Without love, none of us would be here.
But love can be a sickness that brings intense grief, suffering and pain - especially, the "unrequited" kind.
Love comes in three forms: lust, pair-bonding, and long-term commitment - so, we are told. All three . . . forms operate independently, which leads to many conflicts of interest. Nature doesn't care if we suffer - only that we procreate.
Until now, we had to accept this compromise. New technology can cure us of this sickness. Do we want to be cured?
What if we could have all the upside of love without the downside? In other words, the passion and the euphoria without the heart-ache and depression.
Love is akin to life, for it promotes life. It keeps things in motion. Death is the opposite. Yet, sometimes love can feel like death. Is not an orgasm compared to a tiny death? And what of the grief that comes from loss that can lead to suicidal feelings? Many people have ended their lives on account of love.
Love, therefore, is a double-edged sword.
Handle with care.
What is the "Meaning of Life"? An eternal question with many answers, which also makes it an infernal question.
Is this all there is?
Life is what you make it.
Nobody's going to make it for you, unless you live the life of a slave. And, even then, . . . you are free to make what's left, yours. Perhaps, we are all slaves to a higher purpose, which is why the question is so perplexing.
This Jam is meant to make you think about the Meaning of Life and figure out what it all means.
Story Message Jam
"The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb"
We all have roles and responsibilities, which we rank in a hierarchy, ever day of our lives. What happens when those loyalties collide?
Is it more important . . . to be a dutiful child, or a good citizen? Who begs the greater allegiance - our family, or our closest friends?
Sometimes, we are forced to make an impossible choice. Our kinship calls upon us to make a great sacrifice for our tribe - even one that could result in death. Are you up to the call?
Are you really free?
Even if you believe in free will, you are the product of so many other people's decisions - be it family or friends - that your die was cast long ago, not to mention your genetic pre-disposition.
Thanks to technology, you have a . . . better chance than ever before to explore the boundaries of your personality, to expand your horizons, role play, and seek out an alternative lifestyle.
Yet, people seem generally more miserable, now, than than ever before. Do we have too much choice? Too much freedom? War babies remember fondly the camaraderie they shared with strangers when times were hard and choices were few. Have we lost as much as we've gained?
When I was 6 yrs old, a friend at school convinced me he owned a Sherman tank, which he would someday let me test-drive. Because I believed his tall tale, he kept embellishing it and building up even more anticipation in me. I dreamt about driving it . . . all year. The day I learned he was lying, I broke off my friendship with him. Forever.
To this day, he tells people we know in common that we're old friends, even though I haven't seen him since. I hated myself for being naive and never forgave him, but he chooses to ignore that he crossed a line in our friendship that could never be retraced. He liked to be adored.
This Story Message Jam explores the conflict between truth and status.
The poverty gap is widening. Everyone's running the rat race.
Weren't we promised that hard work and consideration would get us a piece of the dream - or, at least what our parents' generation had? What happened? Did somebody not get the memo?
The . . . temptation for bad behaviour intensifies. Why slog your guts out, when other people take short-cuts? Morality is for suckers. Let's slash the seats and raid the larder. I can be the king of kings!
Then, why do I still feel empty inside?
To be part of a community means to curtail personal freedom. There are social mores and codes of honour to follow. We must inhibit our desires.
But, you only live once (as far as we know), and this is easier said than done.
Must we blindly follow the . . . rules? What if they were written so long ago that they're no longer relevant?
We might do well to question all we take for granted. After all, we want a life worth living - on our own terms, if necessary. Maybe, it's time to re-write the rules and get what we want.
This story message jam explores the tension between freedom and responsibility.
We all like to get what we want.
Some, more than others.
When is getting what we want justified, even if it endangers?
When does the need for expediency trump that of transparency? "Trust the Deserving"
Believe me when I tell you we all have secrets. . . . Even you.
You might need them exposed in order to realise their importance.
Love and Friendship.
Often, intertwined. Frequently, confused.
Boundaries are difficult to define.
What is the perfect friend? Perfect partner? Are they one in the same, or should that be separate?
This Story Message Jam explores the intersection of . . . these ideals in terms of human happiness.
A lot has been said about technology being an important part of human evolution - that we are more advanced and far better off, as a result.
New evidence suggests that our hyper-connected, always on, ADHD lifestyle is increasing our stress levels and . . . rewiring our brains. Is this a good thing?
Where, exactly, are we headed? Is it true that technology is always a good thing when it comes to human evolution?
We already outsource much of our learning, our memories, and our predictive capabilities to machines, algorithms and data analytics without really understanding the underlying causes, or frameworks, that shape our world.
Is all this really making us smarter?