Transcript of Narration for: 2000 year collaboration (The Prophet), 2018
By Ryan Gander

Other animals, frog, rat, pigeon, skunk, cow, horse, tigers… Man is the only animal that tells itself stories that understand who he is…

Other animals recall this fable, we have developed speed but we have shut ourselves in. Other animals, your destiny is your making, your joy is your drive, you can be anything you want if you put your mind to it, but your achievements will mean nothing if they are not by your own making.

I want to try to help everyone and anyone, no matter who they are, where they’re from or what they think of me. We all want to help one another actually when it comes down to it, that is human nature. Empathy is instinctive even though we try to fight it. We want to live surrounded by happy humans not miserable ones. We don’t want to hold grudges or hatred, it will grind us down.

There is enough space on this planet for everyone. There is a way to live, that is free and open and beautiful. The world is a wonderful place. Humans are wonderful, but we have lost ourselves in our own self obsessions — this is the culture of the self, not the collective. Narcissism has eaten away at our souls, has diluted our collectivity, has territorialised our domains, broken our societies, splintered our kinship, made us build walls and boundaries, has driven us into fear and doubt and scepticism. We have developed speed but we have shut ourselves in, thats what was said.

The science fiction we once read is now real. The technology that was meant to show us difference and diversity, feeds us with stereotypes and rhetoric. The technology that was meant to give us all knowledge and make us equal, has left us addicted to being fed. The ability to be everywhere at once has left us with a blinkered perspective. We feel too much and think too little. More than technology, we need time. More than ingenuity, we need empathy. More than speed, we need stillness. More than focus we need panoramic vision. Other animals… go slow. Without these qualities we are not longer the human. Humanity will be lost.

Even now as you and the others that will visit, listen to my words — many like us, men, women and children are being silently controlled by their urges to make a mark, to show their individuality, to stand out from the crowd, to signify their difference and to suppress their anxiety of influence. If you understand my words, don’t despair, this era is only the passing of influence and control the blind have over us. Those that commodify the acceleration of our times, the power they took from you will return to you.

Other animals, don’t give yourselves to monocrats, to those that control you, manipulate you, who regiment your lives with likes and a fear of absence. Those that influence what you do, what you think, what you feel… those that drill you, sway you… use you as research and statistics, don’t give yourselves to the monotony, to the singularity, to the uniformity and likeness. You are loved and you can love. Don’t fight for homogeneity, embrace the things we have in common but tolerate the differences, as differences are the very things that define you. Empathy not sympathy. Understand one another.

In Nineteen hundred and forty, in the final speech of The Great Dictator, Sir Charles Spencer Chaplin wrote, “Don’t give yourselves to machine men, with machine hearts and machine minds.” You are not machines, you are not algorithms, you are human… not one man nor a group of humans. All people, you, the people, have the power – the power to use machines for liberty not tyranny. The power to share knowledge, not harvest it. To create understanding and to empower! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and full of awe, to walk wildly into the unknown.

Then, in the name of self-government, let us use that energy, let us all unite. Let us fight for a real world, a physical world, where real actions have real consequences, to dream, to work, to actualise possibility. By empty promises and great untruths these manipulators and their devices have risen to power, but they never will fulfil promise.

Let us operate in real time, to do away with substitution, with non-space and non-time, to do away with self-focus and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where devices and progress will lead all to happiness not to the commodification of our attention. In the name of the real and the actual, let us all unite. The very nature of storytelling instills unity, brotherhood and the ability to view the world from another perspective.

Defy expectation and allow your assumptions to be defied.