Shifting our perspective on the purpose of life
All of the root problems of day and age are the result of a human mindset that focuses on extraction and taking without regard to the finite and limited nature of resources.
Climate change and global warming are a thing because we think we can just burn fossil fuels without consequences -- no matter what simple physics tells us about additional CO2 in the atmosphere.
The pollution crisis, and species extinction, is a thing because we think we can just keep manufacturing plastics, endlessly, and keep killing species, endlessly, without consequences.
If these things go unaddressed, life will expire on the Earth, and humans will probably go extinct in a 100 years.
The biggest challenge we have in the 21st century is thus to change our perspective from one of extraction and taking, to a perspective of preservation and cleaning up.
This is a very important challenge, even a spiritual challenge.
In all our activities -- including our business activities -- we have to make this change.
This is going to be tough for us to do. It is a totally different mindset. It's a shift from a kind of decadent liberty, to a more mature and adult responsibility and care-taking. It will mean having to clean up for past generations, too, which feels unfair.
But I don't see any other way out of the climate crisis or the Sixth Great Extinction without a fundamental shift in our mindsets. I don't see how we preserve life on Earth, keep warming to levels that will permit human life, and maintain basic levels of civilization without a massive revolution in ourselves, and how we think about the purpose of life.
The scale of the problem is so vast, it will require as many people as possible to have this mindset shift.
But I believe this is why we were born today. I believe that we were born today to lead this type of shift in mindset. I believe that we were born, precisely at this time, because we are the best hope to convince others that we need to shift our lifestyles in fundamental ways.
At a practical level, this means:
in our business lives, our commercial and business activities must now dedicate themselves to positive impact, social change, sustainable business practices, and also taking steps to heal and clean up the damage that has been caused by others;
in our personal lives, our personal life goals must now be rethought, and we have to ask what it is we are here to do at this time, in an era that is literally at the cusp of human extinction;
in our spiritual lives, we must now commit ourselves to a deeper ethical purpose that involves thinking about the well being of a species as a whole, defending the equal dignity and human rights of all people, and caretaking and preserving the Earth.
This is the time to shift our perspective on the purpose of life.
We have to do this, or else, we will bear witness to a ceaseless unraveling of our global civilization.