Rambles and reflections about actualizing human potential, on a light tone but of a serious manner, on the doorstep of 2020
Creatures of a day! What is a man?PINDAR
What is he not? A dream of a shadow
Is our mortal being. But when there comes to men
A gleam of splendour given of Heaven,
Then rests on them a light of glory
And blessed are their days.
The above verses, come from the pen of an ancient Greek poet, Pindar. They were written, under a surely handsome commission, to celebrate the victory of an athlete in some Panhellenic games.
Nowhere is the difference of the ancient ethos from the pessimistic nihilism of most major religions and philosophies so distinctively apparent than in this excerpt.
Is life futile? Yes, indeed it is.
Creatures of a day is what humans are. And when the day is gone, gone are they.
Is there a ‘higher meaning or purpose’ to life? No, at no account.
All creation is but a dream of a shadow, i.e. nothing, zero, null, Nichts.
So… what’s all the fuss about?
If life is futile and without meaning or purpose, then why do anything?
Why struggle, why put up a fight, if all, at the end, at the very end, comes to naught?
One cannot help but remember the famous exclamation of Ecclesiastes: “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity!”
Well, there is quite a proper answer to that. In the words of the great miser and antagonist of every Christmas spirit himself:
It’s all about control.
Funny how all who seek to gain control or attention preach about passivity and futility.
Funny how all who do gain control or attention enjoy their lives without any passivity or futility.
It make sense.
Why stir the status quo if you are the status quo?
Why not keep things as they are, with you on the top of those things?
It’s the same old story again and again: struggle to take power from those who have it; impeach all the vices of their rule, overthrow those in power; establish a worse rule than before; make sure it’s never overthrown by someone like you.
Fancy being carefree?
Wouldn’t be just sweet if you had nothing to worry about? If all your problems were solved? If all your needs and desires were fulfilled without even having to ask about it?
Well, do you remember how that was?
“Remember,” you say?
Yeah, “remember” I say. ‘Cause you have already been in that state of affairs during your infancy.
Isn’t that wonderful? You, a grownup man or woman, dreaming being a baby again….
But, I get it. The world is too harsh, too difficult to cope with. Full of obstacles and limitations, full of unwanted artless plot twists, like we are the protagonists of some badly written novel.
On the other hand, there is a strange allure to being subservient: You have nothing to worry about.
All your problems and needs are taken care of by your masters – your corporate masters, your social masters, your political masters…
Why need more? Why struggle for more? Take your loaf of bread (or your piece of cake, if you’re really slick) and settle down.
Are you special?
Of course you are not! Who said you’re special? Your mama? Well… that settles it.
The world population will shortly count 8 billion souls. That’s 8 followed by 12 zeros.
Here it is, written out for you: 8.000.000.000.000
8 billion people will be walking the face of the Earth.
Walking? Not really. Most are crawling. Out of fear, out of weakness, out of disappointment.
After all, why struggle to walk upright, if all is for nothing, right?
Wrong and WRONG in capitals.
The chain that liberates.
All things human are subject to causality. Cause and effect.
A constant stream of incalculable interacting causes that generates a stream of incalculable interacting effects, ad infinitum.
This chain produces all vices along with all virtues. There is no morality behind its machinations. It just is.
The first step towards the gleam of splendour, that Heaven is to bestow upon you, is to realize that you, and only you, are responsible for everything that happens to your person.
Blame no one. Absolutely no one.
Take responsibility for everything, become accountable for everything. Only then will you be able to achieve eternal glory.
Forge your own links in the chain of causality. Weave them into a chain armour that will protect you from futility and depression.
Make yourself immune to negativity.
The root of all evil.
At some point in history there has been a switch in the prevailing worldview. This switch took hundreds of years to happen, but culminated into a true perversion of human nature.
Knowledge, freedom, virtue were named ‘bad’; and ignorance, submission, humility were named ‘good.’
It is such the magnitude of change in perspective, that the world in now plagued by the neurosis of constant sin.
Mellow but subtly cunning sophistry distorted methodically each and every aspect of the human nature.
People’s thoughts have been trained, since infancy, to follow a certain pattern.
Think about it. Oh, wait… you can’t! How can you think in a way different than the one you have been taught to think?
You were given some fundamental guidelines, a set of moral axioms, according to which you examine and judge and decide about e-v-e-r-y-thing.
It’s all about control again.
Those who set the meaning of things are by definition in a position of supreme power: they tell you how to think.
Even more, they tell you what to think.
The light of glory.
Holding forth this swordSHIAKU NYÛDO
I cut vacuity in twain;
In the midst of a great fire,
a stream of refreshing breeze!
The above death poem was penned by a samurai moments before cutting his stomach open, in front of his dead son (killed by him, in order not to be taken prisoner), while watching his estate being consumed by flames.
There is a red fine line between futility and vanity that paralyzes you into submission and inaction on the one hand, and vacuity that you can cut in twain on the other.
Victory is the sword that cuts all dilemmas in twain.
No one ever questions a victor. Victors get to write history ‘right’ – their version of ‘right.’ They get all cool stuff, all naughty girls and wild boys.
The above samurai, although typically defeated, took the situation in his hands and never accepted defeat. But he accepted the consequences of his previous actions that has caused his misfortune and downfall.
There is no shame in that.
Occasional failure is inevitable, defeat is optional.
You don’t chose to fail, but accepting defeat is a conscious choice.
Set your code right.
Only through victory can you liberate yourself.
Victory over your weaknesses and your ignorance. Victory over those they wish you to remain humble.
Be modest, not humble; seek knowledge, not revelation; act on your desires, do not pray for deliverance;
To achieve victory you must first gain power.
To gain power you must first accumulate strength.
To accumulate strength you must act with passion.
Peace, regarded as a holy state of apathy, is a lie; there is only passion and the urge to act upon your desires.
The mantra of liberation.
Instil in your minds, that happiness depends on being free, and freedom depends on being courageous.
Again: The secret to happiness is freedom; the secret to freedom is courage.
Once more, the eternal mantra of ages long gone and of ages about to come:
Happy is (s)he who is free; free is (s)he who is courageous.
Be courageous and prosper!