by Callum B. Downes
Checking the time on my phone can be gut-wrenching. Depending on the news of the day, this subconscious routine can tear down the walls of superficial ignorance I’ve created within my conscious being. And on this particular day, the reports were devastating.
Most of the time I’m okay. Occasional reminders of human suffering on my television, as depicted by brief flashes of African children with swollen bellies, are appropriately suffocated by the constant drone of materialism. Lulled into a false sense of self-assurance, I go about my day unfazed by the seemingly insignificant atrocities being committed against humanity.
Even entire news reports on terrorism, human rights violations, corruption or natural disasters fail to stir me from my apathetic slumber. Instead, stern messages of economic insecurity and the cost of living chain my bank account to my ankle. A slave, unable to break free of a growing ball of money. My humanity begins to fade. Empathy, generosity and charity become foreign, even intrusive. I must survive, I must work hard, I must obey my master, the master of consumerism. The thought of giving becomes offensive. How dare they demand what is rightfully mine.
The more I earn, the less I am.
But when I glanced at my phone this day, a splinter of humanity shone through the menacing clouds of self-absorption. A message from UNICEF which read: 1400 dead in Nepal Earthquake. Shattered, I lifted my ankle and unfastened the chain. This is not a time to be a slave. It is time to be human.
Follow the link below to give to The Nepal Earthquake Children’s appeal.