Existential crisis

July 7, 2013 § 3 Comments

8 am, Saturday morning is probably the best time to have an existential crisis, mostly because who gets up at 8 am on a Sunday?  8 am works because, a lot of humanity is already up and running and in a country like India with 6-day work weeks, someone has to ensure the cows are fed, the eggs collected, the elephants washed and a couple random people hacked to death.

Anyway,

One can always dial students of philosophy, and they will tell you that some random guy in Italy or China or England said something about existential crisis. There is that cool guy who lived in a bucket or sack or something, and that other cool guy who is quoted in a lot movies. You can ask your mom, and she’ll tell you to help with the laundry. But what’s really obvious is that though this has been a state of mind, a burning issue which has possessed people since people became people, there isn’t a way out really.

I’m no fancy scientist to propose it is all in our genes. While I can easily google and find a million, trillion, Larry knows how many articles on this, it doesn’t help. However well written, funny an article is, it cannot make me less lonely. It cannot stop me from feeling that there is no point to life.

There are some who say, too much luxury and time does this to you. I am not too sure that is how it works. Education, time and luxury, make you realize what it is- they help you separate this from thousands of other things which go through you. You probably aren’t going to wake up, mistake this loneliness for something else and choose to invade a country or break a mirror. But you are going to wake up knowing how many hours are left till you go back to sleep and you hope that they day will be filled by nice things so that you can forget about it all for a while.

Will being mindless help? Will not thinking too much help? I do not know, because I haven’t tried that. How does one freeze your brain and not think? After all, I was thought to think and critically at that from a very early age.

Is this being too indulgent? Maybe. But is something wrong with indulgence? How does luxury abate one from the general throes of existence? If anything, it magnifies things. It makes you wake up on a hundred-hundred and fifty year old bed on a cool morning and makes you wonder why you still feel lonely. It makes you think about people, and makes you think about them more, and you do not want to get out of bed and face the world.

There is nothing wrong with people in my life. In fact, if anything I should call myself luck to have many nice friends. But then who do you call when you really need to talk to someone? That’s when you realize that being hyper connected is bad. We have all learnt to ignore calls, messages etc. because we can’t really stand this level of connectivity. The phone ringing at midnight no more means just that someone might need your help, it could also be your friend to talk about some football match. And we might do it once, or twice, but it hits you- you start to wonder about friends and relationships and realize how alone you are, really. Can I blame them? That wouldn’t be fair. After all I’m guilty of the same, such are the ways of our time.

Maybe my loneliness stems from my disbelief in God and all that almighty stuff. I used to be a believer as a kid, mostly because every one around me was, but the reasons for my disbelief also stem from exactly the people. There was no point of reconciliation and frankly preaching one thing and doing another doesn’t inspire confidence. Maybe they were wrong to not instill fear in me, just ‘love’ or whatever but it gave me a chance to think otherwise. While it is convenient for me to hold complex views on the whole god thing, I know deep within that I probably can never believe in him or her or it or whatever.

In a world of believers that hurts, especially when you are confronted time and again with religion and its hullabaloo. There are only so many times you want to confront and fight. But when it comes up again and again it hurts, because your sense of belonging and identity start to shake- you aren’t sure if you want to fight again and again but most importantly as an individual you are made to look into the mirror again and again, questioning your life, your existence and what it means. And constantly having to define and redefine your boundaries and your need to live in a collective world gets you. You need the people and you can’t handle them at the same time.

Should you give up yourself and go on? But when one is expected to employee ones senses and use it to judge, how do you do that? Maybe I am self-centered, but then this is about me and my world, not your world and me.

If you are reading this and cannot understand what I’m saying, well you aren’t alone. There are plenty out there who are of a similar view.  Maybe you all are right. But I miss my teens, a time when I wouldn’t listen to you. When I still could not wake up and remain in bed. But there is a need to belong, to feel part of something bigger, even though I hate it, because there is always hope that people can help you out of it. There is that fear of course, of getting too close and being hurt, but some how you do it.

Should I be rational and look at it from a different PoV, should I try to correlate, understand? Well can you do that with what you believe in? Would you be able to throw out your views and hold another person’s and see the world? You can’t, can you?

If I sound bitter, well I’m not really.There is no point. It is better to smile and try to be funny or mad or something which helps you interact and get by in the world. It is about masquerading yourself as just another person, to blur your identity and be part of the world. It is about not thinking about war, violence, rape, theft and how your best friend might tell you he has a dinner to go to and can’t take you to the hospital.

I don’t want pity or sympathy or even empathy. But I do not know what I want instead. There are people out there who are nice, who are wonderful and I love meeting them. But I’m afraid to get close, to be a part of their lives, because I’m not sure what that entails.

So is 8am, Saturday the perfect time to have an identity crisis? Maybe.

In fact that level of rationalism is probably one of the reasons to make life an even bigger drudgery.

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§ 3 Responses to Existential crisis

  • “It cannot stop me from feeling that there is no point to life.”

    “Will being mindless help? Will not thinking too much help? I do not know, because I haven’t tried that. How does one freeze your brain and not think? ”

    ” It is better to smile and try to be funny or mad or something which helps you interact and get by in the world. It is about masquerading yourself as just another person, to blur your identity and be part of the world. It is about not thinking about war, violence, rape, theft and how your best friend might tell you he has a dinner to go to and can’t take you to the hospital.”

    I just can’t stop thinking myself about these, and you seem to have summed them up better than how I could’ve, if at all I did. I’m not sure if there’s a cure to loneliness. Maybe losing one’s own identity, to start with, and blending-in with the larger crowd might help. And it will help. But at the end of it, it’s back within, again, looming all over. If it’s all about momentary joy, this is one of *the* long-term solutions, but if it isn’t, we’re to go back to introspection, and the ultimate residue would be questions & questions again.

    And I pretty much think that http://www.stephenfry.com/2013/06/24/only-the-lonely/ must’ve had a good effect on this. Do write. Write it off. Write it out. Fight from within.

  • aarti says:

    Wow such heavy duty thoughts @8am on a Saturday morning.. 🙂

    Well I do get what you are saying probably cos I kinda do know you! All I can say is none of us can change the world, change the way ppl think/act/behave, but we can choose to live our life by our own rules and not succumb to the so called society and its rules (most of which makes no sense)..

    Hang in there. You got a long way to go 🙂

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