Personal Philosophy

Existing requires the materials of life to be interesting in the simplest way. In the details of chipped nail polish and opened bottles. In choices of color and crooked frames hung on the wall. In gregarious love affairs and non-commital goodbyes. Beauty is fragmented in and between yesterday and tomorrow. There is infinity in existence. Scattered through perceptions and subjectivity, somehow that infinity supersedes the necessitation of meaning. I don't think that life has meaning. I think life is a happenstance occurrence that we exist. Somehow consciousness developed and we civilized and the fear of death became something greater than the fear of pain. We became afraid of what we didn't know, so we imagined answers to those questions; questions like “what happens when we die” or “why are we here”. I don't think that those questions are relevant to existing. We love, cry, sing, dance, fall, hope, dream, and exist before we die. We exist without knowing the answers to those questions. And we can hypothesize an after, but it could all be frivolous and we’d waste a life expecting pay off at the end of it. Sartre said that life is absurd. There's no predetermined plan, no one dictating what will happen to us, or how we should happen to the world. And that agency is the foundation for which we can design our lives. Reconciling the mess that surrounds us, reconciling the serendipities and the unfortunate events constructing a life that aligns with some personal goal, the idea of identity, or in Nietzchean terms: one’s narrative. I like to think of my life as an unfinished narrative, piloted by a drive to construct the most interesting memoir. There’s incandescent autonomy in the glittering responsibility of decision; potentials organized by the uncontrollable. The subjectivity of beauty begging for reconciliation to be seen, as it reconciles me in my subjectivity. The beauty in tragedy speaks loudly, and in my memoir I let it. That is when the autonomy of framing my own existence, or reconciliation is uncomplicated. I can entertain the idea of some predestination, that I was born condemned to some path of life. But it is a hoax that I cannot assume. We come into existence immediately affected by our surroundings, and in our infancy, our parents clean the mess of it for us. They lead us into paths until we gain the wherewithal to change our minds and write our own paths. Our context is written for us. I didn’t choose this life or the scars on my hands and down my chest. I didn’t choose my hometown nor my mother’s last name; by chaos, I came to be. And that chaos continued when I obtained agency. The chaos of taking risks. I think taking risks manages chaos most efficiently. There is no foolproof option in life, no way to evade disaster. To teeter on the edge of falling offers the best guarantee for the extraordinary. “Send your ships into uncharted seas” (Nietzsche). No one has ever become someone without taking a risk. And when risks do not come to fruition they become indebted, paid off in lessons and anecdotes. It’s difficult to let go of what could have been. There is a certain kind of gripping anxiety that comes from living with your what-ifs and almosts. The maybes and possibilities that plaster you to the past. Imprisoned by the ways that life could have turned out had you made a different decision; had you not messed up. I think that for the most part, everything happens as it should. I find peace in the permanency of the past and the malleability of the future’s distorted possibilities. Accepting the uncontrollable isn't easy. Failure’s consequential descent can be crippling; the pieces of shattered dreams lead to the ruins of potential. But, even broken, those pieces still reflect. The mirror ball is simply shattered glass, reflecting bits of light across the room. What if the mirror had never shattered? There’d be no disco ball hanging to catch the light and disperse it. What if you never failed? 

I’ve found an appetite for those relentless unimaginables. Letting things come as they may, pass as they do, and just be when they fall out of your realm of control. I am not some omnipotent being and that is okay. And if I were, I think I would be overwhelmed by the amount of control over my existence; condemned by the responsibility of every minor detail. There is an ease in letting the energy course through your hand to the brush to the canvas. Like permanent ink etched into skin, the past defines what my existence has been, but is undefining of what it will be. There’s no designed meaning attributed to human existence. We live in intensely individual experiences unharbored by the deity’s design. In the end, all will cease to be and the epitaphs on tombstones will have nothing to rely on for remembrance. The general lack of meaning does not negate the emotional significance that life contains. We are not automatically assigned meaning, instead, we create a sense of purpose that makes the meaninglessness worthwhile. We fall into and out of love with ideas, things, moments, and people. We ebb and flow, fly and crash, drive and stagnate indefinitely. We are in search of something to replace that meaninglessness; some chemical reaction in our brain to ease the fear of an unknown after. I don’t understand why we crave meaning. I don’t understand the insatiable hunger that humans have for determining our significance. The absence of meaning eclipses the pursuit of purpose. Purpose doesn't fill the void of meaning but instead reshapes the intention of existence. Meaning succumbs to the overarching perspective of before, during, and after. Meaning requires premeditation of humanity. Purpose is persuaded by the individual’s intention, subjectivity, affections, and eventually the autonomy to assemble one’s existence. And in this nihilism of pointlessness, the beauty surrounding seeks me in search of purpose.

I’ve come of age and still I am in pursuit of the age where my essence unlocks. Sartre depicts this essence that precedes existence, and existing I have been. Now I grapple with becoming. Here and on I am to find this explicative essence of self. And I’m young, with time to ebb before I flow and fall, still, I exist, defining myself and my life all while preceding the discovery of essence. I make the decisions that define myself, while documenting this narrative. A narrative of run-on sentences where between the lines read the colossal failures, changes of pace, changes of perspective, growth, beginnings and ends, loving, attending, being, desiring, obliging, guessing, creating, and existing. In those pieces the inevitable beauty of defeats and victories reflects. The ego of which is unresolved, but lovely nonetheless. All of which exist meaninglessly, but I let it be interesting if only for the time being.

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