Friday, September 14, 2007

column 12; daydreams

Compulsory daydreaming.

Stick with me on this. I think people should be compelled to daydream. Now, part of me, the liberal hardcore part, says no one should be compelled to do anything. But the other part sees people flaunting their ability to do whatever they want within the law and damage this planet and each other, and thinks perhaps some compulsory actions wouldn't be a bad idea.

They say that the right not to vote is just as important as the right to vote, and that's true, but it means that we end up with idiots in office. Which is of greater use to us, freedoms to do what the hell we like at the expense of everyone else, or useful politicians getting things done right? The debate continues.

But let's just assume the other guy in me, the one who thinks compulsory actions are fine, is right. What should we make compulsory? Something useful, relaxing, mind-expanding. Something that stimulates our imaginations, and harms no one else in the process. Something legal and enjoyable, that can be done by anyone, no matter their religion, race or creed.

Daydreaming. We could all use more time spent daydreaming. Force us to sit down and let our mind wander. Or lie down. Lie under a tree, in the tall grass, next to a loved one, or someone you want to be your loved one. Take a break everyday during work or school or life to daydream.

But why compulsory? Why not just recommend it? Because if it's compulsory some people will start dreaming about a better world. Someone, or a lot of someones, would start to envision a better thing than what we've got. And maybe, just perhaps, when the compulsory hour of daydreaming was over they'd do something about it. They'd act on their daydreams. And they wouldn't be alone. All of a sudden people all over would be dreaming up a better world and their own vision of the future.

Sure, some would clash. That's how great ideas are sorted out, trial and error. And who cares if they clash? I think x and you think y. So long as they're not mutually exclusive they can abide one another. We'd be better of for it. Ma Nature has shown us time and again that she likes diversity, so lets get some diversity of opinions on the future. What do you think the future should look like?

I don't mean to imply the weight is solely on your shoulders, gentle reader. Implying it is too weak. It is entirely on your shoulders. No, don't look behind you, I'm talking to you. And, if there is someone behind you, I'm talking to them as well. Confused? Too bad.

If there's one thing I can make perfectly clear, though, it's that we have to act on those daydreams. We need to try them out, and accomplish them if possible. Got one? Good. Implement it. We need creative minds and curious souls to go out and make this place better. Even if you like this world, and I for one fall in this category, I can still think of dozens of ways it could be proved, I mean, come on. Look around you.

And if you can't that's okay. If your daydreams aren't life-altering or society-changing then no big deal. Daydreaming is still a good thing to do. But that's why it has to be compulsory, to make sure the next revolutionary, or prophet, or whoever changes our world most, gets time to incubate those thoughts and let them hatch into a new tomorrow. It's the best shot we've got.

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