S.O.S.: The Creativity Imperative to Reinvent Ourselves

We are living in an age of unprecedented change in the Self-Organizing System (SOS) of human civilization.

Save Our Ship is an international radio code distress signal first used in 1910 by ships and airplanes calling for emergency help. Generation S.O.S. was born several years ago in New York City when six high school students died of accidental overdoses within a few weeks. The lack of response shocked families and mobilized several students to organize Generation SOS, a social media call for help from the children facing the threats to themselves in a world intoxicated with greed-driven corporate and government behaviors. Generation SOS is crying for help. From Nobel Peace prize winner, Malala Yousafzai to climate activist, Greta Thunberg, children of the next-gen movements are keenly attuned to the ‘end of the world as we know it.’


The cries from stressed-out victims of fear, anger, and confusion, have been heard from Paleolithic times to the present. The clinging to life, to security, to each other, is primordial. Each new generation reiterates the pain, the fear, and the S.O.S. signal, hoping to be rescued from the calamities they inherited from the previous, self-centered generation.

There is no concrete external rescuer from the “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” of life. Religions emerged as an abstract story of salvation across the world. Sadly, conflicts between different religious and cultural dogmas have been brutally destructive to the species of Homo Sapiens.

Self-organizing systems are endowed with the power for self-making—autopoiesis.  From the first living organisms, we are built to adapt for survival by increasing complexity.

Creative Intelligence: Training the Human Super-Power

Human beings are endowed with a potential superpower—Creative Intelligence. Creative Intelligence recruits the inborn potential for increasing human survival and complexity. Teaching and training how to focus reflective attention integrate genetically imprinted resilience with hard-wired brain-mind creativity. Resilience + Creativity = Creative Intelligence. Creative Intelligence is a learned skill. Activating the divergent brain state, the brains’ creativity machine, requires mindful reflection, daydreaming, meditation, journaling, sketching, etc. Empowering individuals to co-create new attitudes and behaviors for group adaptation is critical to the next generations.

Shared Creative Intelligence: A Family-Culture Affair of Trust

Our Shared Creative Intelligence begins in families during toddlerhood. Families are the core unit of culture—like the single cell of complex organisms. When families create secure emotional bonds with shared creativity, trust within the family prevails and everyone thrives.

Families and individuals that cultivate emotional intelligence and creative intelligence form secure bonds of trust. This trust empowers creative contributions that stabilized secure social connections. Shared Creative Intelligence reciprocates in the self-organizing system of family-culture dynamics, empowering social flexibility toward a more egalitarian society.

Dr. Joseph L Dieleman, Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, Seattle, WA, USA [email protected] published Pandemic preparedness and COVID-19, in Lancet, February 1, 2022. He wrote

Measures of trust in the government and interpersonal trust, as well as less government corruption, had larger, statistically significant associations with lower standardized infection rates. High levels of government and interpersonal trust, as well as less government corruption, were also associated with higher COVID-19 vaccine coverage among middle-income and high-income countries where vaccine availability was more widespread, and lower corruption was associated with greater reductions in mobility.

Trust between social groups, from families to the global village, clearly mitigates adversity and destructiveness. The evolution of greater self-regulation in the global village will require a greater focus on educating new generations with Creative Intelligence.

Today’s Challenge: Empowering Children with Shared Creative Intelligence

It is imperative that we train our children to access their individual creativity.  Share Creative Intelligence empowers us to adapt to the ever-changing world we are creating.

Self-organizing systems are genetically encoded with adaptive creativity and natural resilience to the adversities of living. The present generation is charged with the responsibility to train children with Creative Intelligence.  The future of the global village depends on implementing the collective human imagination to design their future. Secure social-emotional attachments and shared creative intelligence empower our species to design world-altering civilizations that can adapt to any environment.

Let us hope that Generation SOS uses their Creative Intelligence to reinvent the Self-Organizing-System of humanity to overcome the toxic stresses they are inheriting.