I have access to all of the collected information of mankind, and it sits in my hands, in this wizard’s tome.
Anything I wish to know, any language I wish to speak, any formula discovered by any scientist since the dawn of time, I have it all.
This is the age of man where we are all wizards.
For generations, our ancestors have fought to retain and collect the small scraps of information they were lucky enough to encounter. If they did not memorize or copy it immediately, they may never have access to that information again.
My mind does not even need to store facts and figures, because I can reference them in a moment’s notice, with my magic book. (My Macbook.)
I keep this grimoire with me at all times, in a backpack I carry wherever I go, and within this satchel are treasures that would astound any one of my ancestors.
Sometimes I think of myself in a conversation with one of them, a forebear from centuries past, and as I plug in my gadgets and tune and tweak my apps, I imagine myself describing what I am doing.
“Okay, right now I am taking a photo. I’ll take my magic wand out of my pocket, and using this magical eye on it, I can save the picture of everything that I see through it. Now I’m going to change the colors in the picture, and add a few words on top of it, just by touching my magic wand in a certain way. I want someone on the other side of the world to see this picture, too, so I’m going to send it into another spell called Instagram. I’ll put my friends name on it, and now my friend, and anyone else that is a wizard like me, can see my photo in their own magic wands, and in their own magic books.”
I cast spell upon spell, stacking them upon each other like a master magus, to manipulate the world of information in the way I see fit.
I’m a web designer, so sometimes I move shapes around by waving my fingers. I can put these shapes together and then write words on them, and make the words and pictures and shapes into wormholes called ‘links,’ that take people into other new things I have made, because I am a fucking badass.
You may have been strong and smart, great-great-great grandfather, but my capabilities in the present day dwarf the greatest genius of your time.
Everyone who is reading this, just by the fact that they are reading it on my blog, show themselves to be wizards as well. I compose these thoughts on a balcony in Costa Rica, and by snapping a few buttons on my magic book, I can display them for any other wizard in the world to see.
The most popular troubadour in the 1600s would never be able to reach an audience as large as mine.
As large as yours.
We are magnificent wizards, all of us. This world is astounding by any measure we have ever had in the past. Our ancestors could not conceive of a world such as the one we live in; or, if they could fathom it, they would be ridiculed for thinking such outlandish thoughts.
To prove my point, here is Arthur C. Clarke predicting the internet in 1964.
These things will make possible a world in which we can be in instant contact with each other wherever we may be, where we can contact our friends anywhere on earth, even if we don’t know their actual physical location.
He is describing Twitter, without having the vocabulary to describe what he is predicting.
It will be possible in that age, perhaps only 50 years from now, for a man to conduct his business from Tahiti or Bali just as well as he could from London.
Just fifty years ago, in Clarke’s time, predictions of the life we live today would have seemed outlandish to his contemporaries. We are living as modern day wizards, with abilities unfathomable by our ancestors.
How would you describe this moment, right now, to your ancestors?
Leave a comment like you’re talking to them.