It is good to take a break from the system in which we are conditioned on occasion to consider how we came to live the way we do. In the United States, and many other countries, we belong to a system in which much of our waking hours are spent at some form of employment the design of which is a vestige from the soul crushing Industrial Revolution, where human beings were used as mere cogs in a machine designed by the wealthy and the capitalists (i.e. kleptocracy). Is this what life is about?
Most people live a daily life divided into three parts: sleep; employment; non-employment (but consumed with the details of daily living). This design is the remnant of industrial factory work – inapplicable to most jobs today. Those with the means and power, the kleptocrats and entrepreneurs, do not live this way. Why? They have the ability not to, and they know it is exploitative and does not optimize human potential. For the vast majority, this system, for which we have been conditioned by society, leaves little room to live an adventure or great story, to explore and discover, to dream and create, to live out a tribal visionquest. It is not that these things are impossible, but one must swim against the stream to do them.
Why is this so? We have been unable to break the chains of the Industrial Revolution and have been divided and conquered. Despite overwhelming numbers, there is no sense of brotherhood among workers or the average person, there is no labor movement, the concept of General Strikes is now unthinkable. Instead, we accept the crumbs from the kleptocrats that keep us quiet and subdued, and exchange the dreams of the human soul for a pittance. No matter how wealthy a society becomes, that wealth remains concentrated among a few, because they can utilize the levers of power to keep it that way, and then tell us this is good.
There are other ways to think and live, and some people choose this. It comes from a realization that purpose belongs to the individual, that money should not buy a person, that the most important goal in life is to be whole and not owned by possessions or wealth. It means a rejection of much of what we have been taught, and it is hard. But these are the pioneers on whose shoulders the future can stand as the wasteland of an anachronistic system one day crumbles. Human life has not always been as it is today, and there is no reason to believe that it will remain so.