3. ABOUT THE WORLD TRANSFORMATION MOVEMENT
WTM FAQ 3.17 How was the WTM persecuted for daring to address the subject of the human condition? / What is the summary of the successful legal action Jeremy Griffith, Tim Macartney-Snape and the WTM undertook to defend their right to exist?
As is described and evidenced in our essay, all new ideas in science have typically been resisted by those who have become attached to the prevailing way of thinking, or paradigm. However, dealing as it does with the until now unexplained and thus historically unbearably confronting and depressing subject of our species’ corrupted or ‘fallen’ human condition (at least not explained in a fully accountable, biologically truthful way, as it is now), no new idea in science was likely to meet as much initial resistance from the orthodoxy as the arrival of understanding of the human condition—even though this redeeming and psychologically healing understanding ends the need to fear confrontation with the corrupted state of the human condition. Clearly then, when this most sought after holy grail of science—as the renowned Harvard biologist E.O. Wilson said, ‘The human condition is the most important frontier of the natural sciences’ (Consilience, 1998, p.298 of 374), and ‘There is no grail more elusive or precious in the life of the mind than the key to understanding the human condition’ (The Social Conquest of Earth, 2012, p.1)—is found, this historic resistance means a crisis point in the human journey occurs where we all have to be scrupulously conscientious in maintaining the democratic principles of freedom of expression, or this greatest of all breakthroughs will likely be obliterated by persecution.
And in fact, it wasn’t long after the launch of this, now absolutely desperately needed, psychologically relieving understanding of the human condition, that resistance to it began in earnest.
A summary of the main events is provided below, but to briefly describe what occurred: Jeremy Griffith’s first book Free: The End Of The Human Condition was published in 1988 and by the early 1990s a vicious campaign of persecution, vilification and misrepresentation was underway against him, those supporting his work and the World Transformation Movement (formerly known as the Foundation for Humanity’s Adulthood). In 1995 this campaign went public with a defamatory nationwide Four Corners television program and a defamatory Sydney Morning Herald full-page feature article about the WTM, published by Australia’s two biggest, left-wing (dogmatic, pseudo-idealistic, dishonest, ‘let’s pretend there’s no human condition and the world should just be ideal’) media organisations, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and Fairfax Media respectively (you can read more about the extreme danger of pseudo idealism in Jeremy’s booklet ). Produced by a fundamentalist minister of the Uniting Church, these publications sought to stigmatise the WTM as a dangerous anti-social cult and Jeremy as its deluded, megalomaniac leader, forcing the WTM to undertake what legal experts described at the time as the biggest defamation case in Australia’s history. Ultimately, both publications were completely discredited by a series of public apologies and official rulings that found what was said was ‘inaccurate’, ‘partial’, ‘unbalanced’, ‘untrue’, lacked ‘fairness’, not produced ‘in good faith’ and was ‘not justified’, with the ABC being ordered to pay almost $1.5 million in damages and costs. It was clearly, as magazine summarised, a ‘hatchet job’.
The following is a summary of the major events in the WTM’s 16-year successful battle to ‘clear our name’ since the campaign of persecution against the WTM went public in 1995:
- In 1995 a highly defamatory ABC Four Corners program and feature article in the Sydney Morning Herald—both produced by Reverend David Millikan—were published about the FHA/WTM and its then directors Jeremy Griffith and Tim Macartney-Snape.
- In 1998 the Australian Broadcasting Authority, Australia’s then official media watchdog, found the Four Corners program to be ‘inaccurate, unbalanced and partial’ and took the unprecedented step of recommending to the ABC that it would be ‘appropriate to apologise’ to the FHA/WTM. At the time this was the .
- When the ABC refused to apologise, were taken against the ABC and the Herald and in and respectively each report was found to be defamatory by NSW Supreme Court juries.
- In 2009 the Herald published this to the FHA/WTM: ‘On 22 April 1995, the Sydney Morning Herald published an article by Reverend Doctor David Millikan which implied that the Foundation for Humanity’s Adulthood placed demands on its members which tore families apart. The Herald withdraws such inference and apologises to the Foundation for the harm caused by the publication.’
- In 2008 two of the three defamatory imputations found to arise from the Four Corners program resulted in the NSW Supreme Court awarding a of almost $1.5 million in damages and costs caused by the broadcast. Findings by the Court included that the program lacked ‘fairness’ and was not produced in ‘good faith’.
- In 2010, the NSW Court of Appeal overturned the key 2008 Supreme Court finding that lack of scientific support for Griffith’s biological treatise, as presented in Beyond The Human Condition (1991), was because it was of a poor standard, with the three Appeal judges, under the leadership of his Honour Justice David Hodgson, unanimously concluding that the first judgment failed to ‘adequately consider’ ‘that [Griffith’s] work was a grand narrative explanation from a holistic approach, involving teleological elements’. Essentially, what the program said about Jeremy’s work was found to be ‘untrue’, ‘not justified’, the court recognising his work as being serious, albeit heretical, ‘teleological’ science. As Tim Macartney-Snape explained in some detail in that the WTM ran to announce and explain this momentous vindication, the idea that there is teleological, goal-directed change is an anathema to all but the most progressive scientists because it confronts humans with the historically unbearable issue of the human condition.
The most revealing part of the final 2010 judgment was the following, in which Justice Hodgson, who wrote the unanimous decision, found that the earlier lower Court finding about Jeremy’s scientific synthesis did ‘not adequately consider’ ‘the nature and scale of its subject matter’ or that ‘aspects of Mr Griffith’s work are apt to make those who do take the trouble to grapple with it uncomfortable. It involves reflections upon subject-matter including the purpose of human existence which may, of its nature, cause an adverse reaction as it touches upon issues which some would regard as threatening to their ideals, values or even world views’.
Yes, ‘reflections upon’ the human condition can be extremely ‘threatening’ for some people, but that doesn’t justify malicious misrepresentation and persecution of a rigorously argued and evidenced scientific analysis of what E.O. Wilson recognised as the most ‘precious in the life of the mind’ holy ‘grail’ of ‘science’ of ‘understanding the human condition’.
For Justice Hodgson to have recognised Jeremy’s work as a variety of science that is heretical rather than the equivalent of meaningless non-science—that it is a scientific ‘grand narrative explanation’ of human behaviour ‘from a holistic approach, involving teleological elements’—was of the utmost significance because it left the door open to the possibility that Jeremy’s treatise, while being unpalatable to conventional scientists, is ground-breaking science of crucial importance to the future of the human race, which the WTM has always maintained it is.
It is worth noting that Justice Hodgson was a Rhodes Scholar, a published philosopher and was, according to a former Chief Justice of the Federal Court of Australia, ‘one of the finest judges who ever graced a court in this country’ (). Indeed, in his 4 September 2012 obituary in The Sydney Morning Herald, Justice Hodgson was described ‘from an early age’ as having ‘been fascinated by what went on inside the head that gave rise to conscious experience’, and that he was said to be blessed with ‘flawless logic’ and to ‘fit the description of Plato’s “philosopher king”’ (see ).
So the WTM has been through that ‘boiling oil’ test of extreme persecution and then scrutiny and was completely vindicated. Further malicious attacks, which do occasionally still occur, are merely going over what has already been tested and found to be baseless and unjustified—so they are extremely unfair and, given the desperate need to find the reconciling, redeeming and psychologically healing, human-race-saving understanding of the human condition, profoundly irresponsible.
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You might also like to see a by WTM Patron Tim Macartney-Snape on the vindication of Jeremy Griffith’s treatise, which the WTM published as the in The Australian newspaper on 16 December 2010 that was mentioned above. (An by Tim is also available.)
For further reading about why there have been ferocious attacks on the WTM, see . and , which are about the arrival of truth day or exposure day or ‘Judgment Day’, are also extremely relevant in terms of understanding why there has been persecution of Jeremy and the WTM. And, lastly, explains the limitations of mechanistic science, and why it ignores, even attacks, Jeremy’s ‘instinct vs intellect’ explanation of the human condition.