Went into the bank this week to pay a bill… Couldn’t do it on line, because I don’t have a gizmo known as a ‘card reader’. As I waited in the queue for Information, a young lady came over and asked if she could help. I explained what I wanted, and she beckoned me to follow. We sat together by a computer, and within a couple of minutes the payment was made. She asked me if there was anything else she could do to help. I suggested she might like to type a couple more zeros onto my account – would be dead easy I said, no one would know! She laughed – probably heard it a million times.
After that she told me how she lives right by the beach. I said that must be wonderful – how great to be able to stroll out in the evening after work and have a walk by the sea! How special to have such freedom close by! ‘Oh no!’, she said. ‘We never do that – we just go straight home and lock the door’. She told me she is very security conscious. I told her I have nothing to steal. She said she was more worried about her personal safety. She said she and her partner are saving to buy their own house too. They don’t have time to go for walks, or do anything much together at all ‘We work all hours’ she said.
How bloody sad is that? I mean… really, really sad. Too scared to go out, no time to go out, no knowledge of a meaning for life other than working all day, every day, to get something… sometime… but never living now. This woman works in artificially lit, air conditioned offices, bombarded by electro-magnetic frequencies, and she never gets to breathe the fresh air off the sea. Does she ever watch the sun go down, or hear the gulls cry as a storm blows in? Does she ever feel the shiver of life as spray hits her face when the breakers crash on the shore, or sink her toes into warm sand and laugh – just because she can?
What has happened to humanity? How did we become so disconnected? When did we shut the door on Life and the natural world, and give ourselves up to an existence chained forever to a false sense of security that never comes?
We have given up our freedom, given up our living, breathing, vibrant life, just because we have forgotten who we are. We spend our days in our heads, thinking and thinking the same stress-filled thoughts over and over again. We never get a break. It is a madness, a sickness of the mind. We are in a deep, deep sleep – and all the time we think we are awake.
Life never stops. It goes on and on and on, in a never ending now. We miss all of it – all the magic and all the wonder – just because we do not allow ourselves to experience life in the now… we are lost in the dream of all our yesterdays, and tomorrows that will never come.
‘What is this life, if full of care, we have no time to stand and stare…’