Sunday, 8 November 2009

Waiting for the world to change is a waste of time (Part 1 of 3)


One day, human beings will inhabit a perfect world. There will be no violence and no poverty. Productivity will be high and consumption will take place without waste. Everybody will be healthy, the environment clean, and Nature, most of the year, green.

The question is how long it is going to take before we get to live in such an ideal planet. Some say a hundred years, others speak about seven times seven generations. Reaching such goal depends on so many factors that no one can give a precise estimation.

Having ambitious plans for the world keeps people debating on talk radio and television, campaigning and making speeches. The problem with those activities is that they tend to have little or no positive effect on your own life. The more passionate you are about improving the universe, the harder it will be for you to accept its fundamental inertia.

Even if you devote all your resources to trying to change the world, you are unlikely to achieve your objective. Even if you give up sleep and work incessantly for your cause, chances are that your achievements will remain modest. There are powerful reasons for this phenomenon:

1. Fundamental changes take place, on most occasions, very slowly.

2. From the perspective of an individual, world improvements often remain imperceptible.

3. Technical innovation does not necessarily affect beliefs. New technologies frequently reinforce traditional views.

4. Most attempts at improving things only aim at increasing their speed. Making the same old mistakes faster seldom brings substantial benefits.

Waiting for the world to change is a waste of time. You will find proof of this by opening any History book and reading a few paragraphs. Things change slowly and trends are rarely reversed.

To be continued in Part 2

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by David Berkowitz under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]

Waiting for the world to change is a waste of time
(Part 1 of 3)


One day, human beings will inhabit a perfect world. There will be no violence and no poverty. Productivity will be high and consumption will take place without waste. Everybody will be healthy, the environment clean, and Nature, most of the year, green.

The question is how long it is going to take before we get to live in such an ideal planet. Some say a hundred years, others speak about seven times seven generations. Reaching such goal depends on so many factors that no one can give a precise estimation.

Having ambitious plans for the world keeps people debating on talk radio and television, campaigning and making speeches. The problem with those activities is that they tend to have little or no positive effect on your own life. The more passionate you are about improving the universe, the harder it will be for you to accept its fundamental inertia.

Even if you devote all your resources to trying to change the world, you are unlikely to achieve your objective. Even if you give up sleep and work incessantly for your cause, chances are that your achievements will remain modest. There are powerful reasons for this phenomenon:

1. Fundamental changes take place, on most occasions, very slowly.

2. From the perspective of an individual, world improvements often remain imperceptible.

3. Technical innovation does not necessarily affect beliefs. New technologies frequently reinforce traditional views.

4. Most attempts at improving things only aim at increasing their speed. Making the same old mistakes faster seldom brings substantial benefits.

Waiting for the world to change is a waste of time. You will find proof of this by opening any History book and reading a few paragraphs. Things change slowly and trends are rarely reversed.

To be continued in Part 2

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by David Berkowitz under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]