Do you believe your life is about surviving? Do you think we survive at work, we survive at home, we survive in the relationship, and etc.? Do you think every single moment of your life is just hanging in there?
It is not so much in North America as much in the post-soviet union countries but it seems like every single moment of your life is perceived as a survival.
The other day I noticed that majority of my correspondence with friends and family back home ends with them telling me: hang in there. I don’t think they realize what they are saying or what words they are using. It’s just the way they have talked day in day out through generations.
Obviously, life is not easy. Our society works as a well-oiled machine only when everyone does their job to contribute and some people get the shitty part of the stick. However, if you perceive that everything you do is just hanging in, then the questions is – when do you live? When does the time come when you enjoy your life, when do you enjoy being, and when do you enjoy the journey you are on?
I have talked about this many times. Shit happens, life is a rollercoaster, but the suffering is an option. Life is not what you get, life is what you make out of it. I would hate to think that majority of people just exist to survive and can’t find anything positive in existence itself.
When I think of a generation of people from the post-soviet union era and compare it to people in some African countries, the post-soviet union seems like a paradise but, for some odd reason, people in Africa seem to be able to enjoy their lives much more. Why would that be so?
I don’t need to hang in there. I have a good life. A very good life. There is nothing that stands in my way of being happy except me. I have all my basic needs taken care of and all that is left is my attitude.
I guess, some people just don’t know what happiness is. They don’t realize that they are indeed masters of their own lives. The only reason they are not happy is because they choose to see the negative and ignore the positive. They don’t know what it means to be happy. They choose to complain about things they don’t have and refuse to acknowledge the truth – Happiness is a choice. It is not a thing that you need to find or buy.
“Hang in there” – is the last thing I want to hear. There is nothing to hang in for. I choose where my life goes. I choose to be happy. I choose to believe that my life is a journey and it goes up and down and I get to decide what path to take. I am not a victim of circumstances. I make my choices, I make decisions in my life. Sometimes the path I take is not smooth but it is just that – an adventure with a few unpleasant turns.
When the time comes and the game is over – then I will have something to complain about. Till then, I choose to love whatever comes my way – be it good or complicated, pleasant or unpleasant, things that upset me, hurt me, annoy me, make me smile, make me happy, make me angry, or make me feel nothing.
I live…and choose what I make out of my life. I do not hang in there…maybe just for a bit to scare the shit out of myself.
Every morning you wake up and you wonder how the day will go. You might be doing what you have always done as this is not a thinking matter anymore. It’s like a conveyer belt – get up, shower, eat, coffee, lock the door, get to work, sit down, get more coffee, socialize, work, go home, eat, do a few things for yourself, and go to bed. And repeat….
At one point in time, you might even have had a light bulb go on in your head and you had a realization that you are wasting your life.
You might have even come home and started looking at self-help gurus to get out of this rut. You know and you have felt that it could be different. You see yourself in that damn hamster wheel and, no matter what you do, you just can’t get out.
Oh, well, not the first time, not the first effort, and not the last effort or the last time. You will read, you will meditate, you will make changes, and you will get back to the rat race. And it is, honestly, because that is what we have been taught. It is something that our parents have done, it is something that our friends and family do on a daily basis.
How are you supposed to be different if everybody around you does exactly the same thing?
I just giggle…even going down the path of awakening or changing the way you think, you still are going down the path that a huge part of the society is already walking. Yes, and there are thousands of them, maybe even millions. Nobody is inventing anything new.
Religion, Buddhism, Spirituality, tree huggers, bug lovers, meditation gurus, cults, communities, juicers, and etc….It is all sweet talk and no results. And there will never be any results because, no matter how you look, you are still in a rat race. Just a different rat race, but still it is a rat race.
So, what’s the solution? There is none and there will never be. Regardless how many books you read, no matter how many seminars you attend, no matter how much you isolate yourself from the crowd….it is still the same crap….
This is not a sad realization. This is not a desperate awareness of a really shitty situation. This is just a reality check. This is what it is and it will be what it will be.
You can’t control your life, you can ‘s steer it the direction you think you want to go, you just need to go with the flow. What the hell does that mean? Who knows…
All I know is that nobody has ever gotten out of this alive and nobody has ever found the world peace. Then why in a world should we thrive for something we don’t understand or have a clue about?
The best we can do is to acknowledge the fact that this is how the life goes and keep this awareness while going through life. Once you have this realization you go through life like an adventure and not a torture. Ups and downs, sadness and happiness, anger and bliss – round and round and round we go.
There is a difference between living your life in ignorance and living your life with an awareness. What’s the difference, you ask?
Living in ignorance is living and feeling like you are a victim of circumstances. Living with an awareness is living with a knowledge that life is random. There is no luck, there is no way to control it, there is no happy ever after.
There is some kind of ending and it can be happy, it can be scary, it can be horrible, it can be…who knows what.
Oh, boy. This is so familiar. How many times we have been in a meeting or at the family dinner where people yell louder and louder to be heard but, in reality, nobody is listening?
It’s amazing how from generation to generation the majority of kids are raised to believe that they are the center of the universe and that the world owes them something. That leads to all kinds of wonderful personalities. People who need to be heard no matter what. People who walk over everyone to get to the top. People who shut down and develop mental issues due to extreme stress of inability to fit in and participate in the rat race.
What about learning to appreciate the differences? What about remembering that nobody is perfect and everybody has their own struggles? What about remembering that in a big picture whatever needs to be yelled out is not important?
What about remembering that you are a human being who wants to love and be loved, and that participating in the rat race gets you closer and closer to losing yourself? Every time you think that you need to be, have to be, must be recognized or heard or taken in consideration regarding a business decision, politics, philosophy or other random social issue, you forget that happiness can’t co-exist with stress and an excessive need for a reward that boosts your self-confidence or self-esteem. Happiness means harmony and harmony is not all the above mentioned.
What in a world do we have to say that is so important that everyone has to hear it?
Verbal fights or disagreements are hardly ever won by brute force of yelling.
No kidding, right? Since when my or your perspective mattered in the Universe? Not enough that Planet Earth is on nobody’s radar in the huge Universe full of other galaxies, you or I might not even exist. And our opinions or perspective is just a laughing matter.
I know, sounds cruel.
I shrug my shoulders and acknowledge that I know that. I know that my perspective is just mine. It matters to me and maybe a few other people but even then, those people also care only about their own perspective.
It is because we care about what WE feel and we care about OUR lives and some people in it; we care because our physical and psychological well being depends on it. We spend so much time in our heads thinking and re-thinking and then thinking a bit more and the only thing that has always mattered was – me and my perspective.
Unfortunately, my perspective is extremely limited. It is based on what I know and what I believe in. And these are not set in stone. I learn every day and I adjust what I know and what I believe in depending on the new information.
How many times you have said or thought: Holly shit, I didn’t know that? How many times after finding out, your entire perception or understanding of something has drastically changed? I bet, many times.
I guess, what I am trying to say is that no matter what you think or what your perspective is, it is a small drop in a huge bucket of swirling water. It is just a perspective after all.
So… love passionately, stand up for what you think is right, never stop learning and adjusting your constantly changing perspective, and never forget to look deep inside your heart to check if the path you are taking is still your path.
There are so many paths to take, so many choices to make, so many jobs to experience, and so many relationships to start or to end.
I like these words: “the plot of your life…”, as when you really think about it, you realize that you play so many roles in your life like an actor and everything is like a little play with a plot.
A short list of plays you might be participating in right now:
“ Let’s have a job and make money”
“ I am a sister or a brother”
“ I am in a relationship”
“ I have an issue with my car and the car shop is toying with me”
All these are plays and all of them have a plot. The best part is – that you always have a choice if you want to participate in the play or not. The outcome of opting out might not be something that you like but there is always a choice to do or not to do something. And so the plot thickens…. J
I guess, Nodus Tollens comes right after the question” What in a world am I doing?”
“… the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk….”
Everybody has a story and it is not yours. And, most likely, you are not even part of it. For most of the world you do not exist.
What’s the population of the world? 7 billion
How many people will get to know you or see you in your life time? Google states that an average estimate is 10 thousand people.
Let’s do the math:
7,000,000,000 – 10,000 = 6,999,990,000
For 6,999,990,000 people you do not exist, never existed, and will never exist… The same can be said about those 6 billion, nine hundred ninety nine million, nine hundred ninety nine thousand people. They do not exist in your world. You will never meet them, never hear of them, will never know they existed.
Can you chew on that for a moment?
Once in a while I can hear my own heartbeat. I feel it more than I can actually hear. It never ceases to amaze me. Like a clock work, without skipping a beat, it continually pumps.
Most of the time it happens when I am perfectly still surrounded by dead silence. I catch myself being uncomfortable with the silence but can’t pinpoint the reason for the discomfort.
Heartbeat should be calming and soothing and, if anything, it should bring peace and harmony. However, the more I stay in the silence the louder my heartbeat gets. It seems like silence becomes breathless rather than breathtaking.
I don’t ask questions like, who am I or what the purpose of my life is; I already have those answers. So, if the existential turmoil is not the reason for my discomfort, then what is?
Does the silence represent the unsettling awareness of my own heartbeat or does it represent the unsettling awareness of the fact that everything has a heartbeat and it might stop or cease to exist without a warning?
“There is great strength in what seems weak, great instability in what seems strong.” ~ Tao te Ching