“Can Google Solve Death?” read the cover headline of a national news weekly. It cleverly enticed readers to read the story inside. The question also represents one of the major problems facing human beings. No, not death, but hubris.
Hubris was one of the themes of the great Greek tragedies in the fifth century before the Common Era. The Greek playwrights like Aeschylus, Euripides and Sophocles understood all too well the capacity of humans to extend themselves beyond their ability to limit the damage caused by their actions.
So great families disintegrated, monarchs fell and society itself came close to collapse – all because people in power could not stop themselves from reaching beyond their limitations as human beings. We do the same, but in new ways with unknown consequences.
Global climate change comes instantly to mind. Last spring, for the first time in human history,