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Derechos of Existence

That we continue to navigate this world being even slightly more constructive than destructive is, in itself, a strangely beautiful fact

Photo by Zoltan Tasi on Unsplash

We’re authors of perspective

A derecho [weather event] is a line of intensely chaotic windstorms, termed from the Spanish phrase ‘straight ahead’.

Our own nature, in how we navigate through (and out of) the chaos of our world, isn’t unlike the intensive progression of a series of such storms — destructive while eerily enlivening.

In the ways we [try to] cultivate order from disorder, manipulating ourselves and our surroundings in the name of relentless progress, we can be likened to arrogant God’s who deny the laws of nature only to be obliterated by them in the end, in some kind of fateful or karmic inevitability (like that which is well articulated in Percy Shelly’s poem Ozymandias).

We’re the creators and destroyers of all; the authors of a reign that’s certainly mighty from our standpoint but only a cute blip in a sea of static noise from more expanded perspectives.

Ironically, it’s perspective in itself which is everything, and we tend to let it crush us if things aren’t working out the way want them to — collectively and/or individually.

What we often fail to realize, however, is that the darkest and most chaotic of moments are typically those which prove the most conducive for opportunity — such rock-bottom moments often, if not always, seem to function as potent fertilizer for what comes next.

With a glass half full

Next year, the Dark Ages Radio Explorer (DARE) is set to launch, designed to investigate the very early universe (redshifted emanations, black hole accretions, the decays of ‘dark’ matter) from behind the darkness of the Moon’s shadow.

Over the next two to four years, developments in bioelectronics will have the capability to break into common use, including neural prostheses that can repair damage from Alzheimer’s, dementia or strokes, as well as pace-maker style devices that can stimulate nerves to eliminate arthritis or restore normal insulin production to help eradicate diabetes.

Within the next five to ten years, multiple countries plan to mandate electronic vehicle distribution in an effort to expand on renewable energy initiatives amidst our ongoing efforts to greenify the planet and ‘stabilize’ the apparently volatile state of the earths climate.

And a glass half empty

The results from from DARE are going to have to be filtered through the rigid grooves of academia before trickling out as preconceived dots along an established narrative that subscribes to one standalone theory (Big Bang), obfuscating details in a way that will act as infertile soil from which new theories can[not] sprout.

The medical industry, working with or against big pharma and big insurance, will restrict access to the the innovative bioelectronic technology and stunt its distribution for an unsettlingly long time.

The artisanal cobalt mines of the Kongo and other resource-hungry systems will perpetuate the worst human-exploitation in recorded history as mineral demand will spike to supply battery demand amidst this new vehicle revolution.

On waves we float

While it’s all in how we look at things, it’s also good to derive common denominators, to extract patterns from the noise.

The three above examples denote our ambition but are saturated with potential for our abuse or mishandling.

Our collective journey through time and space thus far has shown us that we certainly stand to benefit (more than we do suffer) from our incessant need to make sense of the world around us — to organize, to manage, to decode — but we make it pretty hard on ourselves along the way.

We demand order from disorder, moving against the grains of the variable laws of existence and of nature. We seek the best but exemplify the worst.

Though, even in our topsy-turvy, scattered approach, as we flail to stay afloat (and somehow do), there’s sort of an elegant grace that’s observable, akin to the clumsy actions of a child who employs the right intent but the completely wrong application in their pursuit of a justifiable cause.

Evolving via chaos

In our exertion to, arguably, make the world a better place, we create a lot of meaningful sparks and friction.

This friction that we generate, despite technically being useless in the grandest scheme of things (ashes to ashes), does happen to reward us with meaning, character, definition and purpose.

Perhaps more critically, it also results in something quite extraordinary and underestimate: progression.

Growth, sophistication, advancement.

Not always moral (certainly not behind the scenes of the work that’s done) but our quest for evolution is definitely relentless and inevitable — a drive that’s encoded within the very architectonics of our being.

What’s most interesting is the winding way that our evolution really makes tracks, and the ironic way that progress seems to unfold, more exponentially, on the heels of the more chaotic episodes.

It seems to be through the windstorms of uncertainty and conflict, struggle and tragedy (when the tension and noise is at its highest) that we subsequently emerge with that something special.

Whether it’s a social movement or a personal conviction — it’s the kind of thing that Dostoevsky writes about or that Darwin found critical about our species: we get the most out of the worst.

And this is equally true on an individual basis as it is on a collective one.

As passengers, not pilots

Despite all the strife, malfeasance, self-sabotage, ignorance, deception, delirium, we still largely get by as a species.

That we continue to navigate this phantasmagorical world being even slightly more constructive than destructive is, in itself, a strangely beautiful fact.

And despite the occasional and guttural acknowledgements that our absurd reality doesn’t function to simply cater pleasantries to us, we still move forward, stubbornly, optimistically, and persistently.

In fact, we experience something of a momentous propulsion when we need it most; it’s exactly when hope seems lost that it becomes most powerfully clear.

At least, that’s the half-full approach.

Eventually we’ll find a way to stop sucking fossil fuels out of the earth, one that isn’t reliant upon modern systems of slavery; and we’ll find ways to circumvent institutional ignorance controlled by systemic subversion; and we’ll maybe break apart some of the complexes that hang omni-presently overhead.

It’s a difficult contrast to make: on the one hand, we can’t overstate the atrocities of modern existence; on the other hand, a utopic existence without chaos wouldn’t be livable.

Reality curates destruction as much as it enables construction; for us to skew this beyond a 50/50 balance may be a foolish ambition.

But we try to, and make a good case for why it seems to work more often than not.

We’re in a shared journey, united by meaning and survival; we can let the windstorms crush us or blow us apart, or we can use them as the basis for change, as we seem to have been doing this whole time.

It’s at the darkest of times that we stand to gain the most. The turbulent derechos of our existence are leveraged as a precursor to some pretty potent progress, and that fact alone is a special one.

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Philosophy | Psychology | Physiology: Bridging the gap between us and ourselves.

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