“We want to think of the internet as a physical place. It is not about making the virtual physical, but rather to argue that the virtual also exists physically.”
— Woon Tien Wei
When I ask you what the world will look like 100 years from now, it’s very easy to picture tall glass skyscrapers, plants on the walls of buildings, and sleek autonomous cars (à la solarpunk aesthetic) But when I ask how it will feel, it’s much harder. Why don’t we have clear narratives of the psychological future?
Let me lay out one sketch of what this could look like.
Every child learns the occupation of living. We learn how to process emotions ("What are you feeling? Ah, sadness? How wonderful that you were able to name that. Let's just sit here a while, I'll hold you, just feel it through. It's okay."). We have healthy relationships with anger, sadness, hurt, and fear. We learn that our reality is many narratives layered on top of each other ("You think you’ll never be good at math because you learn more slowly than others? Do you see how that's an interpretation you have? What if you were taught differently?") and how much agency we truly have ("What do you want to create? What's standing in your way? Let's turn it into a plan"). We feel loved, safe, and stable. Because we have so much security in ourselves, we have no need to push others down. We’re taught to try to understand where other people are coming from ("What do you imagine he's feeling right now?"). When we’re in difficult situations, rather than reacting quickly and lashing out, we process and try to empathize. We have stable, healthy relationships with each other that bring us joy. We don’t need to fill a hole of loneliness with social media. We don’t need to clutch identities to protect our ego. We’re resilient, loving, fulfilled.
206 blocks • 5 days ago