We are volunteers in this life and we keep our promise to survive at any cost. But why is so important to survive? What makes this life worth living and not giving up once and for all? What gives us such power and strength to be able to get up and move forward after we face death, we lost a loved one, or poverty is scratching off our bones? One day, sooner or later we all going to die and no one will ever remember our existence unless by any chance something greater than just surviving will make us famous. We are all made of matter and that’s the only one who will recycle, but that energy that we use to stay alive is lost. When we ask these questions, we might not like the answer, but after all, why this life is all that matters? If we are living to die, why we are dying to live so hard?
“My message to you is this: pretend that you have free will. It’s essential that you behave as if your decisions matter, even though you know they don’t. The reality isn’t important: what’s important is your belief, and believing the lie is the only way to avoid a waking coma. Civilization now depends on self-deception. Perhaps it always has.”
― Ted Chiang
We are a source of statistics, the result of religion and beliefs, or the sum of all the ideas that made the family, and society the essential matter of our existence? We need to reduce the influences around us and pretend that all we have is the present moment, living like a drunken in love all the time. Smiling and dreaming like a lunatic, leaving everyone wondering what is our secret and how can we be so happy in a destroyed world. In a world where wars are still happening, there are children that struggle with daily meals and we still have a smile on our faces is making us either ignorants or just strong humans. Our beliefs feed us strength and pump power into our veins, pushing us back to our feet. Either from religion or science, our beliefs are the ones getting us stronger or putting us down on our knees. There is not a recipe for living a better life and we don’t have much time either to try every possibility until we discover the right one. But we have a body that helps us stay alive, our cells dividing and replacing the damaged ones every day. When we lose hope and what to give up on the hard life, everything in our body fights back to keep us alive. Our mind might get lost in thoughts, the vision blurry and the senses reduced, but one heart is pumping a greater amount of life into our body, and even if that is the only reason to be grateful, we should consider it. If we want to believe that God loves us and is the one that keeps us alive, it’s also worth it, but no matter what are our beliefs, our life is the most precious achievement we can obtain in this world, and to survive is all that matters.
“When walking alone in a jungle of true darkness,
there are three things that can show you the way:
instinct to survive, the knowledge of navigation,
creative imagination. Without them, you are lost.”
― Toba Beta
It matters to have the instinct to survive because only alive we can achieve our dreams. We want to discover places, push our limits, feel happy, and carry for loved ones. Unless we survive, none of this can become reality, but sometimes to wish is not enough. We also need to have the knowledge of navigation, and not expect to travel on an impossible mission in Antarctica or be part of a secret service. We need to find our way, the path that doesn’t feel too heavy even though is uncomfortable. New roads can make us discover parts of our behavior that we have never been aware we are capable of or get us on different paths that challenge our limits. A different environment or culture can lead us to unexpected experiences. It is not always easy, and caught in the middle of the vortex or spinning new events, our thoughts are challenged but we are pushed to try and discover new tastes, new people, and new emotions. Life is not always reaching our limits and trying our luck in a nearly to death experience, is finding the balance that makes us feel all that matters. When we use our creative imagination, we challenge the world around us, and with the power we have, we can overturn a difficult time with just a memory from the past. Fear is the one we create in our imagination also, and as long as we don’t allow it to take control of our life we cannot get lost, and life goes on until we learn our lessons and we discover the beautiful world around us.
“The people that mind don’t matter, and the people that matter don’t mind.”
― -Dr. Seuss
We want to be part of the community and we are social creatures that need to belong to a place, with a status and a purpose. However, an individual without a proper rhythm that sets up the initial tempo of their life can only be a lost soul. It matters to belong, but what is more important is to stand our ground no matter what is the surrounding. Are times in life when we need to step back and build our own cocoon, reflecting on our achievements, or building them from scratch. There are times when solitude is our best companion when days are nights and everything around us is the same, a routine that burns into our flesh. We retract from social activities, from everything that has an influence over our beliefs, and we face our naked reflection in this world. It comes to the surface all the mistakes, all the failures, all the achievements that we couldn’t get. After that, we face our greatest triumphs, obstacles we overcome, and the new people we become. It is not about how many of each we had and where the scale is hanging low, is the awareness we can get because brick by brick we consolidate our personality and in the end, all that matters is the last version of ourselves. It might hurt to face reality and to realize that we don’t have the life we wished for, but emerging from the chrysalis and spreading our wings gives us a new opportunity to fix what we failed. With new forces and a time we rest, surviving another transformation is all that matters. We live a life not like a movie, but with a series of episodes that gives us always a chance to become another character in the new season. Are you ready for a new season of your life when you can be whatever character you desire?
“Butterflies are beautiful, but the process of emerging from the chrysalis and spreading your wings can hurt like fucking hell. But still, you will survive the transformation (over and over again) and you will fly. Remember this when it hurts the most. This is the metamorphosis, the going down to liquid, and the rising again. It’s no joke – but damn, it’s one hell of a journey.”
― Jeanette LeBlanc