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living in the future


1.   Telling the future reminds me of something from aikido. If you extend your arm and ask someone to pull down on your wrist it is not hard for them to manage. But then imagine and visualise as best you can your arm as over thirty feet long and resting at the end on a wall. Now when they pull down on your wrist their pull is well before your imagined centre of weakness. In fact it is as if someone was pulling on your bicep, right close to the near end of your arm. And imagining the other end as resting on a wall also changes what you accept- you don’t accept they can pull it down- and to counter this you change the way you stand. You MAKE the visualisation come true.

Whilst it is true that you cannot make ANYTHING come true, one thing is certain- when you have an engraved image in your mind’s eye you a) tend to see it everywhere and b) attempt to make reality conform to this image. Therein lies the success of such programs as ‘The Secret’- which offer the tantalising prospect of a world that conforms to subjective desire- as long as you believe hard enough. It reminds me of when, aged 8, I left a stocking out pinned to my bed, in the summer to ‘test’ whether Jesus answered prayers…sadly, I reproved myself for not believing hard enough... But the 'belief' is merely a tool for making the visualisation clearer- just repeating your desire regularly like a mantra is enough- you will begin to adjust things in your life to make that desire come true...of course it may not be what you need even if it is what you want.

If we visualise the future strongly enough we make countless small moves to make such a belief congruent with our daily lives. As in the aikido move we adjust our posture. It becomes a posture that not only anticipates the future we have visualised but encourages it, and sure enough it becomes the future.

Art and fiction are one form of imagining. We have grown used to science fiction anticipating future products. Facial recognition software is straight out of big brother. Even our cars look like those in Total Recall and Robocop now. 

The Burj Khalifa building in Dubai astonishes because it doesn’t just look sci-fi (1930s New York skyscrapers did that) it looks ALIEN- like something off a Klingon planet or the bad guys in Enders Game. But the future is always changing, or, rather, our view of it which in turns becomes the future. We’re not at the centre anymore, we’ve lost the controls, it’s all up for grabs- so why not make it alien? Alien seems more likely. People queue to have tea in the café near the top of the Burj. Very definitely living in the future.


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