surrounded by the vastness of space. The late astronomer then used this picture to share his own reflections on what it meant, “.............The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Our posturing’s, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.” So then the obvious question that comes to the mind is; if the universe is so large, and if we are not at its center, and if nothing we do matters in some objective sense, then what the point of our existence is?
In fact, the vastness of the universe reminds us about our shared reality, and that everything around us is deeply connected, and these connections augment the efficiency of the infallible cosmic plans. Our cosmic identity surpasses boundaries and classifications. The underlying chemical elements that create planets, stars, and solar systems are precisely the same ones that have created our bodies, brains, and all else that we perceive. In her book — ‘A God that Could Be Real: Spirituality, Science and the Future of Our Planet’, Nancy Abraham says;” “We have an urgent need to identify as the cosmic beings we actually are with a huge role in the cosmos. We all have an identity and what happens when people don’t use it is a terrible waste and we endanger ourselves,”
Tesla, Boring Company and the Hyper Loop, Open AI, 4 D and 5 D Printing, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR) is forging new dimensions in innovation and creativity. While, Elon Musk’s Space X and Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic are in pursuit of purposeful exploration of space as an ultimate expression of the human desire to push boundaries and stand at the pinnacle of human species’ achievements, the reality company ‘The Heart of Europe’ is creating new underwater homes combining luxury living with breath-taking vistas of coral reefs and colourful ocean creatures,. In India, Punjab students invent AI-Enabled tech that predicts the rains, down to the minute. Narayana Peesapaty, has created an innovative edible cutlery, mainly made out of sorghum. Prem Kale, quit school for his passion and build a wooden bicycle that ‘Grows’ With Kids’. Companies like Biocon and Infosys have demonstrated how unleashing the power of entrepreneurship and innovation can bring multiple benefits to the country and usher in a better life for millions around the world.
Unfortunately, much of this work happens in silos and there is a need to break down these barriers and encourage a unified approach. The greatest learning of 2020 was the awesome display of human ingenuity across the globe, unifying to defeat the common virus. Thus, we have now the Morderna and Pizer innovating, experimenting and stabilizing the vaccine while India will be the home for companies across the globe for production of vaccine to beat the pandemic. 2020 will be remembered, as a year in which the entire humanity galvanized the power of the human resources enabled technology hopefully to achieve results to overcome this grave threat to humanity. However, we must remember, that this is not the first occasion when large masses of humanity have galvanised into action. If we look back in history, we find large armies of people battling with one another for territorial and petty religious domination. All the resources of science, technology and manpower were deployed for causing death and destruction on humongous scale. The World Wars I and II led to loss of millions and total annihilation of many countries. During the post war period, as the devastating effect nuclear arms race became evident some sanity was restored and a global nuclear tech control mechanism was evolved.
One of the most successful global actions was coordinated and successfully implemented, when the Ozone hole was detected over the Antarctica region in the 1985. Root cause was located through joint efforts and all countries came together in controlling Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) production to tackle the menace. Another unique example of adversaries, USA and Russia, seamlessly collaborating towards ISS Space Ship which serves as a home where crews of astronauts and cosmonauts live, is worth mentioning. The Large Hadrone Collider (LCH) in Switzerland representing a large-scale, worldwide scientific cooperation project is another exceptional example of joint global effort continuing over decades. The LHC allows scientists to reproduce the conditions that existed within a billionth of a second after the Big Bang by colliding beams of high-energy protons or ions at colossal speeds, close to the speed of light.
Welcome to the emergence of ‘Human Resource as the 6th Element’– the missing piece. This is the emergence of ‘Human Resource’ organized and equipped with latest tech and tools, which is now evolving as the powerful 6th element fortified with the intellect, spirit and capacity to challenge the wild dance of elements and beat them to ensure survival and even progress.
We must be aware that we are the product of the five universal elements. Panchbhuta or Five Elements. Our whole cosmic quest of the world and beyond starts from the point of panchabhuta (five elements) which then manifests in an enjoining manner to form the life force and then, later, those five elements disintegrate to ensure a celestial traverse at the Paramanu (atom) level. As the Vedic theory of consciousness suggests a process of evolution, wherein there is an urge to evolve into higher forms, which have a better grasp of the nature of the universe. It is this power to impact the cosmic elements for survival and sustenance that elevates this vast array of HR of sharp, smart, high-tech legions spread across the world to the elemental status both at universal and the cosmic horizons. We shall not fall prey and submit to the cosmic dance of destruction but have the potential and promise to challenge their interventions to the extent that they do not damage or destroy our habitat. And hence we have already occupied the seat at the high table of universal elemental frame at least to the extent of our solar system.
The journey continues as Voyager probes continue their journey beyond the solar system, we must say that now we are trying to access the threshold of the Cosmos which lies beyond the human reach. The Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI), an organization, homes to more than 100 scientists who conduct grant-funded research addressing questions concerning the existence, evolution, and prevalence of life in the universe. The Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO) established at NASA applies planetary science to address the hazards of NEO’s (Near Earth Objects) orbiting near the Earth’s orbit. NASA is also constantly engaged with students both from higher education as well as schools (grade-5th – 12th) and educators through their various educational activities, internships, fellowships, contests, seminars, exhibits and simulations to educate and prepare the next generations for the worlds beyond. Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has launched Samwad with students as part of its outreach programme. However, witnessing the vast intellectual capabilities and the collective power of inquiry, creativity, innovation the human resources possess in the universe, these strategies and interventions are just a drop in the ocean. To understand the universe and beyond, to gain a respectful and legitimate seat as the 6th Element at the cosmic table, all the seven billion souls of the earth have to cooperatively work towards evolving the whole range of interventions right from asteroid defence to designing astral space craft travelling at the speed of light, to making a difference by living our lives in a more conscious and cosmic friendly manner. There is a huge scope to collectively develop a plan to harness intellectual capabilities, boundless energy and endless curiosity, foster innovative models, methods and approaches, partner with various stakeholders and agencies and solve the challenges presented to us. The Cosmos beckons us – do we have the courage, gumption, imagination and faith in creating harmonious human organizations to respond to the challenge? Human resource has the potential but we must elevate ourselves to the prerequisite level of consciousness - after all we are the 6th Element ………….in quest of the cosmic identity!! Aren’t we?
As the famous author of Space Odyssey says, Arthur C. Clarke, “The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible”
Excerpts from the proposed book – Human Resource – The Sixth Element
A Quest for Cosmic Identity ©
Authored by - Dr. Vijay Page & Dr. Farida Virani