Modern day pacifiers / by kevin murray

In modern society, and especially in all those established and stable nations, in which the population in whole is provided with enough food, energy, and shelter, in addition to not being compelled to labor from sunup until sundown, seven days a week, there are going to be a plentitude of leisure hours, of which, those people are free for the most part to do other things that they desire to do or to become involved in activities that appeal to them, or just about anything, worthy or not, and engaging or not.


On the one hand this seems great, and in fact, there are plenty of editorials about people in general, needing even more leisure time, though it does seem that never have so many had so much free time as what is seen in today's society; especially, in consideration that au contraire the history of mankind has often been a history of very hard work and drudgery for the masses, just in order to keep their heads above water, with nary an escape from such dreadful toiling.


One might think that with all that free time on their hands, for those that truly have such, that most people would be very diligent about doing the sorts of activities that they find satisfaction in; perhaps in volunteering, or learning, or congregating with others of like-mindedness, or meaningful social activities, or spending time with family and friends, and so on.  Now, no doubt, some of those people aren't able to do as much as they would like to do because of financial limitations, or health issues, or other assorted problems, but there are plenty of activities such as hiking, community events, and many other socializing events, that really don't cost a dime and typically are readily available for most everyone.


The thing is that despite all of these good choices that are feasible, many people, are quite satisfied to spend instead, inordinate amounts of time in pacifying activities, that require no real energy, no real commitment, and not much thinking, such as watching mindless television shows, or movies, or endlessly posting on social media, or ceaselessly swiping left or right or up or down on their cell phone, or just engaging in everyday gossip of all sorts. 


The thing about these types of activities, is that when distilled down to their true essence, they are basically time wasters, of no real merit and of no real value, signifying that those that indulge with them to no end, aren't improving their minds, aren't improving their society, and aren't improving much of anything, and are instead behaving much like a little baby sucking relentlessly upon their pacifier, using these mindless activities as their pacifier to keep themselves calm and quiescent.


The real things of merit and value in this society require active participation as well as concerted energy and drive.  While one can be sympathetic to all those that have worked very hard and just need some time to wind down at the conclusion of their day; that is completely different from those that seemingly can't habitually figure out anything of substance to do, so they then devalue time by spending it mindlessly on passive activities that require no forethought, no afterthought, and really not much thought at all, never bothering to comprehend that all those that are content to do nothing, become nothing, though they could have become all so much more.