We've come a long way in terms of evolution.
However, society is falling apart as chaos erupts across the globe.
Who are we to blame it on?
Homo sapiens - animals who have evolved from the long extinct Nakalipithecus nakayamai species over the extensive course of time. Homo sapiens are probably considered as one of the most lethal creatures to ever walk the earth.
Mind you I am referring to the almighty human species.
Blessed with the gift of speech, knowledge and intelligence, we might have flourished due to having an upper hand over the other kinds. Equipped with a full cognitive process: ability to think, write, communicate and invent. Also, not forgetting how emotions play a pivotal role in distinguishing us from the rest.
The considerable fact that we overthink and overreact is hitherto associated with the abominable emotions that obstructs the way we fathom our thoughts into constellations.
Do not get me wrong.
No doubt the ability to experience emotions is great. After all, it is our affections and empathy that shape our personality and dictate our actions. Positive emotions aid in understanding a fellow sentient. Guilt allows one to repent and redeem. Happiness leads to content and fulfilment. Yet, too many a times are we tied up with negative emotions: anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, pride, etc. Humans are smart - until our ideas hedge in a tense thicket of ego.
Walking amongst a crowd - the scrambling of footsteps of people thronging along the lift lobby, accompanied by the casual chit chat and occasional rant about work or someone they detest. One cannot help but to feel suffocated. You might find me staring into the vast emptiness of space as if i've been stupefied.
You see, I've been pondering the essence of humanity. What makes us human, human? Perhaps, did the creator of humans ever felt a slight (or deep, extremely deep that no light passes through) sense of shame about us? Did it/he/she rue the day we begin to exist?
We've exploited our form, the form that gave us skills to perform activities other species are not fortunate enough to possess. What a ruddy world we live in whereby the strong ends up abusing their powers instead of helping the weak.
Basic living rights stripped off the voiceless while the strong portray themselves as unfortunate victims of circumstances.
Depression and anxiety becomes a common flu for many have come to misuse the term. You might find this cantankerous, conceivably even label me a hypocrite, but most cases of mental illnesses are self inflicted. (Not referring to the genuine ones who really require special attention.) We fall into this abyss of misery as our judgements get clouded by hatred and jealousy.
Too much greed. Too much fear. Bearing too many wants but the idea of not being able to satiate this covetous thirst, or even the constant dwelling of the past has driven many insane.
Have you ever wondered, why is it that a child is always happier than an adult who struggles with a daily list of worries?
As my mom would say, children - like other animals, especially dogs - are simple, little positive beings. They are straightforward and honest, as compared to the lot of adults who possess better critical thinking skills and ends up overthinking their glee away. Hardly contented with ourselves while we begrudge the status / materialism someone else holds.
Mind you, a simple act of kindness can easily be warped by the brain and perceived as the intention to brag.
Humans have come a long way. However, we are evolving into self-absorbed creatures with heavy pain bodies. What bothers me the most is the way we inflict our struggles onto innocent lives. Terrorism, bullying, animal cruelty, so on and so forth. Humans have forgotten the fact that the earth does not belong to them, neither is the universe. What rights have we got to reign false superiority over other creatures who we deem unworthy of freedom? More importantly, what right do we have to decide another living being's life and death?
I have seen and personally witnessed countless heart wrenching cases of animal cruelty and abuse. I dreaded days when i have to tag along dad's car to school. Lorries carrying baskets of chickens squeezed and stacked under the scorching heat. The look of defeat they gave as they were sent to be slaughtered.
Then again, ruddy beings might be insulted and start dishing out their certs of keyboard warrior-ism by giving you an expository essay to why humans must eat meat and why the cruelty towards innocent lives are a necessity.
Because they are unable to protect themselves the way us, humans do? Talking about survival of the fittest in this dog eat dog world.
If you were to read my previous posts, you will know i'm not a vegan. Nonetheless, vegans are the people i admire the most. It certainly puzzles me whenever i come across a person who claims vegans / vegetarians as annoying folks who preach a cruelty free lifestyle, for i have seen more people who become apoplectic at the mere mention of meat/ cruelty free. The ruthless bashing for not eating meat and ridiculing their feeble attempt at improving the lives of defenceless animals, who ruddy humans think are not worthy to be alive. (meat is actually carcinogenic btw) All of a very sudden, everyone turns into a nutritionist.
Those leaked animal cruelty videos of unethical animal slaughter/ testing that you would so readily skip and live in ignorance due to your "faint heart"? Replace the abused animals with humans and the world gets thrown into chaos.
Double standards at its best, i suppose? This is the exact synonym of the strong exploits the weak. There is little to no compassion in the world we live in. Not a tad bit of kindness. We are selective to the ones we choose to be nice to.
Obviously, you can't just categorise everyone due to a bad apple. There are good samaritans who dedicate their lives to helping the poor, rescuing animals, raising awareness and educating the masses. Compassion is the true definition of being human. Bragging and winning the rat race won't win you anything else, other than a few "wow"s and envies. After all, nothing's permanent. Immortality does not exists and none of these materialism can be brought into your grave. Thus, stop the discrimination and treat every lives as equal.
Words by Ann-Marie Yang.
Photography by Rosemarie Yang.