TED’s its name. In this era of adulation of mediocrity it is refreshing — make that invigorating — to know there are still those who value ideas, their intellect, and are passionate enough to go forth in pursuit of their ideas.
I don’t recall the last time I was this excited. It may prove difficult to avoid haranguing my friends as the newly converted do. However, if the rest of (or even majority of) TED’s talks are on caliber with the dozen or so I watched this past weekend, that may be impossible.
TED.com, a non-profit “devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading,” began in 1984 with the disciplines of Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED) as a clearinghouse to share “knowledge and inspiration from the world’s most inspired thinkers.” (Ideas, our ability to reason, to think, to go beyond “what is” separates us from the animals.) TED has grown exponentially. It makes “the best talks and performances from TED and partners available to the world, for free.” (Last count:1,500ish, with more added each day.)
I was struck by the talks’ focus on the Idea. Each Idea received the audience’s attention, accolades, and limelight (versus the speakers being there for their own glory or ego). Every speaker seemed to have happened upon an Idea which resonated with him or her. Upon pursuit of said Idea, each realized it not only resonated and helped them in some way, but could also help others. That seemed to spark (and/or intensify) a passion for the Idea itself. And, as passionate individuals are wont to do, they were eager to share. TED gave them a forum.
I hadn’t realized how much I’d numbed my mind and shut down my emotions just to get through the day. Mine’s not a bad life, just blah. Then came TED. Each talk less than 20 minutes, many under 10. As a first time observer I found myself emotionally drawn in by the passion. I was kept enthralled with the respect afforded to the Idea itself, by the audience and presenter.
A few of my initial reactions were:
*Simply beyond belief!
Were that the potential for good in humans was celebrated and revered. It is in the TED cybersphere. My thanks to all who conceived TED, made it come to life, and continue nurturing it. Allow me to introduce you to my new best friend, TED.
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