Sometimes I forget, in my constant world that seems to always focus on the alarming and the final failures of civilizations, that not everyone focuses on the same thing.
It probably does not surprise you that (for the most part) the individuals I interact with on a daily basis have little idea of what my concerns are about the nature of things - one or two perhaps, but I suspect many have simply departed in the frantic pace of life into other things. By and large, they are concerned with things in the here and now - entertainment, sports, the goings on at the places where we congregate, occasionally a natural disaster or two.
But the proposed and ultimate goals of my life are, for the most part, invisible. Why is this?
It is not (I hope) from some sense of lack of concern for those around me. These are individuals whom, on the whole, I care about. And certainly not from some misguided attempt (again, I hope) to conceal any knowledge of upcoming events - of which I have none - from them in a sort of evil twisted genius plot.
I suspect that it is mostly because it simply takes too long to explain. And it too often seems to veer into matters political. And even if you make it that far, it is even more difficult to explain how that impacts what you are doing.
Think about it: without being a "tin foil hat" guy, it is hard to make an argument that the world is getting to be a better or more stable place. That involves no thinking that there is some sort of giant government cabal, simply an admission of the fact that the world is a very complex place that is inter-related in ways that impact us all. Instability somewhere really does create issues elsewhere and economies of trade and efficiency assume populations that are able to buy and earn money. The one thing - the only thing - I really learned in Macro Economics is how true fragile the economic system is - not fragile from easy breakage but fragile from the sheer number of factors that can impact it to its detriment.
Without that assumption, the idea that people would consciously seek to pull away from any part of the system seems less of a calling or necessity and more of a personal interest sort of thing: "I like soccer. You like building a complete gardening and making things from wood. I just buy the things of wood. Why do you waste your time?"
It is difficult in such moments to verbalize the words "I do it now because I can, before I have to because it is all I can do" without sounding like a completely ungrounded fool, a wild eyed fanatic looking for the end of the world to come.
But it is not really the end of the world so much as the end of our world, at least the world we know. Always hard to communicate in a surrounding of climate controlled comfort and with coffee and snacks so close at hand (was it the same in June 1914 Austria? Rome in 409? Constantinople in 1452?) So I generally sigh, give a little self depreciating smile, and am thankful for the comments on cheese or whatever else I have made.
It is, in the end, much easier. And perhaps it is the actual only meaningful way I can communicate such things, not in what I see but in what I do.