by Darrin Schenck

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by Darrin Schenck

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It is not a sign of good health to be well adjusted

to a largely sick society.

Jiddu Krishnamurti

Since I am guessing it is a safe bet that you do not know who this is, please click on the hyperlink and read a quick synopsis of his life.  While I don’t agree with everything he has to say (nor anyone else for that matter), some of his ideas were profound.  And this quote in particular is a great example of that.

Despite being born in the late 1800’s, he was already cognizant of the affects of society and they way people were living their lives.  The farther away from “center” we get, the worse things become.  And by center, I mean looking internally, working on yourself, not comparing to others, etc.  Krishnamurti lived to 1986, can you imagine what he would think about today’s world?

I realize that much of my audience is younger, many born in 2000 or after, so you have grown up with so many things that deal with over the course of your burgeoning lives.  Add omnipresent technology and you have a perfect recipe for society to be full of fresh faces hiding a heavy burden.  The past twenty or so years have been accurately label The Age of Perpetual Crisis.

I want you to understand, hear me on this…

You Are Right To Feel The Way You Feel.

Just as a quick recap of the past two decades, here is a less than comprehensive list:

  • September 11, 2001
  • Ongoing wars in the Middle East
  • Housing Market Crash of 2008
  • Social Media
  • Market Crash of 2015
  • And 2018
  • Fake News
  • Growing political and cultural divide
  • COVID
  • Rising cost of…everything
  • Threat of another World War
  • Personal economic insecurity throughout this time

Whether you are old enough to remember all of these examples directly, or just got a sense of them through your parents, this has been a tough run.  There is a lot to be concerned about, and to carry the burden of.  Your angst is justified, but I am here to tell you, it will not serve you well if you just let it fester.  You need to take action to get your head right and live a life of happiness and personal satisfaction.

I will leave it to you to decide if you choose to try to combat any or all of these social issues and more on your own.  Someone has to, and even if I don’t agree with your personal methods on how to do this, I encourage you to make your voice heard.  Maybe you do have some ideas worth exploring and that could end up creating positive change.  I am here to encourage you to do what everyone should do, and why I chose Krishnamurti as my “theme” for this blog.  It needs to start with you.

You need to look internally and fix your own mind before you try to change the world.  Your house needs to be in order before you start pointing fingers at your neighbors.  You need to put a lot of work into yourself before you try to change anyone else.  You need to break free of the “confines” of the environment you grew up in, and formulate your own thoughts.  Your parents had their own set of biases and experiences that shaped their way of thinking, and because you were raised in their house, you unknowingly adopted at least some of these thoughts.  And more than anything, you need to understand this:

You are responsible for how you feel and how this affects you

That’s right, don’t wait for someone else to solve your issues, hand you a magic pill that takes away the pain.  You need to face your fears, issues, insecurities, hang ups and everything else you lug around with you.  You need to take personal responsibility for all of it.  And as soon as you do, you will be free.  Now you won’t be out from under the issues just yet, but you will be free to observe these things objectively, and start to drop that baggage piece by piece.

Our society has eroded from where it was a while ago.  Things are not better in many ways, and it is clear that many things are worse by a long shot.  Social media has you worried about what everyone else is doing before you worry about yourself.  We all start from a different place, and none of us are running the same exact race, so how can you compare yourself to what anyone else is doing?  You don’t need a million in the bank by 25 to have “made it”…write your own rules.  If you want to travel the world in the Peace Corp and live an austere life, do it.  If you want to go to school and get a PHD and never see the light of day until you are 30, do it.  We all know intuitively that social media accounts are full of lies and fluffed up life resumes, so why are you feeling bad about not having an Aston Martin or traveling by private jet?  I had a friend who owned a small private jet company, and he had to hire full time security to keep people from jumping the fence at the airport just to pose for pictures next to the jets like they had just walked off of it.  Ridiculous…

Invest time in yourself, it is the best investment you can possibly have.  If you truly struggle with issues, get professional help in some form.  Do it in person, over Zoom, or via text, as all of these formats are available today.  If you suffer from poor self esteem, maybe a martial arts class is what you need.  By learning to both defend yourself and control your emotions, you gain more personal power.  Not doing well in school?  Maybe you have a reading and visual issue that can be looked at and treated.  In almost every case, there is an answer for what ails you, you just have to be willing to look inward and decipher what the problem really is.  You do not need to learn to be accustom to a sick society, you need to heal yourself and then you can start healing the world.  Even if you just lead by example, that will have a positive impact on those around you.

We all have been affected by the happenings of the world for the past two decades, but if you grew up in the midst of this time, you haven’t seen anything outside of this “Age of Perpetual Crisis” to know that things can and will be different at some point.   You do not have to participate in the madness if you chose not to.  You can be free of it; you can live the Van Life while others live in New York City and are knee deep in the rat race.  YOU HAVE THE CHOICE.  Never forget that.  Even if you don’t have the means to just turn and walk away today, you can get there.  A little budgeting and some extra work and likely you would be off and running.  Give yourself options.

While I am not advocating for running away from your problems, I am saying that you have full license to greatly ignore much of that which goes on in the world.  You have to focus on what you can control and let the rest slide.  You can’t feed all the starving children and you can’t fix all that ails the world, so pick and choose what you allow into your head space.  It is for your own good, trust me.  Start with you and once that is highly polished, then start lending some of your attention outward.

I wish you luck in your endeavors.

 

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