Wednesday, 3 February 2010
Thought of the Day
'Coming of Age - a neo-interpretation'
Up in QLD in Australia, staying with friends right now.
Got into a discussion the other day, which led to a thought.
Every tribe that I can think of seems to have a process of 'Coming of Age' - that is when the child is recognised as an adult.
There is a distinct time where the tribe is notified of the adulthood initiation - i.e. the child becomes an adult and is now responsible for his/her own actions.
Well, I tried to think what marks the Coming of Age in today's Western society. And after much deliberation, I couldn't think of anything that marks coming of age at all. Granted, we have 18th and 21st Birthdays, but if you look at our law structure in the West, there are 'adult-activities' you can partake in at ages 16,17,18 and 21.
Adolescent years are described in the West as the period of time when the child can't figure out where he/she belongs and if he/she is an adult or a child. Their sense of standing and status is highly confused, and it doesn't surprise me.
There's a range of laws that say you're an adult in one walk of life, but still a child in another.
And then it dawned on me.
Perhaps, in the West, the way of life of the 'drone' - the asleep 'person' - could be compared to that of a child in a tribal setting.
The child screams for attention, is helpless without a leader figure such as Mummy, seeks only to please the ego with foods that taste sweet and 'I want' takes the forefront of mental processes.
Not that different from roughly 85% of the world's 'adult' population really.
So, what if to 'wake-up', to take control of YOUR life, to realise that YOU are the only one that can change things now - not Mummy and certainly not a leader figure - to encompass a 'BALLS OUT!' take on life, become a Hazardous Pioneers of sorts ...
What if this is what the West's version is of 'Coming of Age'...?
The Tribe will teach 'nursery rhyme'-styled songs to the kids as they grow up. At first hearing, the lyrics will seem pointless, childish, empty even.
But upon that special day, the elders and the parents will tell that child that every single lyric that they have learnt over the past few years had a meaning. Every set of lyrics, every verse, was a guideline on how to take control of your life, of how to become, essentially, a 'responsible adult'.
A stage of somewhat enlightenment is achieved in the child, now adult, as they see that everything they have been taught up until that second, has all been understood. Their knowledge has manifested into realisation. Into understanding.
Before it had just been nursery rhymes, now in almost an instant, grave wisdom has been achieved, at what the West would regard a 'young age'.
But on our side of the planet, our nursery rhymes are merely songs. Their practical application to life is minute, if existent at all. Arguably, that's either some one's plan, or we were just too stupid to see how indigenous cultures managed such a feat of wisdom. Either way, it doesn't exist in our culture, and in many respects, that 'Coming of Age' is almost more difficult to achieve.
I feel I've reached it - my foot has been set on a path that will most probably take me on to the end of my days.
December 2008 saw an experience happen in my life that was a definite wake-up, and since that day, my life as I knew it, has taken a radical turn for the better, both for myself and the rest of mankind.
'The journey has begun' you could say.
And to come of age is possible in the West. More and more, I'm coming across people who question the way things are currently, and the more I meet these people, the more I realise that it's not just me. There are people out there.
'Saving people is a dangerous game. Find the others.'
Just a thought.