“In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion.” – Albert Camus
Every day I turn to a handful of trusted news outlets, to find out what’s going on in the world.
It’s something I started many years ago, after the realization that I needed to stay more informed and educated on society (economically and socially).
But the more mature I become, the more jaded I grow – questioning the very motives of this daily practice.
In Arthur C. Clarke’s 1968 science fiction novel, 2001: A Space Odyssey, he writes, “The more wonderful the means of communication, the more trivial, tawdry, or depressing its contents seemed to be.”
I’m probably consuming more news than ever before, mainly because of its accessibility on the internet, and yet all it seems to do is make me feel discouraged, anxious, frustrated, mortified and even bewildered.
Over the last year, I feel as though I’ve lost all hope in humanity.
Society has become nothing more than a self-serving machine armed with cell phones and technologies, virtually eliminating the need for social interactions. It saddens me when I dine out at a restaurant, and see a family or young couple spending more time texting and browsing than talking with each other.
We just don’t seem to care about our neighbor, and consequently about the relationships we struggle to foster in life.
Today, society feels it’s their right to tell others how they should and should not live – propagating antiquated and unjust prejudices, which have no room in a civilized society of progress. We believe our way is the only way – that no one else’s circumstances have any bearing on how we choose to conduct ourselves.
Not to mention endless and insensible wars, killings and attacks, which instill fear into the hearts and minds of everyone who walks on an airplane or even into a classroom. And a sea of terminal illnesses – depriving those who are far too young from watching their grandchildren play, or simply sitting out on the front porch holding hands.
I’ve heard people say, “how can you not know what’s going on in the world”. Well I know all about it, and all it makes me want to do is turn away from it for a while.
Marianne Williamson once wrote, “We can always choose to perceive things differently. We can focus on what’s wrong in our life, or we can focus on what’s right.”
And until my perception of the world begins to change, I’m choosing to focus on what’s right – even if that means turning away from the world for a while.