Once upon a time, in a beautiful green land (which I didn’t appreciate at the time 🙂 !) I used to be an Irish country-girl. But I roamed here and there around the globe, met new people, experienced different cultures – by the way I think everyone should travel while they are young – so I am no longer ‘just’ an Irish country-girl, I am older, wiser and more experienced. I guess I think I am more of an ‘expanded being’ (can you see my nose going up??)
Travelling between East (Egypt) and West (Ireland) every 4 months or so and even travelling just between Cairo and Luxor so much now while in Egypt, I think I notice changes more than if I was staying in one place. Lately, I’ve started thinking of the ancient, lost civilizations of Lemuria, Atlantis, Egypt, Babylon, the Incas, Mayans, Native Americans, Aborigines, India, China, Japan. I think of the knowledge they had, much of which is lost, but that which survives is highly prized by our modern, Western civilisations of the 21st Century. We don’t know what happened them, for the most part.
Even to visit parts of France, Spain or Italy or Russia and see the magnificient buildings from bygone ages – we are not building anything like that today. Look at the gothic churches and cathedrals – built with the knowledge brought by the Crusaders who went East to convert the “Infidels”. We pride ourselves that we have made advances and evolved….but have we really?
Outside of a few inventions are we better or worse than those who went before us? Today, some Eastern people and religions are actually referring to us as the “Infidels” – listen to the TV! Times are changing, we all recognise that. What I am wondering is.. “Is our Western Civilization going to be the next one to disappear? I think we are disappearing…gradually. Our economies are in chaos, those business blueprints are no longer working. Where are our 21st century works of art or magnificent buildings? What legacy are we leaving behind? Melting glaciers, flooded coastlines?
All this may appear to be outside your control and mine. But, strangely I believe we are the root cause of the malaise and the Earth, the economies, our troubles and wars – they are merely outward reflections of our inhumanity. There are old sayings that “People get the governments they deserve” and “What goes around, comes around”.
Who cares about anything anymore? Does the sales assistant care if he is selling damaged or faulty goods? Does he even bother to serve the customer? Who answers the phone when you call a helpline or a company? Usually an automated response that has you pushing buttons for at least 5 mins, usually you hang up in disgust! Does the government care about the dignity of the unemployed? Do the people who ‘have’ see the ‘have-nots’ as men, women, children? Do we help each other? Speaking of governments – I’m not sure what to think about the Belgians – they have been without a government for over a year, because they can’t agree if they should speak French or Flemish (if someone corrects me on this I will change it) – they seem to be doing ok and saving a fortune, I am guessing, since they have no government to squander it!
We have LAWS about smoking, litter, seat-belts, construction safety, food safety, child abuse, substance abuse……..why do we need actual laws? Because we are incapable of thinking for or controlling ourselves? Or because we have governments who tell us we are incapable of thinking for ourselves therefore they must regulate and police us – not much different to Egypt and the Mubarak situation – they’ve decided they can think for themselves….it remains to be seen if they can. We fight over religion, religion in schools, lack of religion in schools. I’m going to stop now because this was not intended to be a depressing post.
I am simply asking the questions – Is our civilisation disappearing? Are we degenerating into lesser versions of those who preceeded us? If the answer is ‘yes’ and if our degeneration is being reflected in our society, then that means we have the power to change it. Maybe we will be luckier than the ancient lost civilizations. We are making the future and the future planet that our children and grand-children will inherit. We are the ones teaching our children and grand-children their values. We are shaping their future priorities. What are our priorities? How do we treat each other in our homes? Is it family or TV? Do we know our neighbours? Do we want to know our neighbours? (Hell, I don’t even want to ask if we care what happens the guy next door!) How do we feel about the people we work with? Are we honest, open, caring? Or do we live selfish, closed and greedy lives? Whichever, that is how the next generation will be – thanks to us.
So, is the fight I am fighting at the moment worth the destruction of my community, country, civilization? What are you going to do about it? If your actions are being reflected in the woes around us, do you care? What will you change? How do you feel about your children’s world? I asked on Google+ some time ago who would be willing to wear or not wear a specific item of clothing, if the wearing or not wearing resulted in world peace – I didn’t get much of a response, apart from some who wanted to debate the item of clothing! I’ve asked other questions and it is the responses and lack of responses, I think, that have made me ponder the fate of our civilization.
I mean, the real biggie at the moment is Somalia….isn’t it, thousands of children not to mention adults are starving, dying….who really cares? These famines happen year after year, the flooding in places like India happen year after year. Are we only going to pay attention to what we are doing or not doing with our precious land when these disasters strike nearer home? Australia, East Coast of USA….I don’t know the answers – I am just wondering. I am just wondering where our minds are going.
I’m willing to speculate I will get about 3 comments on this posting – because …. who cares anyway? Another old saying “better to light a candle than curse the dark” – but do we know we are in the dark? Are we in the dark? Are we heading towards another dark age? Or are you and me going to turn it around? I don’t know. I care, but who cares with me? Do you? I know you are reading this….but will you leave a comment? A suggestion? A footprint?