The Only Thing Stopping Us From Creating Utopia Is The Fact That We Don’t Truly Want It Yet
If terrestrial evolution were a super-advanced computer game being played by extra-dimensional entities, I suspect that the arrival of a primate with the capacity for language and abstract thought would be very exciting for the players.
This might be a weird way for a political blogger to begin an essay, but hear me out.
Our hypothetical extra-dimensional computer game players might look at this unprecedented cognitive and linguistic capacity, along with the fact that primates are already social animals by default, and assume that the game was essentially over. A species had arrived which could use its mental and collaborative capabilities to escape the food chain and ensure that all its members get everything they need to survive and thrive without upsetting the delicate ecosystemic context in which it evolved. The death and destruction inherent in Darwinian natural selection had come to an end. Utopia had arrived.
Of course we here in this dimension know that such an assumption would prove spectacularly wrong. Humans have indeed used our superior neurology to out-survive and out-thrive all other competing organisms, but then we’ve also continued to use it to conquer, kill, exploit and enslave one another throughout the entirety of recorded history, and to decimate the ecosystem which we need to survive. If we end up going extinct due to anthropogenic climate chaos or nuclear armageddon, we will have failed as spectacularly as a species can possibly fail in the extremely short time that we have been here. The extra-dimensional alien playing our species would have the lowest possible score in the game.
Why is this? Why is it that we have everything we need to create paradise for everyone, yet we don’t do it? This is arguably the single most important question we humans can ask ourselves at this juncture in time, and in my opinion the answer is that we haven’t created our utopia yet because we still don’t want to.
I mean, think about it. What do most people do with the majority of their free time? Do they spend it collaborating, creating, cuddling, playing and making beauty, or do they spend it on conflict and competition? When you turn on the TV or go to the movies, how many stories will you see in which there is no conflict? Virtually none. Conflict and drama are what the average human mind gravitates toward — in our entertainment, in our social media, in our conversations, and in our routine mental behavior. It’s what we find interesting.
How interesting to such a mind is a world in which there are no problems? All of the major tribulations facing our species today are of our own making: war, poverty, famine, social and economic injustice, cruelty and exploitative toil. What few problems we encounter which aren’t man-made (natural disasters, some diseases) could be vastly minimized if our species was pouring all its mental energy and creativity into creating a better world for everyone instead of into economic competition and warfare. A world without any of those problems is uninteresting and unsexy to the average human mind. We’re not creating it because we’re bored by the very thought of it. If utopia were created tomorrow, humanity would sabotage it almost immediately out of sheer restlessness.
I know that this is true by looking at the way humanity’s addiction to drama is so consistently and reliably used to manipulate us into supporting the status quo. Any movement away from the omnicidal trajectory of the ruling elites who have seized control of our world is quickly neutered and nullified by the way so many of us are so easily sucked into fist-shaking us vs. them opposition. Remember how quickly the rebellious spirit of the Bernie Sanders revolution was absorbed into the McResistance of anti-Trumpism, for example, or how opposition to liberals has caused Trump’s anti-establishment supporters to forgive his increasing deference to mainstream neoconservatism. People are constantly herded back into supporting the neoliberal neoconservative establishment one-party system with the same drama-fueled us vs. them rhetoric:
“You’ve got to support Trump! Look how bad those liberals are!”
“You’ve got to support the Democrats! Look how bad the Republicans are!”
“Support the mainstream media! Trump is waging war on the free press!”
“Vote for me! I’ll save you from those nasty immigrants and Muslims!”
“Vote for me! I’ll save you from those Russians and racists!”
We have right now as you are reading this the ability to come together and collaborate to eliminate all of humanity’s problems and create paradise on earth, but our addiction to drama is being used to manipulate us into an oppositional position in which we side with one arm of the establishment to shake our fists at the other arm while being given absolutely nothing in return. As long as we keep succumbing to this basic mind trick, we’re going to keep hurtling toward extinction, passengers on a plane that is piloted by sociopaths.
And I am aware that speaking of the oligarchs as sociopaths might seem like more seductive us vs. them language, but it really isn’t. As we discussed recently, being ruled by an elite group of sociopaths is simply the natural consequence of living in a system governed by the intelligence of money. The markets, as plutocrat George Soros once said, are amoral, and the people who use those markets most effectively will do so amorally. In a system where money equals political power, this necessarily means that the most powerful people will be amoral, i.e. sociopathic. These sociopaths are just doing what they do in the system we currently have; they’re a symptom of the way we’ve been operating. But they should not be in charge of the earth, so it’s important to point out what they are and what they’re doing.
Caitlin Johnstone (@caitoz) | Twitter
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On my Twitter and Facebook profiles I’ve been listing myself as a “utopia prepper”, meaning I’m doing everything I can to align myself with a will toward utopia. I’m doing my best to rid myself of anything in me that is addicted to drama and conflict, any conditioning I might have that would be bored or restless in a world where we’re not making problems for ourselves anymore.
I genuinely think this is a crucial step we’ll all have to take before we can free ourselves from the shackles of omnicidal Orwellian oligarchy. In order to create utopia, we’re going to have to want it first. As long as we’re psychologically addicted to drama and conflict, to the us vs. them mentality that keeps suckering us into supporting a way of functioning which does not benefit us, we’re going to keep marching toward extinction.
It is evolve or die time. If we want to evolve, we’re going to have to really want this thing, and get rid of our old vestigial conditioning patterns which behave as though we’re still a bunch of howling apes trying to claw our way up the food chain. We won’t survive the hurdles we face in the near future unless we change our way of thinking in a very big way. Paradise will be right here for the taking as soon as we’re truly ready for it, and getting internally ready for it is one of the most important things that an individual can do to help bring it about.
Are you ready?
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