Have you ever sat around and wondered why people actually desire to live in some form of a post-apocalyptic world or reality? Why are we driven to movies and novels and stories about a world gone mad and decimated by disease, virus, or artificial intelligence taking over? Box office stories tell us of the big earthquake, the melting ice cap, the volcanic eruption, or the nuclear holocaust, and we lap up the scenarios of destruction with glee as the popcorn butter drips from our salivating mouths.
The reason people love these scenarios of Armageddon is it gives them an opportunity to justify their own sense of inadequacy. Wouldn’t it be great if we could all just start over? Hit reset?
We live in a day and age where people do not have any sense of purpose or identity and therefore they have a strong feeling of insignificance. They hate the world around them which has never given them the opportunity to shine and therefore, by default, they hate all the people around them as well. The sense of being victimized by the big bad world is too much to handle. They feel if they could just hit the reset button they would finally get noticed and have the opportunity to shine the next time around.
If you feel like your story isn’t living up to all you’d hoped for then just blow it up and start over, right? If the people around you don’t serve to validate your existence then just kill them off and begin again.
These days we’ve inundated ourselves with gadgets and nonstop activities. The world is literally at our fingertips, but the world is not enough. When we are alone at night and the noise dies down we are left with ourselves and our selves are found temporal and lacking. We don’t like who we are and we don’t like where our life is headed. Deep inside of you is the longing and the knowledge that you were made for something more if only the world would cooperate. But it never seems to. So rather than roll up your sleeves and work hard to cultivate your world…in order to create an atmosphere and environment for successful well-being….we’d rather just burn it to the ground.
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In the world of mundane tax returns and holiday parties you dream of greatness and meaning. Kill the dragon. Save the girl. Find the treasure. Capture the flag.
It’s no wonder that the world at large has embraced this pandemic and all of the talisman that go with it. Whether it’s the virtue signaling of social distancing or the religious fervor of masking your face, to the screaming rampage that everyone must be vaccinated, we’ve created a rabid lifestyle centered around a virus. We now find our identity in COVID and it’s variants. Death numbers roll across our television screens like stock market tickers. We’ve finally gotten our end of the world scenario. Deep inside you revel at the thought of the impending doom of those non-conforming zombies at the gate. I am Legend.
A pandemic with a 99.8% survival rate and overall reduced death rates in 2021 are hardly script-worthy for the next summer blockbuster.
“In a world ruled by the dead, we are forced to finally start living.” – Robert Kirkman, author of The Walking Dead
We just love the idea of a real-world hard reset. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if suddenly, all the bad things went away, all the bad people die. The people that didn’t agree with you finally got what was coming to them? You’d finally be justified. The world starts all over again. Thus, whatever atrocities we have committed on this planet and on each other gets washed away in an instant.
“Counterphobia is the idea that we pursue what we are most afraid of in an attempt and effort to control anxiety over it. I think at some level, the fascination with the end of the world – whether a book or in movie form – gives us a way to control the uncontrollable, to master anxiety over death which is inescapable. For that reason, it provides us with a degree of comfort. If we can create the worst possible scenarios and close the book or walk out of the movie theatre, then we both expose ourselves to the worst possible scenario and we’ve mastered it at the same time.” – Dr. Lawrence Rubin
So consider this the next time you start to feel the rising angst of your own insignificance. Perhaps the hard reset doesn’t need to happen to the outside world around you. Perhaps….just perhaps…the reset needs to happen to the world INSIDE you. Renew your mind. Renew your sense of purpose. If you are having trouble then perhaps you need to ask the One that created you in the first place.
The world doesn’t have to end in order to have meaning. Stop seeking destruction. Seek life and learn to foster the same in those around you. Just a thought. Love y’all. – CP
PS – “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.” – Romans 12:2