Should We Try To Predict The Future?

Despite many thousands of years of practice, human beings are mostly unable to predict the future. After failure upon failure, the question arises: should we even try?

From big events to trivial ones, we humans are really inept when it comes to divining what comes next. There are some very basic things — the sun will rise tomorrow — and that’s about it. Jobs are unstable. Health issues can arise at any time. Marriages fail regularly. And of course, the farther out in the future you go, the less certain things get.

Admittedly, as our understanding of the universe grows, some predictions come easier. For example, scientists can predict with great accuracy solar and lunar eclipses.

And yet, even science has its limitations. Predicting exactly when a particular breakthrough will or will not happen is an exercise in futility. Science is, inherently, an exploration of the unknown, which means that progress is inherently unknowable.

None of this stops us from trying to predict what comes next. From taking your umbrella with you when you go out for the day, to selecting the numbers for the lottery jackpot, we can’t help but guess what will happen next.

A lot of time, effort, and money is spent regularly on prognostication. Insurance companies have armies of actuaries. Pundits get paid to sound confident in their predictions of the next election, even if they were completely wrong about the last one. Meteorologists use the latest in cutting edge technology in forecasting the weather.

Could all this time, effort, and money be put to better use? Would our lives be better without the constantly mediocre attempts to predict the future? Or is it the case that our efforts in that direction is what drives us to learn? To make new discoveries that can make our lives better in other ways?

Related questions: What is time? How much does your past determine your future? How do you plan for the future? What is your five year prediction? Ten?

Exercise: Indoor Or Outdoor?

When you work out, do you like to do so outside, in the elements? Or do you prefer to exercise inside, like going to the gym or running on a treadmill?

Share why if you wish.

Exercise: Indoor Or Outdoor?

Winter Solstice Or Summer Solstice?

Sure, Summer Solstice is warmer and has all the sunshine. But Winter Solstice is the rebirth of the year, with the promise of good to come. Which do you prefer?

Share why if you wish.

Winter Solstice Or Summer Solstice?

How Is Climate Change Impacting You?

Climate change is reshaping the world we live in. But has it started impacting you directly and personally, where you live?

As the average temperature rises across the globe, the increased temperatures are setting off a number of environmental changes.

One example is sea level rise. As temperatures warm, the ice at the polar caps are melting, which is causing sea levels to rise. This, in turn, threatens coastal cities with flooding.

Storms are also getting more numerous, and more extreme. Changing weather patterns lead to events like the wildfires of California, or even the current freeze in Texas. Flooding is more common, as are droughts (and, really, all weather extremes).

In addition, there are more subtle impacts. As natural habitats for wildlife are threatened (by the flooding, wildfires, droughts, and so on) there are more chances for interaction of wild animals and humans. Or more endangered species.

There are a myriad of ways climate change is manifesting in the world today. Do any of them directly touch your life? How is climate change impacting you?

Related questions: What is keeping us from sustaining the planet? What is the greatest problem facing humanity? How can we turn sadness into constructive action? What do we do about plastic?