The philosopher Alan Watts writes: “To play so as to be relaxed and refreshed for work is not to play, and no work is well and finally done unless it, too, is a form of play.”
Increasingly so we are allowing machines to take full responsibly for everything in our lives; from wonderful technology that washes clothes and does dishes to robots that vacuum the floor or artificial intelligence systems that help us decide who we should date. Like the Trojan Horse, technology looks as if it is a gift of surrender by the gods, given to mankind in a gesture of submission. Man has attempted to conquer nature, even killing animals deemed a problem, genetically engineering plants and calling all opposition, anti-progress or anti-science.
The Trojan Horse is wheeled into the public square, and the public, weary of hard work with no play, gladly accepts the modern devices as a necessary advancement in civilization. Few ask if we are mature enough to handle such rapid “advancement.” Fewer ask if the technological horse is hollow and filled with an enemy ready to escape and cause harm. Even fewer still will ask if there are other forms of advancements that need little if any mechanical technology for the growth of civilization.
After all, like focusing attention on a terrible storm, we begin to think the world may be coming to an end; watching high winds, torrential rain, flooding, etc. Death tolls may clime into the hundreds. But, thousands die every day from heart disease. Obesity is increasing every year. IQs are dropping with attention spans. Knowledge of history is being forgotten and called for to be destroyed. We are promised safety, security and convenience, an while we may be provided the latter, the world seems to become less safe and secure. We need perspective to understand that just as more people die from disease every day than by politically motivated campaigns on climate or terrorism, all who use technology are slowing finding out that they are losing skills, time (ironically), human connection and their humanity. Technology has began controlling us rather than us maintaining control over it.
We replaced the veneration of nature, polytheism, really a complex monotheism, with oversimplified monotheism, a god dictating to man what to do. We then rebelled against God and took on his form through science to dictate to mankind and the world how we will grow and advance.
Have the soldiers already escaped the technological trojan horse and are now reeking havoc on our society?
Why do we accept it? Because as Arthur C Clark wrote, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Technology becomes like a magical wand, waved for diversion, and when the audience believes it has power, as it acts on the imagination, they succumb to the trick.
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