Modern Dilemmas

I wanted to know how big the moon was. Instantly I found out that it’s radius is 1,079 miles, it is 238,900 miles away from Earth, and over 4.5 billion years old. I could jump in to the Wikipedia article to find out about its tidal effects and read about its surface geology. All of this information is constantly at my fingertips. I can find answers to anything.

Almost anything.


No…no I can’t.

I’ve spent the last few months in a funk, with questions that I can’t seem to figure out how to Google correctly. We’ve got so many tools for comfort around us. Because of these tools we’ve grown complacent and comfortable, so when it comes to the deeper nagging questions of life, community, culture, and morals, we often find ourselves ill-equipped to start to answer the questions. Questions like:

  • Am I doing the right thing?
  • Am I accidentally sabotaging my relationships?
  • Are we as a society heading in the right direction?
  • What can we do to create a safer place for black Americans so that we don’t have to fear for our lives every time we see a police officer? What can I do – as a black American – to quell that fear always sitting on the back-burner of my mind?
  • Are our comforts and distractions holding us back? Is the checking of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, email, watching Netflix, watching wrestling, etc, keeping me from spending time working through larger issues?
  • How can I be more intentional without resorting to inactivity from trying to be too intentional?
  • Are all tech companies doomed to eventually value profit and shareholders over actual human needs the minute they take venture funding?
  • How do I reconcile choosing between the lesser of two evils?
  • How can we create a better future for everyone after us?
  • And the list goes on…

I’m writing about this to open the conversation. Every time I bring these issues up with friends, the response is a similar, “yeah, I think about this too.” We can’t Google these questions and expect to find answers, but we can start discussing them and figure them out together.

Shoot me a message on Twitter @theearlcarlson, or post an inline reply with any thoughts or questions you’ve been struggling with yourself.

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