We Got It Backwards

September 27, 2012

“I can’t think of what I want!” the young woman sitting before me exclaimed, “I have no time for this, I have to work, I have to make money! You don’t understand — I have to do all it takes just to survive!”

She didn’t speak, she exclaimed with passion and fervor. And desperation. I cringed at the desperation. I cringed at the world this woman lived in – a cruel, harsh place where one has to fight just to live, just to eat. A scary, dangerous place. A place where one has no leisure to be oneself. To think oneself. To take care of oneself.

“Yes, that is the world as we, humans, see it,” I thought, “but that is not the world as I know it.”

What if it is not the world that is wrong, but our perception of it? What if we got it backwards? What if it’s not hard work, sacrifices and obstacles we overcame that give us the freedom to consider and enjoy our happiness. What if it is our happiness that creates life full of freedom?

What if it’s not all the money we made that gives us the space to ask: what is it that I want? What if it is our knowing what we want that brings us wealth, abundance, money?

What if the world is not a hard, scary place that has to be survived, but a beautiful playground that is meant to be enjoyed?

What if the pervasive unhappiness and desperation that plagues human societies is not caused by the cruel world, but by our misunderstanding of it? By our misunderstanding of ourselves?

What if we got it all backwards?

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