A Meditation on Life: Philosopher’s Cramp

No matter how deep my analysis, no matter how clever my arguments, no matter how elegant my syllogisms,…

… I have never been able to reason my way to a meaningful life.

In his vain attempt to analyze the unanalyzable, “the thinker” in me sees complexity where there is none… and thus creates problems where there are none.

In his compulsive need to explain everything, the thinker in me splits things into “manageable” chunks… so manageable that they cannot be put back together again into the integrated whole known as reality.

But if the thinker is sensitive enough, honest enough, wise enough, “smart” enough, his repeated failures to think his way to understanding will teach him many priceless lessons:

He will learn that the entire universe defies all logic.

He will learn that thinking has its place, but cognition alone is powerless when confronted with the hard problems of existence.

He will learn that even the most impeccable logic in the world will do him no good if he is asking the wrong questions.

He will discover that his intellect alone is too narrow, shallow, and crude to understand the most important things in life.

He will learn that approaching the problems of existence as a thinker alone inevitably leaves him paralyzed by a tangle of paradoxes.

He will discover that knowledge without action is just a pointless self-indulgence.

He will discover that… while he is calculating, interpreting, comparing, arguing, judging, expecting, constructing, categorizing, planning, and ruminating… he is rendered blind and deaf to so many simple truths that are right before his eyes.

He will discover that thinking and consciousness are not synonyms… that there exist many wondrous dimensions beyond the reach of language and logic.

He will learn that life doesn’t have to make sense… that there is nothing to “figure out” in order for him to live with gusto and clarity of purpose.

Next Meditation: Unnatural Selection

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