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"Those who know do not talk; and talkers do not know." -- Lao Tzu
So I’d better tell you about this before I stop talking.
Love in a Risky World
World experts are rating our global risks:
* Fiscal crises ... * Education gap
* Climate change... * Clean water shortages
* Gender gap... *Human rights
It would be fascinating and useful to have interpersonal risks listed -- miscalculations that people make in the area of Love. Our music and literature are doing some of that. Our economics discipline hasn’t tapped into that rich source of wealth creation. Because…
|.|| This is |
Blog 3 of 6 ... securing a future for love in a future dominated by evolution and the marketplace.
Are Motivated by Love
as Well as by Profit Motive
Honors and Appreciation!
* * * * * * * *
Without love, we may become a sad machine where a soft heart should be.
And a population of sad machines does not make the best decisions for the world we'll leave for future generations to inhabit.
Okay, let’s respect those who are skeptical of the word “love.” Yet we’ll always be aware that there is a sense in which Love is not a mechanism in the way that evolution or the marketplace are. It’s more of a priceless word like “spirit” or “purpose.” One of the first steps in seeking truth, as described in Albert Einstein’s book on Relativity, is defining our terms. Let’s assume we defined “Love" using a few ways that are observable. (We're not dictating these terms...just suggesting definitions for a conversation.) You can re-work this definition later. All our definitions are placeholders for future re-definitions.
We have an unaccounted variable in all our economic calculations. Probably it is something to do with Love.
It will always be unmeasured yet we can account for it. As with "truth," we can approach the topic of Love even if we can never master it. |
Mark Twain was making a joke about truth that also applies to our compromises with love.
Old Man: Wait. You misunderstand. I said I have BEEN a Truth-Seeker.
Young Man: Well?
Old Man: I am not that now. Have you forgotten? I told you that there are none but temporary Truth-Seekers; that a permanent one is a human impossibility; that as soon as the Seeker finds what he is thoroughly convinced is the Truth, he seeks no further, but gives the rest of his days to hunting junk to patch it and caulk it and prop it with, and make it weather-proof and keep it from caving in on him.
Hence the Presbyterian remains a Presbyterian, the Mohammedan a Mohammedan, the Spiritualist a Spiritualist, the Democrat a Democrat, the Republican a Republican, the Monarchist a Monarchist; and if a humble, earnest, and sincere Seeker after Truth should find it in the proposition that the moon is made of green cheese nothing could ever budge him from that position; for he is nothing but an automatic machine, and must obey the laws of his construction.”
-- Mark Twain in “What is Man?”
|.||These risks are not yet well-understood, and most of them could be mitigated by improvements in protocol:
* Jumping to conclusions
* Believing things we don’t care enough about at the time to research, then later acting upon those beliefs
* Letting people behind the scenes mess with our relationships because we’re too trusting or beleaguered
* Forgetting that life is short and joy can be made at home
Love is not really something that can be monetized, precisely measured, or dissected. "Love" is a more general word than either dominance or trading, which are the working parts of evolution and the marketplace. That doesn't mean Love can't be involved with trading or dominance.
It's just a different category as words go, because it has far too many dimensions to be defined as closely as those two terms are defined. It's like "spirit" or "purpose."
|.||DEFINING FEATURES OF LOVE: |
Long term interest, wants cooperation, experiences joy, wants benefit and autonomy for the other... But you may define love somewhat differently, so that’s a placeholder definition.
We can rely on our spirits, our purpose, our soul-power… in future generations… to keep this going. We can trust they’ll remember love sometimes. If we factor it into our equations, what would those equations be like? A physics equation is often quite simple, surrounded by other equations.
|.||.||Evolution and the Marketplace are both machine-like. They process goals; they don't have goals of their own. |
Love is somehow different. It can have goals. It can oppose the machine in creative ways, for what may seem illogical reasons.
If a scientist studies LOVE (or an economist studies it), their best starting place is to admit, "I don't know." That is also true in the study of what a market will do, or evolution. LOVE may turn out to be, objectively, an independent motive category to create a better world that rises above the tit-for-tat machines of evolution and the marketplace... so if we can improve the protocols of LOVE, we're going to be making a better world or better realms above it...
| To marry for Love has different effects on society than to marry for social climbing or for monetary gain. (Both of these latter reasons have been valid and even unselfish reasons for marrying in some situations. We're not thinking about judgment but about improving the world's protocols.)
We've good indications that LOVE is a major player in the economic picture. It motivates inventiveness and creativity that other urges don't inspire. |
Therefore, it is a mistake to fail to see LOVE's effect in the Big Picture and miss a very good chance to improve how we're building the future world.
We could do well to increase our focus about Love, however you interpret it now.