Ice Bucket Challenge as Atonement


    Recently I was called to the Ice Bucket Challenge. I think it is unnecessary to say where I sent the author of this call in a friendly manner.

    Nevertheless, I am grateful to him, because he made me wonder: why was everyone crazy about the Ice Bucket Challenge? Why did this charity campaign gain worldwide popularity? Every day on the planet starts a lot of charity events, and not one of them has had such a huge success so far.

    I have found the answers to these questions.

    There are two reasons for the popularity of the Ice Bucket Challenge: one is mercantile and not very substantial, the other is super-mercantile and super-substantial. One could not speak about the first, because it is more or less inherent in all charitable events. However, in the case of the Ice Bucket Challenge (IBC), it takes on a special meaning due to the second reason.

    Let's start with the less important. With the atonement of sins ...

    How do I imagine the average IBC member? This is a person who almost never donates to charity and who almost never gets cold water. By donating 10 bucks in connection with the IBC, the participant redeems his “egoism”, the awareness of which the participant periodically burdens. Because a person also had not been doused with cold water before, then from his point of view, the atonement turns out to be quite complete for himself: he physically “suffers” for sins. By the way, the ability to “suffer” physically allows you to not really suffer financially.

    The fact that the motive of “atonement for sins” is indeed present is indicated by the comments of many IBC participants: “You know, I constantly pour cold water and constantly donate money to charity, but <portion of illogical nonsense>”. Those. people are aware of their mercantile motive and try to justify themselves in advance (if they tell a lie) or to isolate themselves from a mercantile motive (if they tell the truth).

    For those who have told the truth, the moment of atonement for sins is not particularly important. However, they still remain slaves of the second motive, in comparison with which the first generally fades.

    The second motive is selfies. It sounds corny, but very human. This is not just a selfie, it is a legalized selfie. You didn’t just buy a new swimsuit and take a picture of yourself on the beach. With your selfie (maybe everything is in the same swimsuit) you are fighting a dangerous disease!

    If it were not for this opportunity to take a selfie, the Ice Bucket Challenge would not have lived even for one day.

    Thanks to selfies, even the motive of repentance becomes more significant: you not only repent, but also publicly. People are willing to give a lot for the quiet opportunity to repent publicly. And here you are! Ice Bucket Challenge.

    PS I'm not sure that my habrakarma will survive this post. But on the other hand, why should she tell me if I can’t say what I’m thinking about? :)

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