Welcome to Spaceship Earth

I would say that Buckminster Fuller was my first great teacher. He was the first writer that I can recall who continually spoke to me with the level of complexity and novelty that I needed to expand my mind. He was also my gateway into the perennial philosophy. He helped to open my rational mind in many ways. Made me consider possibilities, like an abundant universe, that were closed to me by the “obvious” facts of life.

Thinking back I find it amazing how my relationship to his work foreshadowed my path. Bucky was a literal and philosophical descendant of the New England transcendentalists, that rich mix of Western and Eastern thought most often represented by Thoreau and Emerson. More than that, the real beginning of his life’s work was heralded by this experience which I read about when I was a teenager:

In his autobiography, Fuller related that just as he was about to throw himself into Lake Michigan and end it all, he was suddenly encased within a “sparkling sphere of light” that levitated and hovered in midair, while a disembodied voice admonished him, “You do not have the right to eliminate yourself, you do not belong to you. You belong to the universe.” That transparent celestial orb and those words of cosmic consolation evoke the peculiar blend of Emersonian egocentrism and pantheistic mysticism that typified the American Transcendentalists, one of whose more prominent members was Fuller’s redoubtable great-aunt, the pioneering editor, journalist, and feminist Margaret Fuller. No wonder he became such a hit with the hippies, whose mantra of “We Are All One” was practically in the old man’s genes.

Quote taken from here. I’ll post when the experience as it is described in his autobiography when I get a chance.


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