A Dream Deficit

We need more dreamers.

More people that believe in the impossible.

More people that refuse to accept the status quo.

More people that ignore the propaganda of the media, who’s aim is to splinter our communities. To make us believe that we are in this alone. To indoctrinate us into believing that all we should worry about is ourselves. To indoctrinate us into believing that only seemingly “powerful” individuals and institutions can make a change in our world and that we should stick to watching cat videos and reading buzzfeed “news” articles.

We need more dreamers.

People that dream to create the new institutions that will lead us to prosperity in the post-industrialization age.

People willing to dream of a different way to educate and prepare children for the connection economy. People that recognize that the current model of education was built to cultivate obedience. Built to efficiently produce individuals that work in factories, follow orders, and never think to question authority. People willing to dream of an education system that fosters difference, is project based and cultivates creativity.

People willing to dream of a world in which all corporations actually care about their consumers. A world in which the health of the individual is prioritized before profits. Do we really need another can of soda? Do we really need another package of cigarettes? The answer is no. However, the incentives of the current system put profits before the well-being of the individual.

We need more people willing to question the incentives of the current system.

More people willing to change the incentives.

Dreams, by their nature,  are evanescent. They flicker long before they shine brightly. We, as a culture, must embrace the individuals that dare to dream.

The Comparison Trap

When we surrender to the accumulation culture and relent to the constant juxtaposition of ourselves and those around us we relinquish our most elemental form of agency. The agency to shape the experiences of our life.

Our experience is what we agree to attend to.

She gets paid more than I do.

He has a more prestigious job than I.

Her career advancement has been faster than mine.

He’s smarter, funnier, and looks better in a suit.

Everything comes so easy to her.

She’s in better shape than me.

How does she have so many more Instagram followers than I do?

His pictures always get so many more likes than mine.

We live in a culture in which we compare ourselves along every imaginable axis of privilege and every dimension of identity – intelligence, beauty, athleticism, charisma…

Our insatiable desire to compare is the product of an accumulation culture. A culture in which the doctrine of everyday life is based on the acquisition or gradual gathering of things.

The accumulation of goods.

The accumulation of leisure.

The accumulation of accolades.

The accumulation of wealth.

The accumulation of education.

The problem with our incessant drive to accumulate is that it comes at the expense of our own being. It inevitably leads to the deprivation of self because there is always more.

There is, and always will be, someone with more money.

Someone smarter.

Someone better looking.

Someone more charismatic.

When we surrender to the accumulation culture and relent to the constant juxtaposition of ourselves and those around us we relinquish our most elemental form of agency. The agency to shape the experiences of our life.

The moment you focus on others you vacate your soul.

You vacate the power to make incremental daily progress towards the life you want to lead.

The only way to resist and make progress towards changing the culture is to realize only those items which we choose to notice shape our mind. Selective interest and attention prevent us from falling into the comparison trap.

We each must develop an inner barometer for our own values.

We must resist pageviews, clicks, likes, follows, and all of the other quantification metrics that our culture has invented.

When we have the courage to intentionally tend to the things that we find important we have the power to shift our posture from merely identifying what is lacking to envisioning ways to create and shape the world we want to live in.

A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it, it just blooms.