I think you should realize this for a fact - especially younger readers who have known nothing different, and who do not read old books to discover the fact.
It has become very difficult, apparently impossible, for people to become aware of the very extreme strangeness of what is taken for granted here and now. This awareness was actually sharp and strong even as recently as forty of fifty years ago - especially in relation to Man's relationship to nature - but (for all the official and media yammering about 'the environment') current culture shows little awareness even of this obvious fact.
Contemporary Man does not even know what he wants or needs - to the point that great efforts are expended on mocking, subverting or destroying those remaining few activities and things which provide reality and goodness and connection.
Already in the mid twentieth century there was the strangeness of so many people spending so much free time reading newspapers and magazines, listening to radio or watching the TV - now this type of activity has expanded to fill almost every waking moment... and it seems a line has been crossed at which the strangeness is no longer apparent.
Indeed, the perception of strangeness appears in those brief periods when not plugged into the media when the mobile phones must be put aside for a few minutes or hours: weird is normal, and normal is aversive.
And humans are social and sexual; and our social and (especially) sexual lives are now almost wholly artificial, saturated in artificiality - to the point where normality is seen as bizarre, and indeed evil.
The casual assumption , possible because of such gross ignorance and disdain for the past and other societies, is that we, here, now have got things right and at last understand what it is to be human (neither a man nor a woman, for starters!) - while everybody at every other time and place were being crudely hoodwinked.
I type this, sitting at a computer screen, linked to the world via the Internet, engaged with it in some kind of subjective fashion - expecting some kind of feedback... how very bizarre. What a weird, doped, detached life we lead - even our antidotes to this disaffection or alienation are themselves modern, technical and artificial - mass distractions and entertainments, mass music, pharmacology, intoxicants, travel, going to big buildings, participation in mass online conversations, mixing with crowds of strangers and the rest of it.
It is not too much to call this world insane, in a fairly-strict sense of psychotic - i.e. living from subjectivity, cut-off from reality, and with no insight. But when everybody is psychotic - then who makes the diagnosis?
This truly is the Most. Bizarre. World. Ever.
And we should not lose sight of the fact.
I have been saying for quite some time now that our disconnect from nature is behind our turn to secularism.
I would have to agree that our increased immersion in virtual worlds through the media and communications technology no doubt has accelerated this considerably.
I fear it has only begun to get _really_ weird.
It's interesting how the baby boomers are disgusted with the attitudes of millennials, and yet this latest generation is only a heightened version of what the boomers started. In their prime, the boomers were all about being subversive towards tradition, and creating an utopian society full of hedonistic distractions. So we got it in ways we least expected.
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