In response to a poem posted in FaceBook/ The NextEdge:
The machine appeared
In the distance, singing to itself
Of money. Its song was the web
They were caught in, men and women
Together. The villages were as flies
To be sucked empty.
A tear. Enough, enough,
He commanded, but the machine
Looked at him and went on singing.
— R S Thomas
I am rarely attracted to poetry as most appeal to visual imagery, which I lack. This poem pulls me back again and again. Thanks.
It “speaks of” an “image” that haunts me, and has for many decades. Social institutions (e.g., corporations) as ALIEN MACHINES. They are worse than an ET alien invasion, as they rose from within us, as a cancer. The madness of contemporary reality, everywhere, as if drugged by psycho-toxins, the excretions of greed.
And, our most respected accomplishment of humankind’s emergence, CIVILIZATION, is the mother of all alien machine monsters. As the default mode (for “stable” organization of diverse cultures) following the successes of tribal humankind, before we had gained requisite competencies to do otherwise, it set in place the tradition to seriously suppress the actualization of potentials ready in each healthy newborn human child. This is the ultimate of slavery, done by no other species to itself: blocking the actualization of the phenotype potential in their genotype. But, emergent humankind didn’t create civilization – it emerged as a cancer, the actual inadvertent consequence of earlier successes. Human elites and technological bureaucrats in “civilized societies” are as trapped as the exploited/suppressed masses.
It is only recently that the collective/distributed knowledge/competencies in humankind (but, not yet coalesced) have crossed threshold to enable positive alternatives to civilization to be viable and possible to achieve.
What might be the consequences of this image, of an Alien Machine consuming humans, going viral? What must be done to cue humankind for appropriate response to this enlightenment?