Being adam parrish was a complicated thing, a wonder of muscles and organs, synapses and nerves. he was a miracle of moving parts, a study in survival. the most important thing to adam parrish, though, had always been free will, the ability to be his own master. this was the important thing. it had always been the important thing. this was what it was to be adam.
The problem isn't materialism as such. Rather it is the underlying assumption that full satisfaction can arise from gratifying the senses alone. Unlike animals whose quest for happiness is restricted to survival and to the immediate gratification of sensory desires, we human beings have the capacity to experience happiness at a deeper level which, when achieved, can overwhelm unhappy experiences.
I can't help comparing what i have with gale to what i'm pretending to have with peeta. how i never question gale's motives while i do nothing but doubt the latter's. it's not a fair comparison really. gale and i were thrown together by a mutual need to survive. peeta and i know the other's survival means our own death. how do you sidestep that?
In fact, one of the arguments for searching for intelligent life in space, elsewhere, is that we have no evidence that intelligence has any survival value. the most successful creatures on this planet are the cockroaches. they've been around, what is it, 100 million years or so and i suspect they'll still be there 100 million years in the future. maybe intelligence is an evolutionary aberration which dooms its possessors in the way armor may have doomed some of the dinosaurs.
There were definitely parts of my character i didnt approve of, and maybe from time to time i had moments when i didnt like myself much. But i got through each day as it came to me, and so far id survived every thing life had thrown at me. I could only hope that the survival was worth the price id paid.
The most important issues to address are the truly existential threats we face: climate change and nuclear war. On the former, the republican leadership, in splendid isolation from the world, is almost unanimously dedicated to destroying the chances for decent survival; strong words, but no exaggeration. There is a great deal that can be done at the local and state level to counter their malign project.
What say you, luxa?" said vikus. "what can i say, vikus? can i return to our people and tell them i withdrew from the quest when our survival hangs in the balance?" said luxa bitterly. "of course you cannot, luxa. this is why he times it so," said henry. "you could choose to - " started vikus. "i could choose! i could choose!" retorted luxa. " do not offer me a choice when you know none exits!" she and henry turned their backs on vikus.
In ascending order the qualities of patriotism are: 1. to work, fight, or die for your own survival. 2. to work, fight, or die for your immediate family. 3. to work, fight, or die for a group, extended family, tribe, or clan. 4. to work, fight, or die for a group too large for all the individuals to know each other. 5. to work, fight, or die for a way of life.