The tickets have been purchased. In fact, they have already began crinkling at the bottom of your carry-on bag. I wish I could tell you that we are still on steady land. I wish, at least, I could tell you we still stand on the illusive stability provided by the pier. But we have launched. We can no longer see the storm out at sea from the comfort of the shore. We are in it. Wind and wave toss our vessel to and fro. East, West, North, South are just as useless as Up, Down, Left, and Right. These direction dance about, sharing their definitions. Chaos has thrown physics into upheaval. Contradictions obliterate all solidity. The exponential complexity of our world, like cells in a petri dish, multiplies indefinitely into all possibilities. Infinitesimal cracks on a sheet of ice. This postnormal storm is devouring seemingly everything. You still have time to look up. How do we survive?
What does it even mean to survive? Everything that is, is at its most fragile coordinate. Astrophysics phenomena tell the story of our eventual one way ticket to oblivion, while reminding us that everything we thought we understood of physics and the natural sciences is wrong. Global weather patterns are the quintessential chickens coming home to roost of these postnormal times. Markets are like the weather; beyond prediction and a consequence of the decisions we make daily (the good, the bad, and the ugly of those being increasingly more difficult to decipher). Our governments are becoming more and more ceremonial as hack-archy gets more votes than our oligarchs posing behind the emperor’s new ‘democracy’ graphic T-shirt. Our very selves are becoming obsolete. Who we are on paper is being re-uploaded as the digital self. Our mentalities are shot in this ever confounding era. Even our physical bodies are due for cybernetic upgrades.
How do we navigate these turbulent postnormal times of contradictions, complexity and chaos, of uncertainty and ignorance? What values do we need to pilot our way to a sane and humane new paradigm?