miercuri, 23 martie 2016

the (f)utility of life sau existentialism in stare precara

I've accidentally come across these few lines from Insurrection: Holding History, a play by Robert O'Hara, and they so beautifully answer a lingering question of mine that I cannot help writing them here (this also comes as a great answer for the discussion I had yesterday on this very subject with two of my friends, sic!). These lines, quoted in Moraga's Love in the War Years, are from a dialogue between a graduate student and his 189-year-old ex-slave great-great grandfather:

RON: I just gotta finish my thesis.
MUTHA WIT: What's a thesis?
RON: It's a long paper I gotta write.
MUTHA WIT: Then what you do after you don write it?
RON: Then I gotta show it to a bunch of white folks.
MUTHA WIT: Then what?
RON: Hopefully I can get paid like one of them white folks.
MUTHA WIT: Then what?
RON: Then nutin. What you mean then what? Then I'm done. I git a job. I live, become fabulously rich and mildly famous.
MUTHA WIT: Then what?
RON: Then I drop dead I guess I don't know. 

I haven't discovered yet the utility of life (and I wonder if such thing is possible at all), but I do know that, biologically speaking, we are left on this earth to procreate; to ensure the survival of our species. This is a certainty and from this certainty onward everything becomes relative and uncertain.

Some believe that the spiritual component is THE answer to this never-ending question. Thus, for some, we are left on earth with the sole purpose of searching for and reaching God. Or of finding the divine element in us, the element that will surpass mortality (be it in the form of a happy saint on a white fluffy cloud or an atom). For an atheist like myself, this is not a valid explanation. 

Others believe that we were left on earth to enjoy life. But, although I am a hedonist myself, I don't believe it to be the purpose of our lives. Enjoying life is not a purpose but the wisest thing to do given the circumstances. 

Life is short and shitty, we all know this. I don't know why we are here, but I do know (and strongly believe this) that for the short period of time that we are here we should enjoy life at its fullest and we should make it the goal of our petty lives to try to become better persons with every single day. 



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