Thursday, 23 December 2010

Feeling UP

Recently I watched a lot of upsetting news in the forms of the extremist, ignorant and hateful factions of society. It's been quite nasty and depressing to digest. The more I watch the news and interact with the internet, nothing more than the ugly side of mankind has reached out to punch me in the face.

I watched the documentary BNP Wives, a look at the women in the BNP who campaign for the BNP, some really old and past their menopause, with no hope of finding any real joy in their lives, focussing on giving their remaining time on planet Earth perpetuating hate. I saw more and more about the EDL and even received a hate tweet from this lovely chap -  EnglishPatriot2

I chose to retweet this, I refuse to let such fascism be ignored. This gentlemen is either going to live a painful life of being an uneducated, inexperienced and delusional bigot, or he might grow up and take advantage of the enormous capacity for intelligence every human brain usually comes equipped with.

Also, what doesn't help are the minority of fundamentalist religious zealots whose words and actions manage to represent the entirety of the Muslim community in Britain, which the fear mongering arms of the media love to evangelise into public enemy number one. With all of this going on, I've felt a little overwhelmed by the abundance of ignorance and hate that is pouring into our society, if often feels like there is no hope for any kind of peace or joy. Let's face it, most of us do NOT want to live in the fascist utopia of any these nutjobs, be it in the fundamentalist and ritualistic dictatorship of the religious nutters or the feral Jeremy Kyle Show candidates of the EDL. However, it seems that the voices for the rest of us are washed away in the tides of hate. Unfortunately, a sad fact of life is that one act of hate has more of an instant impact than the opulence of love. It takes years for life to thrive and grow, but it takes just one single storm to destroy it all.

Overwhelmed by this all, I began to despair for the future as the numbers of the uneducated, ignorant, hateful and greedy outstrip the few who can communicate and co-operate. In reality, neither the religious zealots or the fascist right-wing are actually going to win, neither side will get their way, but the fact that they both exist and that the rest of us have to be caught in the middle, is the reality we have to live with.

Fortunately, never too far away is the abundance of art in which humans have communicated the beauty of our aspirations and potential to experience the joys of what is possible. Tonight, I watched the Disney Pixar film; UP.

Without giving too much away in case you haven't seen it, UP is a fantastic story of having a dream, having ambition and experiencing the journey of life with someone you care about. Although, we may not all have an abundance of material wealth or all the breaks and opportunities that we desire, but if you can share your life with someone you love, then even the simplest of everyday experiences becomes a joy to have. To quote my favourite personal development coach; Anthony Robbins - "The purpose of human relationships is to magnify the human experience".

Fortunately for us, even when we are bombarded by all that is wrong, a rich source for all that is right is recorded in our films, books and stories (and video games, check out Shenmue!) that illustrate the virtues of all that makes life such a precious and joyous experience. It's easy to take these forms of entertainment lightly, but the truth is that this is how human beings record and communicate the very best of our hopes, abilities and aspirations, and they remain the library of our accomplishments as a reminder and influence of the enormous capacity our minds have to create a much better world. So, in conclusion, what I am trying to say is that if you ever feel down about the state of the world and need a pick up, reach into the abundant library of good human virtues and sink your teeth into some of this wonderful soul food.

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