|"Finn Cellist" by Tim Holmes|
All my adult life I recall hearing predictions that automation and democracy would assure us that work would be gradually replaced as the work week would grow shorter, workers would have more time off for home and family, and the creative pursuits would edge out labor as our prime occupation. But every such prediction only led us all to more work. What gives?
Partly it's our own fault for opting so often for increasing work and money rather than quality of life. But also we are all subsumed in a value system promoted by the omnipresent consumerist culture, exerting constant pressure on us and from which we can never escape. Then there is a secularist efficiency-driven trajectory of modern times that seems to minimize the value of anything that doesn't proceed from empty materialistic thinking.
For being so wise and creative, sometime humans strike me as being incredibly clueless! How can we spend decades of our lives plodding toward a future that, when it finally is achieved, will horrify us? Our relationship to work seems one of those dangerous areas where if we don't think ahead we may end up voluntarily imprisoning ourselves in a mechanical, boring future.