“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.”
Chief Seattle, Leader of the Suquamish and Duwamish Native American tribal nations
“Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality.”
Martin Luther King, Jr., Civil Rights activist and Christian minister
What is “Interdependence”?
Cambridge Dictionary defines interdependence as “the fact of depending on each other.” As this definition implies, interdependence is a universal constant. What varies in our world, however, is the quality of human action and interaction.
In order to tackle global issues as one humanity, we must first understand how we individually perceive our place in the world and our connection with others. Shifting our self-concern to global concern is fundamental to building equitable and mindful interdependent relationships.
“We have always held to the hope, the belief, the conviction that there is a better life, a better world, beyond the horizon.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States
“The essence of a group is not the similarity or dissimilarity of its members, but their interdependence…A change in the state of any subpart changes the state of any other subpart…Every move of one member will, relatively speaking, deeply affect the other members, and the state of the group.”
Kurt Lewin, German-American psychologist who coined the term “interdependence”
How to Use the Deep Dive Toolkits
Click on one of the Deep Dive links below to explore the Deep Dive chapters and learn about the importance of interdependence and hope to our world today.
This collection of curated content, activities, and resources will encourage you to look at the world through the lens of interdependence, understand your own positionality in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world, develop a hopeful mindset, and drive your quest for meaningful, positive change.
“A human being is a part of the whole, called by us Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole nature in its beauty.”
Albert Einstein, German theoretical physicist
“You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.”
Michelle Obama, Attorney and former first lady of the United States
“My hope still is to leave the world a bit better than when I got here.”