Why I can’t come up with 2030 predictions
Every time I try to wrap my mind around 2030 predictions, I realize that my way of thinking and my current perceptions will prevent me from predicting the future. Here’s how I know this….
1. When I was a tenth grader, I created a time capsule to be opened in 2030
While I am not embarrassed by the list, I am definitely reminded that at that age, I thought I would be married, have 5 children and be a professional writer. Period. I couldn’t visualize my perfect day - and there weren’t any children banging on the door to wake me up - only lots of light, flowing curtains and warm weather (LOL - I was a kid).
I am a project manager, I am not married and do not wish to ever be married, I have no children (and I am grateful for that - I have 2 cats and they jump on me and pull my hair to wake me up to feed them). The only thing that has not changed - is that I still want to be writer. I’m working on that now.
2. When I was 16, I thought I would always be an evangelical Christian
I grew up during the purity culture trend in Christian circles. For those of you who know about that trend - you know that it can play a mighty mind game on you. Powerful Voodoo.
If 16 year old Joelle met me, she would think that I was a heretic and that I had lost my soul. Now, I consider myself a Christian - Other. I believe in Process Theology and think that God is much much bigger than I believed Them to be when I was younger. I also think that God cares a lot more about creation, animals and people than I thought then.
3. When I was 40, I thought I would always be a Republican
I believed that everyone should be free to live as they pleased. If people wanted to drive their lives into a wall, they should be free to do so. But I was not a libertarian - I didn’t trust people to treat others right without a government.
I was also pro-Life - with the exception being that everyone should be free to live as they pleased. But I loved the whole compassionate conservative bullshit they served up because I thought that a few of them meant it.
I also believed that they were beginning to see that the nation was changing and they needed to reach out to minorities and women - and that they were planning to do so.
Then they nominated Donald Trump.
To be fair, I should have seen this coming - they have always been low-key authoritarian - I mean - you don’t do purity culture and Jesus as the King coming back on a white horse to kill everyone who doesn’t agree with him, if you’re not authoritarian deep down in your heart, but I was not being honest with the ultimate ends of my beliefs.
Now - I have had a number of my beliefs exposed to be very thinly disguised means of control. I have read a lot of theology and heard a lot about how they don’t really read the Bible without shellacking a hell of a lot of culture ideas and 1950s style beliefs on top of it. I have read and listened to other theologians who taught that Jesus actually loves the poor and is on the side of the downtrodden. I’ve just spent my life listening to prosperity preachers and other evangelicals who may not have read any Church history or theology that didn’t align with their cultural ideas about what should be so.
Now I believe that God speaks to many people in different ways. I’ve read other religious texts that say many of the same things. I like belief systems that make my life better, so I believe a lot of things, but my central core is probably more Christian/ Buddhist than evangelical.
4. I say all of this to say that at each stage of my life, I have assumed a lot of ideas that I believed to certain as gravity, only to find that life is a process. A process that changes every second.
A process that changes me as much as it changes the circumstances and the people around me. I have changed more in the past 5 years than I’ve changed in the 10 years previous. If I tried to predict what I think is going to happen 7 years from now, I will almost certainly be wrong. I have no faith in my ability to predict the certainties that will occur in the future. I just hope that I stay open enough to continue to change. I don’t want to be stuck in another shell that prevents me from flowing with a future that is certain to be very different. I just hope we will work together to save each other and the planet.