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Dharma Connect: The Interdependence of Coca-Cola

There's a Zen meal chant that says, "72 laborers brought us this food; we should know how it comes to us." If the meal involves a can of Coke, that's a serious understatement.As blogger Kevin Ashton reports here, the ingredients take a trip around the world to get into your hand. The can includes ingredients from Australia and Greenland; the drink brings in another two or three continents.

The number of individuals who know how to make a can of Coke is zero. The number of individual nations that could produce a can of Coke is zero. This famously American product is not American at all. Invention and creation is something we are all in together. Modern tool chains are so long and complex that they bind us into one people and one planet. They are not only chains of tools, they are also chains of minds: local and foreign, ancient and modern, living and dead — the result of disparate invention and intelligence distributed over time and space.

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