If you haven’t had your weekly existential crisis yet, this post will help you start thinking about life… because of course, without water there is no life.
We aren’t alive forever, and the underlying meaning of this post is that existentialism is everywhere, —like it or not—you have your meaning of life and so do I. The meanings to live exist everywhere… but what about water? What does water have to do with anything? Glad I asked myself this. I wouldn’t be here without water and neither would you. The dark humor in the fact that if we have too much water or too little water we could die, but when we are hydrated *just* enough our brains are able to function at their best.
I’m not one to watch the news although I do independent research on things I’m interested in, and here’s some of the things I’ve been reminded of from that. (sources are linked at the bottom) and here are some facts:
1. How much water is on earth? I’m sure you’ve heard approximately 70% almost every time since you can remember. This number is true, yet very misleading because we don’t have access to all 70% of the water on earth, and even if we did it would be for research only.
2. The human population is going to reach 8 Billion people by the end of this year, into 2023 and will keep growing. The estimation is growing towards 10 billion or more before we see a deadly drop in the human species because of our lack to keep up with the offspring. Most of us won’t be around by then although it makes you wonder what about the water in decades from now?
3. Only around 3% if that water is clean, safe and accessible to humans. Mostly in glaciers that are falling away into the ocean, naturally purifying the ocean, while simultaneously causing natural disasters threatening humanity more each day. People can seem to comprehend that there are people dying of hunger and flash floods but don’t seem to process how all that happens in the first place. It’s possible we process it so fast our brains purposely avoid the attachment and complete awareness of what’s going on with the planet we live on. Naturally, while all of this is going on we still contribute in some way to our own life or someone else to keep the planet going. Even if you stayed inside and relaxed all day stressing that you didn’t do enough, never thought maybe that’s the day you need to rest and it was another humans day to be busy and solve problems. It’s crazy to me how similar humans are to all other species of animals, even insects like ants. Yet we are so different from them because we aren’t aware that we are one, a collective (so I’ve heard the term used in philosophy) we are all humans working together in our own weird way. Alan watts called this organized chaos, see the link in the source below to a great video. The point I’m trying to make here is that our brains want to solve it, not be the problem. We avoid going down this path of existential crisis because we want to solve the problem, not become the problem. Even if it’s already too late…
4. We have a reason to worry about a water shortage, and many already are. There’s already nearly half the human population without clean water or easy access to it. Even in first world countries we have water shortages and our water does get cut off or contaminated unexpectedly. What then? What about our water? During the times I worked the night shift at a grocery store all of the bottles of water were sold out within the first few hours of opening. Along with the toilet paper and everything that had ‘Lysol’ on it. Seriously crazy how much people raided the store, as a night stocker I got to see the damage done at the end of the day, and for 8 hours did my best to make it ready for the rush the next morning. Not to mention that we were severely understaffed and most nights the semi-trucks filled with your food and drinks were stuck in traffic, behind on orders themselves. If you’re out there wondering why the shelves are empty at the store it’s a chain of reactions to action.
5. Why this is a bigger issue than you think…
If you’ve read this far, thank you. This is not nearly the end of my thoughts, but close to the end of this post.
You may not think this water shortage is a big issue right now, most likely because it doesn’t affect you and you’ve been privileged enough to run your tap without thinking twice about the water coming out of it. Even if you haven’t, you know it’s only going to get worse because nothing is changing on the MAJOR scale. On a MINOR scale people have reusable water bottles, water filtration systems and have even been learning how to use their own at home with rain barrels. This is going to become the normal for future generations if nothing seriously changes. Death is a natural part of the life cycle. That being said… does it justify us selfishly abusing our own resources, being fully aware that it puts our own species at risk? And not just any resources, the only ones we can survive on; food, water and shelter.
*drawing coming soon*
World Wildlife.org, Water Scarcity. Updated 2022 https://www.worldwildlife.org/threats/water-scarcity
Wikipedia, Projections of Population Growth. Updated 2022 https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Projections_of_population_growth
“Organized Mess” audio track by Akira The Don ft. Alan Watts. January 7, 2021. https://youtu.be/t-5s7AM3CVo
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