A Collective Epiphany
The Paradigm Shift Will Not Be Televised
Micah White told us not to repeat the same mistakes. There is no point protesting, because the protesters of the Occupy Movement have proven that protest does not work. Without coherent leadership, without a viable alternative, all that is left is the status quo.
The End of Protest by Micah White: 9780345810045 | PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books
"Fearlessly lucid, radically open-minded, Micah White puts protest back where it belongs-among the greatest forces ever…
The past several thousand years have been a disaster.
Humanity has been in the school of hard knocks ever since we discovered agriculture and planted ourselves in place, building permanent dwellings and inventing tools to try to make life easier — at least for some.
Technology has tended to solve some problems while causing many more problems in the process. The phenomenon has been called a progress trap.
A progress trap is the condition human societies experience when, in pursuing progress through human ingenuity, they inadvertently introduce problems they do not have the resources or political will to solve, for fear of short-term losses in status, stability or quality of life. This prevents further progress and sometimes leads to societal collapse.
Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, has called an election. If there is anything that we have learned during the pandemic, it is that the leaders of Canada have proven to be incompetent in the role of governance in the midst of challenges to their colonial, genocidal theft of land and resources for profit. However, predictably, once one has a taste of power, self-awareness diminishes and lust for power grows as much as it corrupts.
In a progress trap, those in positions of authority are unwilling to make changes necessary for future survival. To do so they would need to sacrifice their current status and political power at the top of a hierarchy.
John P. Kotter wrote a book about hierarchies and networks, a playbook for how hierarchies can exploit networks to work more, innovate more, and produce more, while hierarchies sabotage their efforts, withhold sufficient resources, and take sole credit and profits for any successes. To be sure, that was not how Kotter might frame it, but he did not write the book for the networks. He wrote it to train the oppressors how to oppress.
What we are learning from the internet, open source software, cognitive science, and forests communicating through mycelia networks is that networks are powerful, self-organizing systems that have far greater capacity for creativity and innovation than hierarchical structures of homogenous industrial automatons.
Fight, Flight, or Freeze
Hierarchies have three responses to problems. When they are afraid of losing their legitimacy and authority, they react in the same way that animals have evolved to respond to immediate threats to safety and security. They instinctually abandon reason and rationality and fearfully resort to fight, flight, or freeze.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
The Earth has a fever. The Earth is depressed. Humans realize that the only way to change is to engage in group therapy and deal with the intergenerational trauma that is causing all the conflicts they are experiencing, a living hell that is spreading to every other living being on the planet.
To get out of the instinctual fear response of flight, fight, or freeze, we reengage our emotional awareness by disrupting our cognitive distortions and the fear response with rational thought. We tell ourselves a different story that more accurately reflects reality.
This process is called cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).
The mental models for human experience can help us visualize the problem.
Mental Models for Human Experience
Transcending human-centered design, this is design that seeks to learn from nature, to put into practice the knowledge…
The paradigm shift is confirmed through conversation with other human beings who are experiencing the same benefits from a change in perspective that profoundly changes their moods and behaviours.
Then, there is a bottom-up systems change that transforms society, as it is impossible to unsee what has been seen through a more holistic perspective through this shared experience of a shift in their perception of reality through the process of collective sensemaking and dialogue.