Our obsession with growth

“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.”
― E.F. Schumacher

This is one of my favourite quotes and judging by the reaction on Twitter (…not always the best barometer of anything), yours.

And it’s bang on what we should all be doing now; namely, aggressively talking up the notion of less, not growth and certainly not complexity.

If you think I’m referring only to GDP then you’ve missed the point. My ire also extends to the notion of personal growth.


You heard me.

So we all become the best version of ourselves.

And then what?

The world heals itself!

Trust me, time is not on our side and if the world has to wait for every human to self-actualise — whatever that means — I fear it will wait a very long time.

I might be barking up the wrong tree, but I don’t think so.

As much as I know, what we need now is a different cultural narrative, one rooted in mythology and not worshipping at the temple of wants of needs; the Instagram culture if you like.

I don’t mean you start looking outwith your geographical territory for the most indigenous tribes to educate you but simply to put yourself in a place where your forbears made sense of their lives. In short, to consider how you’d live a life that took nothing from the earth. It seems preposterous I know, but then again, if we don’t re-engineer that sort of cultural narrative, the earth will, most certainly, go to hell in a handbasket — and much, much sooner than you think.

Take care.


Photo by Adrian Schwarz on Unsplash

saras_raven@mailxu.com mikkelsenching@mailxu.com