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Are you a fishead?  Maybe, and if not you definitely know of a couple.

 

I just finished watching a documentary, I Am Fishead – which may be viewed on youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUbjaI3X5Qk.  The film was quite interesting, and I would definitely recommend it to friend.  I thought about writing a review of sorts but I decided I would rather concentrate on a premise or two that really resonated with me.

There is no doubt in any sane person’s mind that there is a lot wrong with the world we live in today.  Unfortunately for most people, this is where the thinking stops or goes no further than wishing for a better reality.  Therefore, the conclusion can be found that most people feel powerless to change the world around them, for if they “could” why would they not do so?

The point that hit me came at the end of the film, which was that you do not have to be a “hero” to actually change the world.  The researchers behind the book “Connected” spoke as part of the film about the three degrees of separation concept in which they found to be very true.  So what does this mean?  Well, it means that we live in a gigantic network, upon which I have at least a minimal sort of influence on the three or so people at any one time, while they have an influence on another number of folks, and furthermore those persons affect others and so forth and so on.  Think of a spiderweb, any action causes a reaction at other points of the web.  There are seemingly infinite mini-networks that collectively form a larger network of people whom are all, on a very real sense, connected.

This means that by simply being nice or polite to those whom you come into contact with – with as little as a friendly smile or a nice handshake – you are positively influencing the world around you.  Now, this is not going to solve everything all at once, but the point is that you do not have to be the world saver in a literal sense in order to change the world.  Thereby, whether you are unemployed and homeless, or a CEO you have the individual power of changing the world around you, every day, all the time.

With this comes responsibility.  You are partially responsible for how not only you, but those around you feel and even think!  Wow – that sounds like a bit much, but it is quite true.  I am not referring to “mind control” but you are constantly influential towards how other people think, feel and act.  With this, why would you rather affect others negatively when you can affect them positively?  I believe that people naturally have at least a basic concern for those around them.  This is natural.  As I also believe most people or more “good” than “bad.”

That being said, the movie spends a good portion of time discussing psychopaths.  And after watching the film, one is left with the feeling that a lot of our leaders, political and economic or business leaders, are, in fact, psychopathic.  I cannot say I am totally surprised, although I am also not 100% certain on the accuracy of this claim.  Regardless, I think this begs to build a bridge between affecting microcosmic networks and really changing the world we live in.  This is where the network comes back into play.  What we, as humanity, need is for a network of conscientious persons to sort of lead the charge in revolution.

Yes, I am calling for nothing short of a revolution – but not for the sake of having one, but because I strongly believe one is necessary in order to fundamentally change the world we all live in.  Notice that little phrase  – “we all.”  We all live together, so why not act like it?  I may be going on a bit of a tangent here, but its all for the good of mankind so I think this is okay.

The notion of privatization, among other things, is responsible for tearing humanity apart.  Divisive competition is another cause along similar lines.  Basically, the consumer culture is killing us!!!  Come on, how could any one deny this?  We do not need nearly any of the “stuff” we buy!  Instead of sharing the basic, necessary resources among everybody, a very small percentage own and consume a hell of a lot more than the majority of people and leaving a ton of men, women and children hungry, sick and unhappy.  This is a very, very simplified version, but I find it to be true nonetheless.

Why?  This is always the question I come down to.  Why is this the way things are?  And why are people not doing more to change these things?  I mean, I am guilty of not doing enough, too, so I cannot exclude myself from this population so perhaps this is a personal question as well – and one worth pondering.  But at any rate, I suppose I have wrote a decent amount, hopefully something worth reading, and I am losing my concentration at the moment to keep on writing sooooo…

Thanks for reading!

-Paul

*As always, comments/suggestions, etc. are always welcome!

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