Monday, February 13, 2006

back to my roots

i had an interesting conversation last night. it started out about the uselessness of daylight savings and evolved into the role on nature influence our schedules. i compared a pioneer to the modern day businessman. what has changed? how have we lost our dependency on nature and relied on technology. i dont think we have really moved forward, in fact i think our health is suffering. let me give you an example; before electricity man worked according to the schedule of the sun. we ate according to what we could grow and preserve according to the seasons. we traveled according to permitting weather. now days modern "conveniences" allow us to spend less time on survival and more time working. we work despite the darkness or the weather. we eat what ever we want because of international trade, refrigeration, and microwave ovens. we probably dont even cook it ourselves and half of what we consume isnt even real. we travel because there is no excuse to stay home anymore. winter is no longer a "recuperation time". there is no rest. i thought perhaps God intended us to follow the schedule of the earth and we have defied Him in our attempt to be better humans. can you think of other examples? i would love to hear some comments on this.


elisabeth said...

i must say that i am glad that i am able to travel far from home. for myself, i think one of the reasons i like to travel is that i don't feel like anywhere is my "home" so i feel a little bit at home anywhere i go. i know this strays from your original comment and question but i just wanted to say that.

phyllis sweetwater said...

i know what you mean, i would feel trapped if i couldnt get out every once in a while. do you want to take a trip with me?

erika said...

i know. i always think life seemed so much simpler in the "olden days." not as much was expected of you it seems. but women would spend their entire day just cooking and cleaning. in theory, that simple kind of life seems really perfect, but they definitly worked a lot harder at just surviving. today we don't need to do much at all just to survive, but we still spend just as much time "working". it's a weird trade off, i cant decide which i would rather, but i do lean towards the "simpler life" most of the time, just eating what you grow and only having what you can make yourself seems like a more fulfilling life in a way. don't get me wrong though, i dont want to spend my entire day just cooking and cleaning. but its weird because in what seems like such tedium (tediousness?) i bet not as many people were depressed back then. in a way i think all the convieniences separate us from the earth and from god, and that is probably what so many people are searching for in their lives, a conection to something, to feel a part of something real. i dont know. ya, i think that kind of like would connect you to god in a more real way.

Seaneria said...

I tried to comment before but must have got lost... anywho... I think every time cohort has its unique issues and challenges. I also think the past is often idealized and many vital points are forgotten like the fact that many children didn't survive child birth and the average life expectancy was drastically lower. I do see the point generally however and question if in fact we are not regressing in some areas such as our preservative saturated food, drive to idiviaduality in lonely suburbs and over sterile living spaces. However, I enjoy the challenge of finding beauty and meaning in this time and this place and don't think I'd have it any other way.

Your post reminded me of one of my favorite poems by my favorite poet of all time, WH Auden. The sonnet is called "Our Bias":

The hour-glass whispers to the lion's roar,
The clock-towers tell the gardens day and night
How many errors Time has patience for,
How wrong they are in being always right.

Yet Time, however loud its chimes or deep.
However fast its falling torrent flows,
Has never put one lion off his leap
Nor shaken the assurance of a rose.

For they, it seems, care only for success:
While we choose words according to their sound
And judge a problem by its awkwardness;

And Time with us was always popular.
When have we not preferred some going round
To going straight to where we are?

I wont sully it with a crackerjack explanation as I feel poetry needs to be explored and not taught in order to preserve the beauty of the form and to give the words time to paint their images...

also I posted a new better version of "mountainman" on my myspace site if you didn't already know...

phyllis sweetwater said...

sean i'm so glad i'm related to you. It's true we sugar coat the past, or dull the trama. that's why some women get pregnant more than once. But i dont think i would ever want to live back in the "olden days" i just want to connect with it more. there are some inventions that popular opinion says we must adopt, but it is always a matter of choice.

i like auden

Rus said...

the fact of the matter is daylight savings time does save energy given the way the world operates now. north americans in particular are energy hogs, so i'm in favor of anything that reduces that.
Also, we work too much for all we have, a 40 hr. work week (plus) is just not necessary.
(I have to plug one of my favorite books now "the joy of not working" by edmontonian Ernie Zelinski)
for example France has a 4 day work week. 5 weeks of vacation a year is law in most of europe. neanderthals are thought to have worked less than we do now, and had great dental hygeine too (so we can learn from the past too, but there is no need to glorify it).