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Our Globalization Plateau

Dorothy R. Tilson*

GLOBALIZATION is not a new occurrence on the planet-it seems to have been a cyclic phenomenon, perhaps not generally recognized consciously as globalization, because to be consciously global one must have an outlook which is worldwide in scope and includes the whole earth. As Thomas Friedman of the New York Times says "globalization is the integration of everything with everything else. With the right leadership, globalization will be a force for more openness, more rule of law, and more opportunities for people to enjoy personal freedoms and challenge authorities." Global integration in the past was "driven primarily by monetary expansions" and grew out of the innovations of the time. These cyclic innovative credit booms "sparked periods of economic integration, but were followed by economic downturns."[Michael Pettis, Foreign Policy, Sep/Oct 2001]

At present we seem to be located on a plateau looking out at the pluses and minuses of the future. We see the Populists trying to come to the forefront-we see a downturn in the global economy. We see the states and nations coping with the ultra-complexity of situations arising from multinational corporate integration, world travel and communication. States and nations are concentrating their spending of money in trying to establish their place in this world grid, therefore there isn't much money left for the poor, and the result is "the rich are getting richer and the poor poorer." These are a few of the minuses that we have at present.

Now for some pluses, and our status today. In the World Values Survey of Ann Arbor's, Institute for Social Research, in 1996, an Index was made of a study of 62 countries. This "Globalization Index brings globalization into sharper focus by assessing changes in its most important components, whether engagement in international relations and policymaking, trade and financial flows, or the movement of people, ideas, and information across borders. The index tracks these changes across 62 advanced economies and key emerging markets to draw a picture of globalization across all the world's regions." Seeking the causes of globalization rather than the effects, the index quantifies economic integration by combining data on trade, foreign direct investment and portfolio capital flows. "It charts personal contact via levels of international travel and tourism, international telephone traffic, and cross-border transfers, including remittances. The index also gauges technological connectedness by counting Internet users and the Internet hosts and secure servers through which they communicate and conduct business transactions." Political engagement figures are measured in a variety of ways and include participation in UN Security Council missions. This process produces a range of data that enable comparisons between and among countries of all sizes.

As the survey indicates, there are many positive forces driving planetary transformation at present. Along the way, since 1822, and even earlier periods, humanity has become increasingly conscious of the term globalization. There was a glimmer of consciousness exhibited when the League of Nations was formed, but it wasn't until after World War II that the term globalization became generally used as a result of the "conscious development of the underdeveloped countries, and the post-Cold War ideology of humanitarian intervention." [New Internationalist, March 2002] Globalization became more stabilized with the creation of the United Nations in 1945-since then a general universal awareness of people in all countries has been increasing and deepening. The United Nations has become a forum for discussion of globalization as it seeks to free humanity from all kinds of tyrannies. This is the great plus that we have at present until some greater scientific, space or technological development, or perhaps something altogether unknown sparks a new surge. The term globalization in the future may become something else undreamed of at present-maybe, let's try "galaxalization"-but, as history has shown, undoubtedly, there will be subsequent surges.

The forces driving globalization today are very complex. Some of these factors have already been outlined. For instance, The Earth Charter, which was discussed last month, was created by the Earth Charter Commission in 1997. This Charter is a declaration of fundamental principles for building a just, sustainable, and peaceful global society in the 21st century. Universities are accepting it and some countries are adopting it.

There are today many millions of people working in Non-Governmental Organizations, acting as positive catalysts between the United Nations, state and national governments and humanity in general. Problems are being solved through conferencing. Of course today we also have the negative Al Qaeda NGO types who throw up roadblocks.

In a UN report published on 19 September 2001, Secretary-General, Kofi Annan provides a road map towards the implementation of the United Nations Millennium Declaration. This road map calls on the entire United Nations family of 190 Member States, international organizations, funds, agencies, programmes, the private sector and civil society to join together to meet the lofty commitments that are embodied in the Millennium Declaration because as the Secretary-General affirms, "success requires solidarity."

There are a multiplicity of challenges facing us today on our plateau as we seek the globalization of our planet. We have an energetic United Nations working hard for all of us. We have been given the writings of H.P. Blavatsky, Alice Bailey and many other outstanding writers to guide us along the way. And, let's not forget the Internet. Humanity is challenged as never before in our history, so how we move off this plateau and into the next surge of globalization depends upon all of us.  

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*Adapted from a talk given by Ms. Tilson at the meditation meeting on "The Spiritual Work of the United Nations and the Liberation of Humanity" on 27 March 2002. Please contact the Aquarian Age Community.

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