Knowledge can be profoundly sad, but I need to believe imagination can be stronger – AOL

Clickbait Title Idea:
“Uncovering the Sadness in Today’s World: How can We Make a Difference?”

The Weight of Our Times: How Modern Calamities Can Affect Perspective

Saddened by the World’s Chaos: Could Our Actions Make a Change?

Analyzing the Reasons for Our Gloomy Feelings: Is it Possible to Steer Towards a Better Course?

Spotlighting the Issues Surrounding Us: How Can We Turn Our Experiences into an Opportunity?

Rewritten Article
The idea of writing something about food or exploring how our upbringings determine our preferences was crossed off my list today; there’s a weight on my chest and a tightening in my throat that won’t let me pen in a light-hearted manner. There’s something different in the air–hard to explain, but foreboding nonetheless. It’s not just the usual dismay. It’s something graver, as though the world is slowly crumbling down, like an unbalanced Jenga tower.

We’re all aware of the atrocities happening outside our homes–inequities, wars, floods, and fires— and the truth is that previous events have had a deep effect on me. But today is different–something feels off, like I’m being held to an unbearable standard. This is true for many of us; the pandemic served as a reminder of the importance of a sense of community, as loneliness has become an epidemic.

Being an American, I’ve also seen the repercussions of politicians fixated on power instead of the successes of the public, my own state included with an imposing number of book bans. Universities have failed in teaching critical thinking and society has become heavily reliant on road rage.

Not to forget the weather, once a safe topic of conversation. We had the hottest summer on record this past year, and scientists fear that this will be the hottest year yet. Sadly, for some this fact triggers more debates rather than precautions.

It’s not in my nature to be a Debbie Downer, but it’s hard when so many problems are piling up on our shoulders. But I’ve always been an optimist, someone who finds a way to keep going no matter the hardship. I’m making a conscious effort to believe that optimism will prevail and give us the chance to make a change.

I consulted a friend on my feelings, and she said this is probably due to the good fortune of being a senior citizen. Yes, we’ve lived a full life, but gaining an extended perspective also means being able to clearly evaluate our past decisions and weigh the good and bad.

Mark Twain once said, “The man who is a pessimist before 48 knows too much; if he is an optimist after it, he knows too little”. I truly believe this; knowledge has its merits, but so does imagination– and so should our willingness to strive for a better future.

It’s impossible to figure out the trouble of the world on my own, but I can perform small acts of kindness and make an effort to help others. Maybe, just maybe, these little things can be inspirational to those around me and help form a much needed positive cycle.

Ana Veciana-Suarez writes about family and social issues. Email her at [email protected] or visit her website Follow @AnaVeciana.

Clickbait Title Idea:
“Fighting the Gloom and Embracing the Good: Can We Create a Better Future?”