A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
― Rob Siltanen
Ever since my time WWOOFing out in North Carolina, one of the goals I have set for myself is to build community. Traveling away from my home-town and experiencing a different culture, a different way of life, opens your eyes to new possibilities. Traveling away also allows you to reflect upon the subtle beauties you take for granted.
Growing a connection to the natural world had also given me a better idea of how life once was and where it’s going today; sometimes we get caught up in the instant gratification of today’s technological era, yet our lives still require a sense for the past; a foundation that has allowed generations upon generations to flourish to the present day.
From my travels across the United States, both East and West (there’s still much more I need to see), has allowed me to experience the geographical differences – these natural borders – which has created unique societies within each and everyone one of these regions. All have their pros and cons; all with their unique beauties and disappointments.
I hear stories all the time about how my local area flourished during the 20th century, but now has been declining since the 1970s; a direct connection to the economics of the United States; outsourcing of factory jobs, 1980’s farm crisis, the “War on Drugs“, the destruction of the family unit, the retreat of youth to urban metropolitan meccas; ultimately the decline of the Middle Class.
All of this upsets me; because it upsets me, I want to do something about it.
Just because this area has been in decline does not mean it has to continue down this path. All it takes is one individual with enough passion to change the course of history. I’m working up the courage to be that individual.
I want community.
Photo by Niall Kennedy
The biggest reoccurring theme in my life is that I strive to be different; being normal has never been appealing to me. It’s important that we have individuals in our world who are willing to step outside-of-the-box and experience life from within a self-defined set of parameters (as long as they don’t infringe on anyone’s natural rights); this gives us the chance to view reality from a different perspective; to critique, to inspire, and to improve upon our standard ways-of-life.
For instance, I wanted to quickly review a documentary I watched the other night about a 14-year-old Dutch girl who sailed around the world alone; the film is called Maidentrip and you can find it on Netflix. I thought this was a beautiful documentary for several reasons:
- Because it shows that young people don’t have to be limited by their age. I hold the belief that childhood is being artificially extended for marketing/psychological purposes. Laura demonstrates that with passion, anyone can do anything, especially at whatever age.
- It’s incredible how brave this young girl is. Granted, she was born on a sailboat and has grown-up around water her whole life. It would be a struggle for myself, who has always been land-locked, to be able to travel the sea.
- I love how you can watch her sense of independence grow, and her understanding of the self.
- Lastly, this documentary inspires me to do whatever it is that I want to do.
In a lifetime, there will always be at least one moment where there’s something we have wanted to do, but have decided against it. Usually it’s either because we’re afraid, or we want to please someone else (sure, there could be many other reasons as well). One instance might be you wanted to pursue a particular major in college, but your parents wanted something else.
Currently, I’m battling myself because there are certain goals I would like to achieve, but I’m limiting myself from being able to succeed. I have some bizarre artistic ideas I want to pursue; to live a different kind of lifestyle; to show the world around me that you can be different; that if you put your mind to something you can achieve it.
We only live once. Why not do the things we want to do; especially while we’re still young and ambitious. In years to come we’ll look back and question ourselves, “why didn’t I do this?” “Why didn’t I do that?” “I could have done anything I wanted to…”
Why let others limit ourselves? Why let society limit ourselves? Why let ourselves limit ourselves?
Let’s achieve greatness.
We can do anything we want to do.
Photo by Oscar Cortez