Apathy is commonly thought to be a specific non-emotion: "I don't care." The apathetic carries an air of smug, Gregory-House-ness. Or, just sitting in a beanbag. Lots of Xbox. Sleeping until 10am. Untucked shirts. Untapped potential. Relationally disengaged. We think of apathy as slow, numb, and half-hearted — an emotional anesthetic. But apathy of this sort has not survived the existential crisis of millennials. It has evolved into something stronger, less condemnable by modern standards. "I don't care" has become a parasite on something much more forceful: "That doesn't matter." Recently, apathy has thrown off its garments of unrespectability and taken the judgment seat of cultural prestige. "I'm not motivated" has been replaced with a bigger philosophical gun: "I'm not persuaded." Self-indulgence now piggy-backs on self-involvement.
We now face a bigger, badder "I don't care." It's more complex. Topics of God, church, love, community, spiritual discipline, theological conviction, relational faithfulness, life, work, family, friends, whatever ... all receive a definitive, self-assured and swank "Meh."
Aspects of Apathy
As with any concept, it is best to begin with a clear definition. For our purposes, we will define apathy this way:
The disposition of dismissal or reluctance toward a particular idea, person, or group, often experienced as a lack of emotion.
This sort of apathy has five basic components.
[Read the rest of the article at Desiring God.]