by Corey DeVos

Looking at recent headlines, it seems that we are currently in a period of remarkable conflict and transition. But here’s the thing—looking at yesterday’s headlines, or the headlines from a hundred years ago, and we realize that we are always in a period of remarkable conflict and transition. It helps to remember that most of the great anxieties of our era—namely politics, war, and the economy—have been with us for an awfully long time. So long, in fact, that all of these can be found in monkey and ape societies (thankfully our politicians have found a somewhat more cerebral form of crap to throw at each other, though it doesn’t really seem to smell much better…).

Still, some times are more novel than others, and the rate of novelty itself seems to be accelerating. With one foot firmly planted in the digital age, these perennial problems have taken on an entirely new level of complexity. Our global economy is so intertwined, events on one side of the planet can have an immediate effect upon the rest of the world. We are at war not with a definable faction or nation, but with a faceless fanatical ideology that knows no real geographical or ethnic boundaries. And our political system has come to a near standstill, suffering the paralysis of a complete perspectival meltdown.

Add to the list some newly emergent problems like climate change, environmental degradation, and nuclear contamination, and it becomes increasingly evident that the pressures of the 21st century are beginning to reach a crescendo, that the structures and systems of the 20th century cannot contain or relieve these pressures, and that something new will need to emerge in their place. How these solutions will take shape, no one knows—but it seems clear that they will need to come from an integrally-informed space, or else they simply will not work, and may even make our problems that much worse.

But do not despair, for there is always hope. Evolution has never showed any sign of stopping or even slowing down, and this is certainly true for our current 21st-century predicaments. Solutions will emerge, problems will be solved, which will lead to a whole new crop of problems that we can hardly imagine at our current point in history. And either way, you can rest assured that the world will still be here when it’s all said and done.

Text by Corey W. deVos

Excepts from the Daily Evolver Dialogs
… an on-going conversation on current events from an integral perspective, with Jeff Salzman and David Riordan, published by Integral Life.

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