Great read, I'm looking forward to the next part.

This pattern of people reacting so strongly to the dominant culture does seem to be a relatively new phenomenon. We have accounts of ancient and medieval people experiencing what we might call depression or psychosis, but to my knowledge it's never to the point of being a 'mental health crisis' like we have. Do we need to be doing more to limit the impact of new communication technologies? Or find a way to modify our brains to accommodate them?

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Very interesting idea. The question of 'how to make sense of suffering' plagues both modern individuals and societies. As you've outlined, individual suffering becomes intolerable and all-consuming when you lack an ordered religious and social framework to process it within.

At the societal level, the enlightenment project has always attempted to avoid the question of 'how to suffer well' through its insistence that revolutionary scientific and social projects would eliminate suffering entirely. The fact that this hasn't materialised over the last few centuries has left this central question of how and why we should suffer unanswered, rendering whole peoples into the malaise of paralysing uncertainty initially encountered by individuals like the characters you've described.

Looking forward to the next installment.

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