An Extract from Emergent Humanity: Its Environment and Education

From R. Buckminster Fuller on Education
“An educational revolution is upon us.

One of the most important events of the peaceful but profound revolution is our dawning discovery that the child is born comprehensively competent and coordinate, capable of treating with large quantities of data and families of variables right from the start. Every well-born child is originally geniused, but is swiftly degeniused by unwitting humans and/or physically unfavourable environmental factors. “Bright” children are those less traumatized. Of course, some children have special inbred aptitudes and others, more crossbred, are more comprehensively coordinated. The new life in inherently comprehensive in its apprehending, comprehending and coordinating capabilities. The child in interested in Universe, and asks universal questions. Revolutions also smash boundaries. Industrial society set a clear border between life at home and life on the job. Today, for the growing millions who work from home, the line is blurred. Even who works for whom is becoming unclear. Robert Reich, former U.S. secretary of labour, points out that a significant part of the labour force consists of independent contractors, free agents and others who work in company A but are actually employees of company B. “In a few years,” says Reich, “a company may be best defined by who has access to what data and who gets what portion of a particular stream of revenues over what period of time. There may be no ‘employees’ at all, strictly speaking.”

“Wealth is above all an accumulation of possibilities.”

For some, wealth may mean having a bit more than their subjectively perceived need, whatever that is. For others no amount suffices. Among the poor, matters are less subjective. For the mother whose child is starving, a daily handful of rice may be wealth beyond measure. Whatever else it means, therefore, wealth, at least as used here, doesn’t just mean a second Ferrari. Nor is wealth synonymous with money, as popular misconception might have it. Money is only one of many tokens or symbolic expressions of wealth. In fact, wealth can sometimes buy things money cannot. To understand the future of wealth—our own or anybody else’s—in the fullest sense, we need to start with its very origin: Desire.

DESIRE may reflect anything from a desperate NEED to a transitory WANT.