Bowling Alone and Bowling for Columbine

More Americans bowl then vote.  Robert Putnam wrote the book Bowling Alone in 2000.  Refer I have noticed that this is definitely the case even in my own family.  It has nothing to do with women working as women are also experiencing being alone.  I am alone most days, but I am able to communicate with anyone whenever I want and I have a few close friends.  For the most part I am not lonely as I have a purpose which is what is driving me to be alone.  If I wanted to join in I could.  However, what I’ve seen is that attitudes have changed.  In Australia I grew up and I felt people were very friendly.  Networks were established through children (mother’s groups), there were social clubs and fraternities which enabled the other aspects of society to feel a sense of belonging and acceptance which is critical for the human condition.  I recall in Russia in the baby houses learning about children becoming imbecile if they don’t feel loved.  I taught this as a peace clown in the classroom with kids making sure they understood that love is not some fluffy term but essential for survival in fact.

I have had inspiration around why this is happening on a few occasions in the past.  The first one was when I filmed a speaker in Bangkok.  I was unable to tune in to the speakers feelings behind a camera.  I realised that technology is a barrier.  I’ve seen it in cars as distinct from walking.  Most people do not walk or ride their bike, as I do so i get to move around in this way for exercise (don’t need a gym).  I also like the fresh air.  However, that behavior came from my childhood where I rode as a child, many children these days grow up in sedentary lives.  I interviewed Principles years ago when I started my REAL HOPE program and found out that obesity was a big issue and living sedentary lifestyles.  Latch key kids was another phenomenon started in big cities whereby parents were either single parents or having only one child.  So the kids were made to sit and watch TV, laptops etc. until the parent came home.  This is how economics and business removed from community impacts the family unit. There is no support to keep that family together but more money making ways to exploit the situation.  This is the nature of capitalism with the gloves off, it doesn’t act from instinct, heart felt concern it sees life as a business plan, it looks for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) rather than compassion, human support, community awareness and duty.

I have noticed the detachment and I know it is a social problem that is embedded due to remote parenting.  I am aware that this is a way to disempower societies so they are controllable. But are they happy?  From my experience they are deeply unhappy (as I look around right now at them on computers) I can see them with headphones, on laptops with no-one speaking. Even the librarians do not acknowledge you as you come in and out as it is automated.  Technology filled that space but created a gap in our humanity.  Public service gave way to public corporations and we now see entitlement through ownership permeating public goods (assets) that should be free but incrementally are charged creating greater divisions between those who have and those who do not.  It is very sad to witness as I know community to some extent when I was younger but I have to say most of my life I have seen the slow destruction of the family and society.  I know this is the deepest need in people.  As a clown I was able to bridge that gap by going to the loneliest people and making them feel valued, I would say ‘hello gorgeous’ or play with them so they felt a sense of joy.  I did that to reconnect their heart with mine, as that is my highest joy.  When you see a person smile or say to you ‘you made my whole day dear’, you know you are in a sacred space.  I have had the privilege to love all people and those society rejects.  Especially I go to them to remind them of the lie of their isolation, that they are equal and worthy of love.  Not just the few who have nice suits, who role play in jobs and have flashy things to show for it.   However, I do find myself connecting with them as I can see their disability when it comes to social connection.  The internet from my perspective gave rise to the greatest sense of isolation we have ever seen on this planet.   Yes we connect with many people but who are real friends, you can count them on one hand.  What I have come to understand is all people love but the majority DO NOT KNOW HOW TO LOVE each other.  They are blocked, they have wounds, they are unquestioning, at times unconscious and not evolving their sense of who they are.

The commentator in the video outlined bowling alone well, but he felt self development was no panacea. What I do know definitely is that it is the place that I feel the greatest peace.  I know that my life is exactly where it is meant to be and I feel at peace.  When I know I do not need a partner because he is not here, I feel peace.  How do I know I don’t need a paid job, well, I am sitting here writing to you as my service to you.   You are my job and I feel happy.  How do I know I don’t need much money? My bank account shows me exactly how much I need.  With that there is peace.  That came from seeing life differently and not feeling at a loss when the rest of the world’s mantra is ‘get a job’, that my worth and social connection depends on being seen to be.  I don’t believe that myth anymore as I am happy with who I am.  I never failed.  If anything I have succeeded well beyond what I expected without money or a permanent home. To thine own self be true became my mantra and inherent within that, I found true happiness.  Betrayal of self is the highest betrayal, this is a truism. Do we follow out of fear or do we face fear and transcend it.  I chose to face fear.  This has been the source of my happiness, each obstacle I transcend empowers me.  So I welcome challenges as I realise they are my liberation.  It is not about the smooth ride it is about the authentic ride.  So as society/humanity transitions to more authenticity it has to face itself, hence bowling alone.  This is where the real answers lay.  So have the courage to be alone, be seen to be alone and watch how society operates out of learned narratives that are never true.  Just pick yourself up and keep going, never give up.  You can do it, you are doing it, bit by bit day by day you are finding out who you really are which has nothing to do with advertising spin that is designed to make you into a ATM.  If you have no money you soon find out what is real and what is not.  I prefer to know this.  Aloneness is a gift if truth is your goal.  So inner connection is the purpose of this state of being.

With the words Bowling Alone I felt immediately of Bowling for Columbine about the Columbine Shootings in the United States.  I see this as an example of that social decay and breakdown based on fear.  I have pasted the link under this video, don’t worry about the threat of malware, that is fake as I am noticing that important films are being blocked using these barriers.  It is fine.  Michael Moore approaches this topic with great humour, he is a jester for sure.

I note YouTube has blocked this, that is why people are bowling alone. I will repaste as an audiobook.

Bowling for Columbine by Journalist Michael Moore. 

This drives to the heart of the problem which is destroying lie, liberty and happiness.   Perhaps our isolation is due to the war within that projects without.  We live in great fear.

Bowling for Columbine by Michael Moore takes a deeper look into the shocking events that transpired during the 1999 Columbine High School massacre, from those responsible for the attack to the countless lives that were lost during it.

The documentary explores the possible root causes for unnecessary gun violence, in particular the social factors contributing to its perpetuation. It specifically seeks to understand the psycho-social patterns that could have existed during the series of events that led to the Columbine High School massacre. Bowling for Columbine features interviews with former classmates and well-known personalities who provide an insight on the behaviour and disposition of the people involved in the killings.


Mohandas Gandhi

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”