Sometime around the year 2007, before the big crash, I remember sitting in Rubio’s restaurant, waiting for the take out order. As I sat, I was watching the faces come into the door, face watching being one of my hobbies. To a person, the faces had a look of entitlement on them, and also a color of anger. And they all looked slightly arrogant. It would’ve been funny if it wasn’t so sad.
I have noticed this at other times, when I have a chance to stop and observe the faces and body language of people around. What has happened to Americans? In the old days, Americans were world renowned for being totally sharp, savvy, and bright-eyed.
But it is more than just about being sharp. There was something void in the spirit of those people I was observing. What happened to the spirit of the Americans from the days of our founding? Old George Washington was to have said, “There is something different about the American Christian that sets him apart from all others, in that he will die on his feet before he will live on his knees.”
And you see, I think Americans are still quite sharp in some ways, it is just that the former ideals got slowly morphed into a distorted reflection of what they were in former times. This country was founded on high ideals. This was one of the first times in human history that our kind of government was tried. And have you ever tried to read anything written in those days? Go check out George Washington’s farewell address. It is almost indecipherable today. How did those guys become such deep thinkers?
Perhaps it was the ideals that fired them. And, maybe the ideals of our country actually still live on, which is why I saw, it seemed, half the town where I lived out for the fireworks this year (but do they really know the story that inspired the star-spangled banner – our national anthem? No, I don’t think they really do, but more on that at a later time).
But if those ideals live on as a symbol in the mind, perhaps what has been attached to that symbol to fulFILL those ideals has been slowly changed, through years of a degraded school system, and massive quantities of TV. So the ways we think, and the things we tend to pursue through the old symbols are of a entirely different kind now.
Perhaps that is it. Perhaps those supplanted ideals can’t really light the eye, the way the old ones did. So what is to be done? Well I don’t know about you, but I refuse to just be assimilated. And the first bastion is how I attempt to organize my affairs emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually.
A change back to empowerment from true ideals might seem almost impossible now, where, for example, we could live our lives as though directed from a higher reality, instead of blindly adapting to increasingly difficult changes around us. Where we’d realize that everything we do will affect those to come, and we could become proud of our legacy.
It is sometimes difficult in today’s world to believe that people could live like that again. For as one of my friends is fond of telling me, “there’s nothing I can DO about anything right now Andrew!” But what if it was all actually simpler than it seemed?
What if it was simply a matter of learning to shift our point of reference and orientation back to what would light our eyes again? What could be better than living for something higher, in the way we once used to do, and which we still pay our respects to, during holidays such as the 4th of July?