At the of 2020 we asked our readers to imagine a future in which we have managed to make Basic Income happen and describe how life changed as a result. We held a story contest on that concept and asked for your submissions.

We’ve had the chance to read a few wonderful stories on #HowWeMadeBasicIncomeHappen, but we couldn’t choose between the two submissions with the most reactions on social media, so we decided to award both of them with a signed copy of Philippe Van Parijs’ and Yannick Vanderborght’s book “Basic Income. A Radical Proposal for a Free Society and a Sane Economy”!

Read the winning story by Maria Dolores Teresa Quirimit below!

UBIE 2020 Story Contest

Chapter 1: Origin Story

In the beginning of time, there was nothing.

And then “Someone” decided to create “something”. This “something” was Space and Time, and together they created the Universe. At the center of the Universe was a small blue pale dot, called Gaia or as we all know it “Earth”.

Earth was the home of unlimited wonders, amazing new discoveries and the center of all hopes and dreams. The birth of all possible existing realities.

Time and Space” was always at the side of Gaia, assisting her through the journey of humanity. Humanity have always lived in “duality

The Good and the Bad

The Right and the Wrong

The Light and the Dark

Humanity hold a really big and amazing “Power

The Power of Creation and Destruction of many worlds. They were a lot similar with “Someone”.

That “Someone” has many names given by Humanity and their many cultures. Some of them are:

God

Yahweh

Allah

Vishnu

In other words “The Highest Power

This knowledge was not given to Humanity from the Beginning. Because everything needed to be learned in the “correct and necessary Time”.

One of the greatest things about Humanity is that together they are one collective consciousness, but also each individual is also a creator of their own world, based on their own feelings, thoughts and imagination.

And so because of that Power, many small and big Universes or Realities, were created.

They exist all simultaneously in the same Space and Time.

Chapter 2: An old end and a new beginning

Let’s begin our story from one of the “worst” Universes that have ever existed. In that Universe Humanity has collapsed, many have died and Earth has gone through an irreversible damage. There were only plagues, wars, countless misfortunes and despair.

In other words, Chaos and Destruction ruled over that reality. From that reality, many dark fictional beings existed, however, there are few people, who despite all odds have survived, through that hellish world.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Hi! I’m just a passerby. I’m also a meaningless human.

My life is simple, boring and soooooo difficult! My only care is to look after this weird ball that has been given to me from the moment I was born and I guess this thing is also the source of my life, of my existence. And I will continue to hold it, until the day I die, and then someone else will have it. Maybe? Most probably…

I live in a black-grey world, I’m what you call a self-employed “Adventurer”. My mission is to find a land where my kind can continue to survive and live.

But among all my travels, there was once an “Old” person named 4473, who lived at the mountains of Oblivion. All alone, and whose source-ball was slowly fading away since he lived far-away from our kind. He was surprised when he saw me, but after some small chit-chat we became friends. And among our various conversations, there was a particular one, that has been stuck with me and I will always remember. He told me:

It wasn’t always like this…”

What do you mean it wasn’t always like this?! If it wasn’t, then what happened?”, I said.

Once the sky and the sea was blue, the earth was green and the ground brown. The gigantic factories, which create these grey skies didn’t exist. Humans didn’t wear any suits or masks. They didn’t need a mask that was connected with these “unusual orbs”, a fake source of life.

But instead there was something called “air”. The world was full of “colors”.

I used to be angry and hateful towards the world. I’ve tried to change the world, but I failed. And now I’m simply tired. Tired of everything and also too old, hahaha. The only thing that awaits me now is an eternal slumber.

Well young one. You are a strange one. You are different from other people I met so far. In these last days of mine, you made it fun and joyous. Thank you. I wish you can complete your mission and journey. Good luck, my friend.

That’s what he said and left. That was the last time I saw him.

And here I am at the edge of the cliff, in front of the endless Void and Abyss, thinking…

A world full of colors? What other colors exist? Other than grey and black?

I look inside the ball. Inside the ball is a “Plant”, that’s how the higher-ups called it. And this is my treasure. And has a unique color. It’s called “green”, I think?

Hahaha… A tear escapes.

And every time I “feel” happiness and calmness or sadness and anger. Anger? Why anger? Probably because why such beauty doesn’t exist around me?

If this “Plant” gives me life, then why it can’t exist outside the ball?

The higher-ups say that this is a forbidden idea. And anyone who tried it has been put into a deep sleep. Never allowed to wake up again.

I’m angry that I cannot see the world my friend 4473 saw. But I will not blame anyone. I will not ask of whose at fault. Also I’m sure my friend is sleeping now. I hope he will have “good” dreams.

But from now on I will not despair. I will protect and also treasure the things I already have. After all, it’s a miracle that me and my kind are still alive.

I’m 4093 and I wish the world would become once again beautiful.

Chapter 3: Year 2020

Meanwhile… in another Universe, a Captain and a sailor sit near the sea harbor. It was holidays season, and while everyone in the ship returned to their families. These two lonely souls would spend every Christmas together. And just like every Christmas, they decided to go fishing and watch the sunset.

– Captain: 2020 was sure a “bizarre”… a “complicated”… year for all.

– Sailor: I know right? Some would say even “Apocalyptic”.

– Captain: You saw the news. One big event after the another. One big problem after the another. The world couldn’t get any rest. But nevertheless, it seems that people tried their best to live, to survive, and move forward with their everyday lives.

– Sailor: Well we can both agree that this was a year of many major changes for everyone. From the most rich to the most poor. There were no exceptions. So? Do you see the world differently? I would say that the world was full of hatred. And people seemed to hate more not only others, but also themselves.

– Captain: Hahaha. Well… this is one perspective to see this situation. And it’s normal and understandable, considering that you always watch the news.

– Sailor: Well we are far from homeland and watching the news makes me informed on the things that happens in the world.

– Captain: Sure but, news don’t always tell the truth. And if they tell it, it’s only a half filled glass of water.

– Sailor: Maybe you are right… But one thing is for sure. People are afraid and scared of the Tomorrow. There are so many uncertainties, that one cannot help but worry and overthink.

– Captain: True, but have you ever wondered of who we are…when everything goes wrong? In times of disaster… If we are stripped from our secured structures, do we automatically become lawless and brutal? Is really our society based on the belief of “Every Man for himself” ? Is our society truly so fragile?

– Sailor: If that was true, then we wouldn’t have civilized societies in the first place. We wouldn’t have achieved so many innovations, discoveries and wonders throughout our History.

– Captain: Hmm… interesting. It seems we share the same viewpoint. And one more question: Do you think that our Hopes and Dreams for a better future and real progress, truly hopeless?

– Sailor: Well you know that I am not a religious person like you. But knowing you, I know that you would say that we already live in “Paradise”. But it is a Paradise built in Hell.

– Captain: Hahaha, you know me well my friend. Well, 2020 for me, was an enlightening year. Despite all the harsh realities, chaos and problems of the world. Through our travels in one continent to another, the experiences we gained and the many friends we made along the way, they made me uncover a very underrated Truth. That people are not driven by hatred, selfishness or malice, but with altruism, love, and HOPE.

2020 is the year that I was reminded that most people have many things in common, but we focus on the few differences and turn everything into us versus them. And there are divisions led by people with extreme beliefs and so, normal people who feel weak and who are afraid of an uncertain future, are unfortunately swayed by such stupid extreme ideologies.

The same people who look like me and you. We are all blind in a way, because we cannot see that there can be more helpful and good alternatives. That we can create our own solutions towards a problem, that is not so much complicated, as long as we have a good team and people with the right set of skills and knowledge and most importantly Determination. And if it’s knowledge, that we lack, as long as we are alive, we can always learn new things, no matter how old or young we are.

– Sailor: Hahaha. Honestly captain… Can you become more wiser than you already are?

– Captain: Well who knows? I am just a simple person like you. And look! The full moon seems like it smiles upon us. It’s time for us to sleep my old friend.

– Sailor: Aye aye Captain!

Chapter 4: Turn Despair into Hope

Remember remember the 21st of December.

A winter solstice. Some religious people call it the “Star of Bethlehem”. However, whether you are religious or not. You have to admit that this is a pretty universal phenomenon. All people, under the same sky, witnessed this one in a lifetime miracle.

A “Christmas Star”, which signifies a New Beginning.

And under this beautiful night sky, one small girl, sitting on the roof of her house, heard the conversation between Jupiter and Saturn:

Jupiter: Look at these Humans! They live in a society of infinite potential, however it’s a pity that their social structures does not ensure everyone’s progress in relative unison, and thus they foolishly and negatively impact the minds and futures of the upcoming generations.

Saturn: I completely get what you mean. Take example World War II. Do you remember how many young kids went to war? They must have been only near 20s at that time. And they were not just “kids”, but kids who cared for the same things that the current generation does.

Jupiter: Yeah! And every generation does things for the same reasons, it just looks different due to their new vibrant accessories. How do they call it again?

Saturn: Mecha Stuff? Tech stuff?

Jupiter: Hahaha, oh no no no. I think they call it “Technology”.

Saturn: Yes you are right! They even created a mechanical fast bird that looks like a very thin mountain on top of our sister the “Moon”.

Jupiter: Oh yeah! That’s surely one of the greatest achievements of the human kind. Well… back to our conversation. Looking back to the Past and the Present, it’s easy to remember all the problems caused by people not seeing each other as the same. Living in a society physically, but not mentally.

Saturn: Exactly! In reality these blind humans don’t have any divisions regarding each generation. There is no particular difference between the kids of the “now” and their grandparents. And one day, these kids will become part of history books.

Jupiter: Hahaha. Well there is no such thing as “oldies”. I mean look at us! We still feel young despite the many years we saw humanity change form. And every single time, these silly humans believe that their world was going to end and then there is always the ones who find the necessary solutions to each problem. I really like those individuals, they are interesting and make our slow lives a little bit more entertaining.

Saturn: Heh… well it seems that humans of “this time” have what you call it again? … Oh yeah Virus. Well based on history you know what follows next after a human year full of despair…

Jupiter: I know… Hope.

Saturn: Yup! And I’m sure they will be fine. Since in every calamity and destruction, the chain of many problems becomes gradually too long to ignore. This “time” look at how many people try to end poverty, inequality, injustice, unfairness. There was never a better time, when a huge amount of minds cooperate and try to change the world together. Look, LOOK at their outstanding bravery and courage! They fight for their rights, their “human rights”. And that’s a beautiful sight to see!

Jupiter: Agreed! And who knows? Maybe one day, they will realize that there is meaning in suffering and each generation needs to know its own suffering.

Saturn: Not only that. Calamity and chaos always reveal something deeper about Humanity, that they tend to forget under normal circumstances…

Humanity at the face of great “darkness” and despair, become more caring, more altruistic and also… they do all that through joy. A joy that comes from a deeper experience of belonging and solidarity, of cooperating for a noble purpose and taking pride in finding solutions to neglected needs.

Jupiter: Heh. What do you think is the ultimate purpose of a human? What is their mission in life?

Saturn: Simple. Is to do things for the sake of a cause to serve, for the sake of another person to love and never, never for himself only. Otherwise, “Man” will live a miserable and short life. A Life with no “Love” is a Life equal with Death.

And I do admire the “Human Spirit”, the “Human Soul”, mainly because human beings have the fundamental freedom to choose, to choose Hope, when all seems lost, to choose kindness and decency when “Life” has nothing left to give. And well that’s one of the greatest treasures of humanity and at the same time their Greatest Strength.

Jupiter: Good answer, like always. And it’s time for us to separate our ways.

Saturn: I see. Well until the next time we see each other. I wish you a good journey.

Jupiter: You too. Until next time… Let’s witness again some other “time” what humans will do.

The little girl, from then on, dreamed only good dreams.

Chapter 5: A New Fate: This is Humanity – This is Us

2021

A new year full of endless cycle of misfortunes and violence?

Or a new year full of wonders, new dreams, creation and most importantly healing and forgiveness?

Maybe it’s time for Humanity to realize that a “Utopia” is not impossible. And that the reason why it looks like an impossible feat, is because most people stopped believing that a better world can exist, and that the only achievement in life is to only fulfill their own needs and personal desires, all by themselves.

Then again…it is all matter of beliefs and perspectives. There is no right or wrong answer. On how to play this game called “Life”.

But…

If we want to change the future for a better-infinite potential. We need to focus on the “Now”, on the Present. If we are not in the Present, then we will not be in the Tomorrow and with us not be in the Present, the Us from the Past will disappear.

And how to live in the Now?

Simple. Let’s just all of us take a leap of Faith. That all of us can change the way we view Ourselves. That we, on our own can forgive our own Pain, and it’s easier if we treat our pain as if it was a young innocent child.

And well “problems” and “confusion” are actually no big of a deal. When you change your perspective, let’s say turn complicated problems into a more simplify everyday problem, then you will see a solution out of the box.

There is no need to always take the “difficult” road in life. We can just relax and have faith that better days for all of us will come, that ultimately if we Love and Cherish this one life with big interest for our own self-discovery and huge interest for the people in our community. Then things will roll easier in our lives.

When you don’t take any action and let everything to fate, than you are bound to follow an uncertain future. However, if you turn your wishes, ideas and aspirations into action.

Then we can be a generation worth mentioned in history!

And who I am? Well I’m a simple girl who has been born at the late 1999s and I have made my first steps in life at the start of 2000s. At the entirety of my life I have made many beautiful memories and have gained many precious experiences. I have learned many important life lessons from various people and situations.

What I know as a young adult now is that, it is never too late to change the world. Make the idea into action.

At its core Humanity remains the same through the passage of time. We are beings who hold unlimited potential. Unlimited potential to create or destroy.

However, the dilemma of each generation is: What to choose?

Well each generation face of with the problems of their times. And one thing remains fundamentally true: There is always the need for a positive vision and a desire to make things better than before.

The only difference is that the approach differs each time, based on what people believe “is the right thing to do”

We as species suffer with the curse called “blindness”

Blind not to see that we already have all the things we ever wanted.

Everyday we take many things for granted. We never slow down and try to appreciate the beauty that surrounds us. Whether that this beauty is nature or the wonders and creations of humankind. Well… everyone have a unique sense of what things are beautiful.

Our society has identify “Time = Money”, but the reality is “Time is Gold”, which means that time is precious and we need to use it wisely.

We only have one life and it depends on us on how to use it.

There was once a quote:

A fool man learns from the experiences, but a wise man learns from history”

So my friends? What are you waiting for? It doesn’t take a lot to make a change in the world. Take a leap of faith, hope, dream and make your wishes for a better future, a better tomorrow, Come True!

The Earth is our own personal playground, we can transform this place in a true Paradise for all. As long as we want it, as long as we work hard for it. Put Humanity first, put Love first. And if we do that, all of us can create their own miracles and each one of us, together, we become the Creators of our own reality.

Good luck for all of us and may our future smile brightly upon us!