RethinkX: Repeating The Patterns Of History

In a brilliant third installment of an eight part series, RethinkX explores the lessons of history. In analyzing the patterns from the age of extraction, the video zeros in on the cycles of history and the warning signals that should be flashing bright red. History is very instructive – but if we do not learn from it, we are destined to make the same mistakes. Consider for example the eerie similarities between the 1920s and our current day:

  • High levels of inequality
  • Immigration backlash
  • Pandemic
  • Great inventions
  • Nationalism
  • Age of automation
  • Scientific breakthroughs
  • Mind-altering substances
  • Focus on socialism
  • Financial crisis
  • Culture wars
  • Race riots
  • Emerging power threatens existing power

That resemblance and events of the twenty-five-year period between 1920-1945 should give us pause. Tony Seba and James Arbib go even further in describing these cycles and the common denominators that drive the growth and eventual collapse of leading civilizations. Their work is inspiring and should send clear messages to all of us. Here is the abstract and associated video below.


“History shows that for ten thousand years, humanity has been hardwired to expand and collapse.”

Episode 3 of the Rethinking Humanity series by @RethinkX reveals that the same complex processes that drive the patterns of technological change can be found at the level of civilizations, driving the pattern of human history. This pattern explains why and how leading civilizations grow and collapse.

Early humans escaped the Age of Survival by seizing the opportunities of technology convergence. They forged new production and organizing systems that set in motion the Age of Extraction, a zero-sum game of winners and losers, re-versioned over centuries of expansion, colonization and collapse. These stories lead us to today’s global organizing system. With nowhere left to expand, we must transform.

This is the third of an eight-part series.

The Rethinking Humanity video series is based on the book, Rethinking Humanity: Five Foundational Sector Disruptions, the Lifecycle of Civilizations, and the Coming Age of Freedom by James Arbib and Tony Seba, published by RethinkX. Visit to read the book.

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