We move forward – neither ascending like a rocket nor in a linear fashion like a race car, but from day to month, from month to decade, and from century to millennia …
Depending on how up close we see things, transformations of consequence are quick decisions to take a right or left fork in a path, as Frost describes in The Path Not Taken, or ice ages coming and going.
Moving forward in our lives, as I see it/see mine, isn’t just layering sediment as rivers cut through rocks, but instead layering intelligence and behaviour on top of everything that has come before.
Setbacks and short-term reversals are daily speedbumps and potholes for people and nations, but mostly we’ve moved forward.
Recessions don’t last long. Boom times last longer; whether it’s stock markets or farmers’ markets, every little thing that makes any part better makes the whole better. While a better paperclip probably doesn’t improve the economy and phenomena like Wordle don’t move the needle, subtle things that will enhance how we do things make life and the global community we inhabit a little safer, a little more efficient, a little healthier and often more prosperous (though for many countries, the better term might be ‘less poor’).
Better software, a new drug, a new vaccination, a new currency, a new government, a new company or industry – all of these push us collectively along pathways to better.
Will electric vehicles and reduction in fossil fuel use overwhelm the world altogether?
I doubt that will happen fast, but progress being made on many fronts simultaneously generates jobs and improved technologies. Some innovations will fail while others will emerge as better; they’ll make the world better and make life for all plants and critters better and safer.
Will new food sources feed our growing population and have us eating better, living longer, and having more enjoyable meals? We’re still far closer to our caveman ancestors than we are to the future.
As we’ve evolved, our bigger brains have made us capable of everything we are capable of, yet it seems we are now (with A.I. about to supercharge us) both obsessed with faster progress, needing faster progress, and afraid of faster progress.
Should we be putting our feet on the accelerator or the brake?
Wise words Mark – though…. As I once said to a friend, “I am getting so tired of people crossing the boundaries I refuse to set.” Boundaries require constant maintenance. Sometimes, often depending on the other person, they’re far out and sometimes, close in!, LG, Calgary, AB