OVer the past year I have gone under some extreme stresses, pretty much anything imaginable has run through my head at one point or another.
Am I going to die?
Am I going to go crazy?
Will my girlfriend leave me?
Am I incapable of love?
When will my parents die?
Am I happy?
The list goes on. If you and I had a beer together, I could convince you its been fun, because it has and that is what this post is about.
Life in the context of “Real life” or “Thats life” or “Welcome to life” is synonymous with consciousness. Our conscious experience is what we often to refer to as life, and given that this is a forum post, and not a book, I’ll leave out the elaborate definitions that include entropy. It is our conscious experience that we attribute the word ‘life’ to, and thus many of us see all life on Earth as at least somewhat conscious.
I’ve really started to question all this “Follow your bliss” and “law of attraction” stuff because of one things – it only applies to humans. If a baby wildebeest follows his bliss, he has a large chance of being eaten by a Cheetah or a lion. Why are humans different? Why do humans get the lovely ability to follow their bliss, and then FIND IT (seemingly with 100% accuracy, if you ‘just believe’)?
Well, if you asked me, I would tell you its a crock of shit. The universe isn’t here FOR YOU, or ANYONE else, and for damn sure I know it doesn’t hold Humans in higher regard to anything else.
But I’m still going to convince you having a shitty day is fun. And I won’t tell you its because ‘if you believe in yourself things will come’. Nah, I don’t think it works like that.
If you’ve seen the end of Wolf of Wallstreet – the very end – you’ll notice there is a kind of retrogression,
“Sell me this pen” he asks to the audience. That whole audience is following their bliss – financial freedom and independence. They are all doing what feels right. Picking themselves up off their lazy asses, going to a convention to learn how they can become ‘master of the universe’.
But, every time the audience members attempts to sell the pen, you notice a sinking in Leo’s soul. A saddening in the eye. They are failing here. They are failing in their attempts to become what they dream of. They can’t even sell a god damn pen.
It isn’t following your bliss. There is no special selected bliss for you. God, the Universe, Allah – they didn’t write up a formula before your Mom pooped you out to go out and find. No, you don’t have a set of instructions or a compatibility chart hard-wired into you, and your DNA certainly isn’t going to say that you need to become a painter.
REALITY AIN’T THAT WAY! Don’t romanticize being human! Its awesome, so romanticize it a bit, actually.
Here is the real deal; your brain is really plastic. Meaning it can change and bend and distort and strengthen over time. Depending on what you feed it (metaphysically speaking) is going to determine how it grows.
That is it. That is really it. That is all there is too it. Had a hard up bringing? Think its draining you? Then it will. Believe you can get over it, and become some one-of-a-kind amazing success story because of it? Then you can.
Why? Because the brain is plastic – all of ours.
Convince yourself you’re a confident mother fucker (it takes years, chump, don’t expect results tomorrow) and so you’ll see it be. Convince yourself you can take on the world, and so it will be.
Here is the catch; your old self may think that even when you become this confident mother fucker, you’re really not. Or that when shit really hits the fan, you’ll doubt yourself. But this is the magic. This is the key; it doesn’t matter.
Here is the scenario where we all fail in life;
You wanted to become a doctor. Everything told you to be one. You like everything about being a doctor. It feels like its calling you.
So you go to medical school. You start out great. But then something happens. Anything. A car accident, a death in the family, BRAIN DAMAGE, Whatever the fuck it is! Something happens, and your ‘bliss’ is gone.
If you convinced yourself that being a doctor was your bliss, and that you were going to get it, and then suddenly physics of the universe intervened, you lose it. You’re done. Life is crushed and you’ve lost hope.
Or, you didn’t fuck up to begin with. You realized that all things, no matter how counter productive to your thinking 1 month (or 10 years) ago, are of a duality. They can all be seen as good or bad, they can all be FELT as good or bad.
So you got an F and got kicked out of medical school. FUCK YEAH! What a chance to do project X, or to travel, or to meditate, or to ANYTHING.
So you just lost your leg. FUCK . YEAH . It ain’t what any of us plan, because we’re brought up to avoid it, but fuck yeah what an experience. It isn’t uplifting to you now – because of that duality. You’re focusing only on the negative. We are brought up that losing a limb is a terrible tragedy and that we will be sad and feel bad.
The fact is, losing a limb is an experience like all the rest. Like winning the lottery or eating a jelly fish. We get to view it how we want to, which often we forget, is our own choice. Now, fuck, I’m not going to chop my arm off for the fun of it, or just to experience it, but if it were to happen, A new chapter begins. A new episode of life.
Nobody is going to go chopping there arm off after reading that. I don’t want to convince you to. But, I do want you to think that getting fired from your job, having a bad break up, having neglecting parents, having some mental disorder, not having friends, losing your ‘path’ in life – these are all experiences of a dual nature.
You get to choose if they are an opening or a closing of a door. Better still, you should see them simply as a changing of the landscape. Open to any possibilities.
Don’t let a projection of our societies goals (being rich, famous, and handsome) destroy experiences for you. Don’t let it do that.
I just disagree with this. There’s another option which is that you actually have a choice. If you don’t tolerate, you don’t adapt or quit, you can change things to mutual support and even bliss. Even if you have to think with 2 or more heads.
er.. a wildebeest isn’t a sapient being I and all other humans are.
It’s the central end of life for people to be happy. I’d imagine all mammalians (including our hypothetical wildebeests) are the same, but without sounding arrogant humans have higher ends. it’s not arrogance, it’s simply fact, even though human intelligence and animal intelligence is equal.
You can manipulate what you study but you can’t alter the design. I see the law of attraction to mean wherever I’m most pulled is probably the smoothest way for me to comply with the universe.
Good mindset, we can never get enough of that which inspires us. It made me think of this video, which would be a worthy attachment for reasons that are immediatly apparent. Give it a look when you get the chance.
not fully sure what to reply to this post. the title pulled me in, but as i started reading i began feeling in disagreement with everything that was said… until i reached about the halfway point. the moment you brought up the plasticity of the brain, your argument became very solid, and i realized what all the build-up had been for. bravo!
“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.”
― Robert Frost
i had to google baby wildebeest
@ijesuschrist You lost me part of the way. At first you say “follow your bliss” and “law of attraction” are BS. Then you say things like this after…
“Convince yourself you’re a confident mother fucker (it takes years, chump, don’t expect results tomorrow) and so you’ll see it be. Convince yourself you can take on the world, and so it will be.”
I do however agree that we need to look at the potential outcomes of a situation. We need to not focus on the negative. Its time to also get away from defining ourselves as society wants us, and start to write our own stories. Overall I enjoyed reading this man, thanks for sharing.
I know what I said – if you believe yourself a confident mother fucker, than you will be. Others may find you a homeless man, trembling in the streets, but if it is in your head that you’re a confident mother fucker, then that is all there is to your reality.
It doesn’t have to manifest in other’s reality – only yours. It is still true, if you believe it to be.
So are you saying that if someone thinks they’re a super hero with super powers its true if that person believes it? Or are you only speaking within the context of things that are proven to be possible? And if that is the case would you say that if a person believes he’s rich but in reality is not, in the classic sense rich, its true because he believes it? Im just genuinely curious as to what you believe and how far your concept reaches.
The mind is powerful. If you are in solitary confinement for months on end and repeatedly abused, can you be happy? Yes, of course. It is up to you to convince yourself of that. In any way – That this is what the universe wants for you, that solitary confinement is actually a blessing, that this is a golden place to meditate, that all humans actually strive for solitary confinement – the reasoning doesn’t matter, all that matters is if you convince yourself that you are happy.
If a man believes he can fly, he cannot fly, however. There is no breaking the laws of physics with belief. Physics are the framework of our consciousness, it is what consciousness is dependent on.
So a man believing he is rich will not become rich, unless it is in a relative sense. A man with nothing can act as if he is rich, be joyous as if he is rich, treat others as if he is rich. But he cannot materialize wealth from thought.
Belief is powerful for psychology – not physics. Belief can change mood, emotion, and perspective, but it is not going to change physical things, and it cannot change the bounds of reality. Want to be happy? So be it, you’ll just have to manage without the ability to fly.
There’s another option: You can choose to tolerate as well.
Quite simply, happiness comes from within not from external factors, if you live a life believing that you will be happy when you get an A, or marry a millionaire, or get those shoes, well essentially you are just chasing a dream and you will never be satisfied. You can be happy with peace of mind and appreciating all that you have as opposed to what you don’t have. Easier said than done though for most I would imagine.
So when why do people accumulate possessions?
Actually, no it’s not. the human condition is to advance, in whatever way. Minimalism is only specific to given schools anyhow, it’s not an absolute philosophy.
Though you denounce it, what you just explained is very similar to my view of “The Law of Attraction.” When I learned about the LOA I took it as a way to see only the positive end of the duality in situations like your hypothetical failing out of med school and losing limbs. I also believe that “following your bliss” should mean staying in tune with the signs of the universe leading you in a desirable direction. While I agree that there is no path set at birth for us, I do believe that since we are the universe experiencing itself, that means that the universe will help us experience ourselves to full potential if we just listen.
So while I agree with much of what you said, I disagree with you denouncing other beliefs, because you may not know how much your beliefs could overlap with someone elses interpretation of the beliefs you bashed.
If you believe in the law of attraction, its going to seem true. Much the same as many religious believe in a loving God, and thus feel ‘loved’ from a higher plane. The brain is plastic.
Fake it till you become it (if you don’t believe it in the first place).
Success in life seems to be a self-hypnosis, or a self-placebo. Those who can tell themselves what they are doing is right, and they can do it in the most convincing way, are the ones who succeed in what they want. That’s all it is.
if you believe that law of attraction only works for those who believe it’s true, that is going to seem true. all your “objective”, “rational”, “this can’t be true though this clearly is cause science” makes me laugh :D in a loving way.
Riveting read; thank you; it read like a monologue. Our brains are, of course, malleable but I feel your way of way of expressing that we are who we choose to be trivializes it as it focuses on the scientific side and ignoring the spiritual. Yes, a wildebeest is no more of a living being than a human but while that truth is absolute, it is undeniable that we [humans] are more evolutionarily advanced. Simply look at the pandemic of utter pandemonium and it’s evident that humans are capable of benevolence of-at the very least-equal weight. We are more complex in terms of our thinking and in our capacity to manifest even our most whimsical of thoughts but again this does in no way make us more or better than any other being. That said I do agree with what you – we are who we choose to be, albeit a plethora of manipulations are shoved down our throats; a tremendous deal is done to facilitate certain behaviors and modes of thinking and warp and shape who we are, and it can be difficult to remain vigilant, especially when you are unaware of these external factors and their enormity. Just my thoughts. Thanks again.
“evolutionarily advanced.” I don’t know. You could argue that a cockroach is more evolutionarily advanced, as it can withstand a lot more than a human. It doesn’t make societies or discuss philosophy, but it is able to survive nearly anything.
I think ‘advanced’ is very subjective… We place our intelligence on a pedestal, but often we create more problems for ourselves than we solve…
The fact that we’re conversing right now is a testament of our advancement. I meant advancement in regards to our capacity for imagination and it’s realization, foresight. and our hands. Dolphins are incredibly intelligent but cannot create on the same level as humans… I think that we don’t create more problems than we solve. I think that a minority of humans are the ones who create the vast majority of problems or at least prime the conditions for their fruition… People are indoctrinated via schooling, media, etc. and are deeply psychologically damaged and if peoples’ childhood and at least teenage experience was marked by love, compassion, fostered curiosity, creativity, ingenuity etc. then things would be different, no? Humanity as a whole or in general doesn’t spew problems from cradle to grave….
I understand what you mean by advanced, most people would agree with you. I think it is just a subjective term when you look at biological evolution.
Humanity as a whole reflects humanity at the individual level. We are a dynamic organism, not always productive, not always sad, not always happy, not always confident. Overall, we seem to have technologically advanced, and can accomplish more energy-involving tasks and data-involving tasks than ever before, however our overall happiness seems to only slightly correlate with that.
Since we value happiness over all else, at the individual level, and since on a societal level it seems to be unmoving, I would consider this evidence that we are not very advanced, but rather under the illusion that we know what is going on.
If you knew the narrow sense that I meant it in, then why even mention cockroaches…? In a broader sense other creatures are more advanced, but that’s not what I meant. Have you ever eaten a bunch of the same type of fruit before? If you concentrate on the taste you’ll notice that while they taste very similar, each has it’s own distinctive difference in taste which is usually subtle but sometimes enormous – there are always outliers. The same applies to humankind but on a much grander scale, and I’m stating that it is a minority-a handful of individuals-that have done and are doing much to manipulate the whole for worse. Essentially people seek to gain pleasure and avoid pain, yes, but the expression of those desires is unique; people want happiness but have radically different definitions of it; in our similarities, there are differences; on a surface and extremely broadly speaking the whole reflects the individual but I disagree with you. And what are you talking about…? It is moving and with incredible agility… It may currently be firmly rooted in melancholy but that is still movement and is also a testament that it can also be moved in the other direction… What better a foundation for ecstasy than melancholy? And if you keep up with politics you’ll see with utmost clarity that people are now not only fed up but more and more are willing to do something about it. The smell of revolution is in the air and they [revolutions] are occurring worldwide. People are fighting for their happiness, for liberty. How is that at all degeneracy? People are moving to rip melancholy from it’s roots and eradicate it. It’s evidence that we really are advanced though the most radical outliers of humanity seek to stifle the full expression of our advancement…
The mind has a tricky way of convincing you that what you “quit” or “adapt” to is somehow going to give you progress in life. Human experience is not linear.