No Escape Into the Wild

The story of Christopher McCandless (Into the Wild) is an accounting of Christopher’s search for reality; that of which is the state or quality of being real. To him, nothing could be more real than the existence of life before man’s imprint, the wild. Falsehoods created by man taunted McCandless to flee the mundane, yet chaotic dilemmas of human life. Returning to nature was SuperTramps’ road to finding truth, to finding himself. This journey that ultimately led to his death was his personal salvation and therefore can be considered a success. But, his attempt to live completely outside of civilization can be interpreted as unsuccessful.


It is true that Christopher McCandless endured isolation while inhabiting a desolate bus not far from civilization. A feat, in and of itself, that most may not have been able to conquer. The facts remain however, that the bus and its contents the rice, the gun, and the tools that he used derived from civilization. Even if he had used more primitive methods of surviving, any use of man-made tools or techniques would still lead back to some civilization, tribal or otherwise; thus proving that today, it is impossible to live outside civilizations’ influences.


Consider those who live in huts made from brush who have no running water or electricity. Technology as we know it is not a pertinent determinant when concluding whether or not a people are civilized. The most barbaric of peoples exhibit civilization when they progress in ways of tool making, communication, etc. This progression is natural to man and cannot be undone nor can it be purposefully forgotten.


Considering civilization in your world, as you know it, can we still escape from all that hustle and bustle? Can you live in the wild without civilized gear? I do not believe we can. Even if we traveled to the utmost remote location, the airplane and the satellite still flies overhead and the waterproof matches still ignite.


There is no escaping the civilization that we have collectively built.




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