Enlightenment was an intellectual movement where reason, science and experience (rather than dogma and tradition) gave new hope for freedom and progress.
It is this very faith in reason, science and experience that empowered people to start a revolution. Indeed the Enlightenment triggered the Industrial Revolution.
Industrialization was part of a wider modernization process, where social change and economic development were closely related to technological innovation.
In the industrial age, school was about teaching obedience. It was about creating compliant factory workers. It was a first step and, however, it actually worked, we had a boom and economy expanded.
The industrial age decline started in 2008 when the recession began. Now we are entering the information age; we can say that the two ages are overlapped.
However, society is completely unprepared, the education system has not changed at all. They still train us to be all the same, we continue to study someone else’s opinion or perspective of the world that may or may not fuel our drive.
The recession will remain the same with no recovery as long as the system doesn’t change.
We need another wave of change, we need a new Enlightenment because this system is in decline, we are not free anymore.
Enlightenment means daring to think for oneself, dare to take the risk to live your authenticity, it means thinking differently, going in the opposite direction, freeing oneself from the chains imposed by the institutions.
It means awakening one’s intellectual powers, which in turn leads ultimately to a better, more fulfilled human existence.
We can call this wave of change the 2nd Enlightenment.
In my opinion the 2nd Enlightenment has already begun. But only for the few, not the many.
This is a philosophical movement where people gain knowledge and empower themselves by breaking the bondage imposed by institutions.
Instead of relying on Government, socialism, organized religions, all of them with built-in conflicts of interest, individuals and families will finally educate themselves, take full responsibility for their lives and drop the idea of depending on others to figure out how to make life work well.
No heroes are needed, just wise people offering guidance that all are free to choose or reject. And with the arrival of the internet and the age of information, this is already happening.
We don’t need to lean on the biased knowledge of centralized authorities anymore. Yet only the few understand that, the many are still in bondage.
There are clearly two trends in modern society.
Some people are awakening, gaining freedom and offering guidance. They are creating a sort of “education 2.0”, “religion 2.0”, “knowledge 2.0”, where every person creates his own path without leaning on institutionalized and biased knowledge.
On the other side there is fundamentalism and terrorism. There’s hatred, anger, violence and frustration against a system that doesn’t work anymore.
Both sides know that the system is rigged. Only the former, though, can lead to freedom, inner peace and prosperity.
Only the former can lead to the 2nd Enlightenment.