The Future Is

This piece is collaboratively written by the entire community that contributed to Kernel.

The future is full of colour.

The future is where we make good on the promises we made to ourselves and others, and pause to look back on dreams from past selves. It’s where we arrive. The future is where we find our new selves when we’re with one another. Where there’s enough food, shelter, time, and serotonin for everyone. Where safety and comfort enable bold experiments in new ways of being. We learn from our neighbors in the natural world how to coexist symbiotically. We learn to be present, both here and there. In the future, there is acknowledgement of our histories, the remembrance of harm so that there is healing. There is peace and abundance. In the future, we are thriving rather than surviving.

The future is a garden, full of spaces for bodies to rest, and to joyfully work. Flowers and people bloom in ways that are true to themselves. Queerness is read as a beautiful, not terrifying, thing.

The future is slick with expectations — all the tomorrows we’ve promised ourselves — so tell me, what are the seeds you’re planting today?

The future is where the sandcastles we build don’t get washed away so quickly.

The future is where we don’t need to prove anything in order to be worthy of life and love and care, a world where people find support outside of individual relationships.

The future is an unrolled complex system. We cannot predict it, nor can we control it. But we can give it small nudges. We cannot reap the rewards — only hope that someone else will, in the fullness of time. In the meantime we must choose to live instead in the fullness of our space, pushing ourselves to nudge the trajectory of the world more potently. We live with purpose, so that the future has purpose.

The future is where we are free to learn and grow. Our systems support this instead of constraining us to the status quo.

The future is where understanding hides; it reveals itself gently as we advance ever closer to time’s singularity point.

The future is no morning alarms, untimed walks through the forest, and not measuring the hours worked or words written. We have ways of rewarding those who sustain us, those who take care of us, and those who push our thinking forward, and “work” is reframed as time spent in the common social project.

The future is community-based, abundant, playful, warm, and generative, full of love, compassion, care, and joy.

The future brims with potential. It is pluralistic, messy, and beautiful.

The future is a debt to the past even as it’s a creditor to whom we owe the present.

The future is mutually owned, beautiful, open air. It’s large, endless, fast, unknowable. You could never see all of it, and it’s full of conflict and tension. It has spaces growing and burning, peaceful and chaotic, barren and sprawling. While there’s more pieces to it than you could ever touch or feel, the parts you can, that you know yourself, are also limitless. It’s a bit like New York City, or the ocean, or a human body, but larger and more diverse, its pockets all so different from one another. The future is exploring all of this, and loving, creating, and worshipping small parts of it, for as long as you wish.

The future is filled with trees in spaces once razed, after we successfully studied how to attain given ends with minimum means. The future is filled with goal setting that is largely internal, rather than external goals that demand more resources from the world. We seek mastery directly instead of its proxies.

The future is what we make of it.

The future is built interaction by interaction, tool by tool, concept by concept, hand in hand.

The future is full of good friction, the kind that involves effortful application of our attention and energy, like that required to practice a new skill or finish a work of art. It is also undetermined: statements about the future are only as true as we are willing to argue, build, and fight towards them.

​​The future is the cup of coffee that tastes like music, a journey to the faraway lands that is slowly revealed and revealing, empowering yet freeing, and we must wander the forest full of possibilities.

The future is now, old man!

The future is beautiful in its vastness. So much to see, watch, learn, play with, talk to, enjoy, soak in, cry about, laugh at/with. There’s not enough time to explore it all, even if we spend all of eternity doing it. That’s what the future is. Maybe that scares some people, that we’ll never be able to do everything or know everything. But it gives me hope — hope that we will learn to stop trying to optimize everything in the future and to enjoy the present a little bit more.

The future is wonderful and kind and messy. It is so full of splendour.

The future is abundant for everyone.

The future is one where time no longer circumscribes our dreams. Dances will never need to end, loved ones do not die, and everything is possible. There will be abundant cake for everyone, and the cake will not be made with violence.

The future will be co-authored by all of us.