Thursday, September 07, 2006

Brave New World extended

I finished this excellent book yesterday and my mind was blown almost out of my head while at work. The last few chapters have some of the msot pertinent societal commentaries I have ever read. In the final chapters, the character known as Mr. Savage who was taken form an Indian Reservation by another character back to London was appalled and shocked by what the new society was like. This new society, which is disgusted by family, thrives on sex and drugs and is produced inside of test tubes is a shock to what he is used to. There is a climactic scene where the savage is throwing away in a huge public square tons and tons of soma which is a drug that every member of society takes in order to dull the pains and hardships of life, making happiness almost eternal. He gets arrested and taken to the Controller (which is the name of the overlord of sots... a fitting name). Mustapha Mond, the Controller, goes into a great epic speech with him. Here is an excerpt:

"Actual happiness looks pretty squalid in comparison with the overcompensations for misery. And, of course, stability isn't nearly so spectacular to instability. And being contented has none of the glamour of a good fight against misfortune, none of the picturesqueness of a struggle with temptation, or a fatal overthrow by passion or doubt. Happiness is never grand."

In this modern age, all of us are searching for one thing and one thing alone: happiness. Wether that happiness comes from money, love, stability, etc., we are all searching for it. And in BNW, happiness is 100%. But happiness is a tough bargain. In the society, they cut out art (minus music and very dull, conditioning poetry), religion and science in order to keep stability. In another great line, and a famous one at that, from this novel is this:

"God isn't compatible with machinery and scientific medicine and universal happiness."

This is there reasoning for cutting out God from modern society. It's easy to see that in these ways, this is how oru culture is going. "God changes with what we believe." in this modern age, God seems to be the lack of a God. That's what Huxley brings up in BNW. It's interesting and strange to think that he was on the right track all those years back.

I'd like to believe that God hasn't changed, but the way we see God has. I believe in a higher power. I think it makes sense to believe in a God. And i don't agree that beliving in God, we can't believe in science and universal happiness. I think if there was one thing to cut form society, it should be the idea of a universal happiness. it's not possible without losing so much more that is important in life.

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