Jan 24, 2023
This short story by Ursula Le Guin deeply resonates with my soul:
I think we, suicidal people, are the “miserable child” for our real societies. I mean of course there’s not much prosperity and happiness around and all even for non-suicidal ones, but torturing us (incarcerating “for our own good” etc.) serves a similar purpose of ensuring status quo.


Grave with a view...
Jan 22, 2023
Omelas is my favourite Le Guin short story, and one of my favourite works of literature in general.

I wouldn't say that suicidal people are like the child in the story because the child's suffering was what made the idyllic life of everyone else in Omelas possible. Abhorrent as the child's situation was, it had a purpose. The child suffered horribly so that everyone else could be happy. Of course, this arrangement was so horrifying to some that they preferred to walk away from their blessed life in Omelas. In the real world, suffering is overwhelmingly useless.

But I see a similarity with our real societies—in Omelas, like in the real world, the vast majority of people prefer to ignore the unimaginable suffering that some people deal with every day, because acknowledging it would make their own lives unbearable; allowing themselves to recognise the injustice would force them to confront their own moral failings. It's easier and more comfortable to turn a blind eye towards suffering, and carry on with your own affairs. Suicidal people are kept in check, so to speak, because acknowledging their very real suffering would force us to look in the mirror and deal with our moral failings. It's easier to lock suicidal people up, or tell them to hit the gym and take a walk every day. In that sense, we are very much like the people of Omelas.


Feb 16, 2023
I feel like we're more like the ones who walk away than the child.


May 27, 2023
I can't believe I'm reading a thread about Omelas. Isn't it odd that the reference is to Salem, Oregon, which now, many years later, has become the spearhead for VAD.
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