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Episode 6: Reduce Stress and Build Better Relationships with Insights from Evolutionary Biologist, Elisabet Sahtouris

podcast Aug 24, 2021

Welcome to Episode 6 of "The Art and Science of Success."

Today’s guest is Elizabet Sahtouris, evolutionary biologist and ecological campaigner. Elisabet combines an extraordinarily deep appreciation for the environment with practical ideas for forming a better relationship with it – i.e., one based on respect rather than plunder. This is particularly useful as we come to terms with the recently published IPCC report.

She may seem to be a strange addition to talks run by a stress specialist but some challenging ideas aside, she’s extremely relevant as I have found that stress is mostly a relational issue – it’s something that happens between us- it just happens to come through individuals so we blame them instead of looking at how we are all interacting together. 

She’s been in the field for over 65 years collaborating with people like James Lovelock and Willis Harmon. She’s also spent many years building links between the different types of science in the world.   

She says things that I don’t agree with or rather I don’t know I agree with her. But that’s one of the things I find so rewarding interacting with her work – she makes me think and gives my foundations a shake. AND her work is also immensely practical.  

Here’s the summary of the topics we cover.

0000       Introduction and shock warning. Listen only if you want to give your beliefs a shake.

4.50        Nature as a dance with reality and how she developed her ideas on evolutionary biology

8.50 -     Importance of agency and co-creation

12.00     The different sciences around the world and Elisabet’s keyboard metaphor for describing


16.00     Exploring the creative process in consciousness and entrepreneurship (and reincarnation?!!)

21.00-   Challenging your perspective: Nature, holarchy, the donkey and the rose.

28.00     The role viruses play in our evolution – virus as information.

33.00     What can I do to boost my immune system?

37.00     How to focus on contribution – on making a difference.

43.00     How does Elisabet regain her perspective and her optimism when she loses it?

48.00     Imagining an economy where you recycle everything – Anaximander’s wisdom.  

54.30     Closing wisdom.

Really hope you find it stimulating.

Remember to message me and we can continue the conversation 


PS.  As a way of getting into her work, we discuss a quote from the author Lyle Watson from his book, Gifts of Unknown Things. This is the quotation.

"Dancing is surely the most basic and relevant of all forms of expression. Nothing else can so effectively give outward form to an inner experience. Poetry and music exist in time. Painting and architecture are a part of space but only the dance leaves at once in both space and time. In it, the creator and the thing created, the artists and the expression are one.  Each participant is completely in the other. There could be no better metaphor for understanding of the...cosmos.

We begin to realise that our universe is in a sense brought into being by the participation of those involved in it. It's a dance, for participation is it's organising principle. This is the important new concept of quantum mechanics. It takes the place of our understanding of the old notion of observation, of watching without getting involved. Quantum theory says it can't be done. That spectators can sit in their rigid row as long as they like, but there will never be a performance unless at least one of them takes part. And conversely, that it needs only one participant because that one is the essence of all people and the quintessence of the cosmos."