“Optimism is a political act. You have to act as if it were possible to radically transform the world. And you have to do it all the time.”
From the moment we are born, we are taught often to view each other as fundamentally flawed objects. Humans have committed a great sin and that is why we are preordained to live a life of misery. We are taught to accept what is given to us because it is just the state of affairs, it is just the status quo. Humans are horrible, we can’t improve, therefore, we see no point in questioning the current world order. It’s meant to be this way. A divine being has cursed the plight of famine upon us, Such goes the narrative of superstition. “Karma”, “law of natural attraction”, “doctrine of original sin”, “fate”, call it whatever you want to. Humans are determined to hate themselves, to view themselves as broken shells of inferiority complex-laden holes. Taking accountability for your actions is seen as a joke because humans have no free will. This is the grand mindset of people who are mentally enslaved to a system of inequality.
Cynicism is obedience, Those who benefit from the status quo are perfectly happy to let the common people think nothing is ever going to change. As the privileged enjoy their luxurious lives, the peasants live through wage slavery and are habitually taught to accept this as an unchanging reality. They’ll be told that expecting more is impractical, standing up for yourself is impractical. The same ordeal can be noticed in the world of gender. Women are taught to accept abuse. Men are the natural oppressors. If a woman is abused, she is told, “Men are like that” or worse “boys will be boys”, as if men are biologically obligated to participate in violence. Through essentialism, we are taught that the trauma we experience is normal and unavoidable, even if the factors leading up to the debacle could have been intervened with.
The hierarchy was created by humans. The conception of science created all people on this earth equal to each other. When humans gradually created a feudal class society, people who were able to thrive bubbled to the top while those who weren’t as fortunate fell to the bottom and became undesirable; Humans created this mess, and it was all preventable. Oppression is a process that can be halted, we just need education and awareness. Suffering is not the natural order of this universe. The universe loves humans. We reach for the stars on cold winter nights even though we know our arms could never find those balls of light, they tell us we are small ants among the universe. Still, our arms are outstretched. This is the meaning of optimism. All our systems are social constructs. They can be overthrown.
We work all day to get paid the very same, walk home and doze off in our beds. So much to question and learn about in this world and we don’t even crack the surface of it, and all because it does not help the daily agenda. We’re scared of what we will learn if we open up a book and dare to ask for more, to not settle for this meaningless life. Those who demand freedom are declared delusional dreamers and cast away from society. We don’t want to be like them and cause an unnecessary spectacle. Yet, how else will we find happiness and ambition? If we are chasing goals we have no interest in, if they won’t functionally make us happy? Wake up. Time to dare to dream of a world in which suffering and misery do not exist. Not exactly a utopia, but a world where we care for each other, In which there is a sense of togetherness.
The possibilities of this universe are endless. Our bodies are capable of miracles. Every part has a unique function and a role to play in making the entire machine run. We are capable of so much more than the way the world is currently set up. When we assume that this is just the way the world is, and don’t demand more, we are looking down upon ourselves. It is a form of pessimism to suggest that we are not capable of change, of forming benevolent and loving societies. People have to motivate themselves. What does YOUR idea of a better society look like? It can happen. Be the change. Radical positivity, comradery. Until and unless you put in the first steps, we will not get anywhere.
Society is temporary. Hope is immortal.