I was in a thought provoking series of changing situations today. First, a quiet picnic, where I hardly knew anyone so I mostly wandered about taking pictures. Then I was in a car, getting back to the city, sitting quietly in the back as passenger in front of me, another struggler coming to terms with shattered remains of his life, babbled about this with the driver, a seasoned, overly confident photographer. Then I was in a shopping mall full of people, looking for an ATM.

As I walked the alleys of the colorful, obligatorily happy world of “haves and have mores” that I fell from more than a year ago, I looked at the people around me, relaxed, clean, chatting and wandering about at slow pace. As I walked past couple after couple I begun to wonder about the myth of “simple people”.

I don’t know how it is out there were you are, dear reader, but here there is a notion of “simple people”. These are like an old, poor but wise farmer from stories. Simple people have simple minds and lead simple lives. Not intelligent or significant they posses wisdom about life that eludes philosophers. Not stupid or corrupt they accept and enjoy every small miracle of life, like a grandma feeding birds in the park with crumbs of her sandwich, smiling broadly.

I don’t know where this myth comes from. Is it an echo of a well known story about the shirt of a happy man? Or maybe of Rousseau’s fascination with nature and noble savages? Or the modern fascination with workers, Marxist in its roots, in which an old industrial foreman in his grease-stained overalls replaces farmers as the carrier of simple wisdom? I don’t know, but there is something to this myth that makes it stick with us through centuries.

Maybe it is so that those simple people who were not blessed (cursed?) with overpotent brains don’t have trouble with hundreds of thoughts and images passing through their heads all the time. They don’t worry about “society loosing its sensivity to true beauty”, “socio-politicall challenges of the new millenium” or debates on “why there is rather something than nothing”. When they eat, they just eat. When they love, they just love. When they talk, they just utter words. When they shop, they just shop. They just walk there, through mall and fellow shoppers don’t spur chains of deliberations like this one.

In other words they don’t have to sit long years on a meditation cushion to just be where their feet thread. If it’s indeed so, then Cypher was right – ignorance is bliss.