Much in line with my last post, I have been feeling quite dissatisfied lately. I wonder what life is supposed to be, and why I am so unhappy simply being content, living The American Dream. Is there nothing more? We’re we born to simply work our days away, constantly counting down until that next weekend finally arrives?
The American Dream is belief in the freedom that allows all citizens and residents of the United States to pursue their goals in life through hard work. Today, it often refers to one’s material prosperity, which is dependent upon one’s abilities and work ethic, and not on a rigid class structure.
Although the phrase’s meaning has evolved over the course of American history, for some people, it is the opportunity to achieve greater material prosperity than was possible in their countries of origin. For others it is the opportunity for their children to grow up and receive an education and its consequent career opportunities. It is the opportunity to make individual choices without the restrictions of class, caste, religion, race, or ethnic group.
To me, this is not a dream. Perhaps if you come from another country where you have been previously oppressed, the life I live would seem like paradise. Perhaps, I am just a spoiled brat who can’t accept that the life he has is actually quite good. No matter how you want to label me, I think the American Dream sucks, and I think it is an illusion.
So what is the modern american dream? I would summarize it as saying:
To live in America, in a nice housing development, with two kids, a dog, a cat, and a heaping mound of debt. To work at a job you barely enjoy, to make money, so that you can spend it on shit you don’t need. Hope that you can afford to put your kids through college so they can live the same life you did. Retire, and actually start to enjoy your life, once you’re almost 70 fucking years old. Then die in a retirement home because your selfish kids didn’t want to deal with you.
I am just a ray of sunshine aren’t I? But seriously, boiled down, this is the modern American Dream. This is what the lucky members of our society are living. Not to discount the fact that in reality, I know I have it pretty damn good. It’s just that, living life should be what you want it to be, it should be enjoyable. That’s the point, right?
This is where I am. Should be enjoyable. Without sounding too emo and suicidal about the whole thing, I can make an analogy. If you are reading a book, and you don’t like it, do you continue reading it? If you are playing a game, and it’s not fun, do you continue playing it? If you are with a girl, and you are unhappy, do you stay with her? The answer to all of the above questions is clearly, no. So then, how come if you are living a life you hate, it is unacceptable to simply quit life? Suicide is obviously a bad idea, it is the most selfish act one can commit. I am not suggesting anyone do it, nor would I ever do it. I am simply posing the question – Why is it so unacceptable?
How can I find Joy in my life?