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A manifesto for upshift

Philosopher Ervin László outlines how we can upshift consciousness to reach a higher phase in our evolution
The Great Upshift

This article first appeared in our COP28 issue of My Green Pod Magazine, published 30 November 2023. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox

We have reached a critical juncture of our evolution on Earth. We face a challenge: evolve or perish.

If we are to set forth our tenure on Earth, we need to evolve to a higher phase of our evolutionary path.

This calls for fundamentally changing the way we think. In order to avoid an evolutionary dead-end, we need to rethink the way we relate to each other – and to the planet.

Universal progress

The sciences of life tell us that evolution is not limited to the genetic pool of biological species.

It is a fundamental process of change and development involving all facets of life, indeed all forms of organisation in the universe.

Evolution is a universal progression from the chaos that followed the Big Bang to the order and coherence we now find in space and time.

How evolution unfolds

On Earth, evolution in the higher realms of complexity unfolds in a non-linear fashion. It is continuous and on the whole irreversible, but not smooth and even.

The evolution of the complex systems we call ‘living’ is interspersed with fluctuations, dramatic fallbacks and epoch-changing forward leaps.

The fluctuation we experience today is a downward shift in the direction of disorder and chaos.

But it is not the final word: the current downshift could be followed by an upshift towards order and coherence.

Reaching upshift

If we are to reach the upshift phase of our evolution, we need to survive the challenges of the downshift.

We must reverse the direction in which we have evolved in the modern age.

This is a challenge, but the challenge can be met. We are at a tipping point, and at that point many paths of development open for us.

The choice between them is sensitive to our behaviour, which is in turn sensitive to our thinking.

Agency in evolution

The current bifurcation of our evolutionary trajectory could be a prelude to disaster —
but it could also be the doorway to a higher phase of our evolution.

We need to take the next phase of our evolution into our hands. We can do so: for a community of conscious beings, purposeful evolution need not be utopian.

Consciously guiding humanity’s evolution does not call for manipulating the conditions of life on Earth, nor does it call for any alteration in the genetic constitution of living species. It calls for better ways of thinking.

Our thinking must change

With the narrowly self-centred mindset that dominated modern civilisation, our very survival was placed in jeopardy.

Our thinking must change: it must encompass humanity as a conscious and responsible part of the great wave of evolution that unfolds on the planet.

This would pave the way for the upshift that comes if we follow the evolutionary impetus present in nature and present in every cell of our body: a subtle but powerful impetus towards coherence and wholeness, manifest as a sense of oneness and unconditional love.

A cosmic task

We can make our evolution conscious, and by doing so we can consciously guide our development towards the higher rungs of the evolution that unfolds throughout nature and throughout the universe.

This is a cosmic task, and it is an ineluctable responsibility of a conscious being.

Avoiding a crime against nature

Allowing a conscious species to spiral downward towards extinction is a crime against nature; it is contrary to this evolving and evolution-generating universe. Reversing our current downshift is possible, and it has already started.

Supporting this upshift is not an option but a mission. It is the cosmic mission of awakened people, who are responsible members of the human family.

The Great Upshift cover


In The Great Upshift, Ervin László and David Lorimer have drawn upon their holistic expertise and global network to assemble a stellar cast of 35 of the world’s leading thinkers to ‘map your path forward to a bright future’.

The world-renowned scientists and visionaries who have contributed to this book illuminate where are we today and where we can go from here.

They focus on the most burning question of all: how can we upshift ourselves – our ways of healing, of thinking and feeling and even of intuiting – to respond to the most pressing requirements of our time?

Their visions empower us to ‘be the change’ we want to see in the world – and to help others be a positive and critical part of the great upshift that has already started. This will be our salvation.

This compendium of insights into solutions for a world troubled by conflict, climate change and unsustainable conditions calls for the conscious participation of all of us to implement the verities within.

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