Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Hope for our world?

Last night, I was very depressed. For a few days now, I have been feeling down. All of the negativity I have been exposed to was just too much for me. I turn on the news and there’s death, murder, violence and hate. I open the newspaper and there’s a ton of bad stuff going on. I get on the computer and people share links to a child being murdered, another ISIS attack somewhere in which thousands of people were slain/beheaded or something about government corruption (the poor getting poorer, the sick getting sicker and the hungry getting hungrier). It doesn’t help that I recently read a true crime book in which people killed a young, innocent girl and basically walked free after serving time. (After I finished reading that book, I lost all hope in humanity. I was so upset and outraged. I guess people can get away with murder now!)

And even with politics, there’s so much hatred and violence going around. Even candidates encouraging people to be violent or hateful towards our fellow human beings. They WANT religion to divide us. They WANT race to divide us. They WANT our nationality to divide us. They are not interested in bringing people together, only in dividing them and encouraging them to adopt the same hateful, discriminating mindset they have. I have grown disgusted with politics because of all the lying, hypocrisy and selfish agendas in every single politician.

It was just too much. Of course, I was also upset about my own personal problems, but I’m not going to get into that.

The world is a huge gigantic mess. It is all so messed up. I have written a book of poems about the negative things in this world and it was hard to write because it made my heart hurt so much.

So I was really upset about it all. And I have just given up hope for the world. I have given up ON the world entirely.

But then I had a dream last night. And to some people, maybe it didn’t mean anything, but it meant something to me.

In the dream, I saw different images of different parts of the world. And during that entire montage, I heard Gene Wilder singing part of that song he sang in Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory: “If you want a view of paradise, simply look around and view it. If you want to, do it. Want to change the world, there’s nothing to it.”

Now I realize that song is about being creative and using your imagination to make your dreams come true. It’s also about believing in yourself to accomplish your dreams.

However, given my recent depressive episode, I saw the lines of that song differently. I interpreted them differently.

As so:

“If you want a view of paradise, simply look around and view it.”

This basically means if you are not happy with the state of things, have a clear idea of how you want them to be – what kind of changes you want to make – and keep that as your focus as you work to try to make it happen.

“If you want to, do it.”

I know one person cannot change the world. And with so much bad stuff going on in the world, it may seem overwhelming. Like nobody will care if you do something GOOD for the world or for people. Or it won’t make much difference.

Do it, anyway. It’s enough that you want to. Volunteer at a soup kitchen, donate to a food service for the poor, help the unfortunate, start a program that helps the homeless. If you want to do it, then do it!

“Want to change the world, there’s nothing to it.”

What this line said to me is that it can be the simplest thing that could make a positive difference in the world. Some people may think, “Oh, I’m not smart enough. I need money. I can’t do it alone. I don’t know where to start.” Etc. But really, it’s not that complicated to make a difference. Do a random act of kindness like paying for someone’s lunch or holding a door open for someone. Spread the word about a lost dog or share information about a missing child. The littlest and simplest things can make a positive difference.

Used to be I’d get so upset over the horrible state of our world that I would pray for it. Just pray for the world. But now I know I can take action and do things, too. Positive things. Things that can make a difference. It may not seem like much and I am only one person, but I think if we put more good things out there in the world, all of the bad things will not seem as terrible anymore.


Millie said...

This reminds me of why I try to avoid reading/watching or paying attention to the news of all the murders and violence that go on everyday. I know it happens, it happens everywhere. And a lot of the times the media picks and chooses what they find to be "important" enough to share. It's best not to dwell or give life to the negativity and hate out there in the world. We all have enough of our own problems that we deal with everyday, that is hard enough. We can pitch in and do what we can as good samaritans and create positive good karma. That's what we should breathe life into. Trying to work out our own lives and destinies, and if we see an opportunity to reach out a helping hand we should. That is what I believe. And as a mom I suppose you can just show your kids the way of trying to do good in the world and not becoming part of the problem that society is today. You see the bigger lessons in life and know more than they do so you are their true guide. And I agree with the random act of kindness that you spoke about, it's really not that hard. You never know what someone could be struggling with.

Dawn Wilson said...

Yes, that is true. And thank you for commenting. Sorry for the delayed reply. I just haven't had the chance to really sit down and type my response! Ever since I wrote this blog post, I have been making an extra effort in trying to do something good for others and also the random acts of kindness. The news has gotten really bad these days. They only want to publish or talk about the bad things or the "sensationalist" kind of news because they think that is what will keep viewers or readers. Wrong! I just want to know what's going on in the world and not just the bad things. But it's like that's all they want to share these days. That is one of the reasons why I left journalism. And if not reading the news means being out of touch with the world, so be it. I do try to set a good example for my kids and hopefully they will follow in my footsteps. Unfortunately, I cannot shield them from all of the bad things going on in the world, but I can be there for them to talk and also to help them understand why things happen. And you know, with today being 9/11, I remember how I was pregnant with Jennifer while I watched those towers go down on the news. It was horrible! I remember being terrified of bringing an innocent baby into this world that is so full of evil and terrorism. One of my friends said maybe she'll do something good for this world and hopefully be the one to make a huge difference for people who are suffering or dying. I hope so. I hope both of my kids will.