October 12, 2009
I ask, “What is the meaning of life?”
We live among so much meaninglessness, material things of a false value. Possessions of emptiness.
We are but beings wandering paved roads, trying to justify ourselves and our journey in life. We laugh and we cry, we love and we lose. We know greed and envy, we feel compassion and regret.
Still, we wander on in search of something more. When we think we have found what we seek, we soon yearn for more.
On a paved circle, almost all of us walk, endlessly with hope for something more. We dream of it and yearn for it so desperately.
We seek answers from men and gods. We shed blood for truth and still we are without answers.
I stand upon dirt and stone, things without life and I ponder their origins. I look up to the sky and contemplate the birth of the stars.
My mind runs wild with theories, but I have no proof.
I ask, “What is the meaning of life?”
Closing my eyes, I open my mind to all that I have learned, all that I have seen, heard and touched. My consciousness expands and in one moment I feel everything that I have ever felt in my lifetime.
Every kiss on my lips, every drop of blood that has flowed from my hands, every laugh, every heartache and tear, every gentle embrace and every harsh word, every cut and every bruise, every dawn and every dusk, every rainfall and the scent of every flower, every dream realized and every hope forsaken, every memorable moment flashes through my mind.
In this moment I am one with every human being. We all feel these things, endure the pain and the joy of life. We suffer hardships and enjoy pleasures. We experience many different things in our lives all around the world because our environments are not all the same, but within us we all feel and respond to those things in the same ways. We remember them all.
I open my eyes again and despite the river of emotion that has flowed forth from me, I am still without an answer, I still ask myself, “What is the meaning of life?”
In time we all grow old, age it comes upon us all like the cold of winter. We grow weak and feeble, our bodies begin to fail us. Our minds slip and eventually we forget who we were. The universe takes us back and the energy that was our life is redistributed into the circle of life. Where there is a beginning, there is an ending and where there is an ending there is a new beginning.
Such a cycle must exist with a purpose. Some type of order within this chaos.
The wind begins to blow and gently presses against my body on this cold night. There is some kind of comfort in the chill of this moment, the air awakening the skin on my face. The silence of darkness is a place that I have come to call home.
There is so much distraction in the human world that we forget to just be. To take in all that surrounds us. We worry so much about money, about school, our jobs, the clothes we wear or the objects we own. We worry about the stock market, we worry about the world economy, about the hate among men of many nations. These are such trivial things in the scheme of a greater universe. We are all so blinded by what we think is important, by the mediocre existence of the global human being.
And again I ask, “What is the meaning of life?”
As in life and on this night, I feel alone in the contemplation of greater things. We fear what has been and fear what may come, still nothing ever seems to change. The tracks within our minds keep taking us in the same direction. We keep searching out into the world for better things, for answers and peace. Some kind of harmony we hear in the distance, it calls to us like a light in the darkness summons the moth.
Like mirages in the desert, we think that just beyond the horizon there is hope and satisfaction, some kind of safety from the horror that is our lives.
Always away from us, always out of reach and in the distance exists the answer to our problems or so we think. We say all the “what if’s” and all the “if only’s”. We wish and we dream for so much more, that by some miracle what we think we lack will come into our lives.
Some believe that the answers they seek lay far beyond the sky and into the heavens. That life has no meaning other than to test the soul of a man. To be judged by their deeds and gain access to heaven or hell, the true realms of existence. I, however, beg to differ.
And so I continue to ask, “What is the meaning of life?”
Life is undoubtedly a journey. A journey to find oneself, not to prove oneself, but to find oneself. There is nothing wrong with seeking answers, to find reasons in our suffering and our joys, but I feel as though the only reason for these things is that we are alive. That is why we endure these things, we are alive. It’s just a part of existence.
And the only direction we need to wander is inward. Everything that we seek is inside of us. It just takes moments where we can jump off the tracks of life and stand still, take in what is around us and just be without a cause.
That is my meaning of life – no meaning. I simply live to live. I am here to endure life. To feel pain, to feel joy, to love and to regret. I don’t know what will happen when I die, but I don’t need to know in order to live. I don’t know what will happen tomorrow, but I go to bed at night just the same without that knowledge. Sure I have dreams for a better world like everyone else and I do what I can to better the lives of those around me, but I am not the master of this universe, I am only the master of myself.
This essay is available as an audio track on SoundCloud: