Tony Gowing presents ‘The Up River Story’
This video was originally the first introductory video on our homepage, but has since been replaced by presented by biologist Jeremy Griffith. Tony’s video is still an impressive introduction so we have made it available here.
The Transcript of this video
Tony Gowing: All the problems we’re experiencing on this planet, aside from natural phenomenon, are caused by us humans. They are caused by ‘the human condition’, and, astonishing a claim as it is, it is that underlying, core issue of our troubled human condition that the World Transformation Movement (WTM) website () actually addresses and solves. (The explanation of the human condition is presented in .)
A powerful way to introduce the human condition and its solution is The Up River Story. Imagine a fast flowing river full of people drowning, and on the banks of the river there are people trying to save them—linking arms to try to reach them; some even try to find a narrower section of the river where they can be more effective. But as much as everyone tries, more and more people are being swept downstream.
After a while, a few of the rescuers begin to leave the river bank, which prompts the others to shout out, ‘Come back! We need your help’—but those leaving reply, ‘This is ridiculous; we’re going upstream to find the son-of-a-bitch who’s pushing all these people in!’
Obviously, the people being swept downstream symbolise all the problems facing the world; all the wars, refugee crises, polarised politics, depression, greed, famine, environmental devastation—you name it. And the rescuers represent governments trying to make better laws or policies to cope; or charities, like the Red Cross helping the homeless; or religions helping the suffering.
But the point of the story is that trying to pull people out of the river is only dealing with the symptoms of the problem. Someone has to go upstream and address and solve the source of the problem, which is us. We are the problem. We are the ones who are egocentric, selfish, greedy, materialistic, fake, angry as hell. That is us—our destructively behaved, so-called, human condition—and it’s that underlying issue that really has to be addressed and fixed.
Some where, some time, some day, some one had to go upstream to the source of all the problems—address and solve the human condition—and someone has. In his 2016 book FREEDOM: The End Of The Human Condition, Australian biologist Jeremy Griffith presents the breakthrough biological explanation of the human condition—and that explanation of our divisive and destructive lives is so redeeming and healing it ends the human condition forever, which is why it has been described as ‘the book that saves the world’. (This comment, which is quoted on the cover of FREEDOM, is from Professor Harry Prosen, former President of the Canadian Psychiatric Association, who says in his Introduction to FREEDOM that ‘I have no doubt FREEDOM provides the holy grail of insight we have sought for the psychological rehabilitation of the human race. This is the book we have been waiting for, it is the book that saves the world.’)
You see, after everything I’ve been saying about us humans, we appear to be devils—that we destroy everything we touch, that we’re just a virus on the planet—but this book explains that despite appearances, we humans are not just good, but actually the heroes of the story of life on Earth!
And the fabulous significance of this understanding that lifts the burden of guilt from humans is that it finally brings to an end an underlying insecurity about our self-worth—and since it’s that insecurity that’s been causing all our frustrated, retaliatory and defensive egocentric, competitive, selfish, and angry behaviour, by ending that insecurity it ends all that upset behaviour and transforms the human race. That is why solving the human condition has been described as the holy grail of the whole human journey of conscious thought and enquiry. This is the great breakthrough that the human race has lived in hope and faith would one day be found. That is the significance of this phenomenal book FREEDOM that goes ‘up river’ and solves the human condition.