I’m suspended in the air, flying between London and Houston. Two influential and wealthy worlds connected by an invisible line described by the trajectory of a Boeing 777.
World news, facebook updates and social commitments all vanish for a period of about ten hours. I’m living within the narrow limits of this temporary non-territory and my community is constituted by 319 passengers and 9 members of the airline crew.
Despite the lack of comfort of us sitting in economy, life is peaceful up here: we are conformed to our limitations; disconnected from earthly matters and detached from earthly luxuries. Coexistence between passengers is respectful and collaborative too; a diverse crowd sits shoulder to shoulder, all bonded by a common purpose: to arrive safely at our destination.
And this little stream of consciousness brings me to my simple reflection on an airplane.
If we strip human beings down to their fundamental hopes, away from worldly matters and away from social control, we are often left with a core of similar hopes and desires. No matter where we come from or where we’re heading to, we all want the same basic things: to be safe and to keep our loved ones safe; to reach old age in good health and to meet our imminent death in peace.
But I’ll probably forget all this as soon as I touch ground. World news, facebook updates and the whole system of social determinism will catch me in its trap. It will rule over a significant part of my behaviour and will divert me to overcomplicated and fallacious “truths.” I will forget how simple and how equal all human hearts are. Hearts that long for the same basic things: to be safe and to keep their loved ones safe, to age with health and to eventually meet death in peace.