The stupid ones
He was a former congressman, and lacks the trappings of material success like expensive clothes, jewelry and shiny SUV. In fact, he does not have even a car to move around in. His wife would be out there on the side of the road trying to catch a cab, like a member of the hoi polloi. Those of materialistic leanings secretly smirk in derision. He is looked at as stupid for having failed to make a pile when he was a congressman. His students before who are now successful lawyers whose situations are the opposite of his relative poverty, consider him as a tragedy or an irony.
In much the same way is a former government employee who at one time was the final signatory to the land titles of many who worked like slaves in whatever employment or businesses or other income generating endeavors they were into so they could save and be able to have a piece of land they could call their own. This final signatory could have made piles of money were he devoid of scruples from illegally earning big sums on the side. Typical of these materialistic times, he was often described as stupid. He struggled for years to pay in installments his residential lot.
Such are the situations of those who labored honestly or who were moral enough not to earn through crooked means. But they are the happier ones amongst us. They are in peace. They sleep soundly and are not worried about what tomorrow would bring. Whether they noticed it or not, all their needs are taken care of at the last minute. Actually, they don’t have to worry about anything.
In contrast to the winners of the recent election and those pre-occupied with more and more material things or riches all the time, they are always worried of the day of their downfall, which always comes sooner or later. Not just that. They are always pre-occupied on how to get more money or power or prestige. Name, fame and money. So their lives are complex doing so many things to have more and more. They are a worrisome lot. Peace of mind or joy? They don’t have any of these.
Those who we call stupid or examples of tragedy or irony are actually having the last laugh.
As one philosopher put it, there is actually no progress in the material or intellectual planes. There is always a negative side you have to contend with that balances things out. Having more cars, for instance, means more worries about maintenance, registration and insurance fees, depreciation, etcetera.
Intellectual advancement? It always comes with more stress.
It is only in the spiritual place where real progress can be achieved.**