H+ Mythos & Action [3/3]: First Five

The following article is a node in the Zero State Alternate Reality Game (ZSARG). You can learn more at http://zerostate.net, or in Transhumanity.net articles tagged “ZS” or “Zero State”. ZS is Transhumanist, Singularitarian, and Social Futurist.

This is the third and final part in a three-part series, which as a whole is concerned with showing connections between ideas buried deep in the Transhumanist/ZS “mythos” on the one hand, and possible courses of action (for Positive Social Change Through Technology) on the other. The first part looked into ideas surrounding the notion of Technological Singularity, and the ways that idea is incorporated into the ZS worldview. Part 2 explored those ideas further, and introduced the ZS notion of “worldlines”, or possible futures which lay before humanity. Part 3, below, now grounds these various musings in a prescription for effective, decentralised action.

300  First Five

Symbolically, the number five has come to represent beginnings and foundations within ZS. Most broadly, we may say that this number refers to two things: (1) Principles, and (2) People. Finally, we will also briefly consider ways in which our core groups can begin to grow into larger online networks.

301  Principles (Social Futurism)

The Zero State is explicitly Social Futurist, which is to say that it adheres to the Principles of Social Futurism. In fact, there is a unique historical relationship between ZS and Social Futurism, in that the first version of the Social Futurist Principles (then called the “Zero State Principles”) was published on 1st May 2011, with that event also marking the official launch of ZS. Although the Social Futurist Party is now the official international vehicle of Social Futurism, ZS is its historical and philosophical heart.

There are five Social Futurist Principles, which might also be considered categories of Social Futurist thought, as listed below. For our current purposes, let us simply note that these five Principles are the internalised foundation of thought and action for all Social Futurists:

[1]  Clarity and Strength in Unity

[2]  Positive Social Change Through Technology

[3]  Open Rights and Responsibilities

[4]  Activism is Action with Intent

[5]  Imperative and Outreach

302  People (Your “Five”)

If Principles are an internalised realm, then next we must consider the realm of external action. Each ZS ‘Metahouse’ (i.e. a cooperative pair of ZS Houses, one of six such entities) is a fundamental pillar of ZS organisation, with its own “Sessions” (i.e. live synch/meeting/game) held once per week.

Each such Session is organised around twelve core participants (six per House, assigned to Core Roles), each of whom is in turn the leader/coordinator of an activist group of five ZSers, known as a “Five”. The Five is a kind of cadre, and the essential backbone of ZS activism, each concerned with its own focus and missions within a broader, synchronised network. The Fives are the foundation or basis of that network, in which multiple “Fives” may overlap, and people may thus be part of more than one Five, but Core ZS Members with pre-defined roles represent the firm basis of the organization.

If you are a ZSer, then you are expected and required to understand your personal relationship to the Houses and Fives, or – to put it simply – where you fit. Are you one of the 72 Core Members? If so, you (or a reliable representative) are expected to take your place in weekly Sessions, or your place will be delegated to other, more committed members. Are you in one or more Fives? Who is also in those groups with you? Perhaps your Five is led by one of the Core Members? When do you meet? What are your goals? What is your timeline? What are your methods? It is important that you are able to answer these questions quickly and concisely, if you are to be considered a functional ZS member.

All “Fivers” whose Five is led by a Core Member are welcome to attend any of the core realtime Sessions held via the ZS Discord server [https://discord.gg/R4t7V8U]. Fivers whose teams are at a further remove from the core ZS membership (i.e. not led by Core Members) are encouraged to organise their own sessions and events via the same server, and/or any platform which works for them. ZSers are expected to ensure – through their own efforts – that they are both well-informed and actively working toward goals which are in accord with those of the broader network, and (of course) our Principles.

303  Parasessions

In addition to the Sessions (whether those six per week run for the Core Members and their co-Fivers, or others independently organised by Fives out in the wider ZS network), we also now run continuous, asynchronous Parasessions. These parasessions are ongoing narrative threads primarily hosted in the twelve House email lists (links to which are listed in ZS wiki Directory, here). Each such thread is updated after the relevant weekly Session, but the narrative and interaction runs continuously, every day, seamlessly connecting the Sessions and pushed forward by the House members themselves. An important function of the Parasessions is to reach out beyond the core ZS membership, spreading the narrative to new audiences and subcultures. Anyone can get involved, and everyone who cares about the fate of humanity in the 21st Century should.

A Final Note on Theory versus Practice

My next Transhumanity.net article is a piece on the “ZS reboot” (sometimes called ‘ZS2.0’) which is a work in progress spanning 12018. That article includes a template for concise, call-for-action posts in the future. Going forward, I will be making a sharp, clear distinction between such ZS Action Posts on the one hand, and theoretical pieces related to Social Futurism on the other. I am aware that posts about the ZS mythos and its logic can be bewildering to those not actively involved, and that ideas like Alternate Reality Games, Metafiction and the Thomas Theorem confuse many people. Let’s face it, when Transhumanism is one of your conservative baseline ideas then you’re not going to find a large audience on the theoretical level. Theory is of course very important – all proper action rests upon a firm and coherent theoretical basis – but the language of action must be simple and accessible to all. Stay tuned.

About Transhumanity.net