From the moment one enters this earthly dimension, their safety becomes everyone’s biggest concern or at least for their parents or guardians. The general notion is that the world is a dangerous place, and the foremost responsibility of a parent or guardian is to keep their children safe from both the known and the unknown.
Now, this may be a perception of the person the child is under the care of because it is derived from their personal experiences. It could also be since, as a parent and an adult, one may have not even dealt with their own childhood traumas and hence may be projecting their fears and insecurities on the child. Already, at the onset, the child is not given an opportunity to authentically adapt to the world and develop their view and perception of the world and in this way becomes a victim of their environment.
The general obsession with safety and security may not be completely ruled out though as they can be circumstantial. There can be situations where the parent or guardian’s concerns are legitimate.
This can be in a situation of, for example, war or living in very dangerous neighbourhoods where kidnapping and child trafficking are rampant. In the absence of these situations, the worst-case scenario is when the threats are imaginary and somewhat neurotic.
There is no doubt that, in all animal kingdoms, safety and security is an instinctive responsibility. The problem is when safety and security is extended to almost every area of life and no longer limited to basic needs only. In this instance, it becomes more than a concern and need but becomes more exaggerated. It is this exaggeration that becomes the very foundation of constant anxiety for humanity.
As if the anxiety is not enough, the notion of safety and security eventually also becomes the very root cause of unstable relationships amongst people. This is because when one becomes overly concerned or obsessed with safety and security it may lead to some level of paranoia. They would start seeing almost anything and everyone as a threat. A friendly stranger would be a conman, anyone knocking at the door would be a suspect thief and even a co-worker would be a competitor whose aim is to take over one’s position. A society only obsessed with personal safety and security is guaranteed to self-destruct. Such a society can no longer work together unselfishly and for the good of all. Such is the opposite of the basis upon which generations have survived, not as individuals but as coordinated groups and formations with one common goal. Therefore, the most daunting task for this generation is no longer waiting but before it and for the taking. To wage the war against disharmony and everything that is an existential threat to the current and future generations. To do so, one must first understand that we need to dissolve many illusions and self-imposed obstructions to unity. The aim should be to identify real and common safety and security concerns of the unit than deal with divisive and imaginary or propagated ones.
Safety and security are basic survival instincts. If they are well understood, under normal circumstances, they should not put one under a constant state of fear and anxiety. This is because, in the end, no one is safe. At any moment, a heart may stop beating, and every step taken is a risk.
With this awareness then, one should take the best necessary precaution in the best way they can without letting it suck the life out of them. It is a reminder to make every minute count and be ready for any eventualities. It requires living with readiness and preparedness while finding meaning in living one second at a time in harmony with all life.
By Karlos TheGreat
Uncommon Sense is published every Friday in the New Era newspaper with contributions from Karlos Naimwhaka