Difficult as it will be, given the marked limitations of Parkinson's
disease upon speech capabilities, I do feel that one must not give up
the effort to be open and forthcoming on such an occasion as this.
I just do not feel that for all their insight and even wisdom our
old formulations of truth are adequate to the task before us now. For
that task seems so clearly to be no less than to turn the course of
our species, now aimed so unmistakably and proceeding so deliberately
and with such force and speed toward its own extinction and the forfeiting
of this Earth's potential as one of Life's laboratories. One cannot
hope in the given time and circumstances to even begin to give convincing
grounds for the ideas to be presented at the workshop, nor to really
explain their meanings and implications. Much of that work has been
done, and very ably so, but is only available where and when there can
be devoted attention, effort and an opened mind. What one can hope—and
I do hope—is that something here may spark the interest, quicken
the desire, of some one—or some others.
Either by pre-recording or by having prepared text read by others,
I really do want to say a few things. They will be—for I am persuaded
beyond doubt that nothing less can ever do—sometimes new, sometimes
challenging, but I hope not too disconcerting. We simply cannot any
longer with realistic grounds for hope continue with business as usual.
"Business" here is referring not just to the dealings of our
lives but to the very premises on which we shape and live them: Who
am I? What am I? Where am I? Why Am I?