Tag Archives: fate

In a Black Hole

I tend not to believe in fate, destiny, in the movement of the planets and if they have some cosmic impact in our daily lives.  I like to think we have free will, that we can willingly and consciously choose to act or not, to speak or not, to assume responsibility for the path we walk.

And then there are times like these, when every project I begin is ripped out of my hands and flung into the abyss.  When odd asteroid-problems hurdle out of the blackness and take a chunk out of my reality.  When all attempts at communication are nothing more than pathetic soundwaves that cannot escape the gravity void and are pulled into eternal silence.

Are the galactic energies working against us right now?  Is there such a thing as a supernatural power or powers that can control us?  Do they always control us, and only occasionally, when our mortal whims happen to coincide with the overarching plan, do we start to believe, falsely and with supreme illusion, that we have any say in our lives?

I sit on the edge of the black hole and wonder.  It feels like all I can do for now.

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Semanturgy and the End of Humanity

The latest word is that we’re doomed.  

We can put aside the details, such as how we got this way, how long it will take for us to be wiped off the face of the earth, that sort of thing is all beside my current objective, which is to imagine what comes next.

One of the most profound moments of a human being’s life is when they reach complete consciousness of their own mortality.  Our lives take on new meaning as we view our existence from an imaginary point in death: how we will be remembered, how will the sum of our actions and words appear,  what impact will we have had.  

Such a perspective helps us to crystallize our purpose.  We can realize which path we have been following, and decide to continue or veer in another direction.  This epiphany is an important moment, ideally an important series of moments over a lifetime, from the viewpoint of semanturgy, which is a conscious working with meaning.  To apply principles and purposes directly to a life consciously lived is semanturgy in it’s essential form.

We must imagine beyond our individual deaths when considering global warming, nuclear war, or any other event or process leading to the potential end of humanity.  It is not enough to wonder, what impact will I have? or how will I be remembered? if it is the apocalypse.  Who will be around to give a damn?  Now the questions become impossibly bigger.  What did it mean that ANY of us were around?  What impact did ANY of us have?  

If we accept some measure of responsibility in the cause of the end, then I suppose we have to say that the meaning we constructed in our world reflects a larger value being placed on things such as profit and power rather than on the life of any of earth’s creatures, including ourselves.

And assuming we dutifully play our part in the solution, voting, writing letters, buying locally, cycling, however we choose to participate, and assuming that the end comes anyway, then what does it all mean?  

If you are a member of a certain religion that explains all this, then you have it all sorted out, so read no further.  

For the rest of us, we come to an extremely existential moment in which all word, deed and relic of humanity falls uselessly into oblivion.  Yet after this experience, we still have to figure out what is for dinner, complete another task on our to-do list, conduct smalltalk with the cashier at the grocery store.  What is the overarching goal of our day to day survival, if we will never be the next Elvis or Mother Theresa, never be remembered or revered, if even the fostering of our bloodline, the fundamental biological goal of existence, will be for naught?  

Does it make our actions even more profoundly amazing, a generous gesture to a stranger, an encouraging word to a passerby, when we know it will come to nothing more than the fleeting presence of love, living only in the immediate moment and then lost forever?

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The Best Fortune

Yesterday, in addition to having the best Chinese buffet lunch I’ve ever had, I got the best fortune in my cookie that I’ve ever gotten.

(This is more impressive if you bear in mind that I waited tables at a Chinese restaurant, which for the record had no buffet, for seven years and we were allowed to eat as many broken cookies as we wanted, so I thought I’d read all the fortunes anyone had ever come up with.)

Considering how many blessings I’ve been fortunate enough to receive in my lifetime, four of which were sitting at the table with me, I almost cried when I read the little piece of paper:

“The best times of your life have yet to be lived.”

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