The Price of Youth
THE PRICE OF YOUTH
(Artwork: Fin DAC/Ben Slow in London)
Every day, I hear a different theory about death.
Another new idea about our imminent implosion.
Successive and expanding insistences of our explosion.
Mysterious trucks trolling down freeways, bearing banners with blood red words announcing the apocalypse.
News feeds forming analytical, evidenced reports referencing astral science and sensationalist shoutings that earthquakes, tidal waves, ice ages and reckless comets will come to claim us all.
And who feels assured about what all these proclamations of our permanent destruction are for? I can’t say that I do.
They could stand, perhaps, to convince our more naive selves into believing that prevention of such grand universal action is possible? Perhaps merely to terrify?
I, like many, experience a mixed bag of emotions upon perceiving the ruckus. But, at least, what’s come to feel good about hearing such omnipresent-god-fearing talk is a new appreciation for our era. A shifting of paradigms that seems to have grown from this scrambling of facts and frightened people.
We are a strange moment in time.
An incredible combination of human hubris and burgeoning cosmic remembrance, aware again, that we do not run the big show.
And that our desperate attempts to discover who does has only left us divided, here on Earth. Disgruntled, in our mortal realm of flesh and blood, with endless feelings of inferiority in the face of true forces folded upon our existence.
(Artwork: Claudio Ethos, Cologne)
So, at last, we’ve come to approach something real -
That no matter how many machines we mastermind, robots we fathom, rockets we launch, wars we win, weapons we build, we can never come to equal the total sum of divinity. Of inexplicable deeper, higher, surrounding powers.
And for those who scoff, dismissing such claims as ‘spiritual,’ just as easily consider divinity mathematics.
Just as readily consider ‘faith’ awesome belief in the biological anomaly that is our human being.
Why not, affronted by hunger for huge facts and principles, equate infinite contingency with ancient equations that seem, no matter the moment or man scrutinizing them, to balance, regardless of anything.
Remember the solar system, galaxies, stars. Photographs. Light spectrums. Physics.
(Artwork: Interesni Kazki, Slovakia)
We are a world much greater than women and men. Than movies and emails. Than pets and performance. We know this. And whether one chooses to call this awareness of actual vastness by any particular name or endow such fascination with visage and idolatry, we’ve lived long enough as a species of intelligence-seekers to agree something beyond us reigns.
Perhaps not in any particular, comprehensible pattern. Or, perhaps so.
But either way, when one chooses to witness life as an undivided truth, such discrepancies seem irrelevant, laughable, entirely beside our natural born, greatest ambition – to arrive at last at a moment in time when all nod our heads humbly in mutual peace at something. To something bigger than what unbinds us in daily, menial differences.
If this was not our desire, why else would war rage so? Why else, if not to force others into agreement, attempting unity via obliged behaviors and beliefs? And why, all that being so, do we find it ludicrous to assume the inherent, instinctual knowledge that we, as other creatures present on our planet, are capable of constructing a harmonious relationship with the blessed fact of being alive? Yes, there is death in natural life, but wild animals have, at least, unspoken order. There are watering holes, whereupon all gather. Where are ours? What have we?
We consider ourselves gods and yet, we come and pass. As all else. With and without choice.
Sure, we perch ourselves fortunately atop the uppermost ranks of our so-called ‘food chain.’ Yes, we have been blessed with multi-dimensional realms of information-processing equipment that allows us the almost inconceivable ability to rule a kingdom comprised of creatures and complexities capable of killing us. Okay, we’ve learned a lot, figured some things out, built a great many inventions for the better and worse of our world at large – mostly, and much to our own disadvantage, for worse.
But we’re nowhere near close to containing the cosmos. A fact that seems, more often than not, to infuriate us.
And so we cannot revel in the joy of juxtapositions, because we claim we’ve defined ‘justness.’ And plow carelessly forward, readily prepared to murder. As proof.
(Artwork: Faith47 in Johannesburg)
We are very young in this world, as a race, a human race, an evolving kind. We want to own things we can’t understand. We don’t want to admit our youth, as adolescents who too quickly make regrettable, fatalistic decisions due to lack of humility, awareness of young limitation, need for more knowledge.
We criticize and beat down our teenagers, but what makes us, as grown individuals, so different now, judging how we’ve acted before our parent – nature, the universe?
Are we too not presumptuous? Are we not impatient? How much do we listen to earth in its desperateness to help us understand how our destruction, our greed, our cruelties have come to their point of apex and will soon, like the wave, break at its crest and fall back?
Are we ourselves not adolescent in our denying of some larger authority?
Do we really think our guns will help us when the storms rage and streets fill ragged with water? Do we really believe our underground shelters, however, steel and seemingly solid, will survive the shaking of soil so deep, fires, droughts, forced disarmament?
No. We don’t.
We all know we’ve been born at the whim of something almost surreal. That’s why we shake at the sight of this news, of any word posing potential for an approaching apocalypse.
And yet, even still, we’ve decided to allow our differentiations in opinion about ‘why’ or ‘what for’ to separate us so starkly. Though we’ve all come to sense that the world in entirety could be taken back from us before we even have the chance to convince anyone of anything, we, so childishly fearful, pretend not to be scared.
(Artwork: Liqen, Monkey, Mexico)
We have so long acted, without thought. Killed, without consciousness. Pillaged, without payment of respect, thinking we’d outrun the law. The only real law -universal law. Desperate to do what does not exist within our young privileges, we’ve maimed our people and planet, without ever once contemplating purpose. Or doing so privately, and feigning indifference.
So now, the price of our youth evidenced by growing fear, we, cosmic teenagers we are, feel we’ve come, finally, to face final consequence.
As for myself, I don’t yet know what I believe. About what will happen to us all here. If we will survive. Or if anything so much as a sound will be made in the great expanse.
If September 26th will bring quakes to California. If tides from Japan will devour Hawaii. If it will be us, ourselves, who terminate each other. In battle, in bad food, in negligence. If computers will rise to consume their creators. If the axis will shift, and throw us into the void. If the galaxies contract and swallow all within sight. I don’t know. I don’t think much about it.
I know only that our mutual, global concern for such possibilities means possibility for some kind of revolution.
One unlike any we’ve yet seen in history. One much quieter, much calmer, much deeper than those that have been.
For the most part, I tune out the T.V.’s telling me I’ll die in two weeks, two months, two years, tomorrow. What am I to do? More pushups? That’s certainly not why I do them. I don’t know what’s best to be done anymore, besides live with more dignity and respect for the universal invisible, the truth of intangibles than ever before. What will cash, money do in a ‘crisis of God?’
All I know is this -
Us having carved faces of famous men into mountains, does not mean we’ve any control over whether or not the crater explodes, ending earth as we’ve considered it ours.
I don’t find any of it frightening anymore. I find it relieving. There is so much of which the human mind, body, spirit and collective community can accomplish. And so much we cannot. Such is. Life has it’s ways. I dig. Say, word.
I expand only toward the direction of doing what I can.
And that, in and of itself, keeps me pretty damn busy.
TO THOSE MAKING GOOD, GO FORWARD