The despondency of time

There was some conversational roundabout in the peripheral blogosphere earlier. Seems many of the blogs I frequent are concerned with the subject of social pathology and the dystopian fog they leave in their wake. Men vs Women, Whites vs Everyone else, the Rich vs the Poor…lots of polarized observations embracing the evolving (or devolving) social structure of our civilization. People spend much of their time asserting personal points of view about the dissembling dynamics that exist today and what should be done to “fix” them, or at least address the problems. We build castles upon opinion and editorial.

If we allow our perspective perspective to become muddled, we may even believe many grand social trends are adjustable. We are too fixated on our time, our era, and we strangely disregard the wider, deeper, nearly imperceptible trends that predate us by centuries or generations. We are so busy arguing about the problems of the now but it is Time we are struggling with. Many of the alterations in social structure that afflict us now are beyond our control. They are the legacy of many, many centuries of unfolding and unraveling that we had nothing to do with and which are much more powerful than we can ever attempt to divert into a plan we find acceptable.

We simply love complaining and express our shattered disappointments, soothing our affronted egos by acting as if society is within our control. People begin to believe that social trends older than anyone alive can be flicked off like a lightbulb if only someone would listen to their logic. We use present logic to explain the march of time that will outlive us, and our logic. We are no match for the ruthless march of human social evolution.

Today I witnessed one such train of blog conversation elsewhere and I thoroughly agreed with the presumptions. Yes, this is a softening world of overprotective and reactive sensibilities. We tell ourselves that surely it was never like this before. We want to right the ship. We want to turn back the clock. Yeah, right. We’ll turn the clock back no easier than we can plug up a dam with tissue paper. It is beyond us. The reality struck me today. I thought of how the changes in social structure are so deeply etched into our cultural strategy. I went to a mall and restaurant which I usually don’t frequent and I observed a civilization which exists quite smugly and happily, thank you. They see no need to change. They are too fixated on their present bliss.

We can argue and bemoan the horrors of modern society and its downward spiral of doom but today I was affronted by the unconscious diligence people live in their daily lives and the small iota of existence we can conceive which is the here and now. We are resistant to the biggest picture of all, namely that we cannot change shit about shit. The world, the ticking of the clock, are formidable, timeless forces that mock at our inconsequential demands. They may laugh hardest at our tomfoolery and the delusion that we grasp ideas and trends that are bigger than our present-day fixated minds can even comprehend. I sat here and thought how, at 47, time is chugging by and I’m sitting the in midst of a society that is mutating in spite of me. I don’t like much of the new product, but all I can do is not like it, and be happy with this. Be happy with not liking it. I don’t have to be happy with social evolution. It’s OK to hate it and be at odds with it. We must love our helplessness in the face of incalculable numbers of days and centuries which will leave us in the archaeological dust as it continues to wreak havoc on each generation’s self-important illusions. Do people ever step back and consider that the grandest social trends are the final arbiter of our petty dislikes?

At times like this, the hammer of time sneaks up and hovers over me and makes me shut my thoughts up. People will not be changed because life is so much bigger than they. Our hive existence is a granule on the beach. We came together to create a vast tract of substance but we can never alter the substance through our minute antipathy. I can choose to hate and disdain, but ultimately, these are wasted emotions for they cure nothing and do nothing to inhabit my sense of self-fulfillment.

It’s not a question of “who cares,” but instead, “why does it matter?” As soon as we can reconcile ourselves to this dichotomy, peace is ours.