Sentiment is no longer bold, honorable and stirring; it’s quasi-ironic, saccharine, self-deprecating and “uplifting,” which means a combination of distracting and momentarily pleasant.
Underlying this style of expression is a fundamental negativity. Only if life itself is fundamentally not uplifting do we need little uplifts to get us through the day.
These are doses of the positive in the small. They are not major life goals that turned out OK; they’re the small consolations, diversions and compensatory self-rewards that we use to pull ourselves through life, inch by inch and not mile by mile.
They would have no value if life itself were not on some level negative. If life were positive, we would not seek the uplifting but the complementary, to enhance the beauty we found in life.
Instead, we’ve given up on the big picture or life as a whole being beautiful, and instead view it as a kind of jail sentence in which we take in our uplifts like cigarettes, little breaks that are alternatives to the misery of the whole.
The only reason to fixate on the uplifting, sentimental and emotional is out of a belief that the bigger situation will not change. We believe we are helpless against our jail sentence, and with it, the decline of years.
As a result, we become saps, only too willing to ignore our own concerns in favor of a sad story, a cute picture or a dramatic and emotional news story.
Our goal is perpetual emotional distraction which affirms our negative view of life, and that our only hope is to retreat into the self and the human world of emotions, socialization and “hope.”
We don’t believe in our society, or in its mission, or even it having a mission. We don’t believe in reality. We believe only in the self, and the external rewards like socialization, “hope” and uplifting moments that make it bearable.
This forever excludes us from anything deeper than the surface. In order to experience life, there must be a goal and a study of reality to match. Without that, life is like a skit acted out before the campfire — a caricature, a cartoon, and a farce.
Saps seem like an innocent enough phenomenon. They are harmless, after all. But the underlying cause of saps, as well as the consequences of their presence, is a deadly matter that no amount of uplifting propaganda can correct.