Posted on July 14, 2022
Going Nowhere Fast – An Eclectic Essay
I keep track of the days with flat numbers because it offers a different perspective.
Everyone is used to a standard calendar, but the measurement of age in days really hits harder. It instills something different.
I’m reminded of my own mortality, the passing ages, the old and the new. One can describe the cycle with any possible adjective. My way of viewing things has always leaned toward the absurd, but recently I have been a bit melancholic.
I’m human. A semi-intelligent creature with personal views about a ton of stuff. I’m ignorant in many ways, but there are moments where that doesn’t bother me. I play toward my strengths and ignore my weaknesses until they bite me in the ass. Recognizing what we are is important, even when those around me don’t appear to discuss the concept much. Philosophizing about my own existence has always been an interesting pastime. Maybe it needs to be done alone to feel special.
Sometimes I worry about coming across a certain way. Then I wonder if anyone even cares enough to read my work. Perhaps the minor thrill of giving one access to my mindset leaves me satisfied. The thought of someone caring enough to know me and view a side of myself that many would never see. Yes, others might not value me or my thoughts, but I can never blame them for it. We’re all trying to make the most out of the time we are given. Why should I be the judge of others around me when I think of them so little (compared to my hierarchy of needs)?
It is possible that I need to try harder, or take bolder risks in the face of adversity. I feel more like I’m facing monotony and a never-ending grind. Recently I remembered a feeling of sinking dread, lingering on the concept of ‘bad times’. One wonders about being strong enough to withstand harsh moments, or having enough energy to grow despite them. The phrase ‘dark times makes one stronger’ is a nice sentiment, but perspective and context still play a critical role. There is a subjective viewpoint in all of this. My viewpoint is a bit eclectic, and I’m okay with that.
I have moments of fleeting anxiety too. There are those fractions of a second when a decision is made and it feels like all of the alarms could go off. That an error took place, either in judgement or action, and the demons will show up. Fear, shame, pain, confusion, paranoia, and all the emotional states one would label as Hell. We make our own personal pit of despair, failing to recognize that it only exists to serve as an opposite for the things that offer hope. That we are responsible for picking ourselves up when things are bleak. One cannot depend on others forever, especially given that when we spend the bulk of our lives alone and in our own heads.
We all chase happiness. The thought that everything will be okay in the end. That our lives hold meaning, or that we did our best. Is that desire for comfort selfish? Everything comes at a cost, and perhaps it truly is a selfish notion at times. It is important to recognize that there are moments when it all isn’t about you. Hell, the argument can be made that all of our problems, desires, outcomes and time is not worth the effort thinking about in the first place.
Collectively, I think we just make too much noise to be as efficient and effective as we could. I mean, we know that we have the ability to make things better for everyone. We haven’t because morality is not a good enough incentive. This world was set up under systems that only care about results, not the collective emotional state. It makes sense, given the saying about ‘breaking eggs’. Nobody ever considers that their decisions wind up making or breaking things for others. At times, our only option is to cling to the illusion of control by making decisions, ignoring the consequences.
Nihilism is easy. Instead, I prefer the concept of absurdism. Yes, nothing matters, but at least there is a beauty in it. The curiosity to see how it might end is enough motivation for me to get me out of bed most mornings. That we’re lucky to be a part of the colossal calamity that we find ourselves in. Maybe we’re all just experiencing the universe in a laughably short instance. In the greater scheme, we are nothing and everything at the same time.
Ultimately, I’m just a trained ape bashing away at a keyboard. My only hope is that my words instill some semblance of comfort or understanding. Possibly a brief distraction against the unknowable void we find ourselves in. Untold beauty and nightmarish horrors can exist everywhere if you look hard enough. The cracks, fault-lines and consequences of our actions exist all around us. That said, our greatest achievements are the results you see today, giving us the tools and situations we take for granted. We’ve managed to make things rather comfortable, so I can only hope that life exists elsewhere, taking part in this odd experiment alongside us.