I have come to believe that the best we can ever do is to stumble through life, roughly, hopefully in the right direction.
Then of course it has to be asked what the right direction is. We are told often which direction society would like us to stumble in but if it is right is another question and right for whom?
The opening monologue of Trainspotting springs to mind here, and I paraphrase horrendously;
Choose a career
Choose a washing machine
Choose a wide screen fucking television
Well I chose something else
What do we ever choose entirely for ourselves in this world? When all is said and done, what do we get out of our choices? You need to work till you are sixty five with two weeks holiday a year, then finally, when you are too old and knackered to make proper use of your time, and then you can relax, and die.
Marcus Aurelius said, “We are but shadows and dust.”
He was right, how long after our deaths will we be forgotten? Even if we do something truly extraordinary we will unlikely be remembered for ourselves, everyone knows who Einstein was and what he did but who actually knows him, who alive now can actually claim to know what he was like?
When we die we become electricity passing from synapse to synapse in the minds of those who actually knew us, and then, when they die ? In the words of Jim Morrison,
“I want my kicks now before the whole shithouse comes tumbling down.”
Dia de los muertos
Today I live
Everyone around me is black-clad,
Faces painted white and skeletal.
Festival of shadows,
Ornate coffins carried aloft
Through village streets.
Darkness celebrated, highlights life.
Today I live.
The more time I spend in the shadows
The more I appreciate the light,
Banishing shadows from corners
Filled with people
Dressed in black.
Today I live.