- Politics and Social Issues»
- Australia & Pacific Political & Social Issues
A Question of Future 3
A Question of Future 3
By Tony DeLorger © 2011
Evolution- the cost of change
Have you ever looked at old photographs from the early 1900’s? How different people looked then, their facial features, their body shape and general stature. Have you noticed how tall our children are becoming? Each generation evolve before our eyes. Perhaps the human race has not mutated as have our ancestry over millions of years, but changes have increased and are no doubt because of the massive changes in technology, environment and activity. Our lives have changed so dramatically, and in such a short time that our primitive urges remain in place, struggling to manifest. Men are still hunters and warriors, with desires and needs born from the caves from which we came. Women remain the gatherers, the nurturers. We wear the remnants of these beginnings in all that we do, and even in such a technological age, we can so easily revert to our primitive thinking.
Road rage is a good example of this natural tendency to aggression that many men in particular find hard to contain. It is our nature that life today has denied us. So close is this thinking and feeling that it takes little before men start beating their chest, become territorial and threaten any prospective intruders.
Now let’s transfer that instinct to our youth, particularly boys. They all have this inbred warrior mind to some extent, that during the hormone driven years of puberty can burst forth in a most unacceptable way. Our society is not considerate of this fact. Sport is a great way to relieve these urges, but many children these days are not interested in sport, opting for release in fantasy by means of video games and movies. The problem lies with the fact that we have become less physical and more dependent on technology to do what needs to be done, rather than be hands-on ourselves. This fact is a tragedy.
Today we are further and further reducing the use of our brain, merely concentrating on a few functions and not using our overall capability. Learning about life is usually done through experience, the process the teacher. If we learn from created sensory input we shall never learn about real life, our thinking will simply be governed by what we are fed by our computer and TV screens. If we are not careful, we as a race will evolve into large bloated creatures that push buttons all day and who have lost all sense of beauty and the spectacular nature of our physical world. Technology for all its advantages may just be robbing us of the paradise that we have all been searching for from the beginning of time.
The question is how do we want to evolve? What do we want from life? Surely the second by second wonder and experience of our existence, and living in the moment must have some value. Or have we perhaps lost the value of just being alive, not having to achieve, overcome, acquire or conquer? Could we have put aside the beauty of this wonderful world, for a self-centred process that is eating away at the glue that binds all humanity together? Have we forgotten to love?
That all sounds rather gloomy doesn’t it, but it’s not far from the truth. Perhaps it is about time that we sat down and took a quiet look at what we are doing and why. My feeling is that humanity is lost, having made some ambiguous choices. I guess it’s a matter of compromise. How far will you go to achieve what you deem necessary, without creating imbalance and negatively affecting other aspects of your life?
We are talking here of balance. My suggestion is this. If you are neglecting your emotional well-being, your family and loved ones in any way, to gain money or property for their supposed benefit, you are deluded. ‘Can’t see the forest for the trees’ comes to mind. We have lost the reason for our actions, the underlying truth about why we do what we do. I believe we need to reassess our priorities and decide based on what we want out of life and not what someone else wants or what some social expectation dictates.
Life to me is far more of a mystery than simply lining up to compete for that pot of gold. Perhaps the gratification that we think we need is not all that it’s cracked up to be. I mentioned before that I feel that we have become so goal oriented the real teacher ‘process’ has been caste aside. Experience should not be a cliche used to describe the result of any process. Experience, I believe should be a second by second accumulation of living, using all the sensory abilities that God gave us. Believe me when I say the secrets of life do not instantly reveal themselves after becoming a political or religious leader, a pop star or film star, a billionaire or a poverty-stricken waif. The reality of learning about life lies within the second by second experience of it.
I asked earlier about what we want to evolve into. At present, we as so-called evolved beings, use such a minute portion of our brain potential and yet we are heading down a road that doesn’t expand our potential, but rather inhibits it. Should we choose to sit on our fat posteriors pushing buttons, eating nutritionally deficient foods and limiting our thought processes by becoming caught up in the trivia of modern living, then surely we are prescribing our future and evolution.
If we are to evolve into sentient beings with a positive future, then we must go back to basics and learn how to become aware of the opportunity of life that has been granted us. I feel we have somehow ignored experiencing the ‘now’ to focusing on ‘how will the now gratify me?’ In other words-‘What do I get out of it?’
For a great deal of time I have believed in a simple analogy. I want to share it with you in the hope that you will try it with an open mind and realise there is a world that your brain is not the least bit aware of. ‘I believe the answers to all of our problems lay before us in a square inch of earth. If you get down on your belly and draw a square around an inch of earth, look at it with new eyes. Is the area flat or wavy, coarse or fine, is there a stone there, in what position does it lay? Perhaps there's a stick or something else of note. How does each of these aspects make you feel and what does it tell you? Ask yourself a question. Perhaps the coarseness and uneven surface will tell you that you have a difficult time ahead. Perhaps the stick will represent something in the way of your path, and pointing in a certain direction will impart who or what will pose this opposition.’
You see, by opening this awareness you are using a different part of your brain. You are opening a whole new source of internal dialogue that can indeed help you to both understand your own thought processes, and to open the door of possibility. This simple process is used as a trigger, something to get those synapses firing. If you open yourself to these possibilities, you can discover far more than you might think possible.
In summary, I believe that we need to question our present thinking and where we want to be as beings. Getting back to basics is something that I feel would be beneficial. Life has a great deal to offer and the proverbial pot of gold is a long way down the list.
Justice, like many ideals today, has somehow fallen through the cracks of our varied societies, having for all purposes lost the battle against political and financial compromise. We find ourselves in an age where those who administer justice through law are far more restrained than empowered by the system that is supposed to represent the people for the greater good. The reality has become a sad representation of the corruption and politically driven agendas of those at the pinnacle of law and power, and who have become servants of a system that has turned back on to itself. Compromise has become a loophole that serves the system and not justice. The imbalance of so-called mandatory sentencing about crime, plea-bargaining and legal tap-dancing to take advantage of process, have created costly and prolonged actions that offer only a slight possibility of real justice.
Judiciaries are simply slaves to the system and many I believe have lost sight of their true mission. The answer lies within the political arena, one that dictates how the law is to be administered. Again it is our job as citizens, not to accept the current failing systems and to question administering the law and the people who wield the power. Perhaps the scrutiny applied to elected judiciary could be upgraded. Especially with these arbiters of the law being charged with such crimes as paedophilia, it would seem appropriate to have known that before their election to the bench, don’t you think? It appears that this personal scrutiny should be a prerequisite before becoming a judge, to represent the people and to administer the law unbiasedly. Again the process of politics and corruption is at work here. It is we who accept or reject these anomalies, by allowing governments to live with less than adequate officials, for any reason. Governments need to change laws and to resurrect the values that we as a nation and as private citizens require for a fair and just legal system. It is our caring and voices that will eventually make the powers that be change for the better.
One aspect of crime and punishment that must also be addressed is the change in circumstance the world is experiencing. As the nature of life and attitudes change so do the types of crimes, the criminal mind ever-present and developing new ways to gratify their misguided needs. Therefore, there must be a legal system that is in a constant state of evaluation, able to assimilate and develop new laws and mandatory punishments to address the escalation and frequency of law breaking. Without this continuous assimilation and readiness to address the changing lives and associated problems of this world in flux, governments and the legal systems will remain inadequate. Technology of course has created the greatest opportunity for crime and as technology races ahead at extraordinary speed, laws to protect society must be one step ahead otherwise the game is lost.
Unfortunately the processes of government are so entrenched with the government’s own political agendas, that they have become used to responding to the problems rather than to develop a pre-emptive approach. The enormity of the need then bogs down the system, and justice inadvertantly suffers as a consequence.
Governments as I see them, need to develop more an ethos of insight development rather than appropriate response. In the present system this is often difficult, because that governments be so entrenched within their own political survival instincts, that they couldn’t see the truth if it sat on their face and wiggled. To my way of thinking and in some respects, governments find it difficult to see past their three-year term. The nature of politics works against developing creative and forward thinking anticipation. Therefore it is not until the problems are screaming (and so are the public), the government takes some action. It’s the same scenario again and again- money and where it is best served at any particular time. Therefore when someone dies in a train accident because of some faulty hardware or the lack of maintenance, a long and exhaustive investigation follows. But the problem is rarely corrected unless several more people die and there is a huge public outcry. These government decisions are based on pure economics and have little to do with justice, especially for those who have died and their families. The cold hard reality is that politics has nothing to do with justice at all and more to do with complex issues and agendas related to political stability and self-maintenance.
I know this all sounds cynical, but how else can we perceive it? Governments in general are so top-heavy with the cost of self-maintenance that it is a wonder that anything is achieved. That is why I subscribe to the belief of having only two tiers in government, to somehow ease the burden of over-administration. Surely this would ease financial burdens and allow a more forward thinking approach to develop.
First Steps on a Long Journey
I have talked about many aspects of living in the 21st century and much of it is frightening, to tell you the truth. I feel that humanity is only a whisker away from blowing it all, and ending like all those doomsday film scenarios. But there is one thing certain in life, and that is we have choice. We have created this mess and I feel confident that we can turn it around. But to do that we have to deal with the fact that we are a family, globally. We may speak different languages, have different customs, live different lifestyles, but we are all human beings that share a planet called Earth, and together and only together can we save it from imminent destruction. If not war, terrorism, conquest or natural disaster caused by imbalances in nature, we are in for a ride that could be our last. If we don’t work together and forget these divisions that we now choose to segregate us, we’re done for.
Religious belief, politics or any other belief structures have nothing to do with my plea. My statements are based on what I believe to be common sense and nothing more. We just can’t keep adding greenhouse gases to our atmosphere without dire consequences. We can’t keep blowing one another up over tracts of land. We can’t watch the poor suffer while we sit in our palatial mansions and count our money. We can’t engage in any space race while millions of people are starving to death. We can’t force our beliefs on anyone else for any reason and then vilify them for not agreeing. We cannot disadvantage anyone because of colour or creed. We cannot disadvantage anyone with education, something that should be available to everyone. And finally we cannot remain impartial to the plight of our world and all of its problems.
This may sound rather trite, but the bottom line is that what needs to be changed will only ever change if each one of us step forward and not accept what is taking place. The most important step in a journey is the first step, and we must accept that and become a part of the solution, otherwise we will simply watch the slow decline and downfall of our race and our planet. It may not happen in our lifetime or our children’s lifetime, but if our course is not altered, it will happen. Utopia may not be just an ideal, but a necessity if we as beings are to survive.
So how do you and I begin to change the world? What can we do as lowly citizens? The first step is to get involved. Ask yourself what you believe in and what you are not happy with regarding aspects of the immediate world around you. Being an activist is not a dirty word- it simply describes someone that is actively taking part in something in which they believe. It may be something simple like stopping your local council from cutting down a beautiful tree to make way for a cement car park. It doesn’t matter what the issue is, what matters is that you are prepared to do something about what you believe to be right. Our affluent society has taught us all to be lazy and for the sake of ease, let our elected politicians and officials do as they wish on our behalf. But if we’re not happy with that result then we have to put in some effort to change it and make our wishes known. It will not take a huge effort, simply standing up to be counted on an issue will knock the socks of officials because they are so used to manipulating circumstances and getting their own way.
But just imagine this. If two thousand people arrived at the local council chamber to voice their opposition to the tree being cut down, (not the usual half-dozen greenies with placards)- how do you think the council would respond? It would be on national news for a start. You see, we the public have a strong voice- and the more of us, the stronger the voice and the harder it will be for those officials to drive over us to get what they want. Public outcry is a powerful weapon, yet we are generally too lazy to give time to those issues that could benefit us all and our children. Involvement is the only option if we want change. We can no longer sit back and hope that someone else does something about what we want, ‘cause guess what? No-one’s doing anything.
Forget the doom and gloom, this book will not end on a negative note. The fact is that we human beings are wanting on many levels and the problem has been that we can be arrogant and self-deluded. The good thing is that we have the capacity to learn and therefore the ability to change what we have created and reverse this downward spiral.
I believe there is always hope and the more of us that cling to this hope, the louder our voices will become. Eventually governments, religions and all the people of the world will decide with us, to live together in peace. Like the old adage-
‘What if there was a war and no-one came?’
More than half the money spent on education in America is spent on the military, over $572,000 million in the last twelve months. Explain that to the starving children of the world- some 273,750,000 plus of them.
The world is full of imbalance and now even nature itself is frantically trying to reclaim stability. We are people of the earth and we should, with common purpose, come together under a single banner. Not race, nor creed, nor religion divide us, we are of one human species, searching for survival. So what will you chose to do when your name is called?
I leave you with one thought-
‘You can be a part of the problem, or a part of the solution’ - the choice is always yours.
Statistics gathered from-
United Nations Educational, Scientific
& Cultural Organisation
Australian Bureau of Statistics
The National Institute of Literacy