I’ve written about this before.
I expected more push back but there’s been practically no response.
When I take aim at said cultural narrative, (of course) I don’t escape my ire and flinty stare.
What’s my issue though with the ‘be all you can be’, find yourself in work (personally I’d abolish work much like Bob Black advocated for — see his piece on the subject), climb the greasy pole of success, dine out on all those material necessities and live a comfortable life shtick?
Well, everything, particularly as it leaves no space for:
- less — of everything
- and animism.
Of course the aforementioned doesn’t scale, won’t make us giddy with importance and most of all will leave us gasping for a life of meaning — or at least one of material meaning. (Cars, houses, job titles, and stuff of all stripes seem more meaningful than connecting with our ancestors.)
You might have painted me as a grumpy ol’ git, a misanthrope or someone who is depressed. (I’ve probably backed myself into that space.)
But am I?
Possibly, but I’m more inclined to sit with my own feelings of ennui, Black Dog, anger and tearfulness than run off telling everyone who doesn’t want to know.
To be clear, to anyone who might fancy a ‘chat’ about any of the issues that I’m apt to talk about — even starting a new business — (I’ll explain the importance of that in a subsequent post), I’m ready and waiting with a cup of tea in hand and an open mind.
Somehow, though, I have this sneaking suspicion, and I don’t say this to be smug, clever or self-aggrandising, that no one or very few people are willing to throw caution to the 21st-century winds and tell me that this style of living, premised almost exclusively on the ‘be all you can be’ cult is the one that a) has served our spiritual and psychological needs better than anything else and b) is what the kids need to learn if they too are going to live a comfortable life — whatever the consequences to their fellow human and non-human cousins.
PS. If the above is a little off the mark or obscure I make no apology other than to say, it’s worth I think, much like the fish swimming in water but only realising they’re swimming in something when it starts to disappear, holding said cultural narrative up to the yellowing light and asking yourself this question: how the hell did it get like this?