Is the world a shitty place?
Judging by Facebook, the local news, or by the conversations we hear at a cafe or on a bus, things aren’t good. Jenny feels screwed over by her phone company. That ‘other’ government is a threat to our national security. The crooked-toothed woman who smells of cat piss can’t understand why the city council hasn’t done anything about that pedestrian crossing down near the shops and if it was up to her she’d put in lights there so that the cars had to stop because it’s only a matter of time before… blah… blah… blah…
It’s oddly empowering to bitch about shit. One can sit back, relishing one’s own great wisdom, and when things do go amok, well… it’s exactly what you said would happen, but would anyone listen? No. You were too smart for them.
Do you feel better? Do you sleep soundly? Do you have peace? Hope?
The truth is, the world is pretty great. Yes, one can find plenty of evidence of human screw-uppery. But generally speaking, society has steadily grown better and more productive over the generations. Granted, we do tend to focus on statistics that reveal the great horrors of our age, but we do also mostly ignore the majority of statistics that show how much better things actually are.
But will studying statistics convince you that things aren’t actually too bad? Probably not.
The only way to change your point of view is… wait for it… to change your point of view.
Genius, I know.
But seriously, if you think the world is shit, all you will see is evidence that the world is shit.
If you choose to accept that there’s hope, life and love in the world, then you will start to see evidence of it. Is the shitty stuff still there? Yes. But will you become inspired, driven, empowered by the wonder and beauty of the world when you dare to see it? Also yes.
There is so much great wonder in the world, but we have become so focused on the shit that it becomes all we see. But if we don’t stop and appreciate the good, smile at the beautiful and share the joy of hope, we will slowly sink into the mire of a shitty viewpoint until our eyes are so full of filth we can no longer see any light.
So can we change the way we see the world? Yes. But it’s hard. It takes dedication and commitment. Why? Because we have spent many years of our life hard-wiring our brains to see the evidence we expect. It’s a slow transformation with many setbacks. It’s so easy to fall into a shitty world-view. But as for me, I do want to change. I want to see hope. I want to find love. I want to share joy.
So this is where I’m at. I’m choosing to slowly work at rewiring my brain. Not to ignore the shitty, but to stop overlooking the wonderful.
Hopefully, others will join me.