CHAPTER 4 Life in the fast lane: developing their adaptive agility


Some legends are of dubious authenticity, although we love to imagine they really happened. One of my favourites involves a 19th century explorer marching relentlessly through the African jungle towards a distant mountain. In his impatience to reach his destination, he used every means to force his native bearers to go faster. With threats and inducements he drove them on through the dense undergrowth.

But as they neared the base of the mountain, the bearers abruptly stopped and sat down, and no amount of threats or promises of extra pay would induce them to move. When the explorer demanded to know why, they replied simply, ‘Because we are waiting for our souls to catch up'.

Perhaps we need to wait for our souls to catch up. The accelerating rate of change in work and life contrasts markedly with the steady linear change of the past two millennia. It is as though God is holding down the fast-forward button on a heavenly remote control, and today is pointing it directly at us.

The vast proliferation ...

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