To participate in a seminar, I went with my friend Ana from Lovina for one week to Singapore. And we learned there how Fear Creates Scarcity. She is a warmhearted and always happy Indonesian, who never left her home country before. She was pretty impressed by how clean and organized it is, as well as the skyscrapers and the price level. Having a look at it from a western perspective Singapore offers pretty good value for money. From an Indonesian perspective, the cost of accommodation and food for one day is more than what most Indonesians spend in one week.
We stayed in an apartment, which I booked on Airbnb. The owner was on a trip. To get inside the apartment, he asked us to take a taxi, that brings us inside the protected and fenced aria around the building complex. By entering it this way, we could avoid the security check. To get on the second floor, where the apartment was located, we needed a key card for operating the elevator. He placed the key card in a hideaway for us. Then we were able to open the door with a number code. On each floor several cameras. So, no one can get into or out of the building without being recorded. It all was very beautiful, but due to the fence around it with signs that reminded me of the former inner-German border and the many security levels, I felt a bit like in prison.
One of the evenings we went to a lake near to Marina Bay, to watch the sunset behind the skyline. And we found a jetty to get out of the busy streets. Unfortunately, there was a gate, not even 1 m high. So we decided to hop over it and sit on the jetty to watch the sunset next to the water. It looked spectacular. After dark, the beam of a torch spotted us. And some minutes later two security guards equipped with weapons turned up to explain to us, that this is an offense. So we had to leave the jetty. They took pictures of our passports and did some phone calls. My friend was pretty scared. After about half an hour, they got the OK, that we are allowed to go on our own way again.
Singapore is one of the safest countries in the world. But the number of rules and their enforcement, did not let me feel comfortable. Especially if I cannot understand what those rules are good for. Like a fine of 500 S$ for drinking in the MRT (subway). This can become the most expensive mineral water in your life!
You might expect yes. Because certainty is one of our basic needs. But, watching the people there, most of them are looking pretty stressed, sad and only half alive.
Especially after coming from Bali. Where most people are friendly and trying to make eye contact. And if you reply to it, you get the brightest smile you can imagine. If you make eye contact with the people in Singapore and smile at them, they look away and seem to be offended. Certainty is a bitch, the more you try to get it, the more scared you feel. Is this the price of living in this highly protected place? Does it turn it into a scarcity? People obviously like the rules. And this is typical for the spiral dynamics blue meme.
Learn more about spiral dynamics blue meme in this video:
Source: actualized.org Thank you, Leo, for sharing these insides.
The intention is, to make them feel secure and serve their need for certainty. But the end of the story is, they die inside. Security is not a source of happiness. Rather the opposite. Having rules for everything is just a sign for a society that is on the blue level of spiral dynamics. And this creates an atmosphere of mistrust and fear. Yes, that’s how people look like. Hardly anyone smiles. If I tried to make eye-contact, people look away, which made me feel like I did something wrong.
Due to some issues that needed to be clarified for my business in Germany, I had to change my travel plan. Instead of flying back with my girlfriend to Bali, I booked a flight to Frankfurt. So, on the day of our departure, we had to go different ways. It was the first flight for my friend on her own. So, I decided to bring her to the gate for her flight to Denpasar. And then to continue to gate for my flight.
Due to the fact that I did not have my boarding pass for the flight to Frankfurt, I checked in to Denpasar as well. And went through emigration and security control. After the goodbye kiss and some tears, I was on my way to my gate. For this, I had to change the terminal. There was another security control and they informed me: It is an arrestable offense to enter the transit area without the intention to fly. Even if having a valid boarding pass. I did it for love. And I had the intention to fly but on another plane. Which did not make any difference to the civil servants?
What followed was a 3-hour interview from the airport police, I do not need to explain, that I meanwhile missed my flight. The took my passport away and told me to stay another 1 or 2 nights in Singapore. I only wanted to get out of this country. But I lost my return flight to Germany, my rental car reservation, another 2 days to clarify the issues with my business. I understand that I made a mistake according to one of their rules. And I accept that I am fully responsible for that. But I do not understand, what this rule is good for. Because I did it for love and I intended to go on a flight.
Well, anyway it was a learning experience. And it leads to appreciating the value of freedom even more. It made me aware that my ideal is, to have as little regulation as possible and as much as necessary. As well as having rules that are acceptable, due to having an understandable reason. I don’t mind rules that make sense. Even if it turns out being a bit unorganized or even chaotic, like an intersection during rush hour in Indonesia.
Too many rules lead to a situation, where the individual gives up its responsibility. The Americans are the champions in it. They sue the cafe shop if they pour the coffee over their legs and burn their skin. Or killing a cat by putting it into a microwave, because it was wet. And the judge says they are right? Where is the responsibility for themselves? This is like blaming your mother for everything that went wrong in your life. Because she gave birth to you. Without even asking you, if you want to get born.
Everybody lives and acts at their own risk and responsibility! And taking risks consciously leads to bigger risk tolerance and more happiness. So go and train your risk tolerance. Do you want to get some ideas on how to escape scarcity? Here are some ways to increase your comfort zone and to grow your happiness:
Vital and happy regards