The Transilience Project    

      by Celeste M. Condit and L. Bruce Railsback

      Each of us shares the planet earth with about 7 billion other people, most of whom are also striving to live long, comfortable lives that are rich in at least some dimensions.  That singular fact creates pressing demands for our era, because the size of the population and the potentialities for being rich and comfortable, are unprecedented.  We therefore face two major types of problems--ecosystem threats and challenges to human decency.  We must ensure that the success of some in the pursuit of some kinds of wealth does not require the impoverishment of other people.  And we must ensure that our individual and collective pursuit of some kinds of riches does not degrade our environment, thereby producing other kinds of impoverishment for our lives and also the destruction of other species.

      These challenges are daunting, and two basic principles of social life weigh against us: 1) advantage accrues advantage, and 2) people are exquisitely defensive of their perceived affiliated interests.  None-the-less, humans have developed greater tools than ever before to counter-balance the advantages of the advantaged and the closed-mindedness of existing affiliations.  We should proceed as though these tools might be enough to move us toward better environmental and human relationships.

      This website attempts to articulate the nature and bases of our understandings of human beings as bio-symbolic creatures living in an ecological context that is bound by some bio-physical constraints--and riches.  It is operated in conjunction with a more pragmatic, policy-oriented website, Pathosworkshop.com.  Browse this website for synthetic treatments of research about humans that creates constraints and opportunities for our collective interactions.  Interact with the Pathos Workshop website to participate in using this knowledge to propose and propel policies based on these understandings.

Cover Art
Cover art - click to enlarge
Links:
  • What is Transilience?
  • An invitation to participate
  • Download the book (linked page provides files)
  • A magazine-style article about Transilience (LBR)          
  • Transilience at a glance: a large jpeg, a smaller jpeg, and a pdf (LBR)          
  • Transilience in pictures (LBR)          
  • A Transilient definition of human being (CMC)
  • What is a symbol? (CMC)
  • The Human Matrix (CMC)
  • About the authors
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    Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Institutes of Health or the National Science Foundation.