As I’ve written recently, I observe this is due more than anything else to a widespread demoralization society is suffering from.
Certainly the statistics reflect this. Suicides in the US are up 30% since the turn of the millennium, obesity is at epidemic proportions, mortality rates are rising especially among white working-class Americans, and our national opioid addiction is now the “epidemic of epidemics.”
To these we can also add falling birthrates and the truly startling shift towards a younger age for the onset of depression; declining from age 30 now to age…14(!)
When an organism gives up on self-care, breeding, or its will to live, it’s suffering from a tremendous amount of strain that is cutting it off from its own life force. A dispirited lion wasting away in a cage has a lot in common with the average American today.
At a deep level, what ails us is not a host of unrelated, intractable problems, but the fact that our model of pursuing eternal economic growth simply isn’t working anymore. It doesn’t work for the planet’s increasingly strained ecosystems, nor does it work for the bottom 99% of folks in society (i.e., the non-elites).
The various health epidemics noted above are merely symptoms of a larger acute spiritual crisis.
But viewed at a certain angle, this may be a good sign.
Why? Because in order to shift from one model to another, the old one first has to become unbearable.
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