Sometimes, as I am sure many of you have done at some point, I just start to think about things. Nothing really complex-they are often really simple, yet somehow frustrating thoughts. Like how humans are so divided based on so many factors, and how these divisions have only been amplified over the centuries. That is not to say that all differences are bad- our diversity in culture, ethnicity, language, and so many other aspects makes us beautiful. However, there are certain, increasingly often times when I question how united we actually are as a human race. Take the issue of climate change, for example. A great number of people continue to ignore the scientific research indicating that definitive steps must be taken in order to give future generations a better chance. Granted, they are entitled to their opinions, whether based on political, economic, or social reasons. But shouldn’t the greater good of the entire human population come before one’s personal stance? This does not even take into account the fact that it is not only humans that are affected by climate change. It almost feels like, at times, many of us forget that we are not the earth’s only inhabitants, or at least the only “significant” ones.
This brings me to my next train of thought: the idea of human superiority in comparison to other animals. Many people, whether they consciously realize it or not, hold this kind of view. In a number of cases, these views are not directly harmful to other beings, but are simply personal beliefs that one holds. However, as society has industrialized and become increasingly materialistic, the widespread use of animals for commercial purposes has taken what many would consider an unethical turn. Perhaps it is sometimes easier or comforting to ignore or simply overlook the idea that animals could be almost, if not equally, as emotionally capable as human beings. Here is the link to an interesting TedTalk exploring this concept which I think is worth watching: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wkdH_wluhw. Also, if you are interested in reading about these kinds of topics, I highly recommend checking out the philosophical novel Ishmael by Daniel Quinn. A relatively short, simplistic piece, it explores the nature and destiny of mankind in relation to other beings on Earth. There are certain parts of the book that I personally disagree with. However, overall, it is definitely thought provoking and worth reading if not to agree with it but to discover a new perspective or way of thinking.
Even as I think these types of thoughts, I question the purpose of doing so and whether I am perhaps being biased, close minded, or simply uninformed. I nearly always come back to the one, somewhat unrelated consensus: we must live in the present. As they said in Dead Poets Society (a great movie, by the way), “Carpe diem” or “seize the day”. Live your life your way, and attempt or at least aspire to do what you love because life is short. Do what genuinely makes you feel glad to be alive and remember that there are many people who want the same thing for you.
Ending on a lighter note, I hope you have a great day!