There are many things that have been racing in my mind and I just, honestly, wanted to talk about this. Ever since I learned about the meat packing industry due to John Oliver my mind started to swirl with thoughts about power and what it means in the context of Individualism and Community. It also made me think about how innovation and progress are two distinctly very different things that tend to intersect in this tiny little point where they almost seem to meet to "revolutionize" our way of thinking, as a species in general.
I was born in America so individualism is kind of my favorite thing about this country. The narrative of those who make it through perseverance and hard work always makes me smile. Those tales of men, women, and those who lay between that make the world move forward by discovering many amazing things really make me feel as though I could do something like that. It makes me feel like a person can make a difference and change everything in their lives to make things for humanity and themselves move towards new heights.
That's not the reality of life though. Many people don't make it or become celebrities, billionaires, artists, political leaders, or geniuses. Almost everyone, aside from a few demented people, (I assume since this is an opinion piece) want normal lives with little to no violence or drama interlacing it. Life can bring them this but the thing about these people is that systems are put in place to prevent people from innovating or creating new and fascinating things either because of social class, education, mental instability, or their environment, or a combination of all these and may more.
But what about those people who make it through those hardships and trauma? They make it out alright and so why not me? Why can't I become the next artist, the next billionaire, the next political leader, or the next innovator? I was raised to believe that you could and, honestly, that's an unshakable faith I will have. I believe anyone, and I mean anyone, can become successful if they apply themselves hard enough. To me this faith is the equivalent of the way people feel about religion. Even through the horrors I have read about how most societies treat their individuals, I do believe that faith in yourself is also a strength that can turn into a determination to create the next amazing innovation.
The next thing that will move humanity forward.
When I drive through a tunnel it feels kind of amazing to me. Like a mini rollercoaster. The way the lights move through the car as we travel through it makes me feel ecstatic about what's on the other side, even if it is just a closer view of a city I had seen just two mere seconds ago.
Tunnels can also be dark. They can seem never ending. And if the lights go out...
You can become lost.
Innovation and faith in yourself can be blinding. Like a dark tunnel you can almost lose yourself in the mystery and wonder of what could be. To create something that will change an industry or the way the world works might lead to creeping shadows noticing your work. Money comes and a light goes out while a new one shines you forward. Power comes and a light goes out but there comes another one to shine you closer to the exit. Arrogance comes and almost all the lights behind you burst out because instead of looking back you kept going on letting all the lights behind you burst. And now only two shine.
Do you go deeper into the tunnel?
How do you even fix the lights behind you that bursted?
I have no clue but I will say this. Faith, like anything, can become detrimental when consumed with zero moderation. Innovation can become this. CEOs of certain companies have become this and we have read or seen countless stories of power through innovation leading people to some dark places. Almost every company has destroyed and killed thousands, if not millions of people, and every society has at some point systemically, religiously, and politically done the same. Innovation hoarded and kept for only profit will only lead to an extreme version of Laissez Faire.
To view every human as a tool is just as bad as a serial killer, because they view people the same way. A means to an end.
Look... I can't define progress, okay. To me it is a very subjective viewpoint but in my eyes it has to do with bringing humanity towards a more community centric approach of living. To view people as individuals with feelings, thoughts, and traumas as well as your equals. It's crazy to want this but such a complex problem, I hope, will get solved eventually and I can't wait to see it, maybe I'll see it from whatever afterlife I venture into (if there's even one).
To me the innovation of the internet makes sense. We have been making ways to communicate faster and faster. Language was step one. Stories was step two. Writing was step three. Telephones were step four. The Internet was step five. I don't know what the next step will be but as we innovate and build upon knowledge after knowledge we'll make steps towards the future together, progressing humanity to into new ventures.
Everything is built upon people making new discoveries based on other discoveries made. Stories are pieces of other people's works that inspire to create newer more original pieces. Progress to me is this. A fostering of community through innovation.
To hoard, to me, is to stall this progress. Once you view potential in people you can become someone who is more accepting, more forgiving, more caring, and move humanity towards the next step forward.
Maybe you can fix the lights behind you.
Maybe there is a chance.
Maybe there is hope.
I have zero idea what's on the other side of the tunnel. ZERO CLUES. Heck, I don't think anyone REALLY saw the internet coming. This whole entire library of knowledge (hears the voice of Tai Lopez) feels like it came out of nowhere!
The thing about faith is that, objectively, it is irrational. It makes zero sense. Almost everything about it is rooted in emotion and subjectivity.
The other side could be dark clouds that blanket the sky and you into darkness while thunder hits the ground and you're forced back into the tunnel or it can be a light beaming through those dark clouds leading you to another more amazing thing with even more potential towards finding the next innovation.
Who knows? *shrugs*
I have faith it's the latter. I have hope, okay! I don't care how corny that sounds. I think accepting each other will become easier, innovations in psychology will make people better understand themselves and empathize with people, science will unlock newer ways of viewing the world through an objective lens, and people will innovate until we vanish from this planet and explore the vast universe we live in.
I believe in this.
I just don't think we can actual achieve all this without finding that sweet middle spot between progress and innovation. Do I know what the answer is?
NO, I DON'T!
Jesus, you think you'll find the answer in a poorly written opinion piece?! I really wish it were that simple.
I feel this has left me on a trial with many more questions rather than answers but to me that's how life is. An almost never ending barrage of questions and plot twists. Hopefully, we'll be able to solve the most complex problems. I mean a long time ago we used to think medicine was magic, the world was round, people had little people inside them, and women and men were two completely different type of people that deserve to be treated differently (we still need to work on the whole equality front though).
Time will go on and all I can have is faith in the intersection of innovation coming up with answers to complex problems and progress disseminating them into the world moving humanity towards a new prosperous version of themselves.