Glory in the Highest(excerpted from the revised and expanded edition of
Pronoia Is the Antidote for Paranoia)
To read the complete report, including sources for the information below, read these excerpts from the book:
When the original edition of my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia came out in 2005, it had a fine three-page essay called "Glory in the Highest," in which I spoke of all the miraculous things that we take for granted. It was one of my personal favorites.
But a lot changed for me between the time the first edition came out and the time I started work on the revised and expanded version a couple of years later. For starters, I became a magnet for revelations about the marvels and wonders of the world -- including many I hadn't previously been aware of.
It was as if, by publishing the book, I had invited the universe to shower me with even more evidence for pronoia.
One of the results of this flood of good news was that when I finished the revised version of "Glory in the Highest," it was eight times as long as the original. Why? Because I crammed it full of the many shocking facts I had discovered about how wrong the conventional wisdom is. It's not just that we take our everyday miracles for granted. The further truth is that we are fantastically lucky and blessed to be alive at this moment of history.
Among the well-researched points included in the new essay are the seven below.
1. The world has become dramatically more peaceful since the end of the Cold War, with steep declines in the numbers of armed conflicts, acts of genocide, weapon sales, and refugees. In fact, our era is the most peaceful time in recorded history.
2. Crime in the U.S. is at its lowest level since it was first officially tracked. Between 1973 and 2005, the violent crime rate decreased by 56 percent, while crimes against property shrank by 70 percent. The years 2005 and 2006 brought a small increase in violent crimes, but by 2008, the rate had fallen even lower than it was in 2005.
3. After rising steadily since the beginning of time, the number of people in the world living in absolute poverty has fallen by nearly one-third in less than three decades.
4. A Nobel prize-winning economic historian has shown that those of us alive today are far hardier and healthier and smarter than our ancestors, even those of 150 years ago. We get sick less, overcome the sickness we do suffer from better, and live longer. Even our internal organs are formed better.
5. Torture is no longer a commonplace feature of the justice system, as it was in many places of the world for centuries.
6. The rate of child mortality in the developing world has dropped precipitously, while literacy is increasing steadily.
7. Life expectancy is rising steadily. People live more than 50% longer than they did a century ago. Many scientists believe there is no absolute limit to the human life span, and are working hard to extend it.
Go to Amazon to order the revised and expanded edition of my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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