“Why should I care?” he says looking straight at me. Looking straight though me, as if trying to read my mind. “Why should I take the time to care…it seems like a lot of work. You’ve said as much yourself. Add to that, it’s pretty high risk.”
“Convince me,” he says, “Make the case as to why care is a worthwhile endeavor to embrace.”
I meet his gaze, and then fix my own eyes on the scene I observe through the second floor window, a landscape view found directly in my line of vision. I let my eyes wander even as my mind races to process such a loaded question.
Why care indeed?
Surely he has cared himself for someone. Has just as surely had someone care reciprocally for him too. Can he not then transfer what this care has meant to him, applying that same care as useful to another human being?
“Suppose,” I say to him, “Suppose you are living inside a bubble. It’s safe there inside that bubble. You are protected there, comfortable. There is no need to risk when you live in the bubble because everything is cushioned. There is nowhere to fall because falling is not an option. Failure is not an option. Discomfort is not an issue. You are completely protected, completely safe in your sterile little world.”
“You look around you and as far as the eye can see, all you can see are other bubbles. Each one a complete and self-serving little universe unto itself.”
“But where is the meaning,” I ask him. “Where is the joy, the pleasure, the pain, the knowing of anything else? Where is the living?”
We have but one shot at living this life. The opportunity to breathe and live and experience and understand and grow and know: this is our one human experience. We have no second chance at this, no do-overs.
Is life not worth breaking free from the confines of that feeble, fragile shell that hold us captive? Is it not meaningful to see beyond our shallow living and look past ourselves to the world of others that exist around us? Looking for care and understanding?
Is care not a form of hope?
And what of those who choose to remain inside. There will come a time when each, both those held captive as well as those who have been freed: each will require a helping hand, a word of care from another human being. We all need something. We cannot exist for the totality of our individual lives in complete isolation. And what then?
What then shall we require?
Will we not require from others, something more meaningful than indifference and distant contact? Something more substantial, in fact- sustaining? Can we not call that something CARE?
If then: we all will require care, how then can we not care now?
Convince me not to care: that is a better question.