We live in a world of fast-paced development and creative solutions that we see across all industries from tech, medical to industrial. These are happening all over the world and we can see each of the latest advances spread through all of the different platforms and media.
It is easy to get the view that we are part of a technological revolution, which is true. For example, hang around Steem a little and one can very quickly build understanding of blockchain and cryptocurrency technology and because of the way Steem is designed, actually take part in the economy itself.
Though for most of us, across all of these different fields of development, we are consumers, not active creators. But we feel like we are as recent generations are making leaps and bounds. In actual fact though, it is only a very small percentage that create the innovations, the rest are user-level only.
I don't do, I eat
There are several factors for this of course but I think one thing that limits active involvement is because of a societal shift in how we evaluate ourselves. We now define ourselves on what we consume, not what we create. This shift means that we are less focused on how we get the resources to consume and more on the consumption of the resources themselves.
In the not too distant past, a person's value would be tied to what they could bring to the table skill-wise, through their job and trade is how they spoke about and described themselves. Now however, it is through enjoyable entertainment interests that many people speak and that is nearly always through a consumption of other people's creations. It may be gaming, TV shows, social media, movies, music or a plethora of other activities that seem to continually bite into our time reserves.
And this continual pull on our attention comes with an opportunity cost of the investment into skill development or other activities that offer more personal value. There is of course a place for entertainment but, should it be the main source of fulfillment?
Fill 'er up
Fulfillment is an important concept and is quite easy to explain the basic idea in my opinion. Fulfillment generally requires some kind of meaning of action or thought, the reason to do something at all. And then there is the ratio of skill to challenge where the challenge pushes the skill to its edge and makes it stretch past the outer limits occasionally. Lastly, some kind of feedback loop where the process continually evaluates to increase the challenge as required.
The problem is of course that entertainment is continually providing the conditions of fulfillment and the enjoyment of advancement through a host of various manipulative mechanisms that draw attention. The core of this issue is that for the most part, these aren't creative pursuits and most of the skills are not transferable into real world application other than that which feeds the entertainment machinery.
Creator or Consumer
In many ways, we have been trained to act like this as the western education systems are continually removing creative subjects and driving memory based components. If I was a conspiracy enthusiast, I would likely come to the conclusion that we are being trained to increasingly consume instead of for any practical application. Perhaps this is because at some point, most will be unable to work anyway as a machine or AI will perform so many previously human-performed tasks.
But, in the interim before algorithms do all tasks, there is a changeover process that will give rise to a lot of turmoil and job loss and those that negotiate and benefit from this the best will be the creators, not the consumers. The life of a consumer is always capped and bound by what they are able to consume, whereas the creative life has an uncertain ceiling.
Free to do what we are told
Currently, as their is a homogenization of entertainment through global distribution and platform, pretty much all consumers are consuming very similarly. And if you are what you eat, this makes an enormous group very similar in preference and action which means, easy to target and control.
People talk about a decentralized system where people are free but, if the majority are eating from a centralized pool of entertainment that dictates preference, the way they act with their new freedom is essentially centralized also. Nothing will change and the same people, organizations and governments will maintain control as that is what the majority have been trained to accept.
In my opinion, the way out of control is freedom of the individual and that requires an investment into what that actually means. It cannot be just in the body. A flea can be trained by placing it in a jar and letting it jump and hit its head on the lid for a while. After a few days you can remove the lid and it will never jump out of the jar. If there are male and female fleas together in the jar, their offspring will never jump out of the jar either. Trained for cultural eternity.
What I wonder is if this is what entertainment is doing to our minds as we are sold the mental concept we can do anything, while simultaneously fed content that disconnects us from the possibility to actually do anything. A continual reinforcement of a conflicted position until that is all we know. We feel we are free but, we do not see the walls of the jar we have been trapped within.
There is opportunity though in what is happening and that is if one realizes what is going on early enough to break the cycle and rediscover their creative and skilled self in an environment of trained flees. It is then possible to make the choice 'to help other fleas out, or keep them in the jar. For me personally, the choice is a clear one and if you read my content, you will know which that is without doubt.
Creativity is more than art, innovation or musical ability, it is the process of fulfillment. It is the ability to discover what lies within and then find ways to best use what is found there. It is the quest to be your best at whatever you turn your hand to as an individual, rather than what you have been told to become good at within the group. Creativity is one of the core components that makes us human and drives our development forward. It is something that is in our nature.
Don't let it be programmed out of you, it is your birthright.
[ a Steem original ]