Showcase April - Thoughts from an ancient Mayan archaeological site
I'm not impervious to this feeling of emptiness and this instant gratification solution that mostly affects millenials and younger generations. It does wonders for our self estime, self confidence and how we think of ourselves. Other people's validation has become a key part of our perception of the self, whether we like it or not.
I try to avoid this altogether, in fact, I completely stopped posting on Facebook - except for sharing a few articles - ; my Twitter is only comprised of retweets mostly about politics or crypto, narratives I support pushing in a platform like Tw; Instagram is perhaps the only mainstream social media platform I use regularly, posting a couple of stories daily and a Feed picture once a month or so.
Why did I stop posting on these regular social media sites? Let's not get inside the psychological and sociological ways these Blue and red media hubs mess up with us, I actually wrote a piece about that a year ago. Let's just talk about time wasted and most importantly, the fact that I don't want my self esteem and self validation to rely on likes or comments. The more we post, the more we segregate dopamine, the more dopamine we segregate thanks to social media, the more addicted we become to it.
Well, I don't have the time and I think a bit more of myself to become addicted to social media. But I also know myself, I know I might as well fall in the hands of Zuckerberg, that's why I tend to avoid using these social media sites, to not fall into his claws.
Damn, I'm sperging again, this was just the introduction to the post, I am trying a new kind of freewrite. A freewrite where I write about the topics that wandered my mind during a specific moment or experience where in no way I can put out my cellphone to write, and then putting a post together about these thought once I'm infront of the PC or the cellphone.
I remember thinking to myself: Here I go, taking pictures for Steem and Instagram, what a bloke.
Well, not quite I'd say. Of course I don't like taking pictures ONLY for social media likes, but who am I to judge those who do - which let's face it, apparently it's like 99% of the population; visiting places, spending money and time in getting the perfect picture in the perfect spot, all because of pointless internet points in a mind washing social website.
Unlike Steem, where anyone can monetize their voice, these other social media sites monetize us and our information. But that's not the point, let's get back to my thoughts in Chichen Itzá, one of the modern seven world wonders and the Mayan achaeological site I visited a week ago.
When I began posting on Steem, my posts were about adventures. This post about Chichen Itza would've been about how I got there, how the day went, what I learned and tons of pictures of the place. Sort of like a travel/adventure blog. Now, @anomadsoul is more about my thoughts and opinions, the way I see life along a few travel posts and contests.
We all change and tweak the way we post. I mean, we gotta. Of all the successful Steem writers and vloggers I've seen come and go, all those who never evolved and adapted, are now gone or making low rewards. I like to think I've evolved with the platform and my audience, not being the most popular writer, but keeping on vogue and on trend with the audiences, without losing or compromising my own essence and touch.
Which brings me to my next subject. In Chichen Itzá I found at least 300 street vendors, seeling crafts, souvenirs and some other shit
What do I mean by this?
Well, exactly, literally what it written. There are improvised street stores inside the Mayan site. Not right next to the pyramids or temples, but most of the natural hallways made of trees, you can find hundreds of tables with crafts and souvenirs ready to be sold to the eager to spend Gringo.
I thought to myself. To what point are we, mexicans and people in general, ready to sell ourselves in exchange of some survival. We are tainting our ruins, traditions, ourselves and our pride just to profit off some tourists and because the locals have a quarrel with the private owners of a piece of land inside the ruins. Point being, Chichen Itzá is beautiful and the ruins are next level, but the place overall is a shithole that looks more like a Mexican local market rather than a sacred archaeological site. Pity. Shame. Mexican after all.
I thought to myself all of that while walking around to get to the big Pyramid, the main one, that one you see in all the Instagram posts with the cute girl smiling or the buffed guy looking sexy at the camera. Well, I got a dog on my pic :)
I kept walking around, seeing the temples and watching people around me. I tried to ppreciate the architecture and how nature and men converge, even though I know nothing about architecture I am well versed in nature.
I couldn't help but notice that at times, I forgot I was being witness of something unique, a place that's been there a thousand years and it holds more history than anything around it. I practically stopped noticing how wonderful it is to be in front of a 25 meter temple built 800 years ago, and how the jungle is beginning to regain the terrain that once was taken from it, little by little eating out the plain grass and letting herself grow more and more, starting to be in communion with thte temples, until all we have is a temple inside a jungle, instead of a temple surrounded by plains and more temples, no trees, no jungles, only people, buildings and a working society.
It's easy to lose ourselves in the heat of the moment and give ourselves to the picture taking, laugh sharing and chit chat making, no matter what we are doing. We could be in front of the pope, on a space flight or watching TV, I bet that more than one of us - me writing and you reading - would be a victim of this. We can't help it. But let's at least try to appreciate and live the moment for what it is, and not forget where we are.
Sometimes the best way to do it is to close our eyes, listen around, feel the ground below us, become one with nature and our environment and give in to the moment, and not to those around us and the social interactions we could easily have in a coffee shop.
Of course I had more thoughts rambling on my mind, but this post is already long, so I'll close with some pictures of the place, I hope you enjoy them :)
What, you thought I wouldn't include a selfie? Considering how much I love my selfies on steem, I'm disappointed you thought I wouldn't upload one :P
This post was originally posted in January 2020 and it's part of my initiative called showcase April, where I'll post the best content I've done over the past three years.