Some say reality is broken because we lack a unifying goal to which all of our decisions and actions play towards. Once upon a time (and for a shrinking few) the ultimate goal was/is to get into Heaven or (if you’re an away from person) to avoid going to Hell.
Back then, when people believed in a Heaven and Hell, the stakes were high. Make the right choices in life and get rewarded with eternal life and heavenly bliss. Make the wrong choices in life and get banished to Hell and tortured for eternity.
Think about it, if you really believed in a Heaven and Hell (eternal bliss or eternal damnation) would you still make the same choices you do now? Would you change the way you live?
And now that the stakes aren’t that high, what’s to be gained by living a virtuous life versus a life of debauchery?
from Book I, Paradise Lost:
So Satan spake, and him Beelzebub
Thus answer’d. Leader of those Armies bright,
Which but th’ Omnipotent none could have foyld,
If once they hear that voyce, thir liveliest pledge
Of hope in fears and dangers, heard so oft
In worst extreams, and on the perilous edge
Of battel when it rag’d, in all assaults
Thir surest signal, they will soon resume
New courage and revive, though now they lye
Groveling and prostrate on yon Lake of Fire,
As we erewhile, astounded and amaz’d,
No wonder, fall’n such a pernicious highth.
I’ve been working flat out over the last 3 months or so getting up at 0430 to be out the door by 0545 to catch the 0620 train to London (a journey that takes me about two hours), out the door at the place I am working by 1730 to catch the 1800 train back to Leamington Spa (another two hour journey to get home), workout, eat, answer emails, sleep, then start the process over again. My weekends have been just as busy – mountain walks, country walks, visiting the in-laws. This weekend, I made the conscious choice to simply chill out, stay in the castle keep, and enjoy my home. I needed the time to reflect. My mother is not doing very well at the moment and there is an ocean between us so I am only able to get updates from my sister and brother. Times like these, of course, force you to think about your own time – how you are spending it and with whom you are spending it, how much of it you have left, and what you want to do with it. Yeah, so, this weekend I am taking time out to relax and think about life for a while.
Crashed into the world, a product of two teenagers playing house. Inner city, big city, watched a man get shot, nearly lost my eye. Dragged to the suburbs to make a better life. Life sucked. Too boring and tame. Thought I’d make a name, jumping out of planes and blowing stuff up. Met a girl as you do and the world changed. Marriage, married, kids and all, domesticated primate at 40. Life reset to zero, so they say. New song, same old song, chasing words and literary glory. Probably will die in obscurity, but what can you do, except smile!