Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Humanity Is Crippled By Fear.

I sit alone in my home this evening. There's no one but my dogs to keep me company. My thoughts this evening turn to notions of mankind. What drives us? What makes us tick? Where are we going? How are we to ever survive the future? Most importantly, how are we to ever survive each other? It seems fear drives a great deal of what we do. We're afraid that foreigners will terrorize our cities. We're afraid of losing our homes, our loved ones. We fear being unloved. At the heart of it all, I believe we're most afraid of our own self.

Fear is a powerful tool; it's one that's been employed by tyrants and barbarians for countless thousands of years. Fear makes a man do something he wouldn't normally do, even when there's little at stake. We stop at red lights out of fear of being struck by another vehicle. The consequence of being burned by fire is another tangent of fear. In many cases, fear can be a positive thing. It keeps us from making repeated mistakes. Fear also makes us abuse our children. It can turn a loving husband into a jealous control freak. Fear can make us stick our head in the sand. It's funny how fear possesses multiple faces, much like a harlequin with a new mask for every performance.

I'm intrigued with the human condition, in so much as how it works with exploration. Mankind used to be very eager to break the bonds of this planet. We put men on the moon. We sent probes beyond our own solar system. Our desire to explore the outermost reaches of our own universe were once a driving force in technological development. Yet, here we are in 2015. The most highly anticipated piece of technology is the Apple Watch -- something none of us need. I'm deeply saddened at how mankind has taken two steps back from the future. What are we doing? Shouldn't we be thinking about expanding mankind's grasp of our universe? I realize Earth is our home, but just as birds, we can not stay in the nest forever. At some point, we must stretch our virgin wings and fly from the nest, seeking a new life. There's only a limited bank of resources at our disposal on this planet before we run out of options. I don't want to wait until the last possible moment to develop a strategy for future survival. The time to explore is now. Let us leave no star unseen, no distant planet untouched. Earth isn't just our home -- the entire universe is our home.

The only thing prohibiting mankind from sailing the vastness of our universe is fear. We're afraid to evolve our mindset, our field of scope, our willingness to think outside the box. Why couldn't we construct a terradome on the moon and establish a space colony? We have the materials at hand to withstand the diminished atmosphere of the moon. Supplies could be transported there, though admittedly the journey would be arduous. Yet, what ever came from not accepting a challenge? Are we not human beings? Are we not capable of overcoming adversity? Where is our sense of bravery?

Fear. I say to you again. Fear.

Fear chains mankind to the past. Courage is the key that unlocks our future.

Fear is the lengthened shadow of ignorance.
- Arnold H. Glasow (1905 - 1998)

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