Apathy. It astounds me. It’s everywhere, in every mind and every soul. Never have I felt more concerned for the future of humanity. Now, I know I haven’t lived long enough to make such observations… but isn’t youth supposed to be the flaming torch of uncontained passions that will push humanity to its next leap? Aren’t we supposed to be the dreamers? The idealists? The crazy ones?
Yet, everywhere I look, I find apathy. Apathy in older people doesn’t scare me as much as apathy in the eyes of youth. Apathy in my generation. Apathy within myself. There is nothing I abhor and fear more than this. I hope you, dear reader, are not overcome by apathy, for it is the most dreadful of defeats. The death of a human heart lies not in hatred, but in nothingness. Once your mind stops searching and you stop feeling, when your emotions freeze and crystalize inside your soul, once your dreams turn to dust and your can’s turn to cant’s… That is death. I feel like I am surrounded by death. Could this be the true zombie apocalypse? Is this it? The death of progress?
Is there nothing out there, dear reader, which makes you want to laugh out loud? Cry until you run out of tears? Speak up? Shout out loud? Punch someone? Change the world?
Is changing the world a ridiculous notion to you?
Let me ask you something, if it is not you, if it is not me… who is going to change the world? You know it needs changing, don’t you? But if none of us feel like we’re up to the task… then who will do it?
This life is all you have. This very moment is all that exists or ever will exist; the past is a memory and the future is uncertain. Are you spending your time wisely? When you look back on this day… what will make it remarkable? “Oh, but it is only one day in my life” you say.
What makes you so sure that you will have time to do whatever it is that you must do with your life? I’ve never seen such guarantee, signed by the very hand of your God of choice. Never, because there is no such thing. You could die tomorrow. You could die now.
Actually, if you want to be a fatalist, you’re dying right now. Each moment that passes brings you closer to the day of your death. After that, no one knows what happens.
Why on Earth would you waste your time? Time is all you have. You can do amazing things with it. It’s time to do it, because maybe you will not see the Sun rising tomorrow. Or even worse, maybe you will live to a hundred… and realize that you’ve done absolutely nothing of worth in your life. Is this what you want?
And please, do not for a moment think that money is the answer here. No matter how much money you earn throughout your life, it will not bring you happiness or peace. Money is just an object, and a fruitful life is never one tied to mere objects. There has to be a final objective, a mission, a plan… Which is yours? How will you change the world? Will you leave your mark or will the world never know of your existence? Will it be like you never even existed?
Yes, you might call me crazy all you like. In truth, I question my own sanity all the time. But see, here is the thing: I believe I can achieve great things. I believe I can change the world for the better, and I believe that when I’m old and wrinkled, I will be able to look back on my life and realize that it was all worth it. Being an outcast. Being ridiculed for thinking too much, as if thinking was some sort of flaw. The sleepless nights, spent writing quietly. The tears that had no explanation. The irrational feeling of a flame inside my heart. I know it will all be worth it, and that by the end of my life, I will be satisfied by what I accomplished. The thing is, I want a better world. I desperately want it, and I am determined to fight for it, whatever the cost.
I know my life is just one amongst billions, that my words may be lost in the wind, my thoughts buried forever. But even if I don’t succeed, I have to try. I will not spend my life following a path that has been set out for me, just mindlessly living every day with a boring routine that will lead me nowhere. Every path, eventually, leads us to our death. It is inevitable. So why, oh goodness why, would I follow the path that society has assigned me? I think it is time for all of us to realize that we can do whatever it is we want with our lives. You don’t have to go to school, then college, then have a boyfriend/girlfriend, then get married, get a job, have kids, grandkids, grow old and die. You can do that, of course, if it is what you want… but is it really what you want? This is the great question: Above everything else, what do you want to accomplish in your life? What is the point of your existence?
I think it is time for us to realize just what great power lies within us. It is time to wake up and destroy apathy, for it is killing us all. It is time to ask the important questions.
It’s time to wake up.
Original art by Canisloopus.