We live in a society where notion of suffering has become an evil. This is a very unfortunate turn in our collective thought. While suffering in some forms may legitimately denote the classification of evil, suffering is a conditional term. One may suffer from lack of food, while another may suffer from a difficult class assignment. Suffering’s new blanket designation is not without deep consequences that are felt in the present and will continue to be shouldered as society marches onward.
Merriam-Webster states that to suffer is “to experience something unpleasant.” With our quest to eradicate suffering we are inadvertently losing our entire concept of what pleasant means. If you have never tasted sour, how could you properly appreciate sweetness? To expunge suffering is to rob us of a vital experience we need in life in order to progress and thrive.
When we get past basic needs, such as food, air and water, why are we so forthright about suffering being an evil? A struggle is often what makes us stronger and allows us to realize how much potential we actually have. Without the struggle, how would we ever know? How would we ever grow?
Through negating suffering, society has grown soft. So soft in that we live amongst and allow complete absurdities to perpetuate themselves. The new normal in society features vagrants panhandling with a pet or two. How is this possible? In the not so distant past, the condition of being a vagrant was thought of as something to be corrected. Today being a vagrant is viewed as being a lifestyle choice or, in a sense, a career. In doing so, public policy has created an environment where vagrant life is not only sustainable, but it can support feline and canine companions.
Society is in a constant state of flux. We are in the midst of a great information and technological revolution that is changing many aspects of society. In our new society, certain activities we find that we are able to perform with masterful success. New electronic devices and software interfaces are the most apparent example of our new found success. This aspect is in large part propelling our new society. Yet, other aspects, such as dealing with sloth throughout the population is a nonstarter.
Our inability to motivate those that lack the innate drive to be productive members of society is a direct result of our aberration of suffering. Though a coddled society may produce the great leveling of outcomes social welfare engineers dream of, it also drains our collective drive to grow and reach our full potential. By expunging suffering we are robbing many of their ability to develop skills, take personal responsibility, and stand on their own two feet.