Comfort. It’s such a simple word. Something sought after, craved, and even worshiped by some. We’re not sufficiently warned of the dangers of over seeking comfort, in America. At least not in my opinion. When I think of comfort, I imagine a soft blanket fresh from the dryer. Or my bed (which is extremely comfy despite my habit of avoiding it.) Then I picture Admiral Ackbar shouting, “It’s a trap!” Life taught me not to strive for comfort because it makes me weaken. I’m strong. Strong will, experience, and character. I’m proud of my strength. I earned every muscle, (figuratively and literally.)
When I see so many who seek comfort in all things, to an obsessive degree, I wonder why anyone would deliberately disable their own potential. An example somewhere with a pleasant climate: You’re given the task of transporting yourself to Location Alpha. You get to pick either Option 1: Chauffered there in a new Lincoln Navigator or Option 2: Walking, using a wheelchair, or biking, etc. I’m sure most humans would find riding in a luxury vehicle more comfortable. However, one choice leads to comfort, the other to strength. The latter is a decision to use your own mobility and skills. Option 2 requires active participation, which is how we gain experience in life.
Those who habitually choose the more comfortable road in life are easy to identify. The person who is weak in ways surprising in an adult, for instance. 45 is an example. He’s thin skinned because of his choices. He’s 70 years old, yet has virtually no character or life skills, (lying doesn’t count.) He’s weak and fragile because he refuses to be uncomfortable. He lives for ease, comfort, and image. I can’t fathom what he wouldn’t do to maintain his three obsessions. He doesn’t know how to exist without all three.
In a way, I’m impressed anyone can live on earth in such a pathetic, weakened state. I view it as walking on a mine field without realizing you’re walking on a mine field. It could possibly be ballsy if you knew, but you don’t know. So it’s just foolish and will probably end in tears. It makes me cringe and feel baffled. Why are so many people determined, not only to self-destruct but also damage the lives of others? Who the fuck gives anyone the right to trespass in the life of a separate living being? Such audacity.
When children state they hope to be rich when they grow up, it’s cute because they don’t have much life experience. When adults do it, it’s just embarrassing. Right up there with stating you want to be a junkie, folks. You think you want to obsessively hoard a tool allegedly able to provide joy and safety on our violent planet. In reality, you probably don’t understand where happiness comes from, and haven’t experienced enough to recognize safety doesn’t exist for the living. We survive, or we don’t.
We’re still far too short-sighted to survive for long. We’re at the top of the food chain and are nearly the top predator on this planet. (We’ll probably never out predator virii, but not from lack of trying.) Unfortunately, we prey on our own species. And the number one reason to kill our own kind is greed. The desire for increased comfort, ease, and image. Lots of money will get you all three. But all three are things you can lose in an instant. You can’t buy everything. The strength of will, character, and compassion are acquired through effort, contemplative thought, and experience, not purchase.
Money is a tool. (I’m going to try another analogy.) Excessive wealth is like ice cream. Many think it’s delicious, but few eat it exclusively to survive, (for obvious reasons.) Food is a tool to acquire nutrition. If you consume food excessively, or too little, and/or pick foods with little nutritional value, you defeat the purpose of using nutrition to survive. You’re doing it wrong. It’s the same with money. If you’re using it as a sole means of surviving in this world, it’s like you’re suffering from malnutrition.
I believe it’s wisest to develop skills, character, and to experience life as fully (and honestly) as you’re able. It’s a less simple path in life than lying, cheating, and stealing your way through (like 45), but it leads to strength, not self-inflicted pathetic. Strength is more reliable. Banks don’t repossess life experience, skills, education, etc. It’s harder to rob someone of their strength than their money. The Stock Market Swamp has no power over your character. Choices are a joystick allowing some semblance of control in life. Make them wisely (and diversify your survival portfolio.) I’m off to continue enjoying Perdido Street Station, by China Mièville.