From the moment of birth for most of us, our skills, abilities, knowledge, associations, and character is in ascendency. We are expanding, improving, developing, learning, refining, and gathering.
We reach a point where we begin to shed certain characteristics, young boy’s revulsion of girls, young girl’s affinity for dolls. With the loss of these comes the addition of new ones, sexual attraction, assertion of independence, and the continued development of our physical ability, emotional capacity, intellectual inquisitiveness, and innate curiosity.
At some point we reach a peak. No more skills are added. We may continue to improve the level of our existing characteristics, but we add nothing new.
Then, subtly, unnoticed, unintentionally we begin to descend from the peak. Skills no longer accumulate and improve but abandon us.
There was a time when I could play the guitar fairly well, I still have the memory of that ability, I still consciously know how my fingers need to move, but the skill has faded, and it likely will not come back.
This is a skill I miss, but it doesn’t significantly impact my life. I suppose I could practice more and reclaim some of it, but the broken bones I have also gathered in my left hand limit the reclamation of that level of skill.
But it struck me the other day that I may be losing more important characteristics and skills that may matter.
Empathy. My ability to be empathetic has severely declined. If something is wrong in your life, world, relationship, soul, do something or accept it. Either way shut up.
Tolerance. I can still tolerate pain, bad weather, and disappointment. I have lost all my ability to tolerate stupidity and ignorance. In particular, ignorance fueled by the belief in an anthropomorphic and personal god, please keep that one to yourself.
It is not only the belief itself, but the actions it engenders i.e. Westboro Baptist Church cretins preaching “God hates Fags” on the “Christian” spectrum and Suicide bombers looking for Allah and the seventy-two virgins on the Islamic spectrum.
Stupid may be genetic but ignorance is by choice.
So I am in Ascending Descendency (not even sure this is a word, but spellcheck tries to substitute Despondency which may be more apropos). Some skills, some traits, some abilities are descending. The rate and number is ascending.
But I don’t really care.
To borrow words from a Jimmy Buffet song “he’s losing his hearing, but he doesn’t care what most people say…”