The Muse

The sheer variety of symbols and artefacts in use across the ages and geographies does not necessarily point to a multitude of assumptions and values from which they spring. The study of mythology and folklore then, is a reverse approach to anthropology. This blog is dedicated to my favourite symbols, tales and artefacts - both ancient and contemporary.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A Holiday Called Life

The things that we do, in the course of survival, are seldom questioned. It is our other-worldly pursuits, so to speak, that are brought under the scanner.
Life, says the philosopher, is what exists beyond the business of survival. When you are certain that you can make it through the day, the rest of the day is a holiday.
Welcome then, to the holiday called life.
The realm of the living is populated by many kinds of holidaymakers. Some are busmen, some are compulsive travellers. Others are lotus eaters, and perhaps still others who are unclassified.
Busmen are people who spend their holidays doing the same thing that they do for a living. They are addicted to the thrills, chills, and by that extension, the miseries of the game of survival. When they’ve beaten the wooden jungle, they create one out of concrete just for kicks. And then they lament about their misfortunes. Truly, life is wasted on these lily-livers.
Then there are the compulsive travellers. Their sole aim is to cover as much ground as possible. They have a simple belief – the journey is more important than the end. They care not about purpose, not even about pleasure. They believe that they have one life – and they intend to do it all in that period. And as you know, like velocity and time, grading is relative, and the travellers are only relatively better than the busmen.
But as far as holidaymakers go, in my opinion, the lotus eaters take the cake. They care neither about the arrow of time, nor the vagaries of space. They live in the here and now and are unaffected by the illusions of duality. Sins tempt them not, neither do virtues beguile them. They see the world not as it was, can or should be, but as it is. Only of these people can it be said with conviction – that life is not wasted on them.
So, is life wasted on living?
Well, it depends on the liver.

1 comment:

Gurdit said...

Wow, this was fantastic. It's an essay, not a story, and generally essays tend to become a little dull or preachy, because there's generally no plot to tie it all together. But the way you've written, it kept me engaged from the first sentence right up until the last. That's a positive, a big positive, comment on your writing style.

And while I'm on the topic of your style of writing, I should mention that I really like it. You have a great flow in your sentences, it's smooth and seemingly simplistic, but the words you use are nice and eloquent. The great thing is that it all falls into place without contradicting anything.

Also, just to complete the review, I should also mention that I love the change of font. This entry, by content and mood alone, is very different from a 'typical' blog post, and I like how you've changed the font to reflect that. The image of the leaves at the beginning and the end also play a great part and speak volumes about your presentation. :)

Good job. You've given me very stiff competition for the competition. :P
I hope the other participants aren't as good as you are.