> One of the most often quoted lines from the book of Kohelet in the Hebrew Bible (commonly known as the Book of Ecclesiastes) is the saying “…there is nothing new under the sun.” It would be good to reflect on this statement as world events speed up and all sorts of worries surface about global war, economic collapse and natural disasters.
While every generation has a tendency to think it’s problems are unique (and by far the most challenging) the truth remains that there are only so many difficulties to go around and they do just that. They “recycle” and emerge as variations on a theme generation after generation.
War has existed as long as humankind. So has selfishness, greed, and ego…the precursors of war. Economic issues (supply and demand) are equally as old as humankind and are, likewise, often times the basis for aggression. As for natural disasters, well, let’s go back to the Flood before we even get to global warming, earthquakes and tsunami warnings.
So, what can we glean from all this repetition?
I think it’s safe to conclude that what really changes is not the basic recipe but rather the rate of speed and magnitude of effect that are experienced. We’ve always been able to kill one another. It’s only in the past century that our expanded consciousness allowed us to co-create a way to do it that took out whole populations in a split second (or split atom, if you’ll allow me the pun). We’ve also always been able to feed our neighbors with our excess production of food, but only the past century saw us co-creating ways to do that for populations on the other side of the world from where we actually produce the surplus.
I’ve long been a proponent of the theory (perhaps mine alone) that technology outpaced spiritual evolution thus creating the “mess” in which we now find ourselves. But, recently I’ve been rethinking that theory and have a new one.
It turns out nothing is different at all, just faster with greater overall impact. The key to prosperity, and ultimately survival, rests not on stopping the rate of speed at which we now function, but in learning to adapt to it. How we do that is Part II of my new theory.
Each of us must stop listening to and following the people and the ways in which things have always been done and, instead, go within our own hearts to determine what is truth for us as individuals and then follow that truth. Admittedly, this will be different for each of us but I believe this is the way it was intended. People are like snowflakes, unique by design. The secret to overall sustainability of humankind is for each of us to not only find and live our own truth but allow others to find and live theirs as well.
In the rapidly accelerating world in which we find ourselves, it must be our own inner voice that directs us where to place our thoughts and how to prioritize our deeds so that we may eliminate the excess baggage carried forward from our collective past.
There is nothing new under the sun.
Except how we see it.
And how we choose to deal with it.