Living in ‘Today’s World’
Someone has once quipped that,”Living well in ‘today’s world’ is a lot like starting a campfire in the rain – it can be done, but it takes no little amount of effort and a whole of of skill!”
That’s interesting. It has the ring of truth to it, but what does it mean to ‘live well in today’s world’? On the surface, it seems like the question’s worth the effort to develop an answer – after all, who really wants to live poorly in this world? To even begin to answer that question, however, I suppose I’d have to know at least two things, as it were.
I’d have to put some mental math around, what in the world “living well” means and what, in particular, ‘today’s world’ refers to (i.e., in connection with living well, is it friend or foe ,or some combo?).
I might just say in passing, that you are commended for pausing the fact that you are pausing for a moment – in a culture as driven and fast-paced as ours in the west – it seems to me that you’re well on your way to answering that question, if in our western culture – you even take the time to pause and consider their importance! Most people have ‘given up the ghost’, as it were, with a final lament, “Why bother?”
Why bother? Hmm…
Why bother? Well, the answer to that question is simple: Something deep down inside us as human beings instructs us to ask, even demands that we ask! Something deep down commands us to put in the time, to labor for an answer because deep down we believe (rightly so I think) that doing so could change the entire course of our lives for the better. It could change our family’s lives, our friends’ lives too. It could lead us to new discoveries, new purpose(s), wholeness and meaning, it could lift us above mere instinctual living. But, still, even if we think it’s a good question to ask, there are reasons we do not.
I’m too busy
The truth is, we’re often far too busy keeping our necks out of nooses and our heads above water that we often refuse to entertain the “why” sorts of questions. We’ve heard that life is a journey, so why not do it at break-neck speed. Surely that would be more exhilarating! Correct premise (“life is a journey”), false inference (“The faster the better”). Train wrecks are proof enough.
“Life is good” (La vita e bella)
Why do I do what I do? Why do I not do what I believe I should? These, and many other, complex questions rummage around below the surface, day-lighting now and again, especially at weddings and funerals. But, we’re often too afraid to stop and look at them. After all, if we stop, we might get his by a truck.