By Ross Bishop
We are all concerned about the future, but dealing with it presents difficulties. Predictions are generally fuzzy and non-specific and it can be difficult to know exactly what to do with them. There is also a larger issue – we avoid making changes until we have to.
Since the future is on the horizon and doesn’t present us with an immediate confrontation, we tend to ignore making changes for as long as we can. People don’t like having to give up their old ways. Even if the old ways don’t work very well, they are at least familiar. It has been said, “Change only occurs when the pain of change is less than the pain of remaining the same.”
Change is difficult, but waiting until we are forced to change only makes the process more difficult. And, in a time of accelerating change, the horizon comes at us faster and faster every day. Playing the old waiting game puts us behind the curve.
The future is not going to ask anything of you that has not been asked in the past. For years you have been asked to move to a place of greater compassion – compassion for others to be sure, but also greater compassion for yourself. Those urgings are not going to change.
But they are going to come with a greater insistence that you do your part. Today you have choice about when you make changes. You are about to lose some of that freedom. The circumstances of your life are going to push you to change with an ever-increasing intensity.
The changes you are being asked to make are part of the larger transition being asked of all humankind. For many years human society, driven by economic hunger, has been on a growth and development binge. Whatever it was, we could always find ways to make it bigger, better and faster. Although rarely spoken, the prevalent attitude was, “The consequences be damned, I want mine.” Greed has ruled, and each of us, in our own way, has taken part in that feast.
We can blame the bankers and Wall Street manipulators for the recent economic collapse, but we all rode on that horse. The sad thing is that for people, money is almost as damaging as heroin, and we have yet to learn that lesson.
There are limits to growth and it appears that the economic string has about run its course. It is time for all of us to take a serious look at what we have been doing. The Western attitude of conquest and domination that has driven society for the last 250 years has painted itself into a serious corner and without significant change the end of the road can be seen on the horizon. The oceans are dying, the polar cap is melting, the planet is overheating, our agricultural soil and fisheries have been depleted, bird species are dropping like flies, our food is loaded with preservatives and chemicals, the rain forests are being cut down at an alarming rate, the air in many cities is dangerous, our fruits and vegetables have been genetically manipulated, our milk is filled with growth hormones, the economic system is on the edge of disaster and few people, it seems, are at peace. We are witnessing the results of untrammeled growth on many fronts. News analysts have repeatedly noted the unprecedented number of problems facing any President's administration. This is not a fluke. It is the drumbeat of what the Maya called “The End of Days.”
Give serious consideration to the thought that The Universe may have in place a protective mechanism for the Earth. If man’s unsustainable growth and attitudes of domination do not change, then the world may become inhabitable for people. We desperately need to develop different relationships with each other, the other creatures and the planet. But because of our inherent reluctance to change, it is likely that things are going to get a good deal worse before we wake up. I can sit here and write about it, but the challenge before each of us is to DO IT, and to do it now.
For meaningful change to occur, it will need to be a grass roots change. Politicians will never take the risk to get out in front of this one. Fortunately there are glimmers of hope as important parts of society are frustrated by the old ways of doing things. The “Good ol’ boy” politics of lobbyist dominated Washington are losing favor, but unfortunately, they still hold considerable power in the society for groups with money to manipulate the process. “Get mine” greed still rules much of America.
The core problem is that the essential doctrines of Western society stand in stark contravention to the fundamental laws of The Universe. The Universe operates on the movement toward harmony, where economics creates and amplifies differences. Economics is a “one up, one down,” “I have and you don’t” game. Where God urges harmony, compassion and universal love, Western society is built upon a foundation of power and manipulation.
The essential premise of economics is to create permanent disharmony.
While the Universe urges us to live in accord with nature, Western science, medicine and engineering seek to subvert and dominate the natural world. In economic society the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. In God’s Universe, the air, water, sunlight, the land, the oceans and food are shared openly and freely to all. Man charges for them.
The American Indian did not understand how someone could “own” the land, and that is why he no longer has access to it. The Aboriginals of Australia have a saying: “There are two roads, the White man’s road and the Aboriginal road. And the White man’s road leads to destruction.”
We are witnessing today the limits of several centuries of untrammeled and often thoughtless growth. As I write this, governments all around the world are making unprecedented efforts to repair their damaged economies. But their efforts illustrate the limitation of the economic system. What are these governments doing? As one writer said, they are taking money from citizens to give to the bankers so that the bankers can then lend that same money back to the citizens! How much sense does that make, unless, of course, you are a banker?
All over America, drug addicts, the homeless, the mentally ill, alcoholics, the aged, PTSD veterans, the poor and the jobless walk the streets and live in abandoned houses and shelters because in economic society they are “losers.” People who need medical care have difficulty getting good care unless they have money. Artists, poets, musicians, actors, writers and dancers struggle in poverty because they are not “productive.” People like social workers, counselors, day care providers, teachers, medical techs and nursing home employees work for pittances because their contributions are insignificant compared to the “movers and shakers” who run Wall Street.
copyright©Blue Lotus Press 2016