The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

Too smooth and painless

“It always takes me back to the days when life was different and unpredictable” – Bob Dylan in an interview with Jeff Slate

I find this an interesting statement. Being 81 years old, Bob Dylan seems to have a different take on the state of the world. Where we’ve added the VUCA perspective on the state of the world, that is one seeing it as “volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous,” Bob Dylan adds the idea that in the past, life was unpredictable.

His perspective becomes more understandable with another statement he shared:

“Streaming has made music: too smooth and painless. Everything’s too easy. Just one stroke of the ring finger, middle finger, one little click, that’s all it takes. We’ve dropped the coin right into the slot. We’re pill poppers, cube heads and day trippers, hanging in, hanging out, gobbling blue devils, black mollies, anything we can get our hands on. Not to mention the nose candy and ganga grass. It’s all too easy, too democratic. You need a solar X-ray detector just to find somebody’s heart, see if they still have one.”

Whatever the state of the world is, it doesn’t impact most individuals beyond their perception of it. Life on the other hand has become very predictable through the ease most of us have to organize our day-to-day. Going shopping usually means finding the goods one had been looking for. Driving from one place to another seems to be a routine that happens day in day out. Streaming means being able to see what one wants to watch or hear at exactly the moment one wants to have it.

Finding and receiving what one wants has become almost as easy and regular as using Google. It feeds into a growing belief that hardship and difficulties should best feel easy and be pain-free. The thing is, that’s what it most often is when things are predictable. The irony is, that in a predictable life, external influence and the perception of uncertainty easily take over.



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