Our entire world needs a Mandela as a leader to unite, seek and solve the number one problem in the world. And then, take number two, number three and transform what we can in something beyond we are capable of envisioning now.
Or even better, imagine Napoleon Hill’s knowledge merged with Mandela’s leadership? That would be something. Our humankind would jump decades of evolution in one year.
But we don’t have that. Yet. We also don’t know what the main problem is, and we’re definitely far from being united. Although the impact of our tools and actions can jeopardize the world on a large scale.
The Purpose Of This Article
By stating the above, I thought to make my small contribution and unite great minds who can define our main problem, or at least help contour the present before finding solutions. I will count on The Butterfly Effect to create an impact in the world and bring this topic to the table by reaching as many people as I can. I’m also counting on your help if that’s not much to ask.
I believe that we need to think for ourselves at first and grow masses that can have a holistic view about who we are, what we are doing and where are we heading. We have incredible opportunities today, but we are not at all ok as humans. At least, that’s my opinion. Countries, borders, separation, racism, extremism and many separator factors. In the meantime, we can be more connected and informed than ever before – with the power of the internet. How about having a joint mission as well?
Are We Intelligent Enough?
We should be rational creatures, but the reality shows us that emotions and beliefs are far more impactful about the way we behave then evidence. Many cognitive errors, or call it cognitive biases, govern us. Most of them never acknowledged, and worst – never thought in school. Also, we are Predictably Irrational as brilliantly explained by Dan Ariely in his book with the same title. Besides Dan Ariely’s work, I am also a fan of George Loewenstein, and his speech about NEW New Economics of Information is so enlightening. They both are part of this article, and I’m very grateful to have their views.
Professor Loewenstein points out that our beliefs tend to act like possession and we are attached to them in order to sustain what we thought, how we behaved till now. What I want to emphasize from that speech is the data about Science Intelligence and the Predictive Probabilities derived via Monte Carlo simulation regarding Climate Change. It’s such an amazing topic to point out what I mean. They used a questionnaire as follows.
Is the Earth getting warmer:
(a) Mostly because of human activity such as burning fossil fuels;
(b) Mostly because of natural patterns in the earth’s environment.
According to this study, those who answered (b) can be called as using science intelligence. But the thing is that the answer can be altered according to your beliefs, and they point out the difference between the Conservative and Democratic Party. To quote the Professor, “People are not using their intelligence to interpret the evidence in kind of unbiased fashion, they’re using their intelligence to interpret the evidence in a way that supports what they already believe or want to believe.”
Conclusion, when it comes to our beliefs and past – things we grabbed strongly to us – everything that is outside that thing won’t be filtered anymore through a scientific intelligence. So the question is, how intelligent we really are, and how much impact intelligence has over our evolution?
It’s also known today that emotional intelligence (EQ) overrules the IQ when it comes to predicting the potential of someone to be successful. On the same note, there are laws that govern everything. Law of Success, Law of Failure, you name it. Laws that are as accurate as the Law of Gravity or Electricity. But again, too many people are not aware of that.
So I wanted to know, taking all these in consideration, where we are now and what’s the main problem of our society, or the humankind. Because now the Earth is well populated with relatively and questionably intelligent human beings who now have the power to create and destroy with significant impact around them. Also, our Mother Earth goes through rapid changes as you can visibly notice even if you don’t do more than compare how things were in your childhood. As far as I can see or sense, we are somehow on the verge of something, a tipping point moment. Where we can choose to unite prioritizing the most critical problem, then problems. We are still too divided, so I wanted to ask some amazing people about their views.
In this regards, I asked the same open question from a couple of those who can have a say on the subject, being genuinely concerned about the humankind, from different areas. I did not want to alter the results, so each of them answered as they wished and seemed fit.
You’ll find six answers, plus mine (seven). I’ve had the luxury to develop my response, as you can guess. Please check back regularly because I intend to add more people and their answers to the table, creating awareness on this topic.
UPDATED! [13.11.208] Seth Godin
The number one problem in the world today
Question: What would you name as being the No. 1 problem society faces today? Or the humankind?
Let’s see the answers from six great minds:
Dr. Dan Ariely – James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University, TEDx Speaker, Bestselling author, co-founder of multiple businesses. And, most of all, at least in my view a relentless researcher with outstanding knowledge about human behavior and motivation. I would point him as a role model in turning your weak spots into platinum. You should read all his books. He’s also a big-hearted human being.
George Loewenstein, Ph.D. – The Herbert A. Simon Professor of Economics and Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University, and director of the Center for Behavioral Decision Research. He is the great-grandson of Sigmund Freud. He also co-authored many revolutionizing books based on qualitative research in economics, motivation. You’ll find his work and collected data fascinating, and talking with him will reveal an original humorous character.
Answer: “It’s actually not a simple question. I would say “climate change,” because it is inexorable, and promises to destroy life as we know it in the not-very-distant future. But, one could also point to more basic human problems, such as inequality and political instability, as playing a role in why humanity has so far been so immobile in the face of this challenge.”
Brian Tracy – Thought Leader | Best Selling Author | Professional Speaker – who is relentless of leaving a quantitative and qualitative legacy in the personal development field with a speed that would embarrass a 20-year-old. He doesn’t show any sign of slowing down at 74, and the chances are that he’ll be on a set, on stage or in his office creating new titles and content many years from now on. Who doesn’t know him or didn’t read at least a book from him? My readers would probably pass that group. He impacted both businesses and personal lives during the decades with a distinctive signature on sells. I would also list him as a great family man with an everlasting marriage and four amazing children.
Answer: “Getting caught up with distractions, thus not working towards your goals.”
Robin Sharma – Global Leadership Expert | Founder of The Titan Academy | Humanitarian | Bestselling Author – whose book, “Leader without a title” became a must-read I recommend to every company I work with. It should be used like a manual by each employee, or everyone who actually has a job. Besides his writing career, he became one of the world’s top leadership experts, working side by side with some of the most notable voices of our times, like Richard Branson.
“Our world is crying out for pure leaders, true heroes, and real saviors.
We live in a time of radical change, overwhelming complexity, and unparalleled volatility.
If you’ve been paying attention to what’s happening, you know what’s coming over the next few years. Via the exponential growth of artificial intelligence, blockchain technology, the increasing datafication of our lives, 3D printing and the next-grade of geopolitical movements that will disrupt everything you know about how we currently live.
…Entire sectors and industries will be wiped out.
…Scores of jobs will be lost.
…The way things have always been done will be over. Forever.
For the unprepared, what will unfold will be utterly terrifying.
For those who are ready, the future will be awe-inspiring. And unspeakably exciting.
And so Cristina, you may ask me “Robin, what’s the single best move I can make to capitalize on the brave new world that is coming?”
…step into your natural state of herohood [yes — I did just make up yet another word. Because it’s an important one for you to embrace].
In messy times, it’s our heroes that lead the way.
Think Gandhi and Mandela, MLK and Mother Teresa, JFK and Steve Jobs.
Think Seneca and Nikola Tesla, Muhammad Ali and Oprah, Elon Musk and Jony Ive.
Yet, my point stays the same: why wait for another glorious hero to emerge and lead us from darkness into light when you have it in you to build yourself into the hero we all long to follow?
I’m not saying you need to lead our whole world…
I’m not saying you need to govern a nation.
I’m not suggesting you need to launch a movement.
I’m simply saying you just need to rewire your headspace and reconfigure your heart space so you seriously begin to lead YOUR world…
…by seeing pure possibility where the majority spots adversity
…by leveraging your most glamorous talents and capitalizing on your most luminous gifts
…by ascending to becoming the most brave, excellent, alive and decent person you know.
…and Cristina, the super cool thing is that, as you do, you’ll automatically inspire the rest of us to do the same, in our own lives.
Upgrade your life and you upgrade the world’s life. Glorious truth, right?”
Simona Baciu – President & Founder founder of Transylvania College, the Cambridge International School in Cluj. She is the recipient of a British International School Lifetime Award and holder of the Custodian of the Romanian Crown Medal, awarded for her outstanding contribution to education. In order to get here, she started a kindergarten in her small apartment, in one room – her kid’s room. This was 25 years ago. Now she is running one of the best private schools in Europe. She is a pioneer and visionary who sees the world from the eyes of well-trained children. You can find a glimpse of that reading her latest book, The Teacher Within.
Answer: “Ignorance is definitely a major issue.
Many people aren’t interested in what’s going on around them, such as current events in other countries, or even in their own country.
Ignorance can be defined as a lack of awareness. We are ignorant in the moment when we are not aware of the challenges we meet every day and we are indifferently related to major life theme.
I could also speak about the ignorance in education starting with the old saying: “If You Think Education Is Expensive, Try Ignorance”.
When we think at the human need of education we are thinking first to lack of money and resources. For me, ignorance means the fact that we are not taking the teachers’ need for a continuous professional and personal development, as a priority. If a teacher comes to school and receives appreciation for his everyday work, he can maintain his motivation and enthusiasm during the entire year. That will be for sure reflected in student’s behavior and later in the entire society.
I think that investing time and resources in teachers is the best way to support people, develop societies and avoid ignorance.”
Evan Carmichael – Entrepreneur | International Speaker | Founder of EvanCarmichael.com, a site he developed out of his passion for helping entrepreneurs succeed. But maybe he’s even more known as a social media celebrity who created a mission to help others help themselves. His YouTube channel currently passed 1.6M followers, with over 5000 uploads on only one channel, because he owns several other in different languages. He practically built up a #BelieveNation online, the word #Believe being his mantra. Imagine his impact on the youth, not only entrepreneurs. His tagline became his mission and also the answer to my question. But he’s also the one who pops in on a daily basis helping my daily motivation intact on Twitter; meaning he’s an efficient marketer too.
Answer: “Untapped human potential.”
Seth Godin – One of the most prolific authors, thinkers, and marketers of our times and his daily blog is one of the most amazing marketing machines out there. You type ‘seth,’ and he’ll pop up. That’s by itself a statement. He’s an iconic name whose biography would fill up a thick book. He just launched his latest book (after six years) – This Is Marketing – which gained the best-selling status in the pre-order mode. As a side note, he’s also a serial entrepreneur with a particular focus on education.
Answer: “It’s a little bit of a contest to come up with a word that captures the essence… I’ll go with the search for convenience.
all rolled into one.”
To be continued…
Now, my answer. Since I have the luxury to develop my own perspective – here it comes. My answer goes to – Ignorance. I wanted to add the word Egocentrism, but since I asked my amazing responders only one option, I will stick with Ignorance myself.
Let’s detail what I mean by ignorance. As a side note, although I completely agree with Simona’s view, my understanding comes from a different perspective.
We are a species which still believes (as a vast majority) that we are the power of the Universe, that we are the most evolved anything from anywhere. Taking this to account and adding it with the faulted use of science intelligence we can understand why people think they can alter a planet having 4.543 billion years of evolution, having a Big Bang moment of origin. What if that’s not the first Big Bang?
Know-It-All Mindset Effect
Anyhow, I got it, humans now believe they can create or be directly responsible for a new Big Bang. But my question is again, how do we know that Bing Bang wasn’t created after, or a result of a natural cycle, now that we see what happens with the planets after their Sun dies. Even so, the existent discoveries are not that impactful to change a collective mindset. Most people tend to act like they own the whole truth, they are the know-it-alls, and they love to force their beliefs on others.
This is how racism and all the deviant conduct can be explained. It’s so obvious that we are not alone in this Universe and that there are other dimensions, galaxies and places where probably others are more evolved or more primitive creatures than we are. Depending on the stage of their unique evolution. Now we know how vast the Universe is, and we are far from seeing the entire picture. We are only part of a Galaxy. Just because we don’t have close “neighbors” doesn’t mean they don’t exist. What if we are located in a very far space of this Universe, in one of the most remote Galaxies for a reason?
I believe we just touched the surface of technology and we are infants when it comes to the real truth about who we are, what we could achieve, and what our mission is. Ignoring this can cost us, not on a personal level, but the evolution level. Our choices will decide our faith, and pretty soon. And measurable evolution can only be achieved by a collective mindset.
Ignorance will always lead to poor decisions.
So from this perspective I just pictured, you can easily see why I find ignorance a primordial problem. Because even if we cannot alter the route of something way beyond us, we can still destroy humankind by playing with the essential resources directly linked to our existence. Here we really are efficient creators and destroyers at the same time.
Without water, food, air, and shelter you die. And we can indeed alter those. We do a pretty good job at it. Don’t you think so? I cannot see improvement without a general awareness of a collective mind, connected to the Earth and others. We now know some quantum physics, the real deal in science, and we can realize how connected we all are.
The Fourth Estate of the Realm, known as the news media, journalism or ‘the press’ could help us quickly and efficiently. But they don’t seem to do it. Governments, the church, formal education could also help, but their interests seem divided and channeled in the wrong direction.
So the solution could come from the Fifth Power of The Realm which includes the internet and social opinion. Taking what we got and the present dangers, it’s our responsibility and duty to grow and seek for ourselves to fulfill our destinies. And, most of all, give a minimal chance to our children and grandchildren to continue living here without scarcity or Sci-Fi movies brought alive.
Cristina Imre – High-End Coach for Top Performers; Keynote Speaker; Business Trainer & Strategist; Author; Entrepreneur