Work and Talk: looking into the future

in philosophy •  13 days ago

Our imaginations are powerful tools as it is this that allows us to look into the future, predict and mentally develop solutions for how to get to where we want to be. What we think becomes what we do, and what we do shapes the world in which we live and will have ramifications forever into the future. It is a lot of responsibility if you think that every action will echo on somehow forever.

I was talking with a class today about the future but one of the participants said, "I am not interested, live the moment." I understand, the eternal moment is where everything in life happens but, what we actually do in this moment is influenced by where we have come from and where we may want to go. Our view of the future dictates our present.

Did you know:

On September 7, 1896, an electric car built by the Riker Electric Motor Company wins the first auto race in the United States, at the Narragansett Trotting Park–a mile-long dirt oval at the state fairgrounds that was normally used for horse racing–in Cranston, Rhode Island. source

Now imagine if instead of Henry Ford innovating the production line for combustion engines, he instead chose electric technology instead. Would the environment look different today? Battery technology, range, lack of emissions, oil wars... Possibly, but unfortunately we can't go back in time and know for sure, only forward.

Our imaginations can't foresee all variables, we can't know everything our movements will affect and we cannot know what will be truly helped or harmed until it has come to pass and, had time to complete enough of a cycle to provide feedback. Should this stop us from exploring possibility?

The problem with 'living the moment' without thinking of the future is that our movements are driven by our past alone and that will never hold more information and knowledge than what is to come in the next moment. Living in the present without thought of a future can be bliss but it can also become habitual and supportive of the very status quo that is leading us toward future suffering, conflict and keeps the experiential environment static so that those who are to come will be born into more of the same and set on the same path.

Looking into the future is something that I enjoy but it doesn't mean that it will be that particular future that comes to pass and in many cases, I truly hope it will not because much of my prediction is dystopic. But, looking into the future is not without reason because it allows me to model my actions in the present to aim toward where I currently think where I may want to be. As I move, more information is created so that I can adjust again, that future is not set in stone nor am I attached to it.

Imagine if we could go back into time and show the past societies where we are today. Show them the pollution, the illness, the suffering as well as the progress and advancements, the potential. Would they adjust their behaviors, would they try to add more to the potential and reduce suffering?

I would like to think that having better information would change our behaviors but it doesn't always seem to be the case. Perhaps the YOLO life means that like my student, rather than considering the future and the responsibility we have over it, we continually act and do what we have always done, believing what we have always believed.

Without looking forward, what can we know of possibility and potential? Without looking back, how can we learn from past failures? WE become animalistic, instinctual, reactive to the environment with n plan other than to satisfy our immediate needs, to survive. In that environment, want becomes of flourishing and the understanding and creation of beauty? What happens to the idea of providing opportunity for the generations to come?

Thoughts for another post perhaps.

Taraz
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There are times when I do not take note of a day going because my head is lost in what is to come. I look too much to the past and the future that I mostly do not enjoy the present.

I feel there should be a balance. A balanced look at the past, the present and the future gives perspective and with that perspective, a man can structure his life.

If the mistakes of the past can mold a man for good or for ill, then the present is a place where he can make amends with the hope that the future will be a better place. That is my thought on it.


For those who live for the moment, I find that it is only the aged, retired and dying who have that privilege because then where they are headed is nearer than where they are coming from. They can afford to enjoy a day, an hour, a minute, a second, for they do not know what would happen next as the body deteriorates and bodily function slowly weaken.

But the young, virile, strong, man does not need to leave in such a manner. There is so much to do, so much to give to posterity that you cannot but set out to put your mark on the map, on the sands of time.

It is said that the greatest gift a man can give is leaving the world a little bit better than he met it. That is a plan that can take a lifetime to accomplish or a minute. So what will this moment, now cost those you came to love in a few weeks, months, years?

I always say life's too short to grieve. I say this because dwelling in the past is a poor habit. At the same time, peering into the future can make one lose sight of the beauty of the present. The movie Acrimony, reflects this as the man was so deep in the vision of the future that he became inured to his wife's gradual depression and resentment. If he had but brought his head out of his dreams and tried to give his wife a sense of meaning, of progress, then maybe the tragedy would have been avoided.

A balanced perspective will be a better thing. And as you said @tarazkp, most who choose to live for the moment so sorry because of their past experiences.

I remember a period in my life when I gave up on everything and the only reason I did anything was because of my Parents. I worked, had my bath, ate, just because I didn't want my parents to be worried. It was so bad that I was saying to myself that once they were gone, I'll let go of the strings that kept me standing and just collapse into dust. That is similar to a person saying I am living for now, for today. Tomorrow will take care of itself. Well tomorrow is a spoilt brat and does nothing himself if nothing is done for him.

I hope to find balance sometime so that I can have foresight for to plan ahead. That is what I get. Yes.

Almost made this a post eh?

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A balanced look at the past, the present and the future gives perspective and with that perspective, a man can structure his life.

Yes, a balanced and unconflicted understanding of the 3 positions.

But the young, virile, strong, man does not need to leave in such a manner. There is so much to do, so much to give to posterity that you cannot but set out to put your mark on the map, on the sands of time.

is the mark made with intention or habit, and is the tool and technique used one that leads to where the man wants to be?

So what will this moment, now cost those you came to love in a few weeks, months, years?

This is the question. If I want my daughter to be happy, I must also want her daughter to be happy because a child who faces a world of illness, war, famine and suffering is not one that makes a parent happy, it makes a parent worried, fearful. So, if i want my daughter to be happy, i must make a world where my granddaughter, and great granddaughters have the best chance of health and opportunity. The chain is endless, the goal is to improve continually, not degrade.

Well tomorrow is a spoilt brat and does nothing himself if nothing is done for him.

Loved this line.

Almost made this a post eh?

Is it a bad thing?

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Well it would have moved to my blog I think stead of the comments here, lol.

It is indeed a continuous process. To strive for the well being of those who you will leave behind one day is not a bad thing to do. If you are bringing them into the world, then one might as well make the world as comfortable as one can for them to live in.

This goes back to being responsible for our actions and thought as they impact others. Reminds me of an older Christian movie called Time Changer. Those who live for the moment tend to be selfish and even narcissistic at times. Realizing how your actions affect others shows more care and love for others. Thanks @tarazkp

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Never seen it but that is no surprise :)

Realizing how your actions affect others shows more care and love for others.

I have more to add to this post but it would have gone in a different direction. perhaps a bit later :)

Hi tarazkp, imagination is what creates new things. Individuals can't change or create their own future if they don't imagine, think or dream it. However all the imagination in the world won't help if you don't do anything in the present.

One thing I have found I have to work on is turning all that daydreaming and imagining into action. I have been guilty on plenty of occasions of spending so much time living in the future (in my head) that I have missed opportunities right under my nose.

So I guess my point is that imagination is great, but its pointless without action.

Thanks for another thought provoking article.

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The process for all creation in humans is, thought, word, action. We use the information we have as a catalyst to move or not but unfortunately you are right, people spend so much time passively consuming that they have missed the last step in the chain.

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People satisfy their life desires by eating/gossip/entertain themselves. Then they have no energy left to explore other dimensions. If a person just restricts that a little bit the desire to take action will open up massively. The desire will find other places of interest. That slight degree of minimize certain stuff will open up a subtle space for seeing reality and the possibility.

It's good with services like bit.tube that people can passively consume stuff and get dripped out Tokens of real value. It's a good start also what people are doing on Steem starting to drip out value in form of Tokens. Which slowly empowers every human more. A human needs a lot of poking in a direction to truly get going. Once humans starts to become creative you have no idea what they can create.

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I pretty much went cold turkey on usual 'entertainment consumption' a year and a half ago and decided to write instead. It has worked out pretty well and I definitely have more active understanding than I did previously and it is not like I have no idea of what is going on in the world that is relevant to me.

What people don't seem to realise is that if they consume and what everyone else is eating and doing, they can only really hope for being average. And the average is in debt, depressed, unhappy and lonely and consuming ever more to avoid dealing with their issues.

Agree man, we need to look both in the past and future. While we have to be concious in living in the now, for a well balanced life.

Though I like to think more about the future than the past ;)

#futurethinker

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lol. nothing wrong with thinking either side as long as it leads to acting now :)

I personally think/have experienced that some things that are going to happen, are already registering in my unconscious mind, and influencing my thinking e.g. I slow down my car a bit "for no reason", but if I wouldn't have done that, I would have been in a crash.

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I think that there is information that is unconsciously absorbed in moments that affect conscious experience. The 'vibe' from some people or like you say, the seemingly eerie slowing down of the car which avoids an accident. Maybe there were environmental cues.

My father has a favorite quote - a Native American saying that he picked up in the USA (he also brought back books with fables, etc.)...

It went something like:

'We do not inherit the land from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.'

A dear friend of mine, my age, actually one year younger, believes we should definitely strive to go to space and colonize. Which he is working on in his proverbial garage.

Long-term plans should always consider sustainability. Short-term plans of adventurers can also be successful but more often than not somebody gets hurt. Eventually.

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'We do not inherit the land from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.'

This is what everyone should think deeply upon, especially considering we are constantly supporting debt cycles at every level.

A dear friend of mine, my age, actually one year younger, believes we should definitely strive to go to space and colonize. Which he is working on in his proverbial garage.

More than once in this world someone has made a garage discovery that has changed life for the rest.