Tag Archives: balance

Big Questions

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The big questions:
What is a good life?
What is truth?
What is God?

The concept of a ‘good life’ varies from person to person. Someone’s impression of what constitutes a ‘good life’ can tell you volumes about them. Some people say fun is the most important factor; others place emphasis on morality. The meaning of life is a subjective question. The meaning can be different for everyone, depending on their values. To me, a good life involves adventure. We are pleasure-seeking beings, and we can enjoy life the most when we are exploring new things. In order to lead a good life, one should make the most of every opportunity they are handed. Life is composed of experiences. Having more diverse experiences enriches the quality of life.

 

Another thing which enriches life is the pursuit of truth. What is truth? This is a question which I have given a considerable amount of thought to. I was raised in an environment where I was constantly being told that only a certain set of beliefs was true. I don’t agree with the notion that truth belongs exclusively to a specific religious group. I think in order to find truth, one needs to explore as many of the possibilities as they can. Truth is a balance of opinions. No one should claim to have the complete truth if they haven’t gotten an accurate picture of the contradictions to their truth. I turn to Hegel’s Dialectic as a good model to demonstrate the intangible quality of truth. Someone’s assertion of what is true operates as the “thesis” and then someone’s contradiction operates as the “antithesis”. Somewhere in between is a “synthesis” of the two which is the truth. The “synthesis” becomes the new thesis and is open to contradiction. The process continues. Truth is a balance. It is defined by people collectively and applies to them individually.

 

Truth applies to people on an individual level similarly to theism. God is personal, dealing with people individually on their level, in their language. Any attempts to institutionalize Him only limits Him. Although attempts have been made to universalise God, e.g., Roman Catholicism as the only religion in 16th Century Europe, people interpret ‘God’ differently depending on their culture, heritage, experiences, and other factors. I have pried my image of God free from the claws of religion. The God I have come to know differs dramatically from the God I grew up hearing about. He is nothing but kind to me. He understands me perfectly. He gives me advice that’s far more sound than I get anywhere else. This is the God I know, and I have salvaged his reputation from the debris of human assumptions.

An Array of Sparse Conclusions

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I’ve looked over the edge of death and seen complete nothingness. I’ve seen that dreadful emptiness which is capable of distorting a person into a caricature which they won’t recognize themselves as. I’ve seen a pale face in a mirror, asking questions which never touch the air.  I’ve seen the loss which threatens life from those who want to believe they’ve survived. I’ve stared in the black eyes of the dragon, muttering under my breath, “I’m not afraid. I’m not alone. Now go home, don’t trouble me anymore.” I’ve feared that I’d never be able to wake up from a dream I was dying in. When my head was imploding with an inhumane level of decibels, I wasn’t going to live. I had called out for help, being unable to make any sound at all. Then the moment I dreamily called out, JESUS! the phantasmagoria dissolved into a fine powder which fled the room. Life is an array of sparse conclusions, and this is one of them: Someone has my back. This is why I’ve reexamined everything that’s important to me. I’ve questioned every action of mine, and every thought pattern which led to it. I’ve witnessed my honesty create problems for myself which I haven’t been able to solve. I’ve been trapped for years in saying the all the right things, always acting perfect. I’ve witnessed the dull insensitivity of having faked my way through an entire day. I’ve located a part of me which I never knew I was. After all, I’m a thinker, not a feeler, and relatively tough on the exterior. Of all that I’ve done, I’ve made very FEW conclusions. Conclusions are overrated, especially because they can change so quickly, without any warning. Believe me when I tell you:

There is no black or white.
There is no easy answer,
There is no complete right.
Perfection is a cancer.
There’s not a single blessing,
Which isn’t also a burden.
No answer free of guessing,
No pure metal that’s golden.
Real diamonds have a flaw or two;
The perfect life is not for me.
Believe me when I tell you,
Nothing works out perfectly.

Life is like a course of rushing water, it follows the path cut out for it, but why do we often forget that in the larger scale of things, water also cuts its own path over time? Herein is the tension between determinism and free will. Is there a grand plan which the universe adheres to? This whole idea nauseates me when I remember the sincerity of the people who’ve tried to convince me that indeed, everything happens for a reason; it’s all according to the plan. Is there an adjustment bureau which keeps everything on track? Does God have his big thumb on top of everything that happens? Really? Any answers to this question are merely speculative. We can’t prove either answer. Yes, God’s in complete control. It’s true, the Bible says so. Good logic. Once again, you persuade me by your balance and sensibility. No, God isn’t in control at all. The universe is in complete chaos! Haven’t you ever seen that there’s a lot of order also? The stars, are ALWAYS the same, regardless of whether or not it’s a cloudy night on our mortal perception. Theism and Deism are hard to reconcile, and I admit to having failed at that, yet, it seems I can’t completely accept one or the other. All I have left is God-consciousness, which I trust will sustain me through the years of people being shocked that I don’t just mindlessly accept the fundamentals. Life is an array of sparse conclusions, and this is one of them.