Back To the Basics of Love
Life today can be tough; it can really bring one down. The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that each year approximately one million people die from suicide, which represents one death in every 40 seconds. Unfortunately, the social system we live in today can easily cause depression in both children and adults. Children aren't going to school to be taught about life in an entertaining and interesting way. Instead, children are being trained to simply maximise their future income (and their employer’s income). Creativity has been sucked out of education. All that’s left is temporarily memorizing certain facts in order to ace an exam. This process can be stressful as children aren’t playing, discovering and having fun like they should be. Instead, they are being forced to receive what we could call a training course in how to be a part of the capitalist system. When children become adults they are just as stressed because now they are doing a boring job, which they don't enjoy and which they often believe is pointless.
In a capitalist society it always seems like the richest people aren't doing the work, you are. However, they reap the economic rewards not you. Everybody is in pursuit of a happiness that is very difficult to attain. Advertising has led us to believe that if we work hard and buy new products we will be happy. However, no matter how hard we try, we never seem to be satisfied. Our cousin has the newest game console, our friend has a nice designer watch and the neighbour has bought another sports car. Because of advertising, no matter what we buy, we keep wanting more. It has tricked us into believing that we cannot be happy if we don’t own a wide range of material possessions which we continually need to upgrade. As a result, we keep working harder and harder in order to gain these possessions. As we work harder and harder, we forget what's really important: our relationships with people.
We are too busy to spend quality time with our children so we try to buy their affection. We come home, frustrated with our boss and we take it out on our spouse. We have no time to socialize with our neighbours and we can't even crack a smile when we cross paths on the stairway. We don’t exchange a simple “How are you?” because we just want to go home and relax, it’s been a long and trying day. Maybe it's time we get back to the basics of love.
What do I mean by that? I mean that we need to improve our interactions with other human beings. Both the quality and the quantity of interactions can improve. American comedian and social critic George Carlin said: “Property is theft. Nobody “owns” anything. When you die, it all stays here.” However, memories you create last forever. What really matters in life, is the interactions we have with others. One can witness the magic of life by simply sitting on a balcony drinking a coffee with a loved one and talking about memories and life. The warm feeling one gets from positive interaction with another human being cannot be substituted by any object. There is no doubt that we have a problem in this system. Do we have to return to the basics of love in order to change the system? Or do we have to change the system in order to return to the basics of love? No matter what your response to this dilemma, one thing is for certain. As country artist Waylon Jennings put it: "It's time we get back to the basics of love."