Content or Contentment?

Content or Contentment?

“By 2025, the amount of data generated each day is expected to reach 463 exabytes globally.”

That’s huge. An exabyte is two to the sixtieth power bytes; “exa” means one billion billion, or one quintillion.

“But Bill!” I hear you say. “You don’t have to consume all of it!” True enough. The issue for me, however, is to know this and yet still contribute to it.

I’m conscious of your limited time in this “me! me!” era. You deserve nothing less than extraordinary content. I really really don’t want to offer concrete wisdom in a digital world that’s fascinated by fluff.

Yet, here’s the thing: SEO is driving all of that wonderfulness into the crapper in favor of the homogenized, AI-grokable, search-driven quick-fix how-to that does next to nothing to evolve civilization.

For example…

Literature online? Fughettaboudit. Poetry? Art? Music? If it has words but ignores SEO, like this article, you can kiss your content – and your contentment – goodbye. The Algorithm demotes anything it doesn’t recognize, so any ad spend you muster for it is doomed: do not pass Go, do not collect $200. Might as well keep it to yourself. Not even a thank you for the treasure you gave Meta/AlphaBet/TikTok/etc.

Thing is, the threads that hold all of us together are not digital. They don’t rely on SEO to have evergreen value. They are the lifeblood of what matters most: relationship, genuine compassion, and physical presence sans technology. The ties that bind us are not woven of exabytes. Instead, they are the ones found in literature, poetry, art, and music – the stuff everyone tries to repeat online in SEO-based formats that All. Sound. The. Same.

The Big Lies of Our Age

It’s a lie to claim otherwise, and we can see the results of those false claims everywhere these days:

The detritus of distress, depression, and anxiety, which Big FixIt — that’s Big Pharma, Big Coach, Big Finance, Big Government, Big Science, and Big Commodity combined — wants to “help” us dissolve.

The unequal distribution of treasure that buoys happiness, hope, and health for the few at the expense of the many. You can see it in the desire to have, which is pernicious, destructive, and murderous and underlies a lot of the content out there.

In the face of these Post-Industrial Age results, what are today’s prophets of contentment to do with all this content?

Offer encouragement.

Encouragement

I encourage you to limit activities that dull consciousness: endless network events, another new coach, one more credential for the collection, the weekly spiritual thrill ride of psychedelics, doom-scroll rabbit holes, the ever-lower limbo bar of new content, especially mass media, blogs, and podcasts. Whatever embers are left behind your latest fire walk are just that: left behind.

Dump the content that never fits you perfectly anyhow. I encourage you to expand your consciousness. There’s a nearby visual map for that courtesy of the inspired thinker David R Hawkins. Sweep up the trace remains of those insightful downloads from your last psychedelic journey. Pay attention to the words in your journal – they are closer to your truth than you know.

The Hawkins Levels of Consciousness

Don’t belong just because it feeds some base sycophantic desire you’ve neglected. I encourage you to find supportive, healthful, challenging ways to belong to a group, idea, or movement. That kind of belonging values you for your unique attributes and abilities, not for the number of followers it has for all its vacuous plain-vanilla SEO pablum.

And, for goodness’ sake, I encourage you to stop trying to find online support for the remarkable, clear, different-from-everyone-else wellspring of life inside you! What, you WANT to be like everyone else? It’s normal to be different. Embrace that. There’s nothing wrong with you if you don’t fit into the mold someone else tells you about, regardless of how many followers someone else has — is it real? — may have. Genuine pride doesn’t apologize or demand acceptance, correct?

There are whole worldwide communities of people who celebrate their differences and love one another anyhow. Do you want me to point them out for you? Again? We don’t need or want you stuffed into sameness; we want you — need you! — outside the digital box and in your creative real-life amazingness.

Do you need examples of how that works? Look up “businesses launched during the pandemic,” and you’ll get some ideas, provided you page down below all the stuff The Algorithm wants you to know and only pay attention to what’s left.

You want me to tell you what to do? Not going to happen. That answer is inside of you, right where it’s been all along. You don’t need me to find it. The wisdom of civilization gives you all the encouragement you’ll need. “The Kingdom of God is within you” is a good start. You can hear that echoed in many religions and philosophies if you listen carefully, read it in literature and poetry, see it in art, and feel it in music.

And, once you begin to pay active attention to what’s real, what matters, and who you are in all your personal and beautiful glory, you’ll have a new way to filter all that content and to truly become content.

Thank you. That is all.


Bill Protzmann is a consciousness leader who advocates for the power of music as self-care.