Thanks to my friend Oliver, I just finished reading Ervin Laszlo’s 2006 book The Chaos Point. Probably the best book I have read since the last amazing book I read. They seem to be coming thick and fast at the moment.
We are always busy so my wife asked me to summarise it in 30 seconds. Here goes:
- The world is in a terrible state, and getting worse.
- Doom is not, however, inevitable.
- Changing our own consciousness – personally and as a group – is the answer.
This goes a long way to answering one of the major riddles I struggle with. If you believe the world is a complex system (as I do), and that we can’t predict outcomes with any certainty (even though scientific, economic. and political dogma suggest we can), why isn’t it OK just to live and let live?
It will all work out for the best won’t it? The trickle-down will work. Technology will fix the climate. Crisis will be averted, yet again. Everyone will be happy.
Laszlo’s point is that we humans are both the problem and the solution. We are destroying the planet and in danger of destroying ourselves. But we have the power to change our thinking. And changing our thinking allows us to change the framework by which we all live. Our future is not predetermined. It depends on that framework.
Our ingrained liberalism suggests live and let live. But we can, for example, choose a better morality, summarised by Ghandi’s “Live more simply, so that others can simply live”.
How do we change our morality, change our consciousness? Another riddle: it’s not easy, and yet it is. One clear way forward is to work on oneself. To try to understand oneself better, mind, body and soul.
My wife liked that bit. She’s an example to me. Someone who takes personal development very seriously. And I must go and read another book.