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Project Vision 21

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We cannot enter the new future with the preparation acquired in the past

I recently read the story of a young couple who, to escape the Texas heat, decided to travel a few hours to southern Colorado and camp near a lake in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Shortly after finishing setting up their tent, the couple had to be rescued because neither he nor she was prepared for the situation.

According to reports in the local media, the couple decided to use a common tent, without a double roof and without adequate thermal protection for the low temperatures in the high mountains of Colorado. In addition, they had little water and almost no food. And they didn't have a change of dry clothes to change into.

One of the many sudden rains in the area put them in serious trouble. So, they decided to call the emergency number and asked to be rescued. But the operation was delayed precisely because of the rain, which caused for the rescue team to travel three hours on dirt roads and trails, now transformed into mud, to reach the couple.

When the rescuers arrived at the indicated place, the couple already suffered not only from hunger and thirst, but also from hypothermia. It took another three hours to get them down the mountain and to a hospital, where they eventually recovered.

Someone asked them how it was possible that they had gone to an isolated campsite at a significant altitude without adequate preparation and without the necessary elements for that activity. According to reports, the man would have said: "Because we thought that everything here was the same as in Texas."

This young couple made one of the oldest and most widespread mistakes in the history of human thought: assuming (wrongly) that what one knows is exactly the same everywhere else, and therefore what one already knows can be applied. in the other places.

Put another way, if it's hot in Texas and everything I know is related to Texas, then it must be hot in Colorado too because Colorado must be equal to Texas. (Please let the reader replace the two names mentioned with two other names more suitable for your context).

It seems ridiculous for someone to believe that he or she can generalize what he or she knows to the whole world simply because that is what he or she knows so far. But that is precisely what we do when we think of the future as if the future were a perpetual repetition of the past or a mere extension of the present.

Preparing for the future from what we already know and assuming what we know in the present will serve us in the future is as ridiculous and risky as leaving the heat of Texas and traveling to a cold Colorado mountain believing that the two places are the same or very similar.

But the future is neither continuity of the present nor repetition of the past, but an expansion of consciousness towards new and previously unthought possibilities and opportunities.

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