Rant Time: Pandemic Damage

Those who know me, will know that first and foremost I identify as a Philosopher of the ancient Stoic school. So it probably seems like a contradiction that an adherent to a philosophy which teaches acceptance of struggle and stresses compassion towards, and the equality of all humanity, should so often be intolerant and scornful of people…

Alas I am but a mortal man, with a limited amount of patience, and the generalized abject stupidity of the commons irks me to no end. I may have become a Stoic sage during my adult life, but I was born with an alpha-type personality and a considerable amount of ability(with an ego to match)…

So like most other aspects of my personality there is an underlying duality(thanks bipolar). On the one hand, I wish to help people, to alleviate suffering, to foster growth and self awareness in people, but on the other hand I am disgusted by the way that most people go through life as a series of motions, thinking that happiness will somehow find them if only they could find those things they desire, but do not have…

Our individualistic, materially-oriented society is in essence a competition. A no-holds-barred, every-man-for-themselves, competition with the most serious of stakes. Most of you however aren’t even competing let alone winning at this game, and search as though I might, I’ve only ever managed to find some few true good-souls that aren’t interested in winning at the expense of others. This is no more apparent than in the reactions of so many of the multitude to the ongoing pandemic crisis…

The prevailing sociological theories seek to define rationality in terms of human behaviour as based on a hierarchy of needs, with reasonable actors always preferring self-benefit to loss, and survival to ego. And while selfishness is of course still widely prevalent in times of emergency, it is surprising to me just how many people are unable to put their own petty distractions aside in preference to survival. People care only for their own comforts, their own emotional and sexual needs; unable to prioritize serious and unprecedented global, regional and local concerns over their ‘First-World Problems’, Maslow should be turning over in his grave…

Life will eventually go on from this, some will lose their lives(perhaps even me), many already have. I understand that people react to stress and crisis in all sorts of different ways, for innumerable reasons, but I can’t un-see those reactions in all the people around me(including my own) and those observations are going to lead to judgments and conclusions about those people…

Life will go on from this, but I fear that I will have written-off damned-near all of humanity by then…

 

 

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