This recent book review on NPR seemed to resonate a bit given the state of the world we are finding ourselves in: 1177BC, The Year Civilization Collapsed.
It is an absolute truth that history repeats itself, as we are simply recycling matter and energy within a finite sphere. Sure, with time, this is shifted and swayed, but the laws of physics that we are ultimately governed by tend to reveal patterns at all scales – the discovery of which we humans refer to as ‘science’.
Philosophy aside, ‘we’ indeed have to start taking a serious look at the world around us, as the consequences of our own actions are putting such a strain on humanity that the breaking point may well be on a nearer horizon than we’d all hope to see. As I sit here writing, I have the news on in the background to get caught up on world events, and what comes through in all of it is unrest, and at all scales. People are not happy, which means energy is shifting towards change. Change can be good, or change can be bad. Understanding the consequences of such change is what is most critical such that actions taken can steer us in the right direction.
For the masses, people tend to go for the ride. Its strong leadership that can ultimately drive the bus, but that has to be leadership both behind the needs of our sustainable existence, and maintaining some degree of peace. Today that may well be much harder than in 1177 BC, as we’re extremely pressed for resources given the massive size of our population. Biology tells us that only the strongest survive – that may well be a reality.
I don’t want to stray into the realm of doomsday conspiracies and the like, but consider that if you are feeling the stress of modern times, it is indeed stress that needs attention and in the end no one can do anything about it but you.
Could we go down again? Yes. Will we? Absolutely yes if we don’t start taking care of ourselves and start listening to the world around us. Interestingly, we only know about one major civilization’s fall previously, though there are stories of a major collapse prior to that which left no signs or traces of what was likely the seed of it all. What’s important today is to preserve that which will lead to future sustainability. Does it matter in the end? I guess I can’t answer that one here in a brief Blog post, but it would be incredibly selfish to take advantage of this ride without giving back just a little bit.
Think globally, act locally; go big, or go home.