A new TV series in Israel, titled Don’t Panic, examines if Israel is prepared for events of mass destruction such as earthquakes, tsunamis, or a leak of poisonous gas. Not surprisingly, the series concludes that Israel is unprepared for any such events: There are not enough rescue personnel, residents do not know what to do in what situation, and the infrastructure in the country is inadequate in many places. Moreover, people’s response to these conclusions is usually indifference. I am not an expert, but I tend to agree with the public’s sentiment because I do not believe that the danger is as grave as the series seems to portray. I think that behind this series, and other doomsayers, is the question “Whose interest does it serve?”
I think that the interest behind these shows is to intimidate people and intimidate the country. It is true that Israel is located in an area that is prone to earthquakes, but how this issue is presented and handled depends on the interests of politicians and scientists. Some want to use the information to gain more power, and others want to use it to gain funding for their studies, so the findings are presented in a way that serves the interested parties.
Once again, we see that the problem is not the dangers that nature poses, but the dangers that the ego poses. It twists everything in its favor and warps the truth to serve itself. People sense this and therefore doubt the credibility of the information.
If we want to avoid events of mass destruction, we must deal with the root of the problem, namely our own egoism and the fact that we do not have the common good in mind, but only our own. It is not only politicians and decision makers who act this way; it is all of us. The selfishness of politicians is certainly the most conspicuous. However, it is not unique to them but a reflection of our entire society.
Consequently, if we want unbiased information, we need to change people’s attitude toward society. Without an educational process that elevates the value of concern for others above concern only for ourselves, nothing will change.
We should not say that it is impossible because until today, we have not really tried. Moreover, the idea that it is impossible is the ego’s own protection against our efforts to dethrone it from governing our society and our relationships.
This effort cannot be limited in scope. It needs to be an educational process that encompasses all of society, everywhere. The impetus for such an ambitious feat should come from the fact that we see no future, from the realization that our mutual inconsideration will destroy us unless we become considerate. If there is one truth that we should not be afraid to expose, it is that nothing is true because our egos warp our perception to favor ourselves. If we do not change this, the ego will indeed bring upon us mass destruction.