MIRIAM SHAH–Existential Musings

Lazy Compassion

A false approach to poverty is advancing upon it with the sterile tongs of intellectual humanitarianism. Poverty to many is ambiguous. It is the “donation” plaque on a store counter, it is a bumper sticker on the back of a new car. People on Pinterest who sign digital petitions think that they’ve done enough for a cause just by clicking a few buttons, as well as clothing lines that “give 20% of your proceeds to charity.” It’s all to assuage guilt, really, but it’s deception. All of it. Consumerism, conditioning by the media can shut out everything important. I am not being pessimistic or hopeless, I am stating it as it is. One can live completely shut out from true suffering except on magazine covers and web advertising. The broken human shell likes to seek shelter in the gilded cage of first-world modernity, with all it’s distracting comforts that distort impending death into the form of a self-righteous donation sticker. What one needs to do is realize and measure the good one does with how one feels afterwards, and if it is real it will no longer feel like relief or assuaged guilt, but liberating gain.

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