MIND: Obstructed

It is the obvious which is so difficult to see most of the time.
People say, “It’s as plain as the nose on your face.”
But how much of the nose on your face can you see,
unless someone holds a mirror up to you?

I, Robot // Isaac Asimov

MIND: Unplugged

The education system is not designed to turn out thoughtful individualists, it is there to get us to work. When we come home exhausted from the inanities of our jobs we can relax in front of the inanities of the TV screen. This pattern, punctuated by birth, death and marriage and a new car, is offered to us as real life.

Children who are born into a tired world as batteries of new energy are plugged into the system as soon as possible and gradually drained away … Those who have kept their spirit find it hard to nourish it and between the ages of twenty and thirty, many are successfully emptied of all resistance.

I do not think it an exaggeration to say that most of the energy of most of the people is being diverted into a system which destroys them

Money is no antidote. If the imaginative life is to be renewed it needs its own coin.

Imagination and Reality // Jeannette Winterson

MIND: Expectations

The glass ceiling of happiness is held in place by two stout pillars, one psychological, the other biological. On the psychological level, happiness depends on expectations rather than objective conditions. We don’t become satisfied by leading a peaceful and prosperous existence. Rather, we become satisfied when reality matches our expectations.

The bad news is that as conditions improve, expectations balloon. Dramatic improvements in conditions, as humankind has experienced in recent decades, translate into greater expectations rather than greater contentment. If we don’t do something about this, our future achievements too might leave us as dissatisfied as ever.

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow // Yuval Noah Harari

MIND: Vagabonding

Thus, the question of how and when to start vagabonding is not really a question at all. Vagabonding starts now. Even if the practical reality of travel is still months or years away, vagabonding begins the moment you stop making excuses, start saving money, and begin to look at maps with the narcotic tingle of possibility. From here, the reality of vagabonding comes into sharper focus as you adjust your worldview and begin to embrace the exhilarating uncertainty that true travel promises.

Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel // Rolf Potts