Tagged: meaning of life

The Pleasure Principle

Pleasure ameliorates pain. Pain is a condition of growth. Therefore, pleasure either interrupts or thwarts growth. The only possible exception to this conclusion would be a pleasure that was specific to the process or achievement of growth itself. This latter pleasure — the pleasure that accompanies or rewards growth as such — would thus be the only pleasure consistent with the life impulse....

Irreconcilable Differences, Part Two

     “Violent Passion Surrogate. Regularly once a month. We flood the whole system with adrenin. It’s the complete physiological equivalent of fear and rage. All the tonic effects of murdering Desdemona and being murdered by Othello, without any of the inconveniences.”     “But I like the inconveniences.”     “We don’t,” said the Controller. “We prefer to do things comfortably.”     “But I...

Thoughts To Live By (In An Age Opposed to Thought and Life)

Everything that makes life worth living is something we do not have. That is how it makes life worth living. If we had it, there would be no reason to continue. This means that desire is the source of everything meaningful in our lives. The voices of the modern world shout at us every day, from every rooftop, that we should “live for our...

Going for Broke

Theory of deficit spending.– At a certain point, irredeemable debt starts to feel irredeemable. From that point, every tether is cut. It is too late to repair the damage by correcting the trend, so psychological limits disintegrate. When one feels that one is adding quantities to infinity, what is the difference between two trillion and four trillion? Or seventy-five trillion, for that matter?...

Ripples and Currents

You may, by way of even a slight movement of your hand, cause a visible ripple or splash upon the surface of the sea. The effect will appear before you immediately — and disappear just as quickly. In that moment, you will see most palpably that you have affected the vastness of life, however minutely and superficially. For some men, this minor and...

Letting Go

The need to believe, once detached from all rational hope, becomes a dangerous breeding ground for many vicious and growth-stunting spiritual traps: confirmation bias, idolatry, paranoia, moral compromise, intellectual dependency — and ultimately cynicism, nihilism, and despair, as the disparity between what one needs to believe and what one increasingly realizes will never materialize becomes overwhelmingly obvious. Here is the solution to this...

Living Forever

If the purpose of life were simply to be alive in the biological sense, then every human being would have fulfilled his purpose at birth, or rather before birth, and would therefore stand to gain nothing by going through with the rest of the process — nothing but more time. But who would carry on merely for the sake of carrying on, without...

Random Thoughts: Life, Death, the Living, the Dead

A student sent me a text message today consisting of the following questions: “Why is it important to try to think and find the existence of my soul? Why do you live?” Interestingly, the second question implies that the terms of the first question — thinking and finding the existence of the soul — are coextensive with the question of why I live....

Fear of Death, Fear of Life

The single most universal and inescapable necessity of all human life is death. In principle, though not in subjective experience, it is known from the very beginning of life that this outcome is inevitable. This awareness, to the extent that it is achieved, colors every aspect of life, and increasingly so over the years, until its certain, though temporally unpredictable, arrival. It would...

The Finish Line

As soon as you concretely identify the finish line you are seeking, you begin to tire, until the last stages of the race, as your mind increasingly anticipates that approaching line, come to define exhaustion itself. For upon telling yourself, “I only need to make it to that point,” the soul immediately calculates how much of its energy will be needed to travel...