Ideas need a critical mass before they can meet the criteria of making it into the minds of everyone in a society. Things just seem to arrive. I am trying to think of examples…
All that comes up is political, like revolution. For a revolution to occur a critical mass of society must want the revolution. But perhaps it’s like that episode of ‘mad men’ when they have a picnic and just stand up and get back in the car without cleaning up after themselves and leave their mess behind. I only vaguely remember what seems like such a luxury now. We’d never dream of doing such an awful thing now.
This makes me wonder why I used the word luxury. Luxury to be so ignorant of the idea of cleaning up after ones' selves needing to be done at all? For instance, the very rich never wanting to clean up the mess they make. I guess the nanny and maids always rush in to clean up rich peoples’ messes before they ever even realize that someone must be cleaning up after them. Or when the messes get really nasty, daddy gets someone else to clean up the mess. These days the rich spend all kinds of money in propaganda campaigns so they don’t have to spend money to clean up after themselves. I think this was especially true of the Koch brothers. Ideas like government is inefficient but corporations are not… no such thing as global warming… these lines are all propaganda, all lies… I remember believing government is inefficient but came to realize it was corporations who were truly inefficient…
The important thing I’d like to remind people of is all things are connected, so when you pollute here, eventually that pollution will make it’s way into our water, our oceans, our homes and our bodies. We see that with plastics, micro plastics are turning up throughout our bodies, throughout our planet, from Antarctica to the deepest parts of our oceans people seem to think we live in a Newtonian universe, where you can shut the door on one mess and still have a pristine environment in the next room. While the environment might try to separate one disaster from another, eventually if you pour enough stuff in, it’ll result in massive deaths of important insects, important vegetation, important environment that we need to sustain us here on earth.
Another possible example is abortion, how quickly did we forgot how dangerous child birth is. Some women are extremely lucky and baby’s just seem to fall out of them, but it is not always the case. I guess this is the example that proves the rule, we as a society just assumed it was so easy. Most of us are spared the horror of childbirth so we get to ignore the complications. Besides much of our medical technology is that we can provide safe abortions and can recognize when the genetic experiment, aka fetus, isn’t going to work and we as humans should try again. No living thing is considered a biological success until it itself reproduces, thus it survives birth, lives to sexual maturity and then successfully mates. We as highly social humans have set a very high bar in our society to achieve successful mating.
Given the difficulties associated with getting married in our society and then to have children. Because this it what it truly means in our society to breed successfully. It is possible for teenage girls to get pregnant of course but this is hardly deemed successful in many human societies.
We seem to have realized war is messed up and dangerous but ignore how dangerous childbirth is. Given there is a high rate of miscarriages
About 8 to 20 percent of known pregnancies end in miscarriage. The total number of actual miscarriages is probably higher because many women miscarry before they even know that they're pregnant.
So the take away message is all things are connected and it takes awhile for ideas to spread though society but once they do they feel like we will never forget them until we do.
Another of these ideas is perspective. It is very easy to think I am the only one that matters and no one else has a valid perspective. In my experience everyone has a some piece of wisdom, they are human beings who observe the universe too, everyone knows something no one else does so no one is more important than anybody else. We’re all connected after all and we have no more than to remember how quickly covid 19 spread through the human population.
All this reminds me of being told I was wrong about the subjectivity of reality. We can argue about the abstract reality go the chair in the corner of the room. It is currently there but will it always be there? Has it always been there, no. perhaps science is really about trying to understand what reality really is, laws that describe a universe that is always changing.
Another example is the brutality in society, such as when we had public executions whether it was for witches or other criminals. Now we keep our brutality pretty much indoors and well out of public viewing.
Finally empathy is about the most salient example of the phenomena I and thinking of, it wasn’t long ago that empathy just did not exist as a concept but now everyone is using empathy as away of being able to explain other concepts, such as psychopaths.
I remember in school we read 1984 and were asked can you think a concept if you don’t have the word for it? And the answer is yes. But the concept will be forgotten like knowing how dangerous childbirth is.