I’m studying cynicism. It’s the philosophy of the day amongst many college students, and I wonder how to combat it. Cynicism is trendy. It’s so very sophisticated to be detached, sarcastic, pessimistic, suspicious, negative, and bitter.
It seems so intellectual. The cynic recognizes the fake because it’s all fake to her. It’s all hopeless and pointless. The best the cynic can do is to detach and complain. She pretends she’s outside of the system so she can criticize with supreme arrogance.
When the cynic meets me–in all my flair–she finds I’m naive, pollyanna, and filled with false hope. She can’t believe I actually believe the Bible or in any type of God for that matter. She rolls her eyes at my optimism and my sincere hope. She’s angered by my unshakeable belief in beauty, wonder, and joyful living.
She hates me. I remind her of something she wants to forget.
It’s called hope.
The author Michael Crawley wrote this: “A cynic is a coward …. Cynicism always takes the easy way out. It is a form of laziness that provides someone with an excuse for not making any attempt to change the world. . . Cynicism is a way to hide. . . Cynics are afraid . . . So, instead, they pass judgment on anyone who is trying to make a difference. They ridicule the efforts of individuals and organizations that are working hard under incredibly difficult circumstances . . . Being cynical is often thought of as being composed and detached. It is considered to be a sign of sophistication. Cynics are mistakenly given credit for possessing a deep awareness regarding the limits of what humans can accomplish which is somehow lacking in those who spend their time in passionate efforts to change the world …. Being filled with cynicism is indeed a cowardly and sad way to go through life.”
I want brave. I want to change the world. I press on into the hope even more. Maybe the cynic will give hope a chance today. Besides, today already has too much wonder and joy to fill a million blog posts. Don’t get me started.
Give hope a chance today.