by M.J. Higby, Contributor | Waking Times
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!” – Hunter S. Thompson
Steve Jobs once asked the question: “If today were the last day of your life, would you want to spend it the way that you’re about to?”
If you sit in a quiet place and think deeply about this question, it becomes scary, yet liberating. Scary because one day everything we love and everything we’ve become attached to will cease to exist through our eyes. Liberating because realizing this fact motivates us to contemplate how we walk in our daily lives.
For most of us our life story seems to become, slowly and imperceptibly, one that is mass-produced, like a product off of an assembly line. We are born and we grow into playful toddlers filled with a vast imagination and endless laughter. As we continue to grow, we’re told to study hard and long.
The world has become more competitive and this competition dictates that we put in the time necessary to ensure our success and survival. We get a safe secure job, not so we become wealthy, but just so we don’t become destitute. We are endlessly bombarded with commercial after commercial; pop up after pop up showing us the illusory, bullshit image of success. We buy that image with our dollars and credit cards thereby enslaving ourselves to pay it all back. In the process we lose touch with ourselves, our deepest desires and our sense of freedom.
We start a family pushing those same values on to our kids while we continue our own close-minded trajectory trying to stay within societies norm. Most of us walk the path of our lives, guided more so by avoiding what we don’t want than by moving towards what we do want. We move away from pain but not necessarily toward pleasure. And, as Tyler Durden, the protagonist in Fight Club said, “This is your life and it’s ending one minute at a time.”