Imaginings, Illusions & Illustrations

So many words, so many ideas, so many opinions. Only one self.

“Unprecedented times” is a phrase I’ve heard or read far too much this year.

“New normal” is also another.

Along with “I just want things to go back to normal”

I’ve heard today a political spin merchant seriously use the phrase: “I think we may disagree on what facts are true”

Because I daydream, because I explore ideas, concepts and patterns, just sometimes I have what alcoholic’s call ‘moments of clarity’ and ancient man use to call ‘visions from |insert deity here|’

Yet I find it so easy to be distracted, to be filled, even overwhelmed with information. There are many things we are as a species. At our core I’d argue we are a slightly hairless monkey, with methods of transmitting knowledge and material wealth both on an inter-generational and intercontinental basis.

We, in my post-industrial landscape, mostly live in a world based on our imaginings and illusions. The illuminating illustrations of factual information is there.

I don’t see it as the driving force. Maybe nor should it be. Status, appearance and virtue signalling do seem to take priority to actions and results.

Bending reality to fit your desires – or retreating into an imaginary controllable, limited and safe delusions – is something afforded only to the insanely wealthy, children and mad people.

How much time are people spending on social media out bursts? I miss the days when the internet was mostly cats – and everyone knew the default option was to distrust everything on the internet. I’m careful, I prefer to offer some comedic slight or a slight insight on life. The angry rants are rare, because as an action they rarely create a positive, sustaining result.

Often, even inside groups and networks I’m in, it’s not a meeting of different individuals with different skills and needs coming together to create something which benefits the whole group – more than it limits the individual.

There are actions comments and reactions to online activity that just would not be tolerated in the real – face-to-face – world.

Could you imagine if someone walked up to someone they didn’t know in public and screamed “I DON’T LIKE WHAT YOU THINK, I’M OFFENDED YOU ARE INHUMAN AND NEED TO DIE!?!?!” a mild exaggeration for demonstrative purposes – but not a false analogy?

Online however it seems like there’s a need, a drive, or behaviour patterns which massively exaggerate positive or negatives – and remove nuance.

Why do we have social manners?

Because we know that we need to get along with our fellow earth ship dwellers…

I am disturbed by a wider trend – that of the social or ideological bubbles that are forming, and that an expression that does not fit the group is not just a disagreement – but treated as a threat, an attack or a absolutist destruction of any humanity or value in the ‘Offender’/’Outsider’

As Stephen Fry stated – “You’re offended? So fucking what?”

I’m trying real hard to remain constructive and build connections and consensus. But like all good habits, I definitely find it harder to maintain than the easy bad habits.

The extreme reach in me wonders if its a side effect of something else that’s going on in wider societal trends?

Looking at history, without being histrionic, societies & empires have collapsed due to inability to cope with natural disasters. But also when the division between the the groups of a society no longer have a bridgeable gap.

The internet, information and social media are all human inventions that we are not genetically – or even socially adapted to. All technological and ideological changes are destructive and disruptive, but if nothing ever changes then the whole system is doomed.

Will current trends be the disruptive wedge that creates the illusion of security of the self while the multitude of groups we all rely on slowly break apart?

It illustrates to me that as a collective group, our en masse behaviours, we’re still some hormonal teen who can’t self regulate and attacks or adores in equal measure with acceptance rarely seen?

Will we adapt fast enough to avoid a collapse? Has anyone noticed that the Globo-Corps like Google, Facebook or Amazon – who answer to no individual or government – are possible the only groups to come out of this worldwide pandemic circus stronger? And they aren’t even people. The people are only there to support the legal entity that is a corporation.

What happened to protecting the individual selves through co-operation? Isn’t that why we as monkeys have a collective?

Yesterday chasing waterfalls refocused & revitalised me – perspective is everything. If waterfalls can carve rocks, I’m still willing to hope our species will learn lessons before we hit an exam we can’t pass. Just my individual self will only be the smallest fraction of change.

I’m probably due another break from all this. I’ve spent most of the day listening to music and looking deep into how deeply the capitalist experiment to get China to follow a Anglo-European philosophy has failed..

Like with all changes, it’s a function of energy, time and context.