How to Fix Everything Wrong with the World in One Single Day

Written by Mike Wolf   
Monday, 12 May 2014 04:21
As difficult as it may be to believe, the world's problems are simple, and can easily be fixed. In fact, if we humans put our minds to it, we could fix the problems overnight. Of course, we would all have to put our minds to it at the same time. But, that does tell us what the problem is.

The world is currently populated by some 7 billion people. That's a lot. That's quite a huge number of people, people who drive cars, who use energy, who create and cause nasty chemicals to be used, who want nuclear energy (and some who want nuclear weapons), and all who need food, water, and air to breathe.

Think about what you use. How much gasoline do you use everyday? How much energy to you use? How much trash do you generate? How much trash is generated for your benefit that you don't even know about? These are questions you never really think about. And most of the other 7 billion people on the planet don't either.

We live in a paradigm in which we are isolated in our decisions, our use of resources, and our thinking. But we all share the same resources, the same planet, and the same kind of mind with the same basic goals. Not only does this set things up for conflict between people because of competition for scarce resources; but it has us acting individually and in complete isolation from those resources and from the consequences of our actions.

Yes, money is part of the problem. But it still does not get to the core, to the very heart of what is wrong.

The problem you see, is us. You. Me. People. All 7 billion of us, we are the problem. And how we are the problem is that we see ourselves as separate from the rest of us, and that has to do with the fact that most of us are people, not human beings.

We are a world of children. Almost every single person alive is incomplete and therefore not even technically human. It has everything to do with something called potential.

Potential is what something can be if it fully develops. Ingredients in a dish all have potential to be the completed dish, if they are mixed together and cooked properly. And every human being has the potential to be a genius, and an athlete at the same time.

If we had all reached our potential, we would all get along, the world would be in perfect shape, and we would have complete harmony - global peace and prosperity.

Achieving our potential as humans includes achieving our individual potential in something called our moral development (there is an excellent Wikipedia article on the subject entitled "Kohlberg's Moral Development" which I encourage you to read). Moral development is how we mature in our reasoning, our decision making process and that aspect of it that has to do with the fact that we are all sharing a finite planet with limited resources.

So, we missed the boat on this one, right? Doesn't that mean its too late? Wouldn't we have to go through all the many years of life that it normally takes to develop our moral reasoning? Won't it be too late by the time we teach everyone to reason at a level suitable for the level of cooperation necessary to fix the mess we've made of the world?

Not at all, actually; because we already have the potential to reason at the necessary level.

We could literally fix the world in one day if we all put our minds to it. And this is precisely what I propose as the solution to all of the world's problems: a day of thinking, together, about how we want the world to be. This is nothing more than an exercise in moral reasoning, a single day spent reasoning at what is called Universal Ethics, in order that we might all work together as a species to find a solution to our common problem.

I am confident that we can solve our common problems: global conflict over resources, climate change, dwindling energy resources, pollution, inequality, terrorism, poverty - everything; and that we can do it in a single day. My confidence lies in human potential. I myself have thought through and come up with workable solutions to most of these problems myself. And as I am a human being, it means that we all have the potential to work out solutions to these problems.

My proposal then is this: we pick a day, I have so far chosen July 10th, 2014, and we spend that day thinking about how to solve the world's problems, but in a very specific way: But first, we must prepare ourselves for that day of thinking, and to do so we must engage in an exercise: to learn a basic set of verifiable knowledge about the world around us and to otherwise prepare for that day of thinking.

On that day, we will be pondering solutions to our problems. But for that to happen, we must understand what those problems are, and we must have that understanding ourselves, individually. This means we must do two things to prepare for the day of thinking, the day of meditation if you will: we must acquire sufficient knowledge to understand the problems; and we must discipline ourselves to only understand based on verifiable fact rather than taking for granted what we are told. In other words, we need to learn everything for ourselves and dispense with anything we cannot verify and not consider it in our day of meditation. It does not mean we need to learn everything; but we should of course learn enough to have a better understanding of the world around us so that we can plan a society that benefits us all, not just ourselves.

What this means is that we must do some studying, and it means making sure that what we know is fact. Fact and truth are things we can verify for ourselves. If someone tells you that a building is a certain color, you cannot be certain unless you see the building yourself either in-person, or a photograph - but one that you can verify is actually an unaltered photograph of the building. Unless you verify for yourself, you may go through life thinking that building is blue when it is actually white. No, this isn't exactly going to destroy the planet; but imagine if you took something important about our planet for granted; such as the human contribution to climate change. As you can hopefully imagine, it is quite important to know if climate change is human caused, as many say, or not, as others suggest. In cases such as global climate change where we cannot be sure, it is always best to assume the worst - in this case, that we are in fact destroying our climate through use of fossil fuels.

Once we have disciplined ourselves not to take anything for granted, we can then do the final preparation for the day of meditation: to understand the goal of the day. The goal is this: to figure out how we want the world to be - not for ourselves, but for everyone else. And that is the one difference, the one thing that will make all the difference - that we will be thinking in the realm of what is called universal ethics - that level of moral reasoning that considers all members of the system in which we exist.

This isn't your world, it is our world. And we are not individuals, we are a species. We do not exist individually, we exist as an entire species 7 billion strong who all share the same limited resources. We cannot go through life thinking about ourselves only. We have to consider the whole of the system that we are a part of, and that is precisely what this day of meditation will accomplish - and profoundly enough that it offers the only chance we have to save our future and perhaps the entire species and even the planet itself; or at least its potential to sustain human and other life.

So my proposal then is that we all spend July 10th thinking about how we think things should be in our world, how our societies should be, how our laws should be, how our economy should be so that it benefits everyone. And remember, if it benefits everyone, it benefits you. Not only that, but a society which benefits everyone equally is an ideal society, so what we are really doing here is imagining the ideal society. And the idea in doing that is that when we wake up on July 11th, we only need to act upon our thoughts to make our ideal society happen. It's really that simple!

I have faith that if everyone on the planet were to participate in this day of meditation on how we want our world to be, that when we wake up on July 11th, that we will awaken into an ideal world. Oh, sure, it will have its problems; but we would have thought those through, and it would then only be a matter of making things happen, of solving these petty problems so that we can get on to being an ideal society which benefits us all. And if we stumble, we have our new discipline to fall back on, and we can reason through the problems together.

I have faith in humanity, in human potential, and most of all, in the power of human imagination. I hope you share my faith. And I hope you will join me in making July 10th a day to solve all of our problems so that we can make July 11th, 2014, the first day of the new world, a world we ourselves created in our collective minds. your social media marketing partner
Email This Page