Sometimes we need to be reminded that it is okay that our paths differ from others. The challenge is that the two primary groups, the takers and the givers, do not live easily together like a virus killing its host.
One of my favorite songs is Walking in Your Footsteps by the Police. 50 million years ago you walked along the planet so. Walking in your Footsteps. There is one cold fact. Life is a cycle. In the end, almost all things live and die and are recycled or repurposed as something else.
Think of the dinosaurs. They were Earth’s most powerful creature ever to exist and are now repurposed as the fuel in our vehicles to get us from place to place. There is no doubt that in another billion billion years, our remains will have been repurposed for something else as well. Again, life is a cycle.
What we do with the time of our life cycle is what’s important I reckon. But then again, maybe it’s not. Maybe with this thing that we have labeled reason, we have built up the human species to be something more valuable and important than we actually are. Yes, there are some of us who are our best to contribute to overall mankind, but more than not, many view their purpose as to follow the leader and survive.
As my French speaking friends would say, “Je ne sais pas.” I don’t know. Truth is we will never really know until it’s too late to change. We have yet to pull the back from the dead trick that Captain Jack Sparrow seemed to have mastered.
So the question becomes, and it hasn’t really changed since the dawn of man, “What is the meaning of life?” I think there are probably many answers, but I will focus my energies on two.
The first meaning of life’s answer is easy. Survive at all costs. Remember that you are an animal at base and kill or be killed. That has changed over time to mean have power or be a slave. We see that globally. Those that live by this answer are those with power and they use their power for one thing, to gain more power to be at the top of the food chain to survive.
The second is the harder path. This path separates mankind from animals therefore adding to mankind a higher purpose. Call it what you will, that higher purpose is easy to define and explain. Love yourself. Love each other. At the end of the day or life, try to have done more good than harm.
These two purposes have a time co-existing because one is based on power and taking, the other on giving and helping. There is the problem. Those that survive by taking take from those who survive by giving. It’s the abused and abuser relationship. The abused thrives on helping. In most cases, they see the good in the abuser and succeed only when they help the abuser change. Not the healthiest of paths.
So I return to the song, 50 million years ago. ‘Don’t you have a lesson for us? The lesson is clear. Do more of what makes you happy. I enjoy writing. I also believe that life has a purpose above the animal kingdom. So at the end of the day, I want to be read or viewed as someone who tried, among all other things, to do more good than harm.
The state of affairs globally stresses me out sometimes. Most of the time, I enjoy thinking and processing and trying to find a solution to the above problem. How to allow the taker to take knowing that I am a giver without being a victim? I think it lies somewhere in changing what we value from gold and money to kindness and love.
- All works at Observations from the Spectrum written by Dylan Netter
- On? a third point of view – book of Essays
- Marinehippie.com podcast w/ Docstodden.com – dialogue exploring politics and musings of life
- Horizoncoaching.org – English Tutor and Guide