Opinion: Serious play


As fads come and go, human beings remain largely the same. As shifts occur in how we elect to order our societies, human beings remain largely the same. As cultures adapt to new technologies and new political powers, human beings remain largely the same. As much as we might like to imagine ourselves enlightened, progressing and generally new-and-improved, human beings remain largely the same.

Certainly, we have moved out of mud huts. We have learned to read, to catapult ourselves into space and how to tame all manner of wild beast. But still, we require human interaction. Still, we laugh, cry, envy, judge, hope our tribe – however we define it – comes out on top and talk more than we listen. Sure, some days are better than others. And some humans are better than others. Well, maybe it is better to say that some humans are better than others sometimes and in some circumstances.

To be clear, we, one and all, are flawed and glorious. We build only to destroy. We destroy only to rebuild. We allow our insecurities, angers and needs to occupy our minds and justify our actions. We preen and provoke others even as we reassure ourselves in our righteousness. This is all not to say that we humans are bad. In fact, we are remarkable in our curiosity and hopefulness. We overcome, grow and continue to learn.

Isn’t the real challenge to self-assess once in a while? We can use a good friend, the “Good Book,” or a simple online quiz. Are we our better selves? Are our indulgences going too far? Are we making good use of these few precious years on this planet? Laugh or cry? Run or rest? Even if the game’s the same for a thousand years, shouldn’t we play it like it matters?