Have you ever read anything by Jeremy Rifkin? I haven’t. Well, it’s not that strange, there are so many great books in the world I haven’t read and probably never will. That’s life. Can’t do everything. Very often I’d rather go for a walk in the forest or spend some time working in the garden.
But there are certain books which come into my life, one way or the other, that I simply must dig into. This might be one of them. All six hundred and some pages of it.
Years ago a friend of mine recommended “Entropy: A New World View” also by Rifkin. Somehow I never got around to it. But now another work by him has risen on the horizon. I’ve just read the introduction to The Empathic Civilization published in 2009.
Jeremy Rifkin writes that, as opposed to the generally held historical belief that we, Homo sapiens, are by nature “aggressive, materialistic, utilitarian, and self-interested”, there is now an emerging and in some scientific and intellectual circles apparently controversial realisation, that we are basically an empathetic species, Homo empathicus.
Are we? Really? Deep down? An empathetic species…
Wonder what brought us to where we are now if that is true? Empathy isn’t exactly ruling the world at the moment.
Will it ever?
I’m going to meditate on that one in the kitchen. Potatoes are waiting. Which is what The Empathic Civilization will have to do until tomorrow, when I might light the fireplace and snuggle up in front of it with my new book.
What a great way to spend a dark, cold evening in late autumn. Or several evenings that is, to read all 674 pages. Index included.
Imagine an Empathic Civilization is waiting for me.
Is it really possible that it might be waiting for all of us on our blue planet in the future? However distant.
It won’t be tomorrow I’m afraid.
But then it will be for me.
In the form of a book.
Am really looking forward to it.
- Homo empathicus.
- March of Nations – What a Wonderful Illusion.
- Then my feet will fall off!
- Where have all the flowers gone?
- A home, is a home, is a home…
- Two degrees of separation: Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, Marilyn Monroe and me.
- Lost in the marvels of cyberspace or the endangered art of going for a walk.
- Two of my favourite quotations.
- The greatness of small things – and the minuteness of the infinite.