I Promise You Won't Learn A Thing From This Blog

The official blog for author Ashley Chappell. Check back every week for a few laughs at my expense or, if you know the love-hate process that is writing, commiseration.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Looking for a catalyst

Is there anything we can ever do anymore to really feel alive? We've so shaped the environment around us that being outside no longer really feels like outside, but an extension of the underlying bubble in which we've encased ourselves. I find that the older I get the more the world around me loses some of its sharpness much the way the picture will begin to fade from an older television set. The edges seem less clear, the lines less defined, and the color becomes more and more muted until everything is painted in its own surreal hue. Routine and complacency with the paths we fall into bring us closer to being machines with no real sense of value or lust for anything we do in life. The world told us, "This is how you should be," and so we are.

So do we accept this situation and fall into line fulfilling our daily duties, whatever they may be? I have for so long, and every day that I have has brought me to question why to greater depths. If I'm to continue in this mundane pursuit for the rest of my life I'm going to need to revitalize my perspective on society and life and I really dont know where to turn. Many people look to religion or philosophy to find a higher sense of purpose and be able to turn down the volume on the so-called rat race. I'm enormously envious of those who can because my own participation in the rat race has served only to mute all other facets of my life, leaving little room for real growth at a time when I'm most looking for it.

I have tried to immerse myself in religion, though I find I always end up studying the subject as a fiction despite my earnest wish to believe in something. I have a truly spiritual side, but my difficulties with dogma make it impossible in effect for me to find any true solace there as to the questions of why that we all raise from time to time. Nevertheless, the pieces that I feel are missing seem to be questions only tackled by theologists and philosophers; not by ordinary people who have fallen into line and perform their societal duties every day. If these were the people seeking the answers would they turn the question inward and not look up to the heavens for purpose? Modern society has already effectively replaced God as the Moral Commander, but is the perpetuation of society also becoming our purpose? If this is the case then were no better than a colony of ants.

I believe that to take back any part of this experience of life we should be looking inward and to each other on the individual level for meaning. The human experience should be a sharp and vivid one, punctuated with great joys and great sorrows, but never ignored. Perhaps the world around me has lost its sharpness because life has anesthetized me with responsibilities, or perhaps it is because I simply did not heed the signs. Either way it is up to me to put the purpose back in my life and stop waiting for change to simply happen. I don't know what catalyst I will choose yet, but this will be the one I'll have to see through to the end.