Thursday, August 23, 2012

To Have Our Love & Leave it Too...

What drives human beings to continually yearn to expand, grow, prosper, create, enhance, step forward?  And at what cost are we willing to pay/sacrifice to do so?  As we look at the major paradigm shifts of history (as stated in the Great Transition (2002), Raskin, P., Banuri, T.,Gallopin, G., et. al), we see transitions from the Stone Age with life lived in tribal demeanor with hunting and gathering as their main source of means and oral language (still allowing the Colors of the Wind room to breathe) as their main source of noted communication shift to Early Civilization with their city-states, agriculture and writing (Daniel Quinn's separation of Leavers and Takers in his famous Ishmael starts here with the Agricultural Revolution) and then lastly to our Modern Industrialized Era of nation-state organization with printed writing.  Proposed in this advancing of man is a new era called the Planetary Phase where globalization and the internet will most likely represent the world as we know it much sooner than later. 

And so the question continues…is the advance of mankind to the standards we have defined as this "success" what creates Meaning in our lives or what deters from it?  Why the strain to further our education, specialize in the workplace, move forward, climb higher (or as Pierre de Coubertin stated in tribute to the IOC: "Citius, Altius Fortius!"  (A not-surprising side note: De Coubertin also is known for the quote: "The most important thing is not to win but to take part!")?  This sense to somehow better ourselves, to want to Be the Best, Be the Champion, by the definitions we have chosen to adopt as a society has become a contagion that infects us now from birth.  What happens when survival of the fittest no longer plays a role with upcoming technology- or has it already become irrelevant?  What characteristics of our nature survive when the technology of our present day catapults us into a realm where evolution seems to confuse on itself?   Will this compounded learning curve that today’s Thinker be required to intercept allow remembrance from the ways of the Old?  It seems that a balance between our animalistic strife toward King of the Jungle and our Emily Dickinson heartstrings must be found.  We must not forget the ways of the old, yet we must be willing to accept that a new future is indeed approaching.  We must be what is to come, and what has been to become what we ARE.  To BE.

2 comments:


  1. Surely, you too feel the drive to be better... don't you? Who knows why it is there, but it is. I think it springs from two things.

    First, people like to compete. I don't necessarily think it is always the mindset of "I want to make myself better" as it is "I want to make myself better than everyone else". The word "better" is only used in comparison, which means there has to be something you are "better" than. Men will do absurd things to have more money, be more physically fit, etc. so that they may appear or feel BETTER than another man. Women do the same thing in staying fit, looking good, pursuing success. Everybody competes with everybody in the pursuit of standing out as the alpha male or female.

    Second, it is in our nature to protect and support children. An old Native American saying goes, "We do not inherit the world from our parents, we borrow it from our children." As people, we want our children to be better than us and stand out, and that means creating a "better" world than the one we are in.

    The combination of both factors is what drives people to write articles like The Great Transition I think.

    Now, is it possible to not pursue something "better"? Is it really possible to just stop, settle, and sit satisfied in your position? I haven't seen it. Can you imagine a person without a single goal? There's just this unquenchable fire to be up and doing in the human spirit.

    ReplyDelete
  2. When viewing this pursuit from the pure pull that we so commonly feel, I think that in a way, our success is driven by a world in need whether through steps of self pursuit to strengthen our talents, or volunteerism directed specifically to the cause at that time. Self pursuit will eventually join the circle of life, as will volunteering (although more readily it seems), and it will help people. We cannot lose sight of what brought us to where we are.

    ReplyDelete