As I am now twenty-five, I am still quite young but heading towards being old. My perspective is sure to shift in great ways over the coming decades (if I live that long), but I now have enough data and a wide enough berth of experiences to begin to knowingly shape my behavior and habits into a manner that is both productive and mature. This ability is not unique to me at my age, but it does not really seem to be quite engaged in by many others around my age.
I feel quite confident in asserting that most people never grow up and remain in a state of childlike mediocrity willingly. After all, the basis of civilization as a whole rests on the vast majority of people to live boring uneventful stable non-challenging lives. What sort of person besides a perpetual child would enjoy such an existence? This is not inherently bad or good and I do not seek to change, condemn, or praise it, it just is what it is.
I also feel quite confident that this arrested development and perpetual adolescence is not a new phenomenon, although it is most likely more observable now that the opportunities to behave in an embarrassingly childlike manner have become increasingly numerous. On the whole, humanity is a pack animal that refuses to think for itself or make its own decisions, and there is no reason to suggest that this will ever change. The only difference that should occur over time is that the majority of humanity will become more explicitly pack animals and look the part: uglier, fatter, shorter, and more bovine than ever before.
This arrested development is what I mean by not having a soul. At a certain point in the twenties, an individual gets a choice or series of choices where they can face uncomfortable choices and ideas that disturb them but result in them coming closer to genuine truths and critical thinking skills, or they can hide from these uncomfortable choices and ideas and fit into some pre-defined societal role that keeps them distracted enough that they don’t feel the need to think or make decisions on any real level. Most people choose poorly and get increasingly stupid as they get older, having knowingly embraced the role of slave and thus gradually transforming from an implicit one to an explicit one. These people can’t be saved, but that’s alright, they made their choices and we must respect their autonomy, or rather the autonomy that lead to them giving up their autonomy.
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