Myth of Progress

Category: Songwriter Stories

myth of progreeeOne of the most memorable trips in my life was backpacking in Mexico, taking a semester off from college. And though there's a myriad of experiences that rank high, including playing music on the street during carnival in Mazatlan, learning the subway system of Mexico City getting around one of the biggest cities in the world for pennies, and standing atop the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan; the spring equinox at Chichen Itza was probably the most amazing. I had been in San Cristobal, Chiapas for some of the peace talks between the Mexican government and Zapatista rebels. Then caught a ride with some Canadians in a VW bus up to Chichen Itza. I sat in the back with a guy from London who also hitched a ride, he proceeded to roll up huge spliffs all through the night on the way there.

Arriving the next morning on the day before the equinox I found the place to be out of rooms. But it was fine because the few hotels there allow people to pitch a tent or lay out a sleeping bag in their grass lawn area. I had no idea that many people showed up there, it was easily 20,000. You have your run of the mill tourists whom the locals would call "human carbon copies". But then there's all the cool Mexicans from all over the country joined by an international croud of people from all over the world and all walks of life that makes it a unique event. I had the epiphany there that, rich or poor, from whatever part of the world people seek some kind of fun and meaning with their lives. And all the wars, death, and destruction comes from clinging to a bunch of baggage we've been taught to believe. Whether it's religion, government, or pursuit of money, it's all just human concepts passed down through the generations, but all illusory. The great equalizer is death, no matter how many houses you own and no matter how big your bank account is, it won't matter when you're dead.

So you sure as hell better use the short time you have in this world to put out something positive and find what really makes you happy, because when you're at the end and facing death wondering where your life went, you don't want to look back in regret realizing you just spent it all serving someone else's agenda and that you're nothing more than something you invest in.