TED Conversations

Naveen Meena

Co-Founder, ThoughtLabs

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Development or Destruction, where are we heading?

In this blind race of development, are we not realizing that we are not developing but moving ahead towards destruction. As with this so called development we are facing serious problems like global warming, ozone layer problem, change in weather cycle and a lot more. In modern times only because of the indicators of our so called development, mankind is living a restless & complex life in a lot of fears, where he developed these tools for secure, peaceful & luxurious life.

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    Mar 30 2012: That's one of the best questions of our times. Maybe because no one can answer it.

    Sometimes I think we are "gods with animal instincts". As gods, we have the power to change the world, to shape the life as we want it. And as animals, all our actions refers to 3 basic instincts:
    - reproduction (a look at the world population, all the innovation in medicine against infertility...)
    - self-preservation (eat more, produce more, make the best "nest" possible)
    - domination (having "the biggest one", "the best one" is a key of innovation these days)

    And with this 3 motivations, the majority of us just follow the pack, heading faster and faster toward destruction, guided by people who don't want any change. But the power of acting, changing is not anymore in their hands, TED shows it every days.
    And there are never been so much people willing to change, to go for "the best evolution".

    I don't think we should look for "development", because it involves an idea of "more".
    To me, the big challenge for the 21st century (or the 3rd millennium?) will be to replace "growth" by "balance". We've never been a balance species: a species defines itself by the relationships with its neighbours : flowers are nothing without bees, rabbits would never be that fertile without foxes... We are the only species which is totally out of balance, and we have to survive it if we want to keep a place on the earth. We don't have any predator anymore (which is a good thing), but we should learn to balance our population by ourselves. and we don't need force or war for that: education, health care and sensibilisation to this problem should be enough.

    A TED talk related to this idea: http://www.ted.com/talks/graham_hill_less_stuff_more_happiness.html

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