Utopia isn’t about absolute perfection

Posted on April 19, 2013

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I feel I want to clarify something. I’m using the word Utopia when I’m talking about this new type of society model I’m working on. It is the word that comes closes to what I want to aim for, even though I know the word has a bit of a negative history. It was coined in 1516 by the author Thomas More  who wrote a book about a perfect land, called Utopia. The word is Greek and means the place of nowhere. It is assumed that he was trying to both give critique about current England and point out that there is no such thing as a perfect society. Since then the word Utopia has been used in countless literature to describe all kinds of new idealistic perfect societies. Most of them having some kind of domination aspect to them. There seems to be an assumption that for a Utopian world to work, there has to be a leaders that forces everybody to follow the Utopian plan. In politics the word Utopian have been used to discredit an opponents ideas as unrealistic. In general the word still stands for the unrealistic, the delusional dreamers hopes and something more suitable for science fiction. It is not meant to be a serious and positive word.

I would like to challenge the old idea of Utopia. A truly Utopian (perfect world) is not about control over everything and everyone. One person can’t think they have all the answers and demand that everybody else should obey by them. This idea that as long as everybody does what I say, it will be fine. In a Utopian world we have to accept that everybody is different, want different things, thinks differently, acts differently and reacts differently than you to the same thing. The sooner we accept and respect this, the better of we will all be. Like I wrote in an earlier post, it isn’t about a one way fix. My idea of a truly Utopian world isn’t one of obedience, but rather one of  acceptance, compassion and wisdom.

When you talk about Utopia people seam to think that it would imply that no one ever gets hurt, everyone is happy all the time, no one ever suffers, everyone respects everybody all the time, we would all be like little Dalai Lamas, doing everything correctly etc. This is obviously impossible and absurd to even think it would be. That is not the type of perfection I’m talking about. Because people are so different and we are all shaped by our experiences, there will always be situations when people will clash and seek out revenge and punishment.
We are all capable of expressing a wide range of emotions and they aren’t all good. It is impossible to protect everybody from getting hurt or get into accidents and die. People will still suffer, feel hurt and question their existence. Suffering isn’t always a bad thing. When we suffer, we get a chance to develop, to learn and to get stronger. If we never struggle in life, we stop developing I think. There’s a difference between a Utopian society and a Utopian life. The illusion here is the Utopian life and it shouldn’t be mistaken for a Utopian society. A Utopian society is a society which purpose is to give humans and all life on this planet a chance to really thrive. A Utopian society should give all of us the necessary prerequisites to live a good healthy life, grow, develop and become wise, intelligent, creative and self-thinking beings. Society is after all just a system that we have created for ourselves so that we can improve our lives in many ways. We can compare society with a board game setup. We can control what the board looks like, what pieces there are, what ground rules there are and what types of actions can take place. But as soon as the players start to play it is out of our hands. The game can take any direction and it is up to each player to decide what strategy he/she will have in the game. But the games being played are still constricted to how the board and it’s rules was set up to begin with. It is the same when it comes to redesigning our society. We can only affect the parts and ground rules, but we can do that with the intent to condition the behaviors we want to emerge. If we want people to increase their empathic capability, we need to look at what type of context would condition that. In which conditions do we become more empathic?
When do we practice empathy the most?
What type of behaviors tend to bring out our empathic drives?
Life can’t be controlled. Peoples personal drive and purpose can’t be changed by someone else.
It has to flow freely and we need to make sure that our society enables it to do so.

A Utopian society has to make sure that everyone has the same opportunities, but it is up to each individual to make their own choices. The parts of society that we should improve and supply are these:

  1. Resource management
  2. Food production ( growing and preparing)
  3. Water systems (clean drinking water and water for cleaning if needed)
  4. Waste management
  5. Health care
  6. Distribution
  7. Production systems
  8. Service management and development
  9. Transportation system
  10. Energy production
  11. Educational system
  12. Support system, mediators (todays legal system)
  13. Science and research
  14. Further development of society as a whole (open source bases development)
  15. Spiritual and philosophical guidance
  16. Construction of spaces, for habitat, industry and other activites
  17. Recreation services and spaces
  18. Restoration and preservation of the ecosystem
  19. Centers for cultural expression and development
  20. Centers for artistic development and expression

These systems can be created so that everybody on this planet (and the planet) benefits from them. If all these systems would be developed next to each other, overlooking how they influence each other, we could reach the goal of having a balanced, self sustaining system that everyone have the right to participate in and use, for free. Money can be made obsolete. These are systems we can control and develop in anyway necessary to make sure they are beneficial to us and the Eco-system. It is people and their lives, that flow through these systems, that can’t be controlled and shouldn’t be either. We can only try to give ourselves the best possible prerequisites to live the life we chose and enable everyone to participate in the development of society in which ever way we are best able to.

 

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Posted in: Foundation