How Have You Not Made a Difference in Your Community or the World by Now?
Maybe it’s a harsh rebuke, maybe it is something you need to hear, maybe it is too arrogant and maybe you don’t really care — maybe you don’t want to hear it at all but for God’s sake, how have you not done crap with your life besides use it to think solely in your own interests?
My favorite response to this usually rhetorical question is that “through out history, man has consistently thought of only his own interest in survival and thus it is normal to think only of one’s self interest” or some B.S like that. It is as though I am to accept that we are cavemen and not capable of higher conscious reasoning than each preceding generation. I am supposed to accept that communal’s didn’t directly support one another from birth until death and depend on each other to survive and eventually thrive. Am I to accept that the very designs of our metropolitan centers do not directly revolve around a system which is made to cater to our needs through reciprocation of each individuals ability to provide something different or compete along the same lines?
No, it is not common for man to only think of his own survival throughout history, it is far less common.
Before you assume I am about to advocate for any form of socialism, communism, or any thing that is controlled even the tiniest bit by the government, you are wrong and the government is worthless. What I’m talking about is taking individual responsibility for yourself and recognizing that you also have a responsibility to your tribe too.Yeah, I know what you’re thinking, “The United States is the most charitable nation to ever exist on earth” and you aren’t wrong. We give a lot of resources, time, energy and effort to unbelievable causes world wide, if you’ve been a part of that I commend you, you’re doing your duty to human kind.
If, on the other hand, you are among the generation approaching their 30’s which only knows how to communicate through currency and self loathing, then this is for you, but then again, people like you likely do not read, so really this is for people to make fun of how terrible you are at existing with even a spec of substantive purpose. Don’t think you are off the hook 40–50 year old’s whose boomer parents didn’t have much to give you growing up, so you just hoard everything now, yeah we know you read slightly more but nonetheless, you are no better than the younger generation at doing anything other than what serves you.
Sure, you gave a few bucks to Bobs burnt down house fundraiser on the “gofundme” donation page, you threw $20 dollars from the comfort of your couch, probably purposefully made it public instead of anonymous, and feel you have done your part. Did you make sure to tell everyone about your good deed? I’m sure you did.
When was the last time you decided not to emotionally detach yourself by throwing faceless money at the problems of the world rather than stand in the way of them and take them on head first. When was the last time you communicated with those who had less than you, live differently than you or otherwise have a different perception of the world than you?! screw volunteering, you can’t even talk with people who aren’t of your same exact perspective.
We are put on this living rock that is floating through time and space, only to spend our lives paying bills until we die in the shell of comfort we created for ourselves, remitting any form of frontier-ism that allowed human kind to expand in the first place. Our forefathers, tribes and ancestors had to trust each other so much that they were willing to sail seas together, cross deserts, mountains and wilderness for a chance at a life worth living, and you can’t even serve someone a meal at your local shelter because somehow over the last 10,000 years of human exploration you became too busy because of your 9–5 job, family and washing clothes or some other lame ass excuse. You always have time for amazon and social media though, don’t you.
In true fashion, it isn’t like the secret to the results of working together and impacting the world are in a locked vault. Those who do the most volunteering view life from multiple perspectives and interact with ranges of individuals and because of it they are clearly the happiest, most educated, well-rounded and reasoned individuals on the planet. Great, you coach little league for free, now how do you make an impact on the fabric of their lives? awesome, you’re a teacher, but are you regurgitating state guidelines everyday or are you giving children the tools they need to access higher conscious, to actually be free in their thoughts, to have autonomy.
You don’t need to change the entire external world, you just need to do marginal things consistently and change the immediate world around you, the rest will follow, yet — we don’t even do that. Congrats on being born just to go shopping and live paycheck to paycheck, sounds fascinating, when you get bored of that though you should try to see the world our ancestors left behind for us and what work still needs to be done before the next generation gets here because you will never find it in your worthless comfort zone. Somehow we’ve been conditioned to believe that our duty is to acquire all we can under the religious guide of materialism, even if we have to sacrifice personal happiness. Once that is done, we die average only to leave behind some crap which will be sold at estate auction anyway, or maybe some physical money which will be given to the next generation to spend on worthless shit as they drown in their comfort bubble unsure as to why they don’t actually feel fulfilled in life.
Recently I read a story on a little girl who started a lemonade stand to help raise funds to end cancer, the little girls parents insisted it was truly her idea after seeing it first hand at school. I cannot help but think how innocent her intention is to help without recognition or anything in return, just a child like innocence to want to help where help was needed and backed by action. When was the last time you saw pain in the world so clearly that you started a lemonade stand to help those around you? when was the last time you helped take care of your tribe, the earth it walks on or the resources it needs to thrive? if you’ve donated money that’s a start I guess, money is important for many reasons, but it isn’t fulfilling, it isn’t you being there face to face as a mother in a domestic violence shelter clutches her children and they hold their hands out for the meal you provide them as they wonder what is next in life. Insufferable tragedy occurs everyday on this planet in all corners and it is out job to ensure it doesn’t outpace the amount of love being given in return, it is your job to push the threshold towards equilibrium by doing what you can and then just a little more.
I’ve always felt disassociated in the sense of giving more of myself. I am not a perfect person, I enjoy nice things from time to time like all, and I will not withhold my electric bill to donate to a foundation — I will (usually) not suffer just to alleviate someone else’s. I always give what I can which is usually my time and effort (and yes, sometimes money too) which I’ve found is far more valuable anyway. Since my greater awakening and belief about the true purpose of my life and our collective lives, I seem to more regularly observe in disgust the habits of our culture which is so increasingly self centered that we don’t actually want to see the problems of the world or work on them, we just want to throw money at them in hopes that someone else will do the dirty work for us as if it isn’t our sole freakin’ responsibility as inhabitants of the same home.
I see people dropping thousands at nightclub bars just feet from the alleyway another person freezes to death or starves in. Oddly enough, I’m not saying the former is a bad thing, you’ve earned your money and you SHOULD enjoy your time here as well, we aren’t here only to work and view suffering daily, but the personal test I give myself these days is “did I do all I could today to make a difference?” If yes, I treat myself with that drive thru coffee, I buy a shirt here or there, but I am able to do those things knowing I did my part for my tribe and because I did that, I also did my part for myself too.
I’m tired of all of these incoherent arguments about government funded help, clearly that isn’t the answer, if it was, Venezuelan’s wouldn’t risk death to flee their nation, Cubans wouldn’t make car boats and the Soviet Union would have won the cold war. You need to, at some point in your adult life, take responsibility for not doing anything for anyone except yourself and stop asking the government to give you your sense of morality through taxation. Go do something.
There is a tangible difference in our lives when we do things just to earn a buck and when we do those same things to make a difference. One example which comes to mind is the profession of nursing. The individual who is there to earn a check and cash out a retirement is a slave to themselves, their higher attainment and their ambitions, whereas — an individual who is a nurse with the intention of healing or making a real difference, lives their purpose and their truth and reflects their light unto the world around them and so on and so forth. In a similar manner, you throwing money at things will get you to the end, you can go shopping to fill the voids in your soul for today, and tomorrow, and until you are in hospice withering away, but eventually at some point you might recognize that maybe it is better to fill the void with what it actually wants which is to do something of real value — not material value.
The realization point for me had been building for sometime when it finally hit me at a bar back home, sort of out of nowhere one Halloween night. On this particular night I realized I didn’t want to be normal any more, and I didn’t give a damn about the status quo. This realization wasn’t even about making a difference in the world, it was actually pretty superficial, but it set off a chain reaction, one I fought at times but which has led me to my current life which is more wholesome. At the bar drinking I was watching a college football game, I remember in a moment of true solitude with myself, through the noise and the drinks, the people pushing and shoving all around, I just paused and watched some guy run out of the tunnel in his college football uniform on T.V. In that moment I realized you are either like me and all the people around me drinking and partying with the misguided notion by which we convince ourselves we are really living life to feel better about ourselves, or you’re the guy on T.V….not at the bar, not drunk with a bunch of wannabees, he’s the one actually living life, I clearly wasn’t.
Once I applied this thought process over and over millions of times subconsciously, (probably just as many consciously at this point) I began to see through the smoke and mirrors of self absorption and living for the night. No bar, no night club, no drink was ever good enough or strong enough to fill my soul with what it desired most which was to be a part of something bigger than myself. My “live for tonight and myself” style of living simply provided the illusion that I was filling the void within, while surrounded with other people who bought into the same illusion I did. Very quickly I began to realize how ridiculous it was to celebrate ones self without actually ever accomplishing a damn thing. Seriously think about it, what did we have to celebrate? we’ve literally done nothing and made virtually no difference and yet here we are, celebrating like we deserve to treat ourselves for being a bunch of nobodies, doing nobody stuff. It became unappealing.
Listen, I’m not telling you that you can’t have a beer with the boys, go out with the girls, or to sacrifice your every waking moment in the service of others, you will tire yourself out fast doing that. What I’m saying is probably a little harsher than that, because you’re a liar if you’re going to tell me you don’t have time to make a difference, I don’t believe you. Whether you need to stop looking at time as 7 day repetitive increments or you need to punch yourself in the face, do whatever you need to do to recognize that you can make a difference and live a life actually worth celebrating. Recognize within you, within all of us, is a Mother Theresa… or any other care or peace worker we martyr. Towards the back end of her life, Mother Theresa had the necessary funding available to her to throw money and walk away from the issues, but she still showed up ever damn day and made a difference.
You don’t need to show up everyday, you need to show up once in a while, you need to make yourself available to your species, to your world, you have to contribute something, preferably time and effort instead of just taking from the bountiful basket by which mother earth has allowed us to take. I’m not asking you to change the world, no one ever does, I’m saying if you change the world around you, you have a chance to change the larger world and actually fill that soul sucking void in your heart that you stuff with new b.s. from whatever online shopping cart you cash out on any given day. Show up. Give all you have to give when you can give it. Do your best. Separate yourself. Stop celebrating your life like you are worthy of it despite never having done a damn thing for anyone but yourself. Stop being superficial. Gain a sense of meaning & purpose. Go out, and change your world.