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  • “One of the lessons of Nassim Taleb’s “The Black Swan” is that the events that
    have caused the greatest changes (and collectively most of the substantive change)
    to our civilization and our way of life were completely unexpected, unpredictable
    “black swan” events. Dave Pollard

    The Black Swan comes flying in, usually under cover of night.
    The Black Swan is what you never thought could happen, did not plan for.
    The Black Swan was completely outside your wildest dreams:

    A lover’s unexplained departure, the collapse of your bank,
    the sudden food shortage, the tornado where tornados never strike,
    the earthquake that topples the bridge you drive over every day,

    These are bad Black Swans. You could not have predicted them, planned
    for them, or had any way of seeing the bad Black Swan flying in.
    But suddenly, your world is turned upside down forever. No going back.

    The sudden arrival of bad Black Swans has been well documented,
    leaving everyone wondering how such things could have happened, and
    why there was simply no way of knowing in advance, no clues.

    What I am wondering, as we are bombarded with scenarios of collapse,
    disaster, and sweeping crises – and these are just the ones we can predict –
    what I am wondering is what about good, positive Black Swan events?

    Even though we may not have any way of knowing what is on its way,
    even as I write this, which can create unimaginable harmony and hope,
    which can switch the world’s perception of itself in a heartbeat,

    Even though we may feel at a loss to try and imagine a cataclysm of good,
    an event which would open up ancient mysteries, or new miraculous realities,
    consider that there are good Black Swans out there, waiting to swoop in.

    And when these positive, transformational Black Swans arrive, there will
    be celebrations, and wonder and awe, and we will see with new eyes,
    hear with new ears, and experience Paradise on Earth once again.

    Listen closely: Listen for the beating of wings. Watch the night skies.
    They may be on their way, even right now, and they may change everything.

    (Photograph by AJN in Silken Ropes, in the 3-D virtual world of Second Life)
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