Thursday, March 13, 2008

Humane

Are we really as humane as we consider ourselves?

It's funny to me that the core word of humane is "human", yet we usually use this word in sentences referring to the treatment of wounded or caged animals & occasionally prisoners that are being refused 180 cable channels.


http://www.wordreference.com/definition/humane
humane
A adjective
1 humane
showing evidence of moral and intellectual advancement

2 humane
marked or motivated by concern with the alleviation of suffering

3 humanist, humanistic, humane
pertaining to or concerned with the humanities; "humanistic studies"; "a humane education"


But what ever happened to being humane for humans who are suffering?

In a very moving and sad turn of events, I bare witness to a family member suffer a up until the point of death just a few days ago. Diagnosed with only a few hours to live 2 weeks ago, she clung to life for another week and a half. In & out of consciousness, all the hospital could do it feed her plenty of morphine to make sure she was "comfortable" until she passed.

So while I am not trying to get into a religious debate, how is it that we have our sense of "decency" to lay to sleep a pet that is suffering, yet a family member or friend is honored by simply "keep them comfortable" until as we put it, "they choose to go."

We use terms and phrases like, "poor thing", "Little kitty was scared", "suffering", or "had no idea what was going on, so it was best to put him/her down."

Yet for humans, I guess we don't get "scared", or "suffer", or well, "we know what going on, so we should understand the idea of keep'm going as long as possible." I mean heck, we're being feed damn good meds right?

My point is that I NEVER want to have to experience what I have seen some have to endure prior to passing and I hope that someone would find it in their hearts to treat me with the same "humane" attitude that may keep me from suffering like they would a common pet.

** I want to stress that this topic is simply a thought based on acceptance in society and not a questioning of family values.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Reset the clock!

While most people were aiming to reset their clocks this past weekend, I was aiming to reset my internal clock and there is no better way than getting away!

Lisa and I headed to Douthat to celebrate the week's freedom from classes that so many refer to as "Spring-Break!" Unfortunately, since being at VCU, 1/2 of my professors each semester seem to find it fitting to give a butt load of homework or have a major exam the day that we return to class. This hardly creates the break that so many of us are dying for by mid-year.

Anyhow, Douthat seems to have a way of helping me restore all that's natural in life, like the ability to listen to your body instead of clocks and schedules to guide you through life. After only a few hours after arriving, I was feeling the positive effects of the mountains already.

Feelings of freedom from everyday crap like phones, TV, clocks, cell phones, computers, & internet were such a relief!! I will admit that there was a small issue of withdraw from the internet, but that was quickly over and done with before any severe shakes or cold sweats broke out.

The weekend gave rise to some interesting thoughts, like what it would be like to live in a "tribal" community, or be a loner in the wilderness. To wake and sleep on a whim, to gather food when needed, to just be able to walk into the woods and hike for the days adventure.

The longer I spend in wilderness, I can't help but to think how well mankind has screwed up mankind. While our intent was most likely good when developing a modern society that protects us from illness, famine, and the elements, we have also created a host of byproducts that not only can kill us faster, but also make our lives a lot less enjoyable. While most of us never take the time to consider it, we have constructed our lives in such a way that we are no different than a caged animal at a zoo.

Don't worry, I'm not about to grow out a beard and my hair, stop showering & start to chant, but there has to be a better way for humans to live their lives. One with a focus on a healthy balance of actually living and not being a drone that works on avg. 10hrs per day(includes travel and getting ready for work), watches TV for another 3 hrs a day on avg.

How can we take back what should be a natural given right, to enjoy the basics of life?