The world will end on December 21 2012 according to the Mayan Long Count Calendar. Cold comfort if you are a Doomsday theory believer and not surprising for those of us who feel reduced to survival mode these days.
Our thoughts are consumed with survival; survival in our jobs (which tend to bring little joy or satisfaction), surviving natural disasters (occurring more frequently it seems), surviving pandemics, regional wars and social turbulence. Many of us are simply surviving the times we live in, hoping for things to improve. Welcome to the Modern Middle Ages, an age eerily similar to the Middle Ages of 400 to 1400. Back then we were trying to survive the plagues, pestilence, war and dreary jobs and living conditions too. But, we know now that surviving, while admirable, does not advance us. A surviving mentality tries to hold on to what is. It is why the Middle Ages became known as the Dark Ages and lasted 1000 years.
If you believe our Modern Middle Ages has already gone on too long then you may be hoping for the end of the world as we know it and believe like Mayan archeologists and anthropologists do who suggest that while the current fourth world will end another cycle will begin. It is this idea of renewal that should give us all comfort in these trying times.
or The End of the World as We Know It?
Renewal was our way out of the Middle Ages and the concept of renewal became known as the Renaissance. Renewal in the Renaissance age moved us emotionally and intellectually from surviving to thriving, a mentality that creates what could be. The thriving mentality is responsible for a period of human history unmatched since for its creativity, innovation, social advances and economic expansion.
I will demonstrate here that our way out of the Modern Middle Ages will be a Renaissance 2.0. This Renaissance 2.0 will be everything and nothing like the last one. Here, we will explore the lessons and ideas of the Renaissance and contemporize them for the 21st century. We will imitate and iterate the successes of the Renaissance for application to our careers, corporations and communities. We can bring about the end of the world as we know it (all due respect to REM) or at least this Modern Middle Ages cycle and begin again in an new age of renewal, the Renaissance 2.0 age. And isn’t that a better state to be in?