I come from Woodstock NY. Yes, the famous Woodstock. And let me tell you, whatever you might have heard about the town, it's true, and more. I grew up just outside the town, but was always surrounded by the hippie culture. Unfortunately for them it was apparent to everyone but them that the hippie movement was becoming extinct. Understandably so, because while the 60's and 70's did wonders for environmental concern and activism, they are also synonymous with hallucinogenic drugs, outspoken radicalism, and of course "smelling like a hippie".
Now, I am begining to see a resurgence of some of those same mentalities. We are reviving the "hippie" movement, but we are doing more than giving it new life. We are rebuilding it, from the ground up. Our generation is smart. Without a doubt, we are the smartest generation in American history, but only because of our near unlimited access to information. We are the cyber-nerds, the geeks, the dorks, the dweebs. We are the Bill Gates, the Quentin Tarantinos, the Walt Disneys, the Einsteins, and even the James Camerons. The world is beginning to see that we are creating the future. We don't run the world, but we are in control. Just look at the Academy Awards. In the past 20 years, how many science fiction and fantasy films have been nominated, and won? Small in comparison to the number of non-fantasy films, but growing, and at an incredible rate. Avatar has shown us that through all our advancement, there is a better way of living, and we are begining to make it happen. It takes a film like Avatar, and other James Cameron works to show us how we could be living, and how we might end up if we don't change.
In the Avatar Survival Guide, there is a passage that the author wrote relating to the Na'vi bows:
"Our hands are arthritic and painful from ill use. We need to be both cunning and skilled to use our hands again to build things of value. I stole scrap wood and norcord to fashion a bow. I urge you to do the same"
I took this to heart immediately after reading it. It raises a good point. We do not create anymore, we purchase. But does that make it ours? I went outside, found a recently fallen sapling, and made a bow with nylon cord. While making it I couldn't stop. I carved things into it, I decorated it, and now it hangs above my desk in my room, where it reminds me every day that the natural beauty of the world is staggering, and there is nothing on earth that can equate to the value of something you made with your own to hands. Like the author in the book, I urge you to do the same. Irayo