I was discussing with my friends over our grand vision: how to make this world a better way. Playing God is always one of the most entertaining funs for man-children. For a gigantic toddler in a sandbox or a nerdy teenager with SimCity, the ultimate pleasure is to build a perfect society and to destruct it into ashes on a whim, but reality isn’t going to give us a catastrophic death (as always depicted in another man-children simulation game, Hollywood blockbusters). In the real world, a 30-minute climax is stretched into 30 years of slow, agonizing cultural genocide. How do we get away from it?
While economists and politicians are busy stashing their retirement funds during debates that are important enough to shut down an entire government and undermine their whole credibility, the rest of us need to figure out a way to survive, and hopefully prosper, again. The current direction the world is going is a dead end, that’s for sure.
We thought of the American model, where everybody is too focused on maximizing themselves for the sake of freedom (thus creating the 1% problem), and the Japanese model, where everybody is too focused on minimizing themselves for the sake of greater goods (thus creating the endless Fukushima disasters by unchecked government). Is the new way somewhere between these two extremes?
Hell, no…what’s wrong with the current “system,” as we call, is that it is built upon a gigantic amplifier. That amplifier multiplies whatever desire is carried by its member, be it making himself bigger or smaller, and continues all until the end. The amplifier is also creating the “modern economy,” where infinite growth is the basic assumption for keeping it alive.
The amplifier “system” we are standing upon has only one command: forward. Just like a nuclear power plant doesn’t have a “Stop” switch, once a motion—whichever direction it is—is set, the members of this system go all the way.
(I know, this BGM isn’t going to stop inside my brain)
Whatever “method” “model” “innovation” we squeeze out of our brain, as long as we apply that new thing on the platform we are standing now, the same will happen all over: exploit whatever is on the road to the end. Then another model might come up, and the karma continues.
I think we can step aside and forget the “system” for once. My vision is, again, going back to the basics—that we don’t need to hop on an moving sidewalk. We can walk on our own two feet. And thus, we might be able to get rid of the “system” that exists between ourselves and the ground, the mother Earth. Metaphorically, of course.
When we imagine there is no “system” that provides us with a basic framework, we need to consider, or better, question everything we have believed or taken for granted in our life: money, love, food, work, marriage, kids…even down to those basics.
As we continue to discover what is important (more importantly, what is not) for us, only us, we begin to realize that we are the “system” – a complete set of universe with unique combinations of wants and needs, interacting with other universes (humans and other elements).
In the end, we are all gods, who know who he or she is and what is necessary, for each his/her own. Welcome to the new world—everybody is equally different gods! And where is the “system” in this world? I assume because it is already inside each god, why do we need to create another “layer” on top of gods? A god-god? God2?
But seriously, the first step might be for everybody to question everything in life and truly, deeply, (maybe not madly), know him or her. We will stop hogging resources for one thing, because once you know what is “enough” for you, why secure more than that?
The world population might stop growing at around 9 billion—that is slightly more than the current 7 billion, you might say—but the difference is in the number of aspiring middle classes, which is now a mere 1 billion. Nobody can imagine a world with 8 billion middle classes. We literally need 8 Earths and might still be suffocating (if we continue our current model).
Therefore, I still hold a dim hope in the current apocalyptic worldview: when you cannot find a “way out,” it is finally the time to come back, to go “way in,” to yourself—and to learn who you are, and what you need, that you are a god, and everybody is a god.
Then what happens? Well, that’s what a god is supposed to figure out, right?