With just a few days before the presidential election here in the U.S., I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it has been a wild ride. It’s been a roadshow, a shitshow, and a polemic battle of the cultures.
What we have seen, amidst all the craziness, is a changing of the guard. We are shifting from a closed culture to an open culture and open future. With this shift, we are in the thick of a revolution and evolution.
Not Seen Since the Industrial Revolution
This current era in the U.S. and world is a transitory one, rife with much instability. A time like this hasn’t been seen since the beginning of the industrial revolution. Our present-day world is going through a similar shift as that transition, and it is leading to a lot of upheaval.
Both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders tapped into the raw anger felt by people displaced by this upheaval. But that is where the similarities between them end. Trump feeds that anger by pouring gas on the fire, stoking the burning embers of rage. Bernie Sanders soothed the anger by offering positive approaches.
What is this transitory period we are going through? It is the movement from a closed culture to an open culture and open future.
Towards an Open Culture and Open Future
An open culture is one in which the walls separating us come down, allowing us to better connect, share and collaborate. In a closed culture, there are barriers that create feelings of separateness and isolation.
Donald Trump is the perfect embodiment of the closed approach, with his words that only serve to provoke people’s fears. He continues to reinforce the feelings of separation and isolation that many people have.
Technology and the internet is partly responsible for bringing down the walls of separation and moving us towards an open culture. But the truth is, humans have an innate desire to be open, to connect, and to dissolve walls that separate.
Humans are wired to seek connectivity, but to get there requires channeling the better angels of our nature. These better angels are the more evolved parts of our brain and cognitive abilities.
Politicians who use a closed approach have no qualms at getting people riled up by blaming some dark power for the troubles of the world. But it’s not a dark power creating the troubles of our present world; it is only the shifting of paradigms.
Economic Models Also Change
As paradigms change and we move from a closed culture to an open one, economic models shift also. The old economic model has become dysfunctional and toxic in the way it operates. It has left people feeling displaced and disempowered.
It is these people that Donald Trump’s words incite. He is channeling not only their rage but also the last vestiges of a dying paradigm. Trump is not wrong to bring this to the surface, but he is the wrong messenger. His communication is erratic and spurious and he has no empathy for the pain people feel. He does not have the wisdom nor depth of insight to comprehend what’s taking place, nor what he is doing. He is a narcissist basking in the adulation of the crowds. He feeds people what they want to hear – in return they shower him with love.
These crowds could be inspired by a more positive, open, inclusive approach that brings people together. As John F. Kennedy said, “The rising tide lifts all the boats.”
We need to find a way to come together. As the paradigm shifts towards an open, inclusive approach, we have to find ways to unite. Every shred of anger that anyone speaks, or any act of violence that anyone commits, stains and tears that fabric.
A closed culture is a zero-sum game. In this game, resources are finite and limited, and for someone to win, someone else loses. There are only a few winners in a zero-sum game, and many, many losers.
An open culture operates by way of a positive-sum game, in which win-win situations are the norm. If I get what I need, you also get what you need – everyone wins.
When the Walls Come Tumblin’ Down
When the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, it was one of the first signs of the movement towards an open culture. Since then, walls continue falling, and in its place arises a spirit rich with collaboration and innovation.
In an open culture, truth prefers an unfettered and unrestrained atmosphere. This means there is less tolerance for propaganda that distorts the way people think. With that, people are more capable of discerning truth and bullshit from propaganda’s falsehoods.
No matter who wins this presidential election, the march towards an open culture and open future will progress. Each of us needs to carry this forward in our hearts and minds, and as we do, it will become an unstoppable force.
This unstoppable force stems from the higher brain’s evolutionary capacities of connectivity and openness. Inversely, the desire to remain in a closed culture emanates from the lower brain’s survival instincts. These instincts lead to feelings of being threatened by those not like yourself.
Benjamin Franklin once said, “We must, indeed, all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.” There are many people hurting from the transition from a closed culture to an open one. Instead of disparaging them or their belief systems, we need to appeal to the better angels of their natures to help lift them up.
Demagoguery won’t do that – only an understanding of where we are going can. As that occurs, positive solutions that can help us all can then come to the forefront.
The Movement Towards an Open Culture Will Progress
Regardless of who is elected, the movement towards an open culture will progress, although Donald Trump would stunt this progress and set us back many years, if not decades, if elected.
Either way, let’s work together and bring forth the collective wisdom of an open culture and help it bear fruit.
This is a key moment in our evolutionary history, as we move towards an open culture.
Things are shifting and unfolding in front of our eyes, no matter if we go with the rising tide or resist it. Let’s go with this flow, and bring those who resist also into the fold. That’s how we will make the transition be a peaceful one, and how we can end the polemic battle of the cultures.
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