It’s quite interesting how we sometimes move in circles. Or at least now and then return to circle the same concept. I am currently reading a great book called Sapiens: A brief history of humankind by Professor Yuval Noah Harari. This is truly a book that shakes your worldview a little and I recommend it for anyone willing to read about some unconventional and uncomfortable facts. It also leaves me feeling torn between acknowledging how mundance the existence of a single human is and how we all influence everything, every day (I am sure I will be referencing facts from this book in many blogs in the future). Today I read a tyre screeching line something to this effect – the world is headed to either ecological disaster or technological bliss. So in the spirit of humans being superb at fucking things up and putting a positive spin on it I decided to repost the below. Written 17 December 2013.
Are we not what we are because we do not live in harmony with our surroundings?
Even though I always keep the ideal of living in equilibrium with my surroundings in mind, it would really require drastic measures to be able to honestly state this as a fact. The ripple effect concept also pops into my mind and it cannot be ignored that every little thing you do, or have done effects your surroundings/the earth/the universe and its other inhabitants. Do we not regularly state (in various forms and formats) that we strive towards living in equilibrium with the universe?
Equilibrium: a condition in which all acting influences are cancelled by others, resulting in a stable, balanced, or unchanging system.
Is this what we long for? Or do we confuse it with harmony?
Consider harmony… Accord. The parallel, pleasing arrangement of elements as part of a whole. Simultaneous events delivering a soothing and satisfying result. Even if its only a feeling.
Is harmony not perhaps when we reach the level of human maturity to accept the irreversible things in our world and rather focus on manipulating the results of events? Is it not the essence of contentment? Is being content not all we are looking for?
When considering the first question again, I would conclude the following:
We are what and where we are because we do not live in equilibrium with our surroundings – in the very literal sense of course. That is what makes us human, more intellectual and more opportunistic than any other species. We build and manipulate and extort and we change the world every single moment. I don’t necessarily mean this in a negative way. We are all ambitious. Even the most placid and least driven of our species. We always want something better, faster and more comfortable. Then we of course want it cleaner, healthier and safer. (I talk about similar juxtapositions in We bite off too much ) This is one of the great qualities of Homo Sapiens. This is also the core motivation of development since the Stone Ages (that’s what I read.. I am no expert).
We should rather not focus on bringing this to a halt. Millenniums ago we put this disturbance into motion and it is impossible to reverse. On the contrary it is more important to maintain and fuel this ever-growing commotion of atoms, molecules, energy and neurochemical reactions. Our world and species now depend and thrive on this state of never ending chaos.
We all feed on the entropy around us.
We should focus on finding the beautiful sounds of this cacophony.
I think this then becomes the essence of living in harmony with everything around us.
Natural and man-made.
Human and galactic forces.