The other day, I had a friend request accepted on Facebook from a guy I went to school with. I haven't seen him in years, so I private messaged him to see how he was doing. As I put my phone back down on the table I pressed 'call' by accident. It was all a bit embarrassing because it was late at night and I would never normally call anyone at that hour. But he was cool and we laughed about it.
We ended up having a really interesting conversation about the craziness of the world - all the wars and the ugly extremists popping their heads up over the parapets, then throw in the inauguration of Trump, and humanity seems a little koo-koo. We agreed, it's chaos.
I said that I saw this chaos as positive, that it was evidence that we are in the middle of a time of change. Big shifts make for a big fallout. He agreed but added that, when you look back, hadn't we always been in chaos? Hadn't some pocket of humanity always been systematically dominating and destroying some other part? Good point, I thought.
Later I asked myself, what is different about the chaos of now, when compared to rest of our hotch-potch history? The difference has to be the technology that we have world-wide, at our fingertips. It's the first time in our history that we can be in chaos en-masse, and know, from all corners of the globe, what's happening as it unfolds. We get it in real time with all the visual evidence we need. And this chaos feels different because of that.
This brings me to the concept of 'critical mass', a term which originates from physics, but in this context, that of social dynamics it refers to a 'sufficient number of adopters of an innovation...so that the rate of adoption becomes self sustaining and creates further growth.'
In other words, when enough people start thinking the same way, that thinking grows.
The critical mass theory is one that I like and witnessing events on social media, even over the last few days, it seems the 'mass' is building. This is exactly how change comes, people gather, momentum builds, numbers swell and suddenly, things flip over. The minority become the majority.
When enough minds, enough of our conscious energy comes together, it brings change.
So, I say Amen to that. Amen to the critical mass. Let's bring it on.
This weekend, footage of millions of people gathering on city streets protesting, 'No, this is not what we want!', kept popping up on my social media feed. There were 673 anti-Trump rallies in 70 countries, an international wave of coordinated protest. And I ask myself, when have we ever seen this kind of worldwide movement? I see a critical mass building right there, growing by the day. Because if there's one good thing a man like Trump can do, it's force everyone to get up off their backsides and unite. It takes this kind of drama on the world stage to wake us up and kick-start action.
It's been highly entertaining too.
Reading the placards has had me giggling - my favorite being, 'I'd call him a C**t but he lacks both depth and warmth.' - and reading Trump's tweets, hilarious. I know it's all serious stuff but really, it's like watching a farcical comedy unfold, (who wrote this stuff, it's genius!)
I perceive the atmosphere of this moment to pulling the plug on a bath of water. At first you can't even see that the water has started draining out. But as the bath empties you start to see the waterline going down and it gathers momentum until eventually, when you get to the last litre or two of water, it goes completely nuts. The plughole becomes a vortex of spinning, gurgling, craziness until, with a final glug, its gone through to the otherside. I think right now, we are in that crazy vortex bit, spinning out of control, just about to plop through to the otherside.
It's been a crazy kind of a week for many. The third week in January, famously a 'blue' one. I've had all sorts of setbacks and surprises, some good, some not so good. I have not hot water or heating which in England, in January, is no fun. I woke this morning to my dog throwing up at on the end of my bed and thought, 'Good morning world!' - it's that kind of at time.
But take heart, the critical mass is at play amongst all this crazy, trying stuff. Focus your energies on the millions who are linking up all over the world and uniting. Be one of them mentally if you can't be there physically. It will bring change.
In the meantime, hang in there, hold onto your hat and enjoy the ride.