This is a recent development – a product of the 19th and 20th Centuries. And it never ceases to amaze me.
Why do so few people notice this?
I can see its advantages, easily enough. Life has become so difficult, it is easiest to ignore it – and just get out of the way. We can’t be hurt if we don’t exist!
Except that we can be hurt – very badly. I have seen this in several families I have known, down here in Costa Rica – the best of Central American countries. Families (and individuals) that were in fairly good shape – have been devastated by mental illness, and are barely able to function.
Something has devastated them.
I remember the last time I saw my ex wife, back in the States. She had a complete mental collapse, and had ordered me out of her life. I left her in Los Angeles, and went to my new job in Denver. Years later, I got a phone call “I am flying out to see you!” I met her at the airport, but was so shocked by her appearance, I nearly dropped the flowers I had bought for the occasion. I was looking at a ghost! A year later, she killed herself.
This woman was in incredible pain – but no one (including herself) was aware of this. And when she killed herself – no one could understand why.
When you stop being – you lose the ability to understand.