8.04.2006

Reset, Restart, and Repeat

I’m tired. Tired of hearing about all that is bad, tired of reading about how sad people are. Tired of anger and hating and hurting. Tired of whining and tired of tirades.

In this state, my voice quiets, and my rant goes on vacation. I invite all to join, only I’m not sure who will come because it seems as if the world has become addicted to misery, as if the world feels better when it’s fighting. And I no longer want to participate, not at this time.

Is this the emergence of peace or of my intolerance?

Everyone can find a reason to be sad. Hell, I do it, but lately it seems as if this has become our collective unconscious. Shared complaints, downturns, sorrow. We bond over the bad rather than over the good. How rarely do I get a call from someone lit up with good news. Do I just run in a sad crowd or are people more comfortable sharing bad news, as if sharing the good is the equivalent of boasting? Or is it that with so much tragedy in the world, we just feel guilty feeling happy?

Or have we forgotten how?

While we’re all entitled to our bumps and bruises and occasional tantrums, we seem to have lost the art of appreciation. As a result of the marketing to America – lives paraded before us that we’ll never have – we have evolved to a species drowning in unfulfilled desire. The more we have, the more we want. And we support each other in our cravings rather than knocking each other up the side of our heads and saying, “Get over it!”

And this is becoming a complaint, but it doesn’t want to. It wants to be a celebration.

I propose a challenge. Organize a dinner party and have everyone come with a positive tale. Share stimulating clippings or funny anecdotes or a fantastic piece of art. Encourage conversation around the best things in your lives rather than the worst. Make something together. Invite me. And flex this weakened muscle regularly until it becomes habit.

I bet it will take work because frustration has become our most common dinner companion. But in all the whining, we give sorrow a welcome entrée into our homes and our lives. There is a big difference between being aware and active and wallowing in that which we cannot change. Take it from an expert, someone who knows something about wallowing.

In taking life seriously, I thought I was being noble, respecting the world’s ills, showing proper reverence. But now I question that practice. I hardly think I've helped those in pain by joining them.

So, in the spirit of summer, I'm taking a vacation from worry. I figure that if you’re lucky enough to be graced with a life absent of evils, it’s your duty to appreciate it. And while I’m lounging on the beach or taking a hike, I’ll try to reset my thinking patterns. Hopefully happiness can get a solid foothold and then spread because I'd like to launch a worldwide epidemic right now.

6 comments:

New York Red said...

This is a RSVP, I just got myself invited...great post.

Ted O said...

"As a result of the marketing to America -- lives paraded before us that we’ll never have -- we have evolved to a species drowning in unfulfilled desire."

I love that observation, saddening as it is.

Maybe that's why it always raises my spirits to watch Sophie (world's cutest dog, IMHO) at the dog park -- those critters *always* enjoy themselves!

elleveek said...

I'd like to go on the worry free vacation with you...xx

stephoto said...

Love this post becaue it really has been my survival tactic this summer as well. Things are so bad in the world, I am trying to enjoy what I do have, and not take it for granted. It IS so true that Americans are "drowning in unfulfilled desire." Well, I accept your invitation to break out of THAT shit.

Neil said...

And frankly, if you think about it, feeling miserable about events in the world ALL THE TIME rarely helps you OR the people involved in these events.

ecm said...

Well said, again! Lately I've been avoiding reading about the bad stuff...denial works really well too:)