The Dramatic Shift
I’ve come to notice our world is shifting in how it uses language and what it defines as truth. Present day mentality concerning our identity as individuals (formerly mankind, which emphasizes plurality) is we should all be accepted for who we are, our beliefs should be tolerated and the world needs to change to suit us. This would be an excellent mentality if every individual were the same, but we live in a world where we all have unique traits, qualities and characteristics that make us special. This idea of absolute tolerance and acceptance doesn’t encourage self-improvement as much as it encourages self-promotion and the desperate fight for our personal rights.
To an extent, I agree with human rights. I like the idea that no matter who you are you have the basic human right to food, a home, clothes, running water, a job, kindness and respect. But over here in the developed world we have taken this fight for rights to an extreme level. As a culture we have been so bombarded by new labels that allow us to define or redefine ourselves, despite our previous understandings of self, our biological makeup and despite the age-old definitions of marriage, family and gender roles. We have manipulated rights so certain groups’ rights come before another’s. This new abuse of language has confused our generation and is distracting us from what makes life full of meaning, purpose and value.
Instead of striving toward achieving goals, which would lead us to a bright future, we focus on living in the moment without regard for consequence. The particular area I want to discuss is the goal of self-improvement. It has all been but demolished from our society’s values.
What we believe is fundamental to how we define ourselves. If you believe you are worthless, you will live a life of hesitation, regret, disappointment, avoidance and insecurity. On the contrary, if you believe you are valuable you will live a life of careful decision making, hope, willingness, goal setting and achievements. And here is where the problem lies: we don’t believe in the things we used to. Many people of present day society have abandoned traditional thought and have been sucked into trendy and vague progressive ideals. As a result, we care more about what we look like, what we have, and what we (supposedly) deserve, than what we are responsible for, and what impact we have on others.
Being Responsible for More than Ourselves
Responsibility is a huge aspect of society that is slipping between the cracks of so-called “rights.” Instead of being responsible for the well-being of others, we fight for what we think is best for ourselves… it’s selfish. Relationships are often perceived as a place where we can have our needs fulfilled, instead of a place where we enter a lifelong commitment with a mutual purpose, grounded in love. Child raising is viewed by some adults in their 20s and 30s as a burden beside their career or personal goals, instead of a life changing opportunity and calling to parent. Our lack of contentment with the money we make for the work we do has made us ungrateful and bitter despite the fact that we live in the wealthiest part of the world. We are so focused on making life good for ourselves… why? I think one reason is because we have forgotten that our lives are temporary. We have too many comforts in the physical state of our life, and now the progressive agenda is to make us comfortable in our ego so we forget about death and consequence and live lives without accountability.
Be Accountable to Ourselves and Others
I believe when we take the time to look at ourselves honestly, or accept criticism from others as a genuine perception of ourselves, we can find ways to solve those problems and rise above them. If we do away with the distractions of entertaining news, trends and social media and focus on our responsibilities as people the world will change. Isn’t that what we want? Sharing our opinions online doesn’t make much difference but being an example to the people we interact with makes a big one. And that can’t happen until we learn to be accountable.