I’ve got this ache today. It’s the sinking feeling that I’m a forgotten cog in a well-oiled machine, or just that I’ve been had.
Is there anybody else who wants out?
Outside at night where I live in an ordinary middle class suburb, the whole street is dark except the television lights flickering in each house. It’s that listless silvery light of a room filled with hypnotism. People sit inside those houses with nerves so frayed from dismal hours of mind-numbing work at bad jobs that to concentrate on anything other than the television is too demanding.
Like machine gun fire, they get a steady stream of war, murder, school shootings, bombings, robberies, beatings, political red-herrings, and what we have lately: a ridiculous presidential candidate who clownishly spews bile from a mouth like an aqueduct.
Most of the USA, especially the exhausted middle class, is hooked up to this spookishly turbulent world of entertainment, to such an extent that night after night the real world fades away like a vapor – and then, poof, it’s gone for good!
The viewers, too sleepy to be aware of it, undergo a barrage of insults: They’re too fat and ugly. They’re too stupid. They’re powerless to do anything. They need to be wary of strangers at risk of death.
The demeaning messages creep up at first from the periphery of their vision like a vampire devising mental trickery with its long, shadowy fingers.
A strange, unsettling world begins to take shape. The fat, ugly, stupid, powerless, frightened viewers then observe on the screen a world where people appear to constantly murder, rob, and generally attack each other as if they’re at war with each other in every way imaginable night and day.
Eventually, the people watching are mesmerized. a fiction seeps into their minds, deep down into their emotional lives, and they become so afraid of each other that they don’t want to participate in life anymore. They want to withdraw, comfortably alone, and remain isolated.
Thenceforth, they aren’t much of a match for anything, much less a match that could take on the corrupted system that has been loosened everywhere lately. How long has the monster been unleashed now? At the zenith of the USA’s political power, the USA seems to have decided to delight in profit at the expense of humanity – a great waste – and the monster began to stomp, like a Godzilla wrecking through foreign lands.
The people are tired. They’re hooked up to the screens in their living rooms. They have little to no chance of gathering together in support of a cause if only out of a debilitating fear of one another.
Picture someone standing in your living room night after night, saying to you in a snide voice: You’re stupid. You’re fat. You’re ugly. You’re worthless. Nobody is ever going to love you. But be careful, if you meet a stranger, they might kill you. Don’t trust anyone. People are violent. People only care about themselves. People will hurt you. We’ll make sure we keep you safe from them. We’ll keep you safe from the whole world. All you have to do is work and raise a family of hard workers and listen to me, night after night.
Imagine the impossibility of someone subjected to that for a lifetime actually having the strength to make a difference in the world.
The nondescript screen emits images. The sleep-inducing box presents fictional scenes from a fictional world that replaces reality with an ugly narrative. Albeit, eventually the one believed to be outside the living room window.
But it’s not. It’s a fiction.
An artificial world, and nothing more, is created inside people’s minds by the screen: People are cruel, people just want to hurt you, people can’t be trusted. You’re fat, ugly, unwanted, unloved. You consume goods, make money to buy things, go and be a hard worker, raise hard workers – and that’s it! Bam! End of story! You’re dead!
The city streets have begun to look more and more like a great, long, dismal funeral procession. The people are terrified of looking into one anothers’ eyes. They look away as if a panic might take hold of them if contact is made with one of the potentially life-threatening strangers.
These boxes in almost every living room, which emit light and images, are propaganda-laced. They hold everything in place, just as it was last year. The people are hooked up to a drip filled with opiates so they can bear the night and make it through tomorrow: another mind-numbing day in an office where everyone hates their existence, their job, and the strange feeling that came over them last night in bed, the feeling that something was terribly wrong.
But the damage is done. Almost nothing is left but the inevitable zombie stare that addicts have. Almost nothing is left but the zombie stare that hints at the completely disintegrated personality within.
The propaganda-laced screens, the drip filled with opiates, the drugs are like warfare, and if they don’t leave the body at a young enough age the victims end up with half-eaten brains and a pathetic imbecile sits there, blood coming out the ears as if a beating had taken place. They become weak, passive, apathetic. All of which makes it easier to slip the drugs to the next generation.
Next time you see the stars, look up. Wonder how far space goes; it goes on nearly infinitely; and feel that sense of miraculousness in being here. Count an infinity of stars in your mind. The universe and the natural world are in a constant state of undress awaiting the world’s lovers to notice their beauty. Fill yourself with awe, amazement. Get into a tender mood. Then look at strangers.
People everywhere on earth are on a tiny rock in the middle of space, in the middle of nowhere, yet with brains, blood, cells that are all alive. They’re made of stardust from billions of years ago, and made from atoms as old as the beginning of time.
Every atom in your being belongs to the beginning of the universe. It was born there. It has existed for a countless length of time in space. Now it’s in you, your body, your mind, your thoughts. We are in fact alive like something surreal, something magnificently windswept, something far more powerful and gorgeous than we’ve been led on to believe.
And wonder: With the state of affairs in the world as it is, shouldn’t we teach at every opportunity the feeling that there is, on final analysis, something else to life, something more to a person?
Not fat. Ugly. Stupid. Powerless. Fearful. Depressed. Broken. Dead.
People are so very low they don’t know how to stand up anymore. They’re lying down. They’re beaten, nearly all of them.
Bring it out into the open: your true self, your real face, your beating heart, your love, your benevolence, your empathy, your humanity, the stuff that exists at such a deep level that you and you alone know it’s there. That stuff. That’s what we’re made of. You know what it is.
Give it away. Give that to the depressed, the worn, the broken, the powerless, the frightened, the sad, the wounded, the floundering, the dissidents who have just begun to flash those stardust eyelashes open.
Bring them up to bring the monster crashing down, for good. The madness in the modern world is due to the people being swindled, hustled like a sugar dealer on the street would hustle an addict. Unblock the doors, climb to the apex, break through to the extremity of existence. Do whatever needs to be done.
Godzilla is stomping. Destroy all monsters.
Cliff Gogh’s books available here