Read Creativity I.
Now it’s easy to hear this conversation about ‘standing in possibilities’ of what the future might be as some sort of optimism versus pessimism discussion—the “Just be happy” versus “There’s no hope” maxims. I am not suggesting this at all. Optimism and pessimism are grounded in positive or negative predictions of the future. Changing how we observe is not a function of prediction: it is a function of commitment.
I predict that the future is likely to be very bleak, a global economic depression is likely, and we’re rapidly destroying our planet. But I am committed that all of this is exactly what needs to happen—it is the breakdown before the breakthrough. Without being naïve, I am committed that we are on the threshold of history and the future will exceed in a positive way anything we can imagine. It is our job to create the positive outcome.
Whether we observe all that is happening as good news or bad news is a choice assuming we are committed and creative in our relationship to reality.
Children seem to naturally create their realities and then play all out until a better game comes along. As Sir Robinson suggests, we destroy this natural creative way of being by teaching them ‘the way it really is’. In doing so, we lock ourselves into a worldview in which the future is an extension of the past and survival depends more on how much you have rather than who you are and the quality of your relationships.
Perhaps the challenge of our generation is to recover our capacity for creating reality and then share our experience with younger generations so that together we can create a world that works for all of us.