“How strange it is to be anything at all!”, exclaims Jeff Mangum in one of my favorite songs.
It is a rather strange thing, indeed, to exist. Maybe you don’t think so, you might think you have the answers for why we are here and where we are going, walking around with a “road map to life“. That’s ok. Personally, I find it eerie, upsetting, and rather awkward, that without your consent, without a choice, you were brought to existence, born from parents you did not choose, in a country you did not choose, taught and indoctrinated with customs and ideas about everything without ever been given a second to pause and think twice. Time keeps pushing you forward whether you like it or not, with every single choice you make remaining forever a part of your history, impacting you and others around you in infinite collaterality. Everyone who was here before you experienced this constant pressure from time, too. Everything they taught you was the best way they managed to figure out what exactly is going on, but not everyone concluded the same things, and who knows who is right?
Time never gives you a second chance. If you pay attention, you will notice decay and mortality all around you. Flowers blooming and withering, your own body changing, loved ones dying. Opportunities lost. Nothing can ever be undone, only reconciled. Offenses can never be taken aback, only forgiven.
It’s easy to feel insecure. Continue reading Easter Reflection: On Mortality, Knowledge, and Strangeness.
New Years is coming soon, and it is kind of fascinating. We invented a celebration based on how many rounds around the sun we made; in our minds, a new year brings along new hopes: Hope that the next turn around the sun will carry less mistakes, less hurts, less disappointments. That we will find our calling, our ideal career, our soulmate, or the perfect movie story that will entertain us forever until the next one comes out. We make promises and resolutions, we look back at what we accomplished, and we tell ourselves next year will be better. It is quite silly, but it is fun, and it keeps us going.
For many this is a season of decisions, of delineating goals and how to work on them. For most of these people, it also stops there, and life will go on as normal next year… which is ok, at least we can be consoled by thinking that if we wanted to, things would be different. Continue reading Resolution of Love
I have a really bad relationship with time, it is always ominously behind me. Ahead of me too.
I have the tendency of getting bored of whatever I am going through really fast, making me a rather transient person. I need to keep moving forward and on and on. The next season, the next chapter. However, I, almost contradictingly, find myself constantly believing that I have also arrived: I am here, where I was supposed to be. A sense of destiny, or providence, or what-have-you, makes the past easy to deal with, while constantly pushing me forward. But, if I’ve arrived, is this all there was? There has to be more. I am as much moved by discontentment as by curiosity, but chasing wind is extremely tiring. Continue reading Of Rivers and Stardust
One of my favorite things in Montreal is to walk up the Mt. Royal with a good friend, see the city skyline (the picture on the main page of the blog), then walk down on the other side, where the cemetery is. One day, passing by that place, I asked a friend of mine if she liked cemeteries. She said yes, because they’re beautiful, but she implied that she would still rather not have them — people shouldn’t have things holding them back from going on with life.
For her, monuments for the deceased held people back. She’s not the only one who thinks like that. Continue reading Better a House of Mourning