A Call for Care

By Griet Hellinckx, May 2014

Gary Lachman might be known to some as the author of a biography on Rudolf Steiner, to others as the founding member of the rock band Blondie. He is the author of a number of biographies and books that are concerned with western esoteric traditions and philosophies.

In The Caretakers of the Cosmos the author basically asks the question why we humans are here on earth. While he does not claim to have the ultimate answer, he points out that scientists offer no satisfying explanations either. Modern science has us believe that we are ‘the chance product of an accidental universe’. As the way we look at life tremendously influences our behaviour and well-being, this outlook has led to feelings of nihilism, insignificance and powerlessness being widely spread. Strangely enough as we started considering ourselves as ‘only an animal amongst other animals’, we lost respect for nature and turned to exploiting the environment in ways no animal ever would.

In contrast to this scientific perspective Gary Lachman offers the reader a fascinating insight into esoteric and spiritual traditions that state that the world and the cosmos are not without purpose and that humanity has an essential role to play. He relates the hermetic vision that man belongs to two worlds to the recent findings in neuroscience. He suggests that the ‘other world’, we have fallen from or yearn for, might actually be a different mode of consciousness. He describes the hermetic and cabbalistic concept that as God created the world he purposely left it unfinished. It is humanity’s duty to complete this work by healing and repairing what is broken. The subtitle of the book Living Responsibly in an Unfinished World already suggests that human beings have a responsibility that is beyond the task of saving the planet. We are called to be ‘co-creators’ or in Lachman’s wording ‘caretakers’ of the universe. He points out that we are asked to answer this call in our personal lives as well as in our relationship with nature and society.

The author supports his argumentation by referring to a vast number of philosophers, psychologists, mystics, poets like Whitman and Blake, physicists and neuroscientists as well as to hermetic and cabbalistic notions and the work of spiritual teachers such as Rudolf Steiner, Emmanuel Swedenborg and others. Lachman is convinced that as we as human beings become more conscious and move beyond the feeling of separateness towards the world, one another and that which we call God, the cosmos becomes conscious of itself through us. This evolution of consciousness will uncover humankind’s capacity to bring new worlds into being. A noble and ambitious perspective.

Garry Lachman – The Caretakers of the Cosmos. Living Responsibly in an Unfinished World. Floris Books, 2013. ISBN 978-178250-002-5

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