The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them. – Albert Einstein
I’m not sure if Einstein was wearing his scientist hat or his socially/politically active citizen hat when he coined this quote, but, wow, is it ever poignant today. What we have here is the idea that when we make a significant mistake, we create a hefty problem, or we find ourselves engulfed in a grave situation (usually of our own making) we simply and absolutely must think our way out of that situation with a different mindset than that which got us into it in the first place. The actions that stemmed from our original level of thought created this situation; the actions that will untangle us must necessarily arise out of a higher level of thinking. If they do not, won’t we just continue to dig a deeper and deeper hole? At the very best we’ll stagnate.
Now, in all honesty, this seems to be a fairly simple principle and one which can easily be followed. After all, we should be learning from our mistakes. Whatever got thinking got us into this problem created obvious actions and, probably, obvious reactions. We pinpoint those, we ruminate on those, we grow from those, and we think/act our way out of the mess. Or…at least that’s how it’s supposed to work.
So tell me…what the hell happened? When did we decide it was good idea to just keep plugging away with the same thinking, the same actions repeated time after time? No wonder we’ve created a “quagmire.” What else could have possibly happened? We haven’t grown, we…fuck that, not WE, the Bush administration…hasn’t learned a darn thing. They just keep plugging along with the same broken logic, the same flawed worldview. When are they going to start thinking on a different level and get us out of this mess?