It’s all about
Human Energy’s role
advancing people’s lives

People are Energy Systems
Yes, people are of course bodies, with names, and we live in places. But when the objective is improving their lives, that is achieved by focusing on what improves their lives … and that results from how people apply their energies.That affects health of their bodies, relationships in their homes, then wealth in its many forms.

And, as they apply their energies collaboratively, this then determines certainly status of health and wealth of their communities—but more importantly the direction. When the focus is on human energy, the consequence is directing up, down, or re-directing the dynamics and speed of change in people’s lives. Direction upward is what is wanted—then hope is produced, and hope is the available-to-all foundation of life. Hope, and by extension our human future, is created by directing human energies.

SEED-SCALE is an energy management system for communities. It tells where to start, the team to work with, how to make decisions, and the essential outcome. In that sentence is outlined an energy path. To direct the path, tasks are given—this channels energy rather than its natural diffusion through the community by random individual wills. If criteria are in-place, they allow continually updating as to effectiveness of the energy direction. This takes peoples’ scattering energies, focuses them in the realities of where they live, to grow community-fitted futures.

This framing of human advancement differs deeply from the prevalent presumption based on extraction. That is, life advances based on an energy of fossil fuels and the commodification of economic production. SEED-SCALE’s understanding is based on changing people’s behaviors, specifically making more effective the relationships among people.

SEED-SCALE does not advance its understanding as countering economic production; rather, it complements, bringing back the system that led before the industrial revolution. Yes, quality of life today exists because of extraction, from Earth and Sun. So many good things have come: lower mortality, higher knowledge, and life comforts as a consequence. The good we believe we have created today actually comes from wealth accumulated in the past. Aside from future unknowns of resource limits, we do know it has created a present of where humanity halves between the haves, have-nots, and want-to-haves. Extraction is producing, at humanity’s scale, declining quality of life.

By contrast, focusing on what we share brings society together. We make more efficient our energy use. A parallel exists with making automobiles more efficient. Automobiles today are fifty percent more efficient than three decades ago; we learned how to use petroleum more efficiently. That brought deeper understanding of energy, more effective technologies, and monitoring of production. SEED-SCALE shows how to use human-based energy more efficiently. And similarly, we are understanding of principles of human energy, effective production by tasks, and monitoring through criteria.

Making human energy more efficient has been underway for centuries. Figuring out how to extract Sun power, preserved for today in coal or petroleum, was one way (we replaced fossil slaves for human slaves on whose power earlier grew quality of life). With SEED-SCALE what advances is The How to make human energy more efficient. With ancient energies now fossilized, the The How of making them more efficient is only a matter of losing them to eternity more slowly. With SEED-SCALE the efficiency recycles in continuing organic growth.

Organic Growth

The idea is represented in little community successes (a seed) rising out of its local place to fruit. As one fruiting happens, that extends with new seeds growing from the earlier successes … and these continue in multiplying abundance. This organic growth differs from industrial production where energy is consumed, not repositioned, where post production materials are discarded. Organic growth uses present Sun energy, and returns into the system what was taken. Multiplication, growth evolving into new growth, is underway, more and more getting nourished if they join the process. Not extraction of a scarce resource (which so often leads to competition).

Organic process is distinctive because it presents how better life emerges from groups of people. Diverse life aspects come more available to more people earlier disadvantaged by not having fossil slaves. As energy from past ages was condensed in fossils, now energy of the present is condensed in community action. And, as communities learn better, efficiencies and effectiveness grow from the cycling of local growth (iteration). By broadening the diversity of life (leisure, health, education, shelter, travel, wealth … ) comes the richness of modernity.

Through emphasizing a resource possessed by all, opportunity opens for all. All people have approximately the same amount of human energy. Yes, there are differences due to health, but not the difference there is in material wealth. And relating to material wealth, all people have some access. Using mental energy and growing trust, ways open to leverage or borrow material wealth.

Human energies—when there is collective advantage coming—focus forward, countering the scattering tendency of individuals going separate ways. Being grown is community. How should we understand this collective? In SEED-SCALE, a community is a group of people who share something in common … and have the potential to act together. Emphasis is not the people; emphasis is on sharing and potential. Sharing and potential are both human energies. As SEED-SCALE differs because it is based on human energy as the driver of change, correspondingly the definition of peoples is by their energies.

Persons are energy systems; energy is what makes our body parts function, and creates the person out of the parts. Likewise, communities as gatherings persons are energy systems. This is a Major Distinction. Communities may be individual people. So also, they may be buildings, roads, and commerce. Then to understand how to change communities, making the parts function are the energy systems in every community. Energy systems when they are between people are called relationships. They are connecting ways binding the parts and people of every community.

Improving human well-being, then, occurs by improving relationships among people. How people improve (or degrade) their relationships defines their potential for advancement. What shapes relationships?

Value Systems

Religions & Creeds

This SEED-SCALE workplan was on a wall in the library of a mosque in Kabul, Afghanistan.

A person may disagree with any creed—doctrine is not the center of religion—every religion has a conceptualization of values. Values shape the relationships in a community. Religions are not the only driver that shapes relationships, but they, like creeds, gather the value-based systems and determine relationships. The methods of SEED-SCALE were carefully gathered to fit with all religions. They seek to offer tools that can be applied in all value systems.

For animists, the value system is connection to Nature (fear, awe, mystery). For the Abrahamic faiths, values come from a One God who attends to His (yes) peoples. For Hindus and Buddhists, the underlying value is release from human self and entering the Divine. Capitalism, framed as a religion, priorities production for self. Values sign how people assign behaviors. SEED-SCALE advances a frame by which any faith system can apply its values—it allows this framing to fit every group’s situ and situation.

Playfully, perhaps helpful, the classic equation how physical energy and matter interrelate can give perspective on human energy relation with what matters to people. The equation is, of course, E=MC2 This is a statement of energy potential: a massive amount of energy is in every bit of mass. As a metaphor, then, when people decide what matters to them, in coming together they can generate transformative forces: societies change en masse.

Empowerment—power comes from people applying their energies. But while one person can be empowered and transform him/herself, society changing is in en masse. Collectivism is the historic bond for humans. Until recently, it was possible to believe technology would link aspirations to more effective action. While technologies have certainly done that, they also focused individuals to look at screens in their palms not look to a future of sharing alms across community. Rising social media, connecting individual-to-individual seems to be advancing individualism, hardening lines of separateness.

In our lifting up of individualism as a value—individual rights, taking product from eternity to use for one individual today, prioritizing personal wants—individuals separate from community, disengage from the assumption of acting together. Lost is the force of all, while growing is the focus on self (and wealth). Taxing the wealth of individual gain is not the same as truly sharing human energies together, whether in sweat, song, or sports. The ascendancy of currency as a proxy for human energy, and its management of through economics—while appreciating the liquidity of exchange is just that: exchange. It does not so powerfully change the human soul and uplift as does sharing in sweat, song, or sports.

Economics and Human Energy

Systematizing the centrality of economics in driving human civilization was John Maynard Maynard Keynes, who developed macroeconomics theories a century ago. As he looked across the ascendancy of economics, he noted the period began with Britain’s access to great capital. It started the industrial revolution. That capital came from Francis Drake’s capture of Spanish gold (of course, itself stolen wealth). Then investment of that by Queen Elizabeth in what became a cycle of taking raw materials from its conquered world and coal from the Earth. The energy of people was focused in labor, and that focused in processing the Earth.

Keynes predicted this process would run for 450 years, beginning at that 1580 seizure. He predicted that with the year 2030, a new age would begin based on humanity having solved the challenges of needs. Human attention would move to higher concerns (art, leisure, understanding, expressions that gather under the driver of human energy). As 2030 approaches, needs are not gone. Human energy still centers on labor. Marx noted that people when viewed as labor function in antagonism to production. To find higher concerns he proposed collective ownership, but this still centered on a universality centered in economics, not higher concerns which are inspired and driven by human energy.

A recent staging toward these is exciting—specific goals, 169 targets, 232 indicators, the Sustainable Development Goals. It is exciting because every country in the world has agreed to such detail—and all countries agreeing to anything is exciting. But agreeing to a definition of a wholesome shared human future could draw Humanity away from antagonism to symbiosis is exciting. Those with little struggle to hold on, and those who look longward struggle to find hope.

AGAIN, focus needs go to relationships, not the parts but the process of connecting. But how? The answer is in energy management. As more productive factories understand that in better management they produce more efficiently, so when society sees itself as human energy systems (as well as parts and products of people) then comes improving our potential to act together. That shall grow through Learning. With SEED-SCALE, so far every group that has started to learn has started to grow, managing what they have more effectively and efficiently.