Sunday, August 31, 2014

August 31 2014. As death approaches—at quite astonishing speed—do I understand the meaning of all this any more than I used to?

I think essentially the meaning of life is probably the journey and not really any one thing or an outcome or a result. I think it's kinda the process and I think that if you can find happiness in the process then maybe that's it.

Charisma Carpenter

You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.

Albert Camus

Only an artist can interpret the meaning of life.


The short answer to my own question is “No.” I don’t understand the meaning of life at all. In fact, if I have learned nothing else, it is that that the more I know, the less I understand. And these days, I know a great deal. I have spent my life learning so have reached a stage of truly impressive ignorance. I increase it by the day. I am ever in pursuit of knowledge. I have become a positive paragon of ignorance.

It seems rather unfair of life to reward all this endeavor by death—but I’m not sure fairness features much in the scheme of things. If anything does, it is almost certainly humor. If nothing else, the gods certainly have a sense of irony. I tend to share it. Life is vastly entertaining. It is also short. The gods either have a limited attention span or limited bladders.

Between a moody, violent, and unpredictable mother, boarding school at the age of five, years of bullying, and much else that was unpleasant and emotionally destructive—including never-to-be-underestimated Catholic guilt—I had a pretty traumatic upbringing and long regarded happiness as fiction. But then I discovered writing and have learned that not only is happiness very real—but it is available here and now if your don’t mind shedding blood for a few decades.

Downright instant satisfaction in the scheme of things.

The thing that has surprised me most is the ability of happiness to increase over time. You think you have hit a hundred percent and that life is as good as it gets—but then, at least as far as writing is concerned, it gets better and better and better. It is, so to speak, mathematically illogical. Or maybe relative. I’ll check with Einstein when we meet up.

Then again, the whole pleasure and purpose of death is to change the ground rules—or else it is just a potty break for the divine.

I confess I’m curious. Almost eager.

Just not quite that eager.





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