The average life expectancy of a human being is about seventy one years. Reasonable, right?
It should be, if not for the fact that we lose so much time. Work. Sleep. Acts that nurture the spirit-housing machine. These innumerable obligations gnaw at the precious time we do have, leaving us with very little chance to sit back and enjoy the journey.
Oh, there might be alternatives, but are they even worth considering? A life without money is no life at all. Unless you’re a fan of insanity, sleep cannot be avoided. And a neglected body has a tendency to not last very long. Aside from not being very pleasant to inhabit.
Indeed, the mere act of existence often seems like an endless race with something horrible and relentless. Do this. Do that. Oh, you don’t have to, but you’ll be sorry if you didn’t. And the more ambitious one is, the more these so-called options keep piling up. This is not a choice. It is nothing more or less than an illusion of it.
And here’s the thing: that is okay. This planet is not a nice place. Everyone and everything must fight. No exceptions. Living beings die by the millions. Billions. Some thrive, and have to keep struggling. The dull, watered-down routine that civilization has provided us might be soul-sucking, but at least it comes with some degree of certainty. Not counting wars, a human being getting killed is an exception; not a norm.
Yes. We have replaced good old battle for survival with a battle for prosperity. Except that everyone wants that, so few can have it. Like a bunch of hyenas, we gather around a large piece of carrion, and try to eat as much as we possibly can. Or we’ll be sorry we didn’t.
But this respite is over in an eye-blink. Our appetites are insatiable, and we have to keep moving. Someone would call that agony. I call it progress. Both individual and collective.
We have to be the best we can possibly be, or we will be no more. This goes for society as a whole, and for its individual members. It’s not pretty, but few things are.
I myself would not have it any other way. Perhaps someday there might be an actual alternative, but don’t hold your breath. It tends to slow one down.
Keep moving, my friends.
M. T. Miller