By Aran Levasseur According to the ancient Greeks, humans received the gift of fire from the Titan, Prometheus. Paleoanthropologists have unearthed evidence that our early ancestor, homo erectus, was able to control fire around 400,000 years ago. Whether looking through the lens of myth or science the analysis is similar: Controlling fire was a watershed event in human evolution. It was perhaps the first of many critical technological thresholds that would radically change our relationship with the environment, ourselves and what it means to be human.
Once again we are traveling through such a technological threshold. And while this digital edge is full of promise and potential, the transition, as we are witnessing, is full of peril — whether it be of the political, economic or social variety. As the philosopher, Ken Wilber, has stated, “technological revolutions can speed through the social system extremely quickly — leaving the old cultural worldview completely out of sync with the new realities.” It is precisely this lack of symmetry between our emerging digital infrastructure and our prevailing cultural worldview that is helping to fuel an age of uncertainty and disorientation.