Over the centuries? Very little, from the looks of it. It’s 2012. Yet, here we are, falling over each other, proud to be part of the Cattle Class and dragging along each day. We now live under the illusions of possessions, crappy serials, petty politics and self importance.
Those in the 16th & 17th centuries had imagined the 21st century would be the age of robots and artificial intelligence. What went wrong?
We are still stuck inside our lizard brains. For the uninitiated, it’s that part of the brain which is concerned with survival, food and sex (the very basic needs and emotions). We refuse to move beyond it. Relentlessly arguing with those who don’t get our point, feeling cheated if someone else gets what we felt we deserved, looking to avenge pain someone inflicted on us... the list can go on and on. We want to conform to those in power; be it our parents, teachers, bosses, influential friends or even those running the world. We want to study so we get a good paying job. So we do exactly what our teachers tell us. Then we do what our bosses say. Then our families, our children, our friends, our peers; all this just to ensure we live in the comfort zone. Comparison becomes a way of life.
The world talks crap: innovation and creativity! But when it’s action time, higher ups expect us to do exactly what they want. Why? They probably encountered the same thing. They’re so mired in mediocrity that’s all they can measure. Do you want to go the same way?
|Chanakya, my guru for life.|
Stop living in your comfort zone. You cannot make a difference by sitting in a plush corporate office. All you learn in cubicles is appeasing egos, while the real world is out there. On the streets. You learn it by watching, absorbing and comprehending. And accepting! Develop different points of view, learn what people’s latent needs are, understand what works with them and what doesn’t, how they can help you in making this world a better place, how you can contribute to society... forget people who left you, caused you grief, laughed at what you believed in; there are millions like them waiting to be herded by you the moment you do something ground breaking. Fighting doesn’t get you what you want. Even if it does, it’s a hollow victory. Breaking someone else’s furniture doesn’t make yours look any better. Only when we move beyond this lizard brain we will be able to build something more beautiful and make the world a better place. Here's how we can do it.
Yes, world has forged way ahead of what it was 200 – 300 years ago. But that isn’t because we humans have advanced over the years; it’s because some humans were adventurous enough to venture past the lizard brain and build something new... Niccolo Tesla (the real inventor of electricity), Galileo, Jack Welch, Steve Jobs and our very own Lal Bahadur Shastri, Azim Premji, Kishore Biyani and Narayan Murthy to name a few. They invented, innovated, built products, services and companies which are epitomes of success today. We merely copy what they did. Mind you, we do a sucky job at even that.
Our brain has developed substantially since the days of Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln and Dale Carnegie. But how much of it are we utilizing? If we don’t go past petty issues we still dwell on, our kids will inherit a soulless world. Are we doing enough right now? Stand up! Don’t be afraid of being different. The world may laugh at you, but it needs you. It needs you to fix it, to make it sane, to see the bigger picture and be indispensable. It needs you to do something no one can repay you for. Yes, the world needs you. Can you deliver?