Tuesday, June 24, 2008

An Answer to The Old Whyarewehere

Why are we here? A question that haunts most people at some point in time. It could be at a time when things aren't going quite the way you'd like, or it could be an existentialist, permanently haunting sort of question.
I think answering that question becomes a lot easier if you don't believe in an after life, or the concept of souls, or god. Notice I don't say God.
Because if you don't believe in those things, this life, of 80 odd years on an average (maybe less, I don't know the stats well) is about all you've ever got man. You ain't gonna get another chance to experience everything life, despite being a pain, has to offer.

So then, if this is what you believe, and I do.. I think we're here to make the best of what we've got.
Notice how vague and open ended that is.

I'm here to use whatever little I have by way of talent/capacity to help whoever I can, to be gentle when someone's unecessarily being harsh and so on; and to taste every kind of food, travel everywhere, read a lot.. the reader understands.
Of course, at this stage, there are no readers.

Deviating completely..
The upshot of this sort of belief is that suddenly, time seems a lot more precious. Now, all I want to do is what I want to do.
And for that reason, being horribly famous or well respected etc is just not as attractive as it was before. That by itself means nothing. Money by itself, or some really important position in the government means nothing.
What's attractive is anything that allows me to make the most of my time on Earth.

I've believed in "God" for most of my life. But I find this change in me now that I don't. Earlier, I wanted to be succesful. Now, I want to be happy. For some people, like the Dalai Lama perhaps, being succesful means being happy. But what I mean is that I no longer care for success as society envisions it.
It's liberating and it's scary, this non-belief. Because suddenly, there's no super power to turn to. I'm responsible for everything I do. So it's also empowering.

I think this insight stems from both non-belief (I wish I knew another way of putting this) as well as general influences and the odd thinking session. So I'm not saying there's a correlation between non-belief and this understanding of what I'm here for. I didn't think about that question before I stopped believing.
What I AM saying is that when you believe that this life is all you've got, your priorities change. A lot. Mine have.


Aqseer said...

upon re-reading, I have struck upon the correlation. I stopped believing in god and souls at the same time. I think the non-belief in souls is really what led me to my ans to whyarewehere.
but notice, i have also written about what non-belief in god has done by way of transformation. that shud, ideally have been another blog entry all together. ah well.

vishak said...

rambling on is fun isn't it, mind you i'm not making fun. putting one's thoughts down on paper (or similar e-medium), especially in a haphazard manner, is extremely liberating. the more it makes sense only to you, the more so it is comforting. its nice to see you write, and it was great reading it. hope you keep writing. cheers

Aqseer said...

:) yes. it is fun, liberating and gives me a high
thenkoo. i hope so too..

UDit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
UDit said...

sodhiiiiii!!! nice to see u blogging and all! :)

This period of transformation you're talking about does lead us to question certain beliefs and the justification we're given for following it... but the sense of empowering you're talking about, in my opinion, is just free will. That you are responsible for your actions and you reap as you sow.
God is an empowering concept, something i truly believe in, simply because i feel his presence in my life quite strongly. I have questioned his existence, but i didn't get any conclusive answer and it left me confused and aimless. I find my purpose in believing in him and doing what I'd like/want to do. Life is too short to be lived in any other way.

adios! love ya! :)

Phantasma said...

Glad, and really nice, to see some of your writing at last. :-) It seems a long time ago (and in fact, it was) that we were sitting in acad in the corridor that night and you were reading my blog and freaking out over the way you connected with what you read. Sadly, I've pretty much stopped writing since then. :-(

Lovely post. I really enjoyed reading.


Aqseer said...

@asma- thenkoo :) means a lot. i know, we shud have had more of random bonding in acad type sessions really. why have u stopped writing??

@anand- "That you are responsible for your actions and you reap as you sow"- sounds scary that does. schoolteacherish but true to boot.:)
I find my purpose in (believing in him) and doing what I'd like/want to do. Life is too short to be lived in any other way.- EGGJactly!