Photo courtesy of NASA. Earth during a solar eclipse
Have you ever believed you had the power to change the world? Many people have aspired to accomplish this objective, and some even maintain that all of us have the power within ourselves to do so. With earth’s population over 7.8 billion, that is a lot of changing. In fact, if we all took one day changing the plant, it would take 21,369,863 years to complete this task!
Granted, some may have never considered believing they had the power to initiate such an impact, but that still doesn’t mean they are without their own talents. I firmly believe each of us has our own distinct and unique gifts but changing the world may not be the most valuable way to pursue our dreams.
What does it mean to change the world and is it a task within the grasp of one person? For many, leaving a legacy continually compels them to work more diligently and if they can impact the world, it only shines a brighter light on their accomplishments. But how does one go about transforming “The Blue Marble” and is that change always for the good?
A lofty goal
This week, a fraud trial began for someone who believed she could change the world by revolutionizing the medical industry. Sadly, it also happened to be the 20th anniversary of another day which altered and scarred countless lives. These are not the kinds of changes most of us consider when thinking about global transformation.
Perhaps the earliest and most significant event to permanently alter our planet occurred about 66 million years ago when the Chicxulub asteroid collided with earth. Although still a theory, numerous scientists view this catastrophic event as a catalyst in shaping the planet’s current condition.
Moving ahead 65.988 million years, another global transformation was the ice age. What both incidents have in common is that many suffered tragedy while others prospered. Is the notion that some must suffer calamity while others prevail and succeed an undeniable paradox every time there is a global transformation? Is it possible to have an outcome where everyone prospers, or is there always some aspect of Pandora’s Box lurking in the shadows?
Change never guarantees positive results for all. But when one sets out to change the world, is the likelihood of collateral damage happening to someone an inescapable component of this extreme goal? Is it considered acceptable to trample on a small percentage of people as long as a majority of lives are enhanced?
Perhaps one of the most recent changes to impact our planet is the internet and online communication. Nearly 60 percent of us use it daily and many are entirely reliant on its service. When the internet is down, some businesses will come to a grinding halt.
Microsoft was the first to make it viable on a grand scale and Apple followed closely behind. However, when the history is uncovered, there were many companies who were destroyed by the ruthless business practices of these organizations and others. Is this fact neglected or disregarded because our lives have been made more convenient and luxurious?
Let’s face it, transformation is just a fancy way to dress up the word change, though it typically is used to describe a constructive personal or spiritual change. When used in this situation, that would imply no one is harmed, impaired, or abused. There is no downside to personal transformation. If this is the case, is it possible for a global transformation to have a similar conclusion?
The answer may lie behind one simple word: intention. What is the intent behind anyone’s reason to change the world?
It may be utterly impossible for global transformation to occur through any corporate entity because the intention behind most every business is to make a profit. Any considerations given to a competitor are how to acquire or destroy it. Cooperation with a rival is either for a means to control the market or it has been mandated by a governing body. There can never be any semblance of “everyone prospers” with this kind of intention.
Thankfully, there is one way we all – every one of us – can take part in changing the world and that is to be the change we wish to see in it.
Most, if not all of us, have heard this famous phrase by Mahatma Gandhi. However, there is a deeper, more reflective side to this quote with which many may not be familiar.
The entire quote states: “We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man [sic] changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do.”
You may need a minute to reflect on the entire quote. I can think of no better way of stating how to personally strive for Global Transformation.
The personal development industry is approaching $40 billion annually. I regularly see profiles of people who state they’ve changed the lives of thousands of leaders. With thousands, if not millions of lives changed, this makes me scratch my head wondering why the world isn’t becoming a much more thoughtful, caring, and compassionate place.
The cold reality is that the answer will never be in how many lives we can change. The solution is how genuinely and profoundly we change our own lives. When was the last time the world changed because of how you changed yourself? Is our planet a better place because of the way it reflects you?
Global transformation is something within everyone’s reach. None of us has any excuse nor do we need to aspire to reach it. All we need is to be willing to look into that mirror and ask ourselves how will I change so that this world will become a better place. I truly hope the comment section will be filled with personal stories of Global Transformation. Thank you.