I have only one chapter left to write, and that’s the final chapter: Discussion and Conclusions. After that, I am going to spend 2-3 weeks more for editing before the whole thesis is polished for final submission in October / November.
It feels so surreal. Just two days ago I was lying down, almost debilitated because there were a whole stream of voices — a combination of my own conscience and from others who have doubted me — kept playing in my head. “Someone’s going to find out you are just bullshitting all of these things”, “you write like a pseudo-intellectual” (I was told this before), “you’ll never be good enough”, and “what are you going to do with a PhD? You’ll never find a job anyway.” I was lucky (?) I have practically trained myself to time and schedule my breakdowns, so in 20 minutes I got up, brushed the vicious thoughts away, walked to my desk, and resumed to write.
I don’t plan to write longer than 300 words tonight — or maybe even less — but I am intrigued with this article and xkcd comic (I just learned today his name is Randall Munroe) on how to mail a package from space. Apparently it involves just throwing it out of the door of the ISS and wait. There are also two possibilities: the package will burn before it ever reaches the ground, and if it ever arrives on Earth anyway, we have no idea whatsoever where it will land, despite it being addressed elsewhere. But there are ways to ensure your package reaches the land safely, and one that involves a lot of addressing heat reduction. Anyway, read here.
People’s ability to connect is the glue that holds our culture together. By thinning out our interactions and splintering our media landscape, the Internet has taken away the common ground we need to understand one another. Each of us is becoming more confident about our own world just as it drifts farther from the worlds of others. Empathy requires us to understand that even people who disagree with us have a lived experience as deep as our own. But in the fractured landscape of social media, we have little choice but to see the other side as obtuse, dishonest or both. Unless we reverse this trend and revive empathy, we have little chance of mending the tears in our social fabric.
Have a good weekend.