I was discussing this topic with my Mother-In-Law a short while back and felt it was interesting enough to post here. If you disagree, imagine instead I’m talking about puppies, because everyone loves puppies.
We’ll begin with the subject of change and the effects of it on our psyche. I don’t believe I’ll be citing anything today, so if you disagree with my points go check out case studies and I’m sure they’ll provide the same information. While it is true that change, and paradoxes, help expand the gray matter, many people are very resistant to change. This may be a survival mechanism, once you have mastered your surroundings, you would be very unhappy if those surroundings changed because now you would need to utilize more time (a precious commodity to mortal beings) to once again become learned.
There is an irony to this, the more open to change an organism is, the faster it will adapt and the higher likelihood that it’ll survive. So how is it, that humans have survived this long? As a whole humans have proven they are overall highly resistant to change, so much so that they’ve many times over developed belief structures that are themselves the ultimate hyperbole of static. Beings with unchanging infinitely wide power that exist for an unchanging amount of time over an unchanging swath of existence (namely all of it). The answer lies in a natural check, in a sense humans are one massive organism, while our bodies do contain various organs that seem to have no purpose other than to kill us, there are balances to these that keep us as a whole alive.
The relatively small percent of humans that are not only open to change but actively searching for it, these are what keep humans alive. While many people find distress in change, they can avoid it (to the misfortune of them and all around them), this small group however continually discovers and advances knowledge in the universe and thusly sparks change, which generally leads to longer and much less painful survival.
Depression, or at the very least stress, is derived from seemingly uncontrollable circumstances. The worse the feeling of no control, the higher the level of depression or stress. In most situations the loss of control can be rectified but it cannot usually be rectified quicker than merely avoiding it, which may be the reason that people largely avoid change or things they don’t understand.
However Technology has become basically unavoidable, for a truly productive life people must tie in with technology. This has some amazing ramifications, because I’m willing to bet that not a single person reading this article has a deep understanding of exactly how a computer works. Many people have a rough idea of how cars work, the mechanisms for their function are fairly straight forward. However a computer (though arguably no more complicated) has a much more daunting scope. You could contain all the knowledge of the collective human existence into a device that is the size of a dictionary. This is a daunting concept that mystifies PCs amongst many people, and puts plenty of money into the pocket of the “Geek Squad” ;).
We are technologically much better off than we were in the early 1900’s, but with that has come the inescapable necessity to learn and change. This is a massive, utterly unstoppable, reality that I do feel has made the majority of people less happy than they were in a relatively simpler time. War has always been here, disease has always been here, and wheels have been around for a long time. But technology, electricity, and the extremely quick evolution of information has put a globes worth of people who live off the idea of the rawest static ideals in check.
This is a very good thing however, forcing people to accept change and to enjoy new challenges has nothing but positive ramifications in the short term and in the long term. For the entirety of human history it has been the people accepting of change, and only these people, that has kept the rest of the human population advancing and alive. The larger this population becomes, the better the lives of all people will be. However it will be an uphill struggle considering just how strong the desire for static infinitives is. If you need a very real example look at America and Pluto. Or really America and basically any scientific advance in the last 100 years that didn’t obviously and immediately make life easier. I’d comment on other countries, but I don’t live in them so all my comments would be largely assumptive and that’s not fair.
Unrelated I would like to congratulate Volcanoes, you have once again reminded everyone just how badass you can be.