Monday, April 03, 2017

Busy Busy Busy…

April A-to-Z:  A Celebration of the Automobile! (If You’re the Devil)

“But there are positive things also,” said the Journeyer.

“About cars? Are you sure? Like what?”

“Like convenience. Like access. They allow us to get places efficiently. We can do more. We can get places we wouldn’t have time to otherwise.”

Those things are all true of course. And they are also all bad.

Everybody driving around in cars is either doing so in order to solve problems which are only created by the existence of cars in the first place, or they are driving in pursuit of something they shouldn’t be pursuing.

Captain Vino once objected to my criticism of long term regional planning around expansion of highway infrastructure and the ghastly proclamation from an idiot politician: “Cars are never going away!” by claiming cars were necessary for such noble purposes as his visiting his young daughter in a town sixty kilometres away; seeming unable to grasp that without the pre-existence of cars and car culture he never possibly would have ended up in this circumstance. His friends, his baby-mama and his daughter would all have lived in the same village as he, the precise experience of somewhere between 97 and 99.9 per cent of humans in history.

We live in a society almost completely absorbed in artificial needs. The existence of cars has allowed people, in their confusion and standard-norm insanity to imagine that their needs are best met beyond their own locality. This “car culture” breeds profit-driven priorities of centralization; the basis for corporate culture. For thousands of years people met all of their needs in and around their own village or on their own migratory path. This has always been possible – and – mentally healthy (I will get to that explanation in another post if not here).

The natural human appreciates and loves their neighbors, instead of regarding them with the repressed resentment which belies the ugly suburban attitudes and architectural trends of the day:  smaller stoops and front yards and larger walled-in backyards. The modern home is more a stronghold than a dwelling. Cars have made neighbors an optional feature of our lives. And overwhelmingly we tend to decline them as we whiz by them in favor of function-specific neighborhoods such as the super mall; the crown jewel of the auto's reign over our society.

Everybody’s busy busy busy… without grasping how artificial the vast majority of their business is. Most of our “needs” are imagined. We seem to need them because everyone around us seems to need them. The more we have the more we want. Technology, as predicted in the past, has indeed enabled a standard 2-hour work day. There is no doubt about it. But no matter how much technology improves efficiency we will keep working the eight-hour day – come ten hour with overtime born of slave mentality, reputation mongering and greed – come twelve hour with travel time. Because we’re blindly absorbed in ideas of capitalist competition which is pure unbridled insanity and contradictory to life itself  if you stop long enough to think about it (again I'll elaborate in another post).

Our needs are so much simpler than we imagine and much of them – the need to contemplate, learn (real learning – the acquisition of wisdom, not factoid collecting) and creativity – are wholly overlooked due to our constant distraction and addictions.

The car enables us to stay permanently distracted and permanently busy because we are insanely enslaved to greed and ego - to our vast detriment. The car brings too too much within our reach while we fail to stop and really look at the things around us; and so we never take the time to discover the remarkable essence of the supposedly simple things in our presence. We never learn to see things - or people - or ourselves - for what they - and we - really are.

Without the car and it’s unlimited access we would be far more inclined toward (and have the time for) the great human necessities of regular solitude, mindfulness, observation and deeper processing of contemplation. All of that is quite present in the prominent philosophical, poetic and religious texts of the world by the way – if you look for it.

The intelligence levels of average western citizens has been dropping alarmingly. We’re breeding cities jam packed with functional morons; instinct robots deeply disconnected from their potential humanity who imagine they are intelligent or cool or special or successful or normal because the inventions of our ruthlessly clever (and ruthlessly unwise) elite have mechanized us with iPods and cell phones and automobiles (and yes – my own laptop) which FEEL like our own extensions; which FEEL like something to our individual credit and which in no way are. They are chains which bind our minds to the matrix. And the thing about being an instinct robot is – our FEELINGS are almost always corrupt; almost always a placebo to lull our weak consciousness into dreamy comfortable submission, while our actions go about destroying us: our society, our planet and our arrested evolution. Because, of course, our instincts have barely evolved in the last hundred thousand years while technology has taken over the world and evolved our circumstances a millionfold.

You and I and everyone we know are Xboxes running on Pong software and this problem is in fact at the root of every problem you can imagine - from war to global warming to racism and to all the rampant - practically ubiquitous - superstitions which warp our minds and society into a whirl of delusion, vanity and accusation; 

We should ask ourselves how useful we would be, as an individual, without any of our tech gadgets – as if they all disappeared one morning. How useful would you be? Think about it. The answer is not simply hypothetical; it is crucial to our existence.

And now I must apologize. I am very tired (three hours sleep last night) and mentally sluggish. I've failed to contain the scope of this post and with no brain left with which to further edit it into something more fair and manageable to read, and the deadline upon us, I must now surrender this beast and collapse in bed.

With regrets,
FWG/New Day Rising


Nilanjana Bose said...

Hmmm...I hope I have gained some real wisdom from this post and not just factoids. But cars do have their uses, so do all the other gadgets, though I am not an avid fan of any of them. The trick is not to get enslaved to the toys, to the point of mindlessness.

Cool post.


Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Well... ideally I offer no wisdom OR factoids! I only suggest that one might here absorb some inspiration toward their own exploration and contemplation and hopefully some consolidation as well - when folks build their own wisdom and then find it supported here!

Of course my dismal writing style does not make these intentions clear I know! It is so much easier to write in a preachy way and in a very real sense what I am doing here is preaching to myself. The lessons I learn are easily forgotten.

Than you for your excellent comments!

Alex said...

I'm not sure I'd want to live in a world where it's impractical for more than a few to venture very far from their hometown, but I'm all for more and better public transportation over cars.
I don't drive and I'm fascinated by the number of people who think it's a necessity. I mean, I know lots of cities are set up so that it's incredibly impractical, but there are a LOT of places where it's no problem at all and a good number of people who can't drive for medical reasons even if they wanted to who get along just fine.