Do you REALLY give a Damn yet?

by Ravi

All this blogging, learning like crazy as I go deeper into subjects and concepts – has brought up a very uncomfortable fact for me.  I have realized that it is only recently that I really started to give a damn.  I mean really care about every last thing I fed my body, about how we are educated (brainwashed and re-conditioned actually), how totally full of shit virtually every level of authority is and utterly empty is the space inside when I actually manage to genuinely meditate.

I was aware of all this along the way – “intellectually” aware – but most of these issues were easily skirted, tucked back in a fold, a bit too uncomfortable (and seemingly unnecessary) to lay out and examine.

The “uncomfortable fact” part is that I am 56 years old.  It took me that damn long to get a clue and to take this diet-health-nutrition thing , and, in fact, the whole of this American being, really serious.

Now all of you reading this who are younger, eating paleo, not eating grains, or (too much) sugar, working out, looking great, questioning authority … and feeling all smug-like as you read this – well, do know that what I have done is I have traveled the world, experimented with relationships and my modest share of interesting substances.  I’ve had many “careers” and yet been free to roam, explore experimental communities, had successes and failures in businesses – so mind you, [young whipper-snappers ;-)]- you may have one-up on me diet-awareness wise – but I have been around the barn a few times (stopping in the haystack) … and enjoyed it.

What’s the point?

The realization that the inside, sub-conscious and shockingly effective play of marketing and consumerism has lurked in my American being even though I thought I was free.  I am realizing almost daily yet another instance of where the corporate/consumerist marketing machine has reached inside me (from my arrival on this planet in the post WWII “Pleasantville” kind of world) and planted it’s pernicious poisons that have lurked as a background of my “good”,  if un-conventional, American boy behavior for decades.  And for the very reason that I was fortunately flexible, relatively free and open-minded, I was never confronted with some of the deepest of these manipulations that has quietly twisted my view of so many things in this reality.

The first really big clue as to my awareness (or lack thereof) was my first trip to India coerced by my then-partner Sandhya – a tough little German girl raised in walled Berlin.  One of my multitude of eye and soul- opening experiences is recounted here in my short story: “A Glimpse of All That Is – An episode of Ravi Wells’ passage through India”.

The degree to which our American view of the world is shaped by the marketing intentions of rampant consumerism, is almost impossible for us to see from inside the system.  Base values by which we color our perceptions are not ones based in deeply held moral or traditional ways of life.  For generations, the “Mad Men” of western American corporate marketing have instilled shallow, unseated values that are purposefully fluid and open to their further manipulation as is necessary to get us to respond to THEIR stimulus – to buy THEIR worthless and inane products.

But the worst is not the consumerism – no – the worst is that the lost values replaced – the concepts, meanings and knowledge that have served humans throughout their evolution – intuitive, “natural” behaviors of survival and communal value – they have been effectively ditched to insert the android-like knee-jerk responses to market tickling that directs the consumption of more and more and dummer and dummest.

To awaken – or even begin to awaken from that [matrix?] at any age is bound to shock the soul to its core – as the values discarded are long gone – and yet another grand search for self – like the search for god – must begin.

So I consider my soon to be 3 year old daughter – the single most awakening creature/event in my life so far – and I am confronted with not only the questions of what will I be able to offer her – but also, what more will I be able to offer myself? Can I find enough of myself to launch a true offensive against this monstrosity of a social system in order to present some true alternative to my daughter?  How will I manage to erect a loving, competent, benevolent, sincere and above all, truly honest frame for her to eventually plunge herself into this abyss?

Do you REALLY give a damn yet yourself? Have you – dear American brother or sister – yet really looked into the forces that compel you to see if they are really of your own making? Please comment.

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2 Responses to Do you REALLY give a Damn yet?

  1. Kelli says:

    My whole life has been a life. Everything I did and said was controlled by the establishment (unconsciously).
    I wish my life was as exciting as your life. But its so hard to get over the fear of going out there and really making a difference. I’m such a passive-aggressive.

    • daiaravi says:

      First you have to realize that when all is said and done – it will not matter an iota what “other people think” – not family, not friends – no-one – the quest and finding of “self” will change your whole outlook anyway – and your whole frame of reference, circle of acquaintances etc etc. It does mean being brave enough to “go for it” whatever “it” is –

      but look at it this way – if YOU don’t go for your life, your experiences, your discoveries, – who else is going to give them to you?

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