First: read the primer on thought –for why this is important.
Second: Think for yourself.
Are we done telling people to stop thinking? I’ve heard it a lot. Will, you think too much. Will, just take a break. Will, –actually never-mind.
How long I had thought that thinking was wrong! That it was, and is something to be detested. What does thought give you? Headaches, pain, realization.
Ah –realization, a woman that skirts to your bedside and leaves just as quickly. Floating in an out, never fully formed, non-consummated, until it is. But then of course, it’s boring, and the next woman is called over.
Realization is pain –it plays games with you, so that you can be tested. Do you deserve the fruits of this understanding? And can you handle what it means to understand?
For example, starting in high school when I first thought about the meaning of life (your meaning does not matter). Would it have made any sense if one day I woke up and the meaning of life just landed on my head? Like OH –right. Gotcha. And if it did, how worthless of an answer that it couldn’t even hide itself for me to find!
But then, if we agree that it’s worth it to play hide and seek –don’t complain to the hider that he’s hidden well. That’s his job. And it is your job to seek.
I sought this answer for a long time. I thought about it in order to find it, and in my frustration at not being able to find it, I decided to think about how I could go about finding it better.
Everyone is born into the world naked –literally and mentally. All conceptions of what you believe, the toolbox of shortcuts you use to make decisions (a shitty one), is filled when you’re born to the present day.
Most people don’t question the toolbox. The toolbox is thought –some conscious, most of it unconscious. And in these “thoughts” I also lump emotion, just a very visceral “thought”.
A thought is a reaction to stimuli, a thing, a form that tries to explain. It’s an interpretation mechanism, so that’s what we should treat it as. Instead, many people run away.
Away from their own mechanism! Away from their hardware, software, whatever. We all know this already. It doesn’t make a difference, we continue running.
So what haven’t we thought? Why do we continue to run and have useless thoughts that don’t cut the diamonds that we want?
Well, I had another thought when I was deciding to drop out of college. I didn’t know which thoughts to trust. How was I supposed to know which one of my thoughts were good and which ones were bad?
I ended up in a circle. Is college bad? Is college good? Can I survive without college?
Except, I actually never had any of those thoughts. But I suppose most people that would think of dropping out would think those thoughts.
I had only two important thoughts.
I’m wasting my time because I like learning and I’m not learning at college.
I have a tendency to listen to what my parents say and not what I say to myself.
How do I stop wasting time? –Dropout of college.
How do I prove to myself that I can listen to myself? –Dropout of college.
Why was dropping out of college the only solution to these questions?
Because then I knew I wouldn’t be bullshitting myself.
I wondered how many times I’ve told myself that I would stop playing video games, or chasing girls, or sulking about life. How many times did I say I would do xyz, do it for a bit, but then stop and revert to the same thing.
To overcome this, it seems to me, requires a leap. First you say –HEHE. Then you say –HOHO. Wicked is me! That I should be able to deceive myself.
Cross a boundary of water, the end of the cell membrane that is your Self. What is on the other side?
Where as other people may say that it shouldn’t matter. I will say it does matter. What is on the other side is beyond your Self. Therefore, you can’t know.
Do you have any sympathy for a fish that you’ve caught with a hook and bait? But then why should life have any sympathy for you when you trip and fall over it?
Everyone asks me why I dropped out of college. But what they really mean to say is what is the thing that compelled me to do it. But should there be any assumption as to what that thing is? ME. I compelled myself to do it because I knew that if I did not, that I would have been suppressing me.
And for those who asked me, why is it that you believe things compel us? Or that you should even need to fake interest in asking me. Just walk away! I’m not a student anymore, you don’t need to talk to me.
But fine! So I gave you two whys to give merit to my decision. But the only merit should be that I would have expressed something of me that has not been expressed.
And what is that part? Let me demonstrate:
“I should do what Mom and Dad and Society and everyone else tells me to do because…
–they love me,
–they want whats best for me,
–they know what’s good and bad,
–I don’t want to disrespect them,
Into… “Wait. I should decide things for myself.”
This is not a miracle. Indeed, this too you know. But because you know it, you choose to ignore it. Indeed that you can know it and not act upon it to its ends means that you ignore it.
What is the hidden truth that makes this shift so hard? What is it that keeps us sitting on a fence, dangling our legs on every each side, groining in pain just so that we don’t fall on one side?
Responsibility. That if you should want to decide things for yourself, it also means that you are ultimately responsible for everything of yourself.
But you already know this! And this is precisely the nature of this beast! That you know this. Believe this. Think this. But only half the time. The other half, and always when it’s convenient, you choose to defer to Mom, Dad, Society, God, Life, anything other than you.
You get to feel responsible. You get to be irresponsible. But you never get to be complete. And I thought that’s what everyone wanted, to be yourself.
But I am myself! Yes. Especially since you yourself fill the day with activities for yourself? But for yourself is not Self.
Just like working in service of someone else (their project, their work, their whatever), is not really working for yourself, although you are working. Right?
So can you live as you?
Maybe you should think about it.
Welcome back to society, William.