Friday, 12 August 2011

The Hope in the Darkness

Everything is a bit grim and depressing at the moment, with riots, recessions and peak oil all rearing their ugly heads. It is easy to lose hope and to feel that we are all doomed, but I was sent a link today by the fabulous Otesha project that cheered me up and reminded me of the huge potential of human creativity. We have in our collective hands the ingenuity and skill to find a solution to any problem that faces us, that is how we got where we are today. It is arguably one of the most precious gifts of the human mind. So today I would like to share with you some of the amazing creativity and ingenuity that is lighting the way through the darkness.

The link that inspired this post gives 5 ingenious ways of reusing t-shirts and I particularly like the tent idea and the awesome video that comes with it.

And what about this is an awesome alternative to landfill? Saving lots of money and resources compared to new building materials too. Or we could make clothes out of cigarette butts? Or Buddhist temples out of glass bottles?

If you haven’t discovered TED talks yet, they are an amazing showcase of creativity and lateral thinking. One of the talks that springs to mind as being ingenious is by an amazing Indian entrepreneur teaching kids to make toys from rubbish.

Of course some of the old creativity and wisdom is equally inspiring, such as making soggy salad leaves into salad soup or using souring dairy products to make amazing cheese scones.

The human mind is amazing and we can achieve incredible things. Let us hope that our ingenuity and humanity can lead us to the better future we are all striving for. Never be afraid to think outside the box, for that is the stuff of evolution and progress.

Please share your favourite examples of creativity to inspire us all.

1 comment:

  1. as well as looking for creative solutions (which themselves often come from adversity, hence so many being from developing nations)
    its important to realise things *aren't* as "dark" as they are claimed to be - economic depression and peak oil have been known about for years - especially on Transition we have to accept them and deal with them - and yet in the UK we by and large retain a good standard of living and quality of life.

    The recent city crimewave was the anger of youth "rioting for consumerism" - if anything the backlash from this is going to *force* the British people to consider alternative and creative solutions to current business as usual - and rein in some of the consumer society whether they want to or not!

    For one thing shops are going to be less likely to put expensive goods out on public display, just like the case in more austere times. This reduces demand, in the same way that cigarettes aren't as widely advertised as they once were.

    Its also worth remembering East Anglia largely escaped these disturbances, other than a few young teens teens trying to ape their London counterparts, most of whom were swiftly and effectively rounded up by standard bobbies in standard uniform, and taken back to their parents!

    I'm originally a Londoner and came here because life was better quality and safer. EA is not without its own social problems - but however the community works here - even "business as usual" and the conventional authority figures like the Police, faith groups and elected politicans seem to be doing *something right*.

    one issue though is that we lose many talented intelligent young people to the capital and cities seeking excitement and hedonism, particularly those of University calibre, causing an ageing population and requiring migration to take up the slack, which can unfortunately also lead to social tensions.

    But even this has been dealt with fairly effectively here - but I do feel any "creative solutions" *must* involve the younger people and somehow appeal to those seeking hedonism and excitement (whilst still delivering constructive outcomes). This is currently less easy when they are easily mobile - but perhaps recent events and their knock on effects will be encouraging more young people (an important resource) to stay local?