Hello World! (Thoughts for the day)
Wild fires. Floods. Hurricanes. Tornadoes. Earthquakes. Tsunamis. Volcano Eruptions. While there is no argument that these events are responsible for a great amount of human pain, suffering, and loss, are these types of things happening more today than before?
When one considers the length of time this world has been in existence, the period for which humans have kept written records, especially about weather and other natural events like those listed above, is an extremely small span of time. Who are we to say with any accuracy how often such events occur?
As we live year to year, anyone can observe that nature goes through cycles, so it would stand to reason that all of nature, including climatic and seismic events, go through cycles as well. In the grand scheme of things, humanity is miniscule when compared to the enormity of our universe. Despite all of our growth and advances in technology, our wisdom is nothing, our knowledge limited.
Going back to the original question, are these events happening more today? Maybe, or maybe not. If so, it may just be a natural cycle of nature. If not, then the illusion of more frequent catastrophic events may simply be the result of humanity’s growth in population and technology.
To the best of our knowledge, more people inhabit Earth today than ever before. As a result, we cover more of the land mass on Earth. Results of our increased technology allow us to travel to distant places with relative safety and speed. What happens in a remote part of Nebraska can be broadcast to the entire world within seconds if the technology necessary to do so is in place. We know more about hurricanes occurring over open water or earthquakes too weak to cause any major concern simply because we have developed the capability of monitoring such activities from a distance; we do not have to be there to experience incidents with our senses to know these events are happening.
It is my hypothesis that floods and tornadoes and earthquakes and the like are not more likely to occur today than they have been previously, save perhaps in a normal cycle of nature, with maybe the difference in wildfires caused by human error. Instead, we simply know more about these events for all of the reasons I have outlined above.
First-hand accounts and experiences have increased, not the events themselves, because we have increased in numbers and spread out far and wide. The news media, blood thirsty for the sensational story to scoop the competition, goes out of its way to make sure all of these occasions are reported over and over with an intensity that preys upon those who crave learning of appalling atrocities and horrendous happenings. News media groups refuse to allow anyone with access to print, radio, television, or Internet to avoid such reports. The only real benefits of the excessive coverage is to offer warnings in advance of disastrous events and a quicker response of help to those impacted by destructive forces. Beyond these two aspects, over-reporting either desensitizes people to pain and suffering, or it can strike unnecessary fear into those who otherwise have nothing to fear because they are not in harm’s way.
Life happens; bad things happen, but don’t be so affected by such reports that life is lived in fear and the beauty and good that is all around us in our world is missed.
Have a blessed and happy day!