Is it possible that a breakthrough of world-peace proportions could happen inside one individual human? That one insight could crystallize, be communicated, felt, applied and then spread, leaving a wake of empathy, cooperation, sanity, healing and health behind it? Certainly horrifically bad ideas have propagated themselves, feeding on the energy of threat, abandonment, and past wrongs. Why not a positive idea, one with teeth and power, that spreads itself via the energies of connection, healing, cooperation and beauty?
What if you were that one human? What would you do?
Imagine life is a journey from birth to death across an open field of experiences. You can walk only one path through the field, weaving this way and that, choosing this and that, falling into the other, getting out. You yourself might change along the way, as experiences improve your navigation, update your aesthetic, refine your value choices.
Some experiences are pleasurable — eating, the company of good friends, winning. Some are painful — getting sick, losing a friend, hard consequences of past choices.
You come equipped with an algorithm for making choices among experiences. What is true, good, right? What is false, bad and wrong? What are my goals in life — what experience am I trying to have?
The system that equips you with this algorithm is the combination of evolution, culture, and upbringing. Embedded in your program are hard-coded goals: survive and reproduce in the manner typical of your people.
Your initial settings on this journey are likely to be “more pleasure, less pain”. So you make your plans accordingly to maximize pleasure and minimize pain. But as things go along, you begin to see patterns. You begin to suspect things are not as simple as that. You see that the promises of pleasure and pain made by your program of desired experiences are not kept. Your navigation map for life does not match the territory!
If you eat too much good food, you might get heartburn, you might get fatter than you want to be, which is painful. If you love to win, then you play games — that you might lose. Losing is painful. Even if you choose hard paths to high achievement, then when you get there the achievement might not feel as good as…