We humans tend to believe that historical tendencies will continue forever. I’m one of those people. But there’s hope in the fact that reality is more fickle than that.
By the way, I’m off till January 2nd and will try to write a short post daily until then. To see how it works out. Stay in the flow.
Back to the topic. Economists are the big example of this idea, who believe (or have long believed) in perpetual growth and continuously expanding wealth. But in recent years we have seen numerous examples that show the opposite: trends end or get disrupted, and sometimes even reverse. I’d like to pick a few hopeful examples:
I find this one promising. In 2013, omnipotent and omniscient lord of this era Google introduced what was supposed to be the next step in the transformation of humans into cyborgs. The marketing was right, the product was interesting. It offered revolutionary options comparable to the way the terminator perceives the world. Something we had all longed for since we saw the film. But it failed. Nobody bought it and no-one knows why. A trend got interrupted, to say the least. It demonstrates a weakness of Google and a lack of interest of their target groups. Apparently there had been enough development for now.
Whether it has already passed, or lies in the decade ahead remains under discussion. But the fact is that oil production and, consequently, consumption will slow down and ultimately end. We will go over the peak of oil, and will have to switch to other sources. Sooner or later, the era of oil will end.
My personal use of social media
When Facebook just emerged, it was all hot and cool. But it isn’t anymore. Same with What’s App. It’s getting boring. What’s more: there’s floods of advertising. There even are organizations that will sell people theatrical Facebook outings to make their lives look worth living. This compromises the trustworthiness of the platforms and make it less interesting for people to be on them. It does not consume us further: we gently back off. I’ve seen more people make that movement. There’s nothing to miss out there: it’s becoming vain. The series Black Mirror illustrates this quite well in some episodes.
We have had a period of enormous growth in many ways, but there are limits to everything. Just like the expansion of roads has slowed down, so will the internet. The economy. Technology as well. We are entering a period where we can slowly get used to our new tools and learn how to use them wisely. To support a soulful life, that makes us happy, instead of running to get more.
Do you know of some other hopeful indications that might hint to an end to a historic trend? Feel free to mention it in the comments : )