A THOUSAND MILES
Op/Ed By J. Strauss
Habit. Humans and animals are all creatures of habit because we move. Plant life does not have movement as a part of its survival strategy, at least for all intents and purposes. Humans survive by doing successful things time after time while rejecting those things that are not deemed to be successful. Plant matter has to take whatever comes along, although the luck of landing as a seed, pod or spore somewhere plays a huge role in plant survival. It is movement that advancing technology is so changing for mankind today, and it is changing movement that is so befuddling every developed culture on earth.
At one time, not so long ago, human beings exposed to failure, violence, or even social disgrace could move with impunity. It took almost nothing to pick up what belongings were laying around and then violently change geographic location. Inherent in that “freedom of movement” was identity. Old identities wherein success was not readily found could be discarded for new identities with the results of distant movement.
That has all changed, and the very fact that its changed is not discussed openly anywhere. The lack of discussion on the subject exists because of lying. All culture is stuffed to the brim with misstatements, misdirection and downright lies. Damn lies permeate everything humans do, from the justice, economic and entertainment parts of life all the way through sexual selection, performance and procreation. The ability to lie is nothing more or less than an inherent ability to start over. Geographic movement used to assure that any human being wanting to start over could simply move far away. Even without a name change or any lying at all, a complete change of life could be expected or even depended upon.
Today there is no escaping one’s past unless the person attempting to do so lives deep inside a third world culture and country. Resistance to accepting people who are moving from one place to another, particularly those moving from one country to another is mounting higher and higher as such movement is revealed to be an attempt to change from a poorer performing life to a better one. The ability to move and change has been ripped apart by advancing technology in the areas of computer, television and cell phone communications. There is no such thing as changing a credit report or criminal record. Changes in those areas have become available only in fiction. Today, in developed countries, there is no escaping any dings in credit history (in spite of assurances that seven years for credit and ten years for bankruptcy are the limit on reporting). If there is anything missed in someone’s credit or criminal history then it certainly is not missed by modern intelligence organizations. These collections, storage and analysis of data has very slowly led humanity toward a time when movement becomes less and less important and human beings activities begin to more resemble those of plant life rather than what we have come to know as animal.
Today, all across America, but more in densely populated areas rather than rural, young people remain indoors and travel much less than children of the recent past. Children of today play computer and cell phone games. Children of today talk on the telephone and look up things on their computers. It is not uncommon in this day and age to see and hear a child talking to the robotic systems identity known as Siri (a program active on all Apple cell phones), as if Siri was another human. These choices by America’s young, to experience life from a stopped position, has the potential to bring the culture, even the world, to a dead stop with them. Civilization as we have come to know, understand and enjoy, cannot be sustained, much less built upon, without movement. Civilization was not created by brilliant planning in still forest glades, quiet contemplation along the wind-wafted sides along dirt paths or enjoyed by seething but inactive crowds of humans living lonely among crowds of others doing the same things.
Walking a thousand miles in another’s shoes is part of a lyrical set not an expressed philosophy of how to live.
There is no longer any question that planet earth, over the course of the last twenty-five years, has fallen into digression when it comes to reward for entering into and being a part of the middle class, efforts to reach outer space, understanding that higher education isn’t there simply to look better on job applications, or selection of enlightened human beings to lead everyone into a future made up of more improvements. Lao-Tzu said these famous words: “the longest journey begins with a single step.” When those words were first spoken and for many years following no one ever stopped to consider that Lao might have been talking about the absolute gift animals have been given when it comes to natural selection. The single step is more important than the long journey or any journey.
The single step is a journey.
Take the step today, and then another, and another.
Become someone else, even if you get found out. The new “you” will have ever so much more chance at survival and success in every area. Move!