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5 April 2012

In Otherwise Grim State, Zday 2012 Provides Optimism

It is not hard to understand why some people take solace in blissful ignorance. The amount of accessible doom-ridden information depicting the oppression of human rights and freedoms throughout history is disheartening to say the least. Mind you, any truth seeker has surely come to realize that going back to a sheltered, dependent state of mind is futile once a certain threshold of consciousness is transcended. Yes, the enormous hurtles humanity must jump in order to get anywhere may leave the most confident of us feeling hopeless and depressed but there is light on the horizon, a silver lining on the clouds.

Though initially expecting more doom and gloom attending ZDay 2012, I did in fact encounter quite a bit of optimism. The Zeitgeist Movement's annual event promotes awareness of new paradigm developments while reflecting on our current system's degradation. Highlighted below are the event's first three lecturers who spoke on technological advancement, the education paradigm and human survival logistics.

Author of upcoming book Robots Will Steal Your Job, But That's OK, Federico Pistono talked about the technological potential of greater society - available now, growing exponentially and about to take off. The message is that there's no stopping it, there's no use fighting it. It's only a matter of time until robots are better at every laborious "job" that we do so why worry about something out of your control? Instead, embrace that robots will set us free!

James Phillips works with TZM Education and his lecture covered many bases outlining the failure of the educational paradigm. The idea here is that the establishment of the Western education system is based on an old Prussian design to control noncompliant military subjects. Echoing thoughts of John Taylor Gatto, Phillips explained this system's failure to fulfil much purpose besides being a mechanism that controls the development of tomorrow's labour force. Surveillance in an artificially competitive environment,  industrial style factory bells ringing the start and end to work periods, emotional and intellectual dependency on authority that fosters conditional self-esteem... This is no place for students to thrive. The lecture instead promoted that true love for learning is a self-taught mission and should not be given a set curriculum via some false authority figure but only be offered guidance when demanded.

The third speaker was Douglas Mallette who revealed that plenty of thought has been put into human survival, especially in regards to Mars. Through work he did alongside NASA, Mallette went over the simple logistics of sustaining human life for longer periods of time. Emphasized was the concern that Earth has its own issues needing attention and these logistics can help. In other words, before we worry too much about Mars, let's see if we can give everyone a good life on our own planet first.

For links to prospective solutions to food, medical care, energy and more, Read the following sourced outline of Douglas Mallette's lecture (courtesy of Douglas Mallette):
Douglas Mallette – CEO of Cybernated Farm Systems, Former Space Shuttle Systems Engineer
Biological Needs 
Naturally covered as long as we maintain a strong & healthy environment.
Scientific Fields of Study: Aquaponics & Hydroponics
Charlie Price on Aquaponics
Omega Garden Farm Systems
Free range livestock farming using the land freed up after a significant amount of commercial real estate is returned to nature. This mixed with advanced technological systems for monitoring & shepherding as needed.
Dan Barber on “Extensive” fish farming:
Common existing systems such as desalinization plants, local rain collector facilities, centrifugal centers, etc. are well known. Marry these systems with clean energy to increase efficiency and sustainability.
-Medical Care-
Ray Cronise on Weight Loss/Management
When stress & labor requirements are low, sleep is easy to come by]

Quality of Life 
SunPower – 20%+ Efficient Solar Cells
Sphelar Solar Cell
New wave of ocean energy to be trialed off the coast of Australia
Geothermal Energy
Wave Power
Fuel Cell – BloomBox
Contour Crafting
Internet based education centers globally connected can educate humanity as never before, combined with better modes of teaching, there are no limits to human potential:
Charles Leadbeater
Sir Ken Robinson
Sugata Mitra
Salman Khan
Alfie Kohn
Examples: ULTra, electric cars, robotic GPS driven cars, maglev train systems, Evacuated Tube Transports (a supersonic system that can replace inefficient and pollution contributing airliners)
Long range Electric Car
500 kph Maglev Train
Evacuated Tube Transport
Stanford University Automated Car
-Clothing & Other Products-
With local automated sewing and 3D printing capabilities, all clothes and products could be made locally by uploading blueprints into a computer and having the automated system make it locally. One could even be their own custom designer, literally designing their own clothes or house wares to their liking, to be made at their local facility.
3D Printing
Satellite Communication, Smart Phones, Internet – The world today is already aware of the communication capabilities we have at our fingertips, and it’s getting better and more robust all the time.

Additional Concepts to Consider
*Personal Purpose...Given that one is no longer restricted by a lack of educational opportunity, they are free to learn and pursue whatever passions they like, and since their living conditions are no longer based on what they do for ‘work’, they are considerably more stress free and strong with a sense of purpose and self fulfillment.
*Recreation...Given costs are no object, recreation of all forms are readily available for all, all the time. Thanks to advanced transportation, global travel is easy, fast and convenient. The arts become robust and plentiful, since artists at heart no longer have to set aside their talents and passion so they can work an unfulfilling job just to pay the bills and live a decent life.
*Community...With such a positive living condition, and a significant amount of time available, the social creature known as the human being is free to interact and enjoy their community. Family, friends, colleagues and the worlds people are at their fingertips, available to learn from and to grow and share the joys of life with.

Social Sciences
Dr. Robert Sapolsky. Here’s a short clip to review:
Dr. Gabor Mate:
Nature or Nurture; How Do Genes, Environment and Free Will Affect Human Behavior:
Some final thoughts...
Mankind has always been motivated to discover things that we may or may not have been supposed to find. We tend to lead ourselves astray from an otherwise simple life with promise of procuring new things that could bring about new possibilities of happiness. The things we encounter may improve our lives or bring us down but as long as it doesn't hurt anyone else, it's our individual right to learn from the journeys that make up our existence. It is not the duty of others to lay down a path for us that they see fit. Sure you can decide to have another represent or even control you if you'd like. But when someone is raised in a world that makes them fail to realize their own choice in their own matters, then an inherent freedom is lost. Thus freedom's ultimate responsibility is to forward the freedom of all others.

Til next time, this might inspire us to think about what classrooms ought to provide developing minds that hold our future: 
Children Full of Life


Anonymous said...

Do people really intend "blissful ignorance".? Or is it something else that keeps people from listening, caring, doing? Do they take "solace" or refuge? If for example, I refuse to think about something or act on something I am taking refuge away from what overwhelms me. It doesn't really give me solace. And it doesn't mean that I am necessarily blissfully ignorant. It means I am using my "flight" reaction to fear of either the known or unknown. I simply want a break from the hell out there that I know exists.

Dirt Rich said...

In my mind, I use these words almost as synonyms.

solace definition: comfort or consolation in a time of distress or sadness

The point I'm trying to make is that there is so much useless information that is being jammed in our face. All these things that are trying to be sold to us are consumed readily and often times willingly by many people I know. They even laugh at how stupid some of it is but nevertheless, do not stop indulging.

People have to wake up and realize the solutions available to us and start trying them out! We have options but as time runs out, these options run out too.