In a Waiting Mode

Aren’t we all just waiting?

Waiting for things to happen. Waiting to be evacuated because of a wildfire in your area. Waiting for COVID-19 to explode. Waiting for Trump’s ominous win. Waiting for climate change to wipe us out.

WAITING FOR SOMETHING TO HAPPEN

As if – at least – we’ll get somewhere. As if – at least – there’s an answer in the future. As if – at least – life will move on, for better or for worse.

The Unknown is upon us. And it is stressful. It is scary. It is damaging.

How do we deal with the Unknown? Not good. Please! Can I get on with my life without any unnecessary disruptions? I’m a good person, I’m responsible and capable of taking care of myself. So, why this?

That describes my immediate outlook. My immediate concern for my own life. BUT. It can be explained. I am not alone but part of a global world, part of a political system, part of human history, and part of human innovation and exploration.

We are here now. We were there yesterday. Where will we be tomorrow? A huge question with major consequences. How much have we thought of and reflected upon our human trajectory since we discovered fire and invented tools?

For us, the important part is to feel comfort and pleasure. We act upon that. We defend our loved ones because of that. We go to war because of that. We invent new things because of that.

And we forget. We forget to act further. We forget to reflect. We forget to analyze our actions, to measure their consequences. Because we don’t want to wait. We don’t want to wait or be without comfort and pleasure.

Instead, we react. We react when wildfire is upon us. We react when a virus hits. We react when Trump policies go too far. We react to climate change.

This reaction is contingent on action. Reflection is not. Reflection is contingent on thinking, on looking ahead, on reading consequences, on gathering facts, and on accepting the big picture. That we are part of a global world and part of each other.

Looking ahead and working accordingly is very different from reacting to immediate happenings. The latter is important, too, but cannot be the only way we work when doing what is best for humanity.

WE MUST LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE. Meaning looking at historical and current events, asking questions why they happen and what we can do to face them.

Yes, we are facing the Unknown doing that. Not merely reacting to the known in front of us.

This is the difference.

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