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Our current dominant way of looking at the world ("worldview" or "ideology") is rooted in the economic system (capitalism) that has been around for at least 500 hundred years (dating back to late 14th century of Italian city-states i.e., Renaissance with the advent of private but cooperative manufacturing and banking) taking best hold in England (16th century) and reaching full force in large-scale industrial England by late 18th century - early 19th century.  This economic system evolved out of necessity (i.e., survival advantage) to improve production for a rising population and providing competitive advantage to the feudal factions at first before breaking out on its own and asserting its political as well as economic dominance (e.g., by mid 16th century century in England with the English Civil War and the "Glorious Revolution").  This economic system had its ideological (worldview) manifestations in "philosophies" such as empiricism (e.g., Newton, Lock), rationalism (e.g., Voltaire, Rousseau, leading thinkers of American Revolution) collectively known as Englightment and more specifically "age of reason" with outcries of "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity" climaxing in the French Revolution.  However, one man's reason proved to be another man's unreason.  Appeals to common sense (e.g., Paul Revere during American Revolution) later but soon proved to be a superficial call for unity against a common enemy masking the inherent class conflicts that existed in this new economy (e.g., Shays' Rebellion in Massachusetts 1786-1787).  The increasing number of conflicts (from legal to battles, wars, and world wars) revealed a new class system with competing interests with the capitalist class continuously rationalizing their decisions in the face of a stark reality that exposes the hollowness of their dominion.  


I presented this historical perspective (much too briefly I am afraid) to underscore the nature of "paradigm" shifts.  First the way at least I understand and use this concept is that it represents a radically different way of how we live our lives.  To be a genuine, this change must be rooted on irreconcilable contradictions within the existing "paradigm" (human life system).  These contradictions must affect our survival (not just individually but on a much broader scale i.e., globally).  Thus necessity for survival is the driving force for a true paradigm shift - i.e., system change.  Therefore, change in the means of survival (i.e., economy) is at the heart of a true paradigm shift.  This change in the economic system, exemplified by the evolution of the capitalist system, has then its reflections in the way people think (i.e., worldview / ideology) as well as all the other superstructure (in contrast to economy as the infrastructure) elements of their lives (e.g., politics, culture, spirituality / religion, etc.).  The necessity for reorganization of society based on new survival needs (i.e., change in the economic system) forces a paradigm shift in the neural organization of our brain (i.e., the way we frame ideas and concepts, relate them to one another, remember them, express them).  Matter / nature / evolution at work.  From a change in our natural environment to a change in our behavior and "spirit".  


Of course it is the greater nature that decides the terms.  Due to our limited consciousness we can only hope and struggle to find the way, through experimentation, to genuine sustainable change (i.e., survival advantage for the species) thus proving "'better', because we are joyfully living it while others suffer".  To this end we must use the most objective tools (i.e., genuine experimental "science", devoid of private bias = private funding which renders "science" into another "religion" / instrument of profit) instead of the old more subjective tools (e.g., "reason" / rationalization / religion / other dogmas) to access the bigger nature / reality.  Finding the most effective organization (i.e., collective / cooperative rather than individualistic / competitive) would also increase our chances of survival.  Thus, the means and the struggle to find and adopt them through this journey (where the greater nature / survival is the judge) help to bring about the paradigm shift / system change.

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