14
Nov
08

Illusions of Purpose and Choice.

I have no idea where I’m headed in life. I have ambitions, sure, but very little skill to make these feverish visions of mine into reality. I’m not a demonic director, driven by my delusions of grandeur. Nor am I motivated by the simple joys of dominating other people. Letting them cower in submission as I madly stab at the canvas, laughing hoarsely and flinging my monocle at my assistant. All the while the critics will sing my praises. Women will want to sleep with me. Men will want to be me and some men will want to be in me. Monkeys will gaze at my grandness and wish they too had been blessed with a higher rank on the evolutionary scale. Not that I’ve given this much thought or anything.

My point being, no one seems to have any damn idea what they are doing anymore. Didn’t people used to have a higher purpose in life? Some sort of end goal they were striding towards? A glistening, bright future they pinned their hopes on? It just seems like everyone is adrift on the open sea these days. No point of reference, no horizon, no hope in their heart. Just being tossed about by wave after wave. Mercilessly at the whim of forces they cannot quite grasp. The forces of pointlessness.

You don’t have any more freedoms today than your great grandparents had. In fact, you might very well have fewer. That you can choose from fifteen different types of fussili pasta, twenty-three variations of toothpaste and four sorts of oranges (I counted all of these at one of those huge mega-stores) means absolutely nothing. These alternatives are all superficial, they only give you the illusion of choice. What real difference would it have made in my life if I had bought apples instead of oranges? Absolutely fuck all. You can in fact compare apples to oranges, believe it or not. It’s just fruit.

Individualism clearly has merits. The idea of self-determination without compulsion is one any non-cretin must cherish. It is not without its flaws though. Most people are ignorant. A very large portion of them are also dumb. Couple this with democratic governance and you’ll see that some rather interesting patterns will begin to emerge. If everyone agrees to live in a community but then only look out for their own self-interests things will go awry. Of course, this is all very entertaining to a sick individual such as myself but it’s not very productive.

Pretty soon you’ll have a government whose only job is to balance the fucking budget and keep the shit at shoe level. And people will think that’s just awesome! ‘Cause things are going so well now that we are finally free. Free from commitment of any kind, that is. To be free is not just to be without hardship. We have come to expect much from society, while contributing little. We carry a sense of entitlement so grossly out of proportion to our actual importance it’s staggering. If you died tomorrow what would the world be like? Sure your mother would cry a little (maybe not as much as you’d expect or like) and that’s pretty much it. She has to get on with her life, get on with the shopping. Forwards is the direction that indicates purpose. Don’t ya know?

This entire movement towards hyper-individualism has been touted as the solution to all of our personal problems. If you only concentrate on yourself and look no further than your own feelings everything will be alright. Well, people have been doing this for over 50 years now. Are we any more happy today? Hardly. Everyone seems confused and bewildered. We have become isolated, lonely and afraid. No matter how secure and centered we are. No matter how stoic in our outlook. No matter how free we are. We all want to belong, to something.

I do not really believe in destiny. It always seems to lead you down the same path towards some sort of spooky space-god. Wanting to believe that a semi-benevolent dictator is behind the scenes of this macabre little puppet show we call life is a frightening thought. But if the only destiny we have is that which we make for ourselves, what exactly is it that we have made? Pointless consumerism, selfishness as a sacrament, meaningless sexual encounters and reality-TV? If that’s all we can come up with I say: Bring back manifest destiny and tell it to stay away from the indigenous people if possible.

Was anything better “in the good old days”? Almost definietly not. Maybe…

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2 Responses to “Illusions of Purpose and Choice.”


  1. November 15, 2008 at 1:15 am

    Brilliant, yet again. Par excellence.

  2. November 15, 2008 at 1:16 am

    …and might I add; hear hear!


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