A Saturated Planet

Feature image courtesy of James Cridland

Sometimes I think about the almost eight billion people on this planet and dream of what it was like in the past when there were four, or two, or one billion. The world seems to be riddled with turmoil and division these days and I wonder if that’s a result of the sheer amount of people that exist or if it’s just that we’re transitioning to a new, radically different generation and the mindset of the old and new are clashing.

Like most things, I bet it’s a bit of both. I wonder what could unify all of us. What needs to be created, or said, or done to inspire the world? I think back to World War 2, or the space race and think about how that seems to completely take hold of the entire nation and most all of the world. Sure those are some pretty radical circumstances, both during a war of some sort, but there’s got to be a way to grip the minds of billions and really get people unified.

I’ve, for a while, thought that it may likely be space again. If a human begins a mission to step their soft astro-boot onto the red sands of Mars and the world gets to eagerly watch that, then it may bring millions and millions of people around the globe together.

Sometimes I think that technology is what’s holding this back from happening. It seems as though that by having so much of humanity all across the globe we’ve also been spreading our humanity thin across much of life. We shallowly indulge in so much surface level activity, whether it be reading 140 character opinions, quick attention grabbing listicles (you know, the “10 best foods to eat while high” or some shit like that), or skim meaningly cartoons and youtube videos.

Relatively few seem to delve into content that has the potential to inspire and be digested. There seems to be a movement toward a deeper content, however. I think humanity was sucker punched by the age of the internet and now we’re looking ourselves in the mirror and figuring out what it takes to switch to a balanced use of technology. That’s not the only reason why technology has been holding us back. The World Wide Web is so new and people utilize it in such a varied way that there isn’t one central platform for people to get in-depth TV broadcast-like content to tune into the ongoings of the world in an accessible and appealing way. People who go on the internet gravitate toward their different channels of content and are thus cut off from interacting with those who subscribe to different streams. Same with television these days, at least that’s what I see in the United States.

To get back to the matter of our populated planet, it just seems to me that because we have such a staggering amount of people it may be impossible to galvanize a relatively large portion of them. The reason being is because so many of us exist with our varying ideas and opinions and there’s just no way to have something so widely appealing anymore.

I really hope that changes or that it’s just not true. One of the most eye-widening and joy inducing experiences for me is when I get to be part of a movement or to view a great movement happen. One that gets people up from their computers and away from their smartphones, out of their houses and into the essence of life toward a common goal.

And a goal for the good of the world, I would hope. When people are inspired to get out and do good, to create more connection and beauty, that’s when a gorgeous wave of humanity washes over things and we truly reach a golden age.

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