TED Conversations

Stefan H. Farr


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Debate: Our culture isn't adapting to our rapidly progressing technology.

There is a lot of talk about the current economic crises. Projections, promises or just plain old confusion, everybody seems to have an opinion on when and how it will get resolved or on the contrary how it will not resolve, but rather bring about the end of us.

Personally, I believe that it "can" resolve, but not by traditional economic measures, because the cause of it is not purely economic in nature. I believe, that this crises stems from a profound conflict brought about by the increasing incompatibility of our cultural, social and economic values with the ever more advanced technological progress that we are accumulating. Our inability to culturally adapt to this rapid technological progress is like a dead weight that impedes our metamorphosis as a species altogether.

Consequently, I believe that the next giant leap in our evolution must be a cultural / spiritual / intellectual / social one and not a technological one. Technologically we are way beyond what we can culturally accommodate and so any more progress in this domain will only deepen the conflict rather than resolve it.

Thank you!


Closing Statement from Stefan H. Farr

It's been a pleasure reading your comments. Thank you very much everybody for the excellent insight.

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    Oct 17 2012: culture,education,ect influences how we use technology. As a designer,I make symbols that support our pervasive beleifs(unliked or not) When we suggest changing beleif ,a good idea would be to create symbols,artifacts,buildings,paintings ect that clearly validate the realness of this new fledgling beleif. No idea that is cultural accidently fell into our psychics. If one is attempting to sell world alterism,enviornmental responsibilty ,what is the symbol that would contradict the symbols of our current ones. There are princess crowns for little girls,swords for mostly boys,elitist toys for adults to display power and wealth ect. Enlightenment has been underfunded with art that makes it an option for the average citizen. Where is my holiday tree covered in endangered animal ornaments, my friends bragging they went on a holiday to donate time to the third world. If I met anyone of you would I beable to quickly see your beleif system? A cross speaks of Christian beleif, do you operate powerful symbols that are comprehensible. I beleive we have good intentions,but innerblindness exists because most buildings whisper voices of grandeur,strreets express the importance of cars not humans,corperate signs imply success or power. If you close your eyes without symbols most of these snakeoil ideas are as powerless as the fiction on which they are based. This world is mostly a design hat perched on a real natural world. If you wnat more reality to guide behaviour,the designs are the strongholds of the concepts...discussion is superb,but a infectious symbol speaks eternally. If you want innerblindness to cease, tell me what cherished symbols we can agree on will defeat the current artifice that has me trapped,please.

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