Here’s an example.
I really enjoyed Dan Brown’s latest book, Inferno. The Malthusian population problem is the key concept. Basically, the idea is that if the world’s population keeps growing, human beings won’t be able to sustain themselves. Our consumption of resources will be so rapid that we’ll die out. The villain comes up with a solution. He’s going to cull the population of humans.
In the book, the device which holds a solution to the Malthusian problem goes off. The heroes of the story can’t stop it. But in the film adaptation, they do.
Does that sound like Hollywood catering to the audience’s expectations? Satiating our desire to see the protagonists triumph over everybody and everything? Of course it does.
I don’t want to live in such a world. In a place where the extremes are censored. Where ideas and stories and experiences are softened for fear of provoking an unfavourable response from a spineless minority. I want to experience reality in all it’s totality. If reality were a liquor, I’d want a straight shot. I wouldn’t take it with ice and a mixer.
But what I’ve discovered is that the watering down of reality is something we opt in to. We give our consent by consuming the diluted. By steering clear of the real. It’s kind of like the content on the internet. If we click or consume it, we make more of it.
Yet, consumption is a choice. Which means we don’t have to lament and moan and put up with it. We can alter our diet. We can choose to live in a different world. The real, uncensored, undiluted world. Here’s some of the many simple ways to make that choice:
– Drink your coffee black and strong.
– Take a cold shower.
– Cook and eat unseasoned food.
– Talk to a homeless person, rather than avoiding them.
– Don’t wear gloves or a hat in the cold.
– Drink plain water instead of soft drinks.
– Study the history of pogroms and massacres.
– Read first hand accounts of addiction and abuse.
– Make a list of all your fuck ups in the last year.
This is reality. The cold. The bitterness. The sweetness. The intensity.
The world will try to give you a diluted shot, but you don’t have to swallow it. See, they think you can’t take it. That your mind and body is too weak, too frail to handle the uncensored and untampered. Prove them wrong. Take the hard liquor of reality straight.