One Quantum Transformation For Mankind: Preeta's TEDx

Posted by Rahul Brown on Oct 17, 2019
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In a TEDx Talk delivered in her hometown of Lincoln, NE, Preeta Bansal movingly shares what might be called a homecoming speech of the truest kind. Weaving her family's personal moonshot of arriving into America concurrently with America's (and humanity's) own literal moonshot through the Apollo 11 mission, she sets the stage for the gravity of heavy realizations from her own rocket-like career trajectory into the highest echelons of conventional power. It was a momentary glimpse of dissolution at at 10-day meditation retreat that catalyzed this and gave her the embodied experience of interconnection with the whole-- the breakdown of the separation that sits at the core of our self-view, and put her back in touch with the infinitely renewable fuel of love and connection within. Tasting a visceral insight into oneness, the priority shifted to a new model of social change: the quantum model where inner transformation ripples into the whole. Or we might say in Servicespace circles, "change yourself, change the world".

These are some of my favorite tidbits from the talk.

First, I felt keenly the limits of that old toolkit to address complex problems of a certain massive scale, at least without doing a good amount of collateral damage along the way.

I found myself questioning the whole mantra that bigger is better, or that impact and scale should be measured by breadth rather than depth.

Because with awareness and deep concentration on breath and body
sensations for an extended period, I experienced a tiny glimpse of what
sages and mystics of all faith traditions have been saying for millennia, and what modern science and quantum physics have only finally verified in the past century – that all physical matter (including our bodies) is constantly shifting and re-forming into a new mass every nanosecond. [...] The seeming boundaries between you and me
are highly permeable, and at core nonexistent. I caught a momentary
glimpse of the reality of a dissolved self and a dissolved ego. We are an interconnected organism, and every interaction I have with a so-called “other” is an interaction I am having with myself.

This allowed me to feel the validity of a different model of social change – a quantum view that involves a small, distributed group of people changing the world from the inside out, energetically from the micro-, particle level, and not just the massive, macro-scale.


The truth is, I did break; I broke open – to a breakthrough, not a breakdown.

And as we heal ourselves, we shift the energy of others around us and help heal the world.

Amazingly, my post-moonshot experience is not unlike what our astronauts discovered when they journeyed to the moon. Frank White interviewed the dozens of astronauts of the American space program. He found that they were most transformed not by their glimpse of outer space, but by turning their gaze back around at Earth and seeing themselves anew.

Ultimately, my own commitment is to try to keep doing the work of
becoming and embodying the change. So let’s embrace the approach of healing and transforming the world by healing and transforming ourselves. And not just at the margins. Not just as a nice, quaint and feel-good self-care supplement for the real work we have to do on our big issues – but rather as the real work.

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Comments (2)

  • Audrey Lin wrote ...

    Go Preeta! So great to see this talk! So genuine, sharp, courageous and honest. :) (And thanks, Rahul, for leaking it! :))

  • Yoo-Mi Lee wrote ...

    Wonderful talk, Preeta! Loved the fossil fuel vs. renewable energy analogy.