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    The Utopia Hypothesis
    Utopia has taken up residence in my frame of reference again, possessing me with glee, anguish, and a pronounced sense of forking paths. This past weekend I counted at least 6 references to Utopia, a trend that suggests a general awareness that major changes are afoot. What else is Utopia, after all, but the suggestion of radical change.

    I just had a very long conversation about climate change, about technology, about losing 90% of all species on Earth in some sort of inverse Arc scenario, where Noah throws the animals off the boat to make room for more people.

    The appeal of Utopia seems to be a byproduct of our current condition: we are at a stage where we are simultaneously losing whatever semblance of control we, as humans, had on the future, AND ushering in an age of advanced human decision making. To the shigrin of outdoor enthusiasts, we have transformed the Earth's surface to accommodate our uniquely human compulsion to invent. Ironically this seems to accelerate the rate at which innovation must take place to avoid collapsing under the weight of a significant evolutionary shift.

    Whether we are perched on a cataclysmic precipice or a moment of profound opportunity is a matter of perspective, but it's clearly a moment when human beings need to once again step into a void, and a void always demands imagination. These are the conditions, I suspect, under which Utopia becomes a worthwhile preoccupation.

    Tue, Nov 24, 2009  Permanent link

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    Wildcat     Wed, Nov 25, 2009  Permanent link
    Megan: "Whether we are perched on a cataclysmic precipice or a moment of profound opportunity is a matter of perspective,"

    Yes in principle, though I would rather see it as a matter of context realization, the moment the exact context is realized the correlated perspective emerges accordingly.

    aeonbeat     Fri, Nov 27, 2009  Permanent link
    nicely put
    Spaceweaver     Sat, Nov 28, 2009  Permanent link
    I am for the void :-)
    ronny     Sat, Nov 28, 2009  Permanent link
    we may not live in a utopia, but at least we live in the best of all possible worlds.