“Oh! I need to end this violence / in a place that I call home.”
Looking back: 7 years since I left the shelter of youth and starry-eyed optimism and where have I wandered? 32 years old and I’m looking back more than I’m looking forward.
Is this it? Have I run the gauntlet and come up with not even a bronze? Just resignation and a nagging compulsion to make peace with all the “dreams that won’t be realized”?
Where did this sense of entitlement and fate and destiny come from? Am I just another failed by-product of a spoiled generation, or is this the kind of thing that sentimental dreamers suffer across the boundaries of space and time and international borders?
Would I feel this way if I’d grown up in a war-torn Banana Republic as a child soldier, or would I have just ridden the tide of havoc reassuring myself that I had a cause and a purpose until I either died or was spared or rescued and came to terms with how the world is a cold and indifferent place where there are winners and losers and the only thing separating the two is tragic streak of dumb luck and maybe a winning ticket in the socio-historical lottery?
Or maybe it’s not the socio-historical lottery. Maybe it is the genetic lottery, after all, but instead of it having to do with race and smarts and wits, it has to do with how the cruel and indifferent forces of nature have hardwired my brain to never be satisfied or content or at peace with how the cards have fallen?
What kind of life is that? What does it mean?
What kind of cruel and sadistic deity would condemn one of its cherished creations to a brief and meaningless stint of restlessness and doubt? A cruel and maniacal one who looks for kicks anywhere it can find them in the vast expanse of eternity and immortality? Or one that’s just so bereft of the anthropomorphic flaws and morality and delusions that are so endemic in our species that we can’t imagine sentiency without them?
And if this is it? If these are the flaws and limitations that we can’t escape, then why do we bother? Why do we carry on and reproduce more imperfect clones that are just as hopeless and lost and have no control over their fate or destiny or whatever aether we read into in a desperate search for meaning?
Are we really that deluded or is it just desperation? That same kind of sick and hopeless compulsion that drives us to reason that enough trial & error is bound to produce a desired the outcome eventually because, if it doesn’t, we’ll never get over the shame and humiliation of a lifetime of empty beliefs and lost causes – and lose all our drive to make an effort and carry on?
Maybe that’s what the survival instinct is: a strange and unfathomable obsessive compulsive disorder that has pervaded our gene pool and infected out species at its very core. Maybe we’re just an anomaly and accident of quantum biology that holds no special place of import in the unfolding of space and time and the universie.
What do you do with that? Where do you go?
I guess the practical answer is “nowhere” — you just trudge along through this momentary quagmire of breath of consciousness because that’s all you are and all you have because that’s what you were given, so you mind as well make the best of enjoy it for what it is.
But maybe some of us are too blind and too deluded to accept that g*d plays dice with the universe, after all, because we have a lurking suspicion that even the incidentals help hold the rest of it together.
Just like dark matter: we can’t see it, but we know it’s there because, without it, everything else would quickly spiral out of control an scatter violently to the extremities of being and time.
It’s a lot to chew on when you’ve been burning the midnight powder, and when you’re in that kind of amoral headspace, it’s hard not to put aside your own superstitions and moral hangups about the universe and g*d and how you fit into that “bigger picture” — and I’m not quite convinced whether that is a good or a bad thing because sometimes, putting things into cold and calculated terms helps you feel like you can appreciate your place in the space-time continuum (even if you can’t feel it) and make peace with that place because it’s the only place that you belong — nowhere else.
I envy most people: the sociopaths and the egomaniacs who can shrug it all off and move on like none of it really mattered — like all of it was just a frivolous happenstance on their way to happiness and finally arriving at the place they’ve convince themselves that they’re supposed to be in.
I don’t know what it is, but I’ve never been able to drink my own kool-aid. Maybe I’m just too doubtful, or too unsure of myself. Maybe I’m just too much of a pop nihilist for my own good and sense of well-being. Or maybe I just suffer from a genetic defect or shortcoming that holds me back from appreciating what beauty lies in this brief and chaotic existence…