Rain on My Parade – Failing to find the point

Life when you boil it down to the component parts really has no point beyond the biologic imperative to continue the species. Life is survival and reproduction. This is how it is for every other species on the planet, they exist without a point. They don’t need one. We, humans, the cosmic accident are the only species that tries to find a point in all this.

I never asked for existence. Consciousness was forced upon me and here I am with the burden of my own mind. I mean none of us asked to exist, we are all here because of the choices of others. I always wonder: if people were people given the choice would they still choose to exist? What if you were given informed consent? Shown your life in advance? I don’t know.

I fall into the pits of tangent rants though. My point is that there is no point. There is no reason to exist or to not exist. The idea of there being a point is our monkey brain desperately searching for something to cling to. Being aware of our existence is terrifying, this terror might be why being born is such a trauma (the first trauma of many). This is starting to sound like the ravings of a thirteen-year-old who just read the Wikipedia entry on nihilism, I don’t want to sound like that. This is not groundbreaking stuff, just preamble.

Consciousness needs a reason for its own existence and a big chunk of human existence and endeavor is driven by this desire for meaning. We need to have meaning because life is painful at worst and often just a dull grey of labor at best. There are little bursts of happiness, contentment, joy and elation but I think if you graphed most emotional states it would look like a line trending downward, maybe a few steep drops that are never recovered from. A few spikes up but a constant return to the down. If you were looking to invest, the human emotional state stock would be a bad bet.

We are (most of us) aware of this on some level. We go to bed at night on a bad day knowing that the next day will probably be just as bad or worse. We know that things will never get better, by the time we can comfortably relax our bodies will be too aged and damaged to enjoy it. We cling to little slivers of hope, little vague visions of a better future but in the end things mostly stay the same.

Knowing this I often wonder how people get out of bed in the morning. How come we all don’t just lie down and wait to die? How come I don’t? That is where things get a little trickier. That is where the search for purpose comes in. The search for meaning. We strive to find meaning behind our suffering. Suffering without meaning is nearly impossible to endure. We search for hope in the future and cling to it when we find it.

Those of us who are like me have a much more difficult time with things like finding hope or meaning or purpose. People like me see only a future of more dull toil. See only stress in relaxation. See only more pain and must make an effort to keep going. A titanic effort to even find a reason to get out of bed. We are also the few people who see things for what they really are.

I think clinical depression is driven in part by the loss of the ability for the self to lie to the self convincingly. That is what the point of life ultimately is, finding a lie that you can believe until the end. For some it is religion, for some it is family, for some it is the constant search for joy. Some find the point and others don’t even feel the need to search for it. Still others, a minority, can’t find the point, but still struggle onward. Driven in part by biology to keep living and society that seems to have found the point. For some of us the only hope we have is that one day we will be able to find a point.

Whenever I feel good, whenever I feel like I might have it all sorted out finally it falls apart again. I know that no matter how good I feel there are always storm clouds in the distance waiting to rain on my parade. I know that most people can enjoy the moment, can default to a state that is rare for me. That most people don’t dread the day, don’t struggle in this constant search for a point. That most people have the occasional storm or rainy day while I and others like me exist under constant clouds at best, torrential downpour at worst.

What starts to get me is when I have evidence that feeling this way makes more sense than feeling good. I am the type of person that can bet on red and black on a roulette spin only for it to come up green. I am the type of person you can hand every opportunity to, the type that puts in double the work and effort and still manages to land on his face. I am the type of person that would find a way to end up losing money by winning the lottery. In short, I am a failure to myself and a disappointment to others. I know this, I have more evidence that points toward this as a fact then I would like to share, but I still move onward.

I have found my point. My point is to be the example, the one people look to when they look where they don’t want to end up. My point is to come last so that others can come first. My parade needs to be rained on so that others can have sun.

At least I can feel something with the rain. The grey is somehow worse.

Like most things I don’t know what the point of this post is. I just felt like writing down some thoughts.

Thanks for reading.

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