by Warwick Manfrinato b

Throughout the history of mankind, and our evolution, aware- ness has been a factor of success. We have discovered something greater than satisfaction, we have discovered happiness. The process of awareness-building has not al- ways resulted in happy endings. We have found that knowledge has become a commodity and an item of power. Humans have created the science of politics, gaming and manipulation. Managing knowledge to suit specific interests and influence people’s choices is an unfortunate aspect of this.

As our living planet transits through a period of intense activity of the human race, never in the history of billions of years has one single species been so impactful over the surface of the entire planet. So much of this transformation is taking place in the endless pursuit of what has been so cleverly called “re- sources”. Again, our awareness of these impacts on the very complex web of interrelations was, and must be further, improved in order to fully understand these transformations. As a race, we are unconscious- ly compromising our own future.

Nonetheless, some of us have better, more accurate knowledge, with some very few having great understanding of the situation, with a minute number being in positions to make decisions based on such knowledge. The sense of being part of such complexity is substituted by a distorted attitude of control and disregard to the implications of having a role in the whole. This summarizes the collective mistake.

The main challenge that lies ahead of our society and civilization is reclaiming our true position and function, in balance to our fel- low living creatures, all of us with different kinds of awareness and roles on this planet. We will have success in overcoming our global challenges only by the individual commitments of people, as long as they are rooted in their own inner lives. This is where our collective efforts must act from and is the starting point for change. Unless we have a critical mass of people, with commitments rooted in their own inner lives to act and produce change, most of us, no matter how aware one may be, will be simply observers of the global change that will take place and compromise both the wonderful innovations along with the ugly developments of human civilization.

Today we are faced with many new questions and very few answers. Science, and for some, religions and spiritual practice have the task of producing answers, which to a certain extent are only possible if there is stability in the world. After millions of years, glob- al stability seems to have been achieved, but in the last few decades such stability has been com- promised. The global climate has been altered and the perspective of our future is in question. We must be aware of this new perspective and seek to understand the many implications.

Warwick Manfrinato—Brazilian agronomist and engineer who has travelled extensively. He is a Brazilian who dedicated most of his efforts in life to understanding the cycles of nature from the perspective of a planet in the process of global change. As an agronomist raised in Brazil, he connected with the environmental movement early in his teen years. A family environment of academic parents allowed him to have contact in his formative years with thinkers of a better future for our planet Earth. His choice of sustainable agriculture studies and practices led him to engage in social-environmental certification and eventually work directly with the sciences of cli- mate change, especially in land- use-change themes. In 1991 he was invited to work in organizing the Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. Under the leadership of Maurice Strong he had the opportunity to work directly in parallel events organized by Maurice’s wife Hanne Strong.

By coincidence Warwick end- ed up in Colorado in 1993, living in Loveland in a farming operation. A visit with Hanne Strong in Cres- tone led to the establishment of the Educo Adventure School in the Crestone Baca. Many years later as a result of the longtime friendship with Hanne Strong and her family, Warwick was introduced to Shumei in Brazil where he continues developing a relationship between Shumei, Brazil and Japan. He is visiting Crestone to participate in the celebration of the Shumei International Institute’s 17th anniversary in Crestone in 2019.