A mere action, a slight word, either of those can change just the highest of moods and change the greatest of lives. It's not obvious, but it's there. The way we treat our friends, the way we conduct ourselves, the way we think, even our inner voices: it is, somehow or other, puppeteered by someone other than our self.
The 'obligation' students have to go to school, the need to be in a relationship with someone for fear of dying alone, to wear the right clothes: are these things we ought to want?To live day to day doing the things we enjoy, to be with someone knowing things will still be OK even if you're not together one day, to walk out of the house stark naked: are these things we really want?
Human beings have a certain power that not one animal even has: reasoning. It's kind of funny to call reasoning a 'power' because it sounds like it is something superior to have over all other animals. In some cases, it's not. It's a pure weakness.
Reasoning leads to compassion, compassion leads us to question our initial actions and the questioning is caused by other voices that are not your own. How frustrating it is to be questioned. What you once thought was just and right, it is easily quashed and deflated with the slightest words of others. What's worse, we tear our selves apart wondering why we compulsively thought or acted upon the 'wrong thing'. Clearly we need those 'others' to dictate to us what to do, how to think, what to say, how to act. After all, that's why we have friends, books, the internet and Oprah. We're willing proteges to anyone/anything that wants to mentor.
Oh, Humanity, why are you so vain?
That is not to say that to be questioned is tragic. It can be quite the opposite and lead us to think differently and uniquely, which is sometimes epiphanic. Sometimes.
Sometimes it can totally just change our mood and irrationally bring us to our knees to the mercy of those who judge us and worst of all, to our selves.
Animals are so lucky, in a way. Never a pause to think. They always seem to be in state of readiness, almost without a blink (true say, for the fish). They'll nosh on red meat without consideration to calories and lick their own balls with candour and unreserved honesty.
How can outside voices be blocked and can they be blocked? Is it possible to control our actions and listen to those voices at the same time? Why can't everyone just shut up?