Evolutionary Catalysts are committed to catalysing a movement to profoundly shift mainstream thinking, with a view to evolving a compassionate life-affirming culture.
We recognise that people’s behavior is based on their mental maps and emotional functioning. Evolutionary Catalysts aim to improve both of these.
Some of us act as citizen-educators. We talk with people we know about the terrible reality of current ecological trends, the system that drives them, and what it will take to change the system. Our intention is to develop thoughtful public will for transformative leadership.
How might we take this to scale?
There are millions of groups that care about environmental and social well-being. Our vision is to inspire many of them to act as citizen educators. We provide innovative tools, including Kitchen Table Conversations, to make communicating succinct and effective.
All of this is described in:
There is more. There is a straightforward solution to climate change. It is to massively regreen man-made deserts and arid areas, thus restoring the global water cycle, which is the Earth’s natural cooling system. Walter Jehne’s video explains this in detail. It is very hopeful!
Communication tools for citizen-educators
A majority of people recognize the reality of climate change. Not because anybody has persuaded them (although Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth brought it to the forefront of public conversation), but because of the fires and floods they have seen in the news or experienced themselves.
That noted, collectively we have not accepted how devastating climate mayhem will become. If we did, we would be acting at emergency speed to do something about it.
In addition, climate change is not the only issue that will cause our globalized civilization to painfully unravel. We are in a condition of overshoot, temporarily using resources faster than they can regenerate. For example, falling freshwater tables and topsoil loss will in time severely reduce food supplies.
Escalating Disasters is a communication tool to bring this home to people. It provides a reason to embrace otherwise painful changes in economics and ways of living. You can adapt Escalating Disasters to your own use.
- Escalating Disasters slide deck
- Escalating Disasters pages for printing PDF file
(Technical note: Printing these pages on card stock (180gsm) makes it handy for conducting one-to-one conversations.)
Kitchen Table Conversations use labels on beer coasters to help people connect-the-dots about the major big picture drivers of ecological destruction. These conversations enable people to move from silo thinking to systems thinking. They also highlight economic growth is a driver of ecological destruction.
- A short course with a training video is here.
- A slide with draggable icons for conducting Zoom conversations is here.
A Kitchen Table Conversations Kit with physical pieces for live conversations can be purchased here.
There is a solution to global warming
It is not where most people at the looking. The solution is to massively regreen arid land. This means cultivating grasslands, forests, and healthy soils to reestablish the water cycle – the Earth’s natural cooling system.
It’s beautifully complicated! This slide deck gives a useful but simplified account. It is worth reviewing the masterful presentations by Walter Jehne on YouTube.
This slide deck introduces the main dimensions of planetary health.
An outreach tool for Evolutionary Catalysts
In addition to perhaps conducting Kitchen Table Conversations, Evolutionary Catalysts use our communication skills to engage other people in championing the vision of evolving a compassionate life-affirming culture.
Our strategy is to inspire members of established groups to act as citizen educators. We reach out to leaders of organizations and to thought leaders.
Becoming a colleague in the League of Evolutionary Catalysts
Anybody can act as evolutionary catalysts through their own initiative, using these and other tools. However, we are forming a League of Evolutionary Catalysts. There is a learning curve; we want people to be well grounded in the idea of mindset change and its practical applications.
Techniques people can use to resolve their own emotional issues
Among the many effective experiential techniques for resolving trauma, there are two do-it-yourself techniques that are very helpful.
One is EFT, a method of tapping on acupressure points to resolve energy imbalances. EFT is well known; virtually everybody could profit from have it in their kitbag of tools.
The Saint Francis Process, developed by Jean Houston, uses visualization to meet and resolve problematic parts of ourselves.
Some citizen-educators introduce these techniques to people they know when appropriate. In doing so, we are not acting as therapists, but as trainers.
All that’s required is to be comfortable with the techniques ourselves. The techniques are presented in:
During World War II and for a time afterwards scribbling images like this was a fad:
Kilroy was here was seen all over the place. Apparently Stalin saw it in the toilet at a high-level meeting and asked. “Who is this Kilroy person?”
We can adapt this for today’s world by posting Kilroy’s Comments on bulletin boards and social media. Kilroy’s Comments are pithy quotes, cartoons and images that simulate people’s thinking.
Our aim is to enable people to quickly grasp key ideas about the current state of the world and what needs to change. Typically we use images to tell the story in a simple way.
This works. It does not require a PhD to grasp the main ideas.
That noted, it can be helpful to know more. Here is a curated list of articles, books and videos.
- Donella Meadows Leverage Points: Places to intervene in a system
This seminal article asserts that the most influential leverage points in any human system are in people’s paradigms and goals of the system.
- Jane Meyer Dark Money
Meyer describes in detail how the billionaire Koch brothers shifted American thinking about the role of government.
The result is the divided America we see today.
Their money helped, of course. Bur their communication strategy was critical.
The environmental progressive movement has yet to catch up to them.
- Walter Jehne How Healing Water Cycles can Cool the Climate
Jehne vividly describes how the complex system of soil microbes, grasslands and forests, and atmospheric circulation
is the Earth’s natural cooling system. Over the past millennia humanity has reduced arable lands by about half. Actively regenerating these lands is the only way to reduce planetary heating in the near term. There are reasons why neither emissions reduction nor drawdown can have any effect in the timescale that matters.
If this is the case (check it out for yourself!) this is the biggest climate news in the century. We should act on it!
- Alpha Lo The Water Web
Lo describes in fascinating detail how complex interactions between animals and plants have the effect of increasing nourishing regional rainfall (the small water cycle), and how this scales up to planetary cooling.
- David Ellison et al Trees, forests and water: Cool insights for a hot world
A technical article with references on the biotic pump.
- Andrew Gaines Becoming an Evolutionary Catalyst
Among other things, this book goes into the theory of improving brain functioning.
The theory was adapted from the work of Moshe Feldenkrais, and is now applied to transformative social change.
There are Feldenkrais practitioners in many cities, and Feldenkrais group lessons (Awareness Through Movement) are on You Tube.
Doing a few lessons will improve your body coordination, and give you more a feel for what it means to improve brain functioning.
- Bessel van der Kolk The Body Keeps the Score: Mind Brain and Body in the Transformation of Trauma
There has been a revolution in psychological healing. The most effective techniques are experiential.
Van der Kolk goes into the neurology of trauma, and describes a number of techniques in detail.
- Andrew Gaines Inner Work
This is a manual techniques people can use to resolve their own emotional issues.
They can easily be taught to others.
- Richard Heinberg The End of Growth
Any society devoted to growth will self-destruct when it destroys its resource base. The End of Growth connects a lot of dots.
- John Michael Greer The Long Descent
Civilizations grow, prosper and decline. We have entered the decline stage. Greer thinks through how it is likely to play out.
- Brian Natgrass and Mary Altomare The Natural Step for Business
They explain the system conditions for ecological sustainability, and shows how businesses such as IKEA have applied them.
- Amory Lovins Natural Capitalism
Lovins shows how through skilled design we can massively reduce energy use. Many practical examples are given.
Greta Thunberg will have reason to hope
when she sees that mainstream society is committed to turning things around.
Let’s make it happen!