Saturday, February 27, 2010

The question of money or whoring 101

Everyone's a whore. Yes, even you and before you run off proclaiming your morals to the world, hear me out.

Money makes the world go round, the more of it you have, the faster it goes. Take a trip to any classroom in this country and ask the kids what they want to be when they grow up, I assure you more than half will tell you they want to be "very" rich, as in they want to make so much money. I have been thinking about money a lot and what it means to human beings. Apparently the idea came about because barter trade was not quite sufficient for the exchange of goods and services. Some idiot decided one day that he wasn't going to till the land or rear animals; that instead he was going to collect a bunch of shells and use them to get what he wanted. It must have been hard convincing someone that a bunch of shells was worth anything back then. Anyway, this guy was eventually successful, I don't know how long it took but knowing ideas and how they spread, it might have happened centuries after he was long gone. Thanks to him, we have this grand idea of money that makes each and everyone on this sordid piece of rock a whore.

Nothing in life is free, nothing. Everything must be paid for in one way or the other, even respect, love and friendship have their currencies. John Donne once famously said "No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent" and there is no one out there who can disagree. Every human being must justify their existence, most importantly to themselves and then to others. The bit about self is mostly easy depending on your mental state and capacity; the bit about others is a lot more difficult. Human interaction defines our existence and every human being must put forth a good case for others to interact with him or her. He or she must possess something that is considered valuable by others, something that makes their lives better or at the very least, different.

Every human being attempts to package themselves appropriately for the world. Those who can afford to, go to school and acquire skills that are meant to make them more valuable to the world without themselves. You are taught that if you do not acquire skills that are valuable to the world at large, you will spend your days destitute and live a meaningless life.

The world today is driven by the middle classes; an idea that is defined by their levels of education and income relative to that of others. The classic middle class worker is educated or trained to do certain things, to fit into the economic system that prevails as a factor of production and nothing more. You are told that somehow you are adding to the general well being of humanity, that the work which you do makes a difference for the better but the stark truth is that you're probably lining some guy's pockets with money while you barely have enough to survive let alone indulge in the things that make you feel alive. So everyone pretty much goes about their lives, hoping that somehow they have justified their existence, that one way or another they provide something to someone that makes all the hassle worth it.

The child knows that it must earn the respect of its family; you feel that you must earn the love and respect of your peers and the "elders" wish for nothing less than the respect of the younger generation, an acknowledgement that they have so far built a future that is worthy of it. So everyone goes around, whoring themselves to each other, saying "look at me, I have packaged myself thus, I have built this and if you wish to interact with this, then you must have something to give in return." We learn what we can and have the chance to; we try to use this knowledge to our advantage believing that we are somehow building something, adding to a greater whole or at least making people's lives easier. Beggars (merchants of karma), politicians (glorified conversationalists), soldiers, policemen, doctors, teachers, accountants, farmers, businessmen (middlemen), children, lovers, friends and family; each and every one of these considers themselves essential to someone or something else. From the clothes you wear, the things you say and do down to the very thoughts you formulate, it's all a process of selling yourself for a little bit of meaning in this madness we call life.

So good luck to you, may your wares have many a buyer and may you never be cheated out of what is rightfully yours, your life as you wish to live it.

5 comments:

sam said...

your definition of whoring isnt clear...

Brenda said...

Eiii, whoring??! I disagree. But of course you know that :-)

L.A. said...

whoring is such a strong word but when you come right down to it, thats exactly what it is; selling ourselves for the sake of acceptance.

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gikobwa said...

I don't know but whore doesn't sound good....