Despite the title, my post today is not encouraging the trend of mindfulness. I think pop culturally it is abused by managers and predatory entrepreneurs. Yet we are not just less present in the digital age, but blinded. We never escape the moment, it seems. We put vast amounts of effort and resources into keeping up with the global moment, an endless loop of fervor and dejection devoid of location or time.
This short term life benefits greed. YOLO, following your dreams, life is too short not to be happy are ways of indoctrinating us to desire instant gratification. While alone, we die in a blink of the cosmos. As a species and country we have no limit. It could be that the punditry and professional classes are less likely to have a family that causes this decay in forward thinking. We, the public, certainly encourage and support selfish culture. Reality television is the textbook example. In many ways on a daily basis most of us conflate happiness with luxury. An unbreakable state of comfort was not what millions have died for and not what so many have striven to achieve towards.
In our war on discomfort we have shattered and subverted our natural tendencies. The lie of true multitasking is not limited to a small percentage of the population. That we can interact with all screens and stimulus at once. That our attention can encompass the universe. None of these statements are any more true than 2+2 =5. We can never ignore the truth as the burnout in the workplace and destruction of the community show that our denial doesn’t make it any better. Why are we so cruel to ourselves?
We have become the storm in order to escape from it. People who believe an immoral life calls upon God’s wrath elected the least scrupulous president in history. The left on campus has become the big admin that used its power to stifle the left in the 60’s. The maternal protector of the students once again. Will curfews return? Each group and group member gnawing off their limbs caught in the bear trap of modern life. Then there are those who voluntarily remained trapped. The wealthy and their chosen servants who wear their chains in false solidarity. We must ask ourselves do we value freedom and liberty or luxury and aristocracy. We must choose between the moment and history. The world should not end with us.