We all know about the ‘Butterfly Effect’… one small event creates the future… a butterfly flaps its wings over the plains of Kansas causing Tsunamis on the other side of the world? Makes sense, no?
I’m wondering how the world would be different today if the butterfly had turned around and headed towards Ohio instead of crossing Kansas. I know people always say… well you shouldn’t live in the ‘What Ifs’, you should live in the ‘What Nows’… but that isn’t nearly as fun sometimes
Let’s pick a few key moments in history.
1.) Let’s say that Hitler’s Mom got a cold and lost her baby… little baby Adolf
2.) Let’s say that Bill Gates one day while being young was running on the deck of a pool, slipped, broke his back and is now in a wheel chair
3.) Let’s say that back in middle school I decided to take Art instead of Band
First off… I think it might be a fact (but possibly not) that Hilter’s mother was considering an abortion… but for some reason or another didn’t have one (would it have been OK after seeing what happened if she did have an abortion??? talk about your ethical dilemma)
So Momma Hitler lost the baby by getting sick… or fell… or got the abortion… to put it straight, no one ever met/heard of/feared Adolf Hitler. How would the world be different? Would World War II have occurred? Would there have been a different war, to even out the balance. At this point in history are we suppose to have two ‘World Wars’ and it just so happened that one of them was rooted in a certain German mindset? What about all the movies about the Holocaust, millions upon millions of dollars have poured into Hollywood due to the tragic set of events that took place over half a century ago. Would the world be a nicer place? Would people have a different view of people that are Jewish? Think about all the bright minds that were lost in the Holocaust, would we now have a cure for cancer? Would we be able to stop global warming?
On the opposite perspective, what if one of the people killed during the Second World War were, if not destined to die in the war, destined to be the worlds most feared terrorist. With a smarter than should be mind that might have been lost, the entire North American continent could be under a claustrophobic cloud of nuclear fumes right now. Is the world in balance because Adolf Hitler walked his own path? In our historical perspective, Hitler was a terrible person who did unspeakably terrible things. It is hard to imagine the world being a worse off place if Hitler did not come to power…. but what if?
So Bill Gates slipped… he’s in a wheel chair now. He is still the same person he is at this current day. His mind is still bright, his heart still large. Would the world have treated him differently if he were in a wheel chair? Would Apple have given him impassable benefits so he wouldn’t have left? Would Microsoft exist? How would the world be different? Linux might be the platform of choice… more people may have learned to help develop open source software. Does your cell phone run windows? Would someone else have taken Bill Gates concept and run with it… making the same present day, just without the powerful name of Bill Gates? Or would our society have viewed Bill Gates no differently than if he wasn’t in a wheel chair, and today would be the same as today is now? Would computers have never hit the market as strong as they are now… and some other ‘better’ technology found? Maybe our society would be much more advanced if Microsoft hadn’t dominated, or maybe some country other than the United States would have taken off in the computer world…. where has the United States economy taken its roots in?
What if I had been an artist instead of a musician (not that musicians aren’t artists…) Would I have gone to Indiana University before coming back home to the University of Cincinnati? Would I have met the people I did in high school band? Would I be a world famous computer programmer now since music took up all my time in high school? Would I have found my place elsewhere? I have very different life experiences for my young age… what if I found my calling in the art studio instead of the auditorium stage?
What do you think? Are there key points in history that have left their mark to such a degree that our world would be a completely different place? What if Adam and Eve hadn’t taken the apple… would someone else have? What if no one ever thought about building a building that reached all the way to heaven… the Tower of Babel never existed? Would the world be one happy family, united under one language, one economy, and one society? What if Lincoln decided not to attend the theatre on the night that he was shot? What if the Titanic didn’t sink? What if you slept in 15 more minutes today? How would your life be different?
Its like those choose your own adventure stories… except in life I can’t keep all my fingers stuck in pages so that I can go back and see the other path.
Lots of question marks in this post, makes for interesting conversation. Happy Thursday! I’m ready for the weekend!