One of the things that I tend to be lacking in is emotional understanding. Because I believe that my emotions are inherently irrational, I try to control them in order to reach my goals, rather than satisfy them. This is not to say that emotion is intrinsically bad, this is simply my preference. (In fact, if everyone acted like me, I imagine the world would be very boring indeed.) This is why I was confused earlier today when I had a rather intense emotional experience.
I was contemplating the thought of kids, potentially my own kids in the future, and how they would interact with the world. What do I want for them? What kinds of desires will they have, and will I have to bravery to help inspire and teach them how to reach their goals? Can I be confident and bold for my kids in the future? I realize it’s almost certainly a long way off for me, but long term ideas are my favorite ones to contemplate, so I won’t really address that point. My thoughts involve the dreams of children.
One of the most endearing things about children, at least in my opinion, is that they dream. They dream big, wide, and in great depth and detail. They have desires that transcend the imaginations that adults tend to have. Some people dismiss these dreams as being impractical, silly, and childish. While it may be true, I admire the idea of childlike dreams. A desire for what isn’t there motivates people to do great things, and I find that to be inspiring. I was thinking how terribly sad it is when a parent has to tell their child that no, they cannot be Superman. You cannot fly. You cannot save the world. You cannot dream.
However, I came to the conclusion that this doesn’t have to be it. We can still dream, even as we lose our childhoods. We needn’t forget what we really want out of the world. Yes, the world is certainly quite sub optimal (a major understatement). It is just that lack of perfection, though, that gives us the drive we need to achieve our dreams, though. I imagine that I will experience my own set of disappointments, setbacks, and kicks back into reality that cause me to doubt the premise I just stated. Indeed, I already have. It is just in these intense moments of realization, though, that we have the capability to make a difference. Perhaps not for ourselves. Perhaps not even for our children or our grandchildren, but for someone else. I find that incredibly inspiring, despite the pie-in-the-sky sound to it. I realize it’s hopelessly optimistic, but my dream is that there is dreaming. There is so much out there that can be done, and certainly none of us can accomplish big things on our own. Who would want to do it by themselves anyhow?
My convoluted thoughts on this idea are, I’m sure, not entirely clear. However, I hope that there is at least one other person out there who might share my sentiments. It is human ingenuity and drive that makes us unique and important. Right now, most of us spend our motivation on getting by, and I’m not criticizing that. Personal well-being is absolutely necessary in order to obtain the greater goal I hope to see someday. I desire to see a system where people don’t need to focus their drive on simply getting by – but to improve the human condition. A lot of people have called this the “happiness-based economy.” Whatever one wishes to name it, I see it as a noble goal. I may or may not get to see it in action, much less be involved in it. I want to see people able to dream big.