The reason for everything?
“I am not young enough to know everything.”
The older I get, the less I know. Or, rather, the older I get, the more I know that I don’t know. And frankly, that bothers me. Recently I’ve been struggling with a new addiction. That’s right – I’ve replaced the obsessive-compulsive addiction to negative perfectionism with the Jupiter-esque expansive and insatiable desire to understand EVERYTHING.
Devouring books, docos, magazines, lectures, and probing everyone I meet to try to find some balance between the nutty extremes in this crazy place is my new obsession – actually, my old one. I used to be this way, before illness, bad relationships, self-medicating, fuckwittage (i.e. ill-advised behaviour) and all that nonsense numbed my desire to do anything other than withdraw within – which, funnily, literally saved me. I found a holy grail in there that I’ve learnt to trust, and that I hope to share with others through my life.
But time has passed, and wounds are healing, and the space I find myself in now compels me to open my eyes as wide as I possibly can. I want to take in the whole world, all at once. Which is kind of like wanting to sail around the world in a cockleshell: ambitious, but not really attainable.
This is, of course, an ill-fated pattern for me – pining for the unattainable. For no one can ever know everything – or even the reason for everything, although there are a legion of teachers and prophets who believe they do (which is fine – as long as they don’t try to forcibly impose it on others or lead others into oblivion). American Evangelist Rick Warren audaciously (and without any hint of hubris) titled the seventh chapter of his 2002 book The Purpose Driven Life “THE REASON FOR EVERYTHING”.
The Reason for Everything. Whoa, now that’s ambitious. Now I know what you’re thinking: what is this reason? Well, according to Rick Warren: “It’s all for him. The ultimate goal of the Universe is to show the glory of God.”
Fair enough – but surely he means the Goddess?
But I digress. Back to my mental health. Recognising that wanting to know everything has the potential to be as mentally & physically taxing as that whole “perfectionist” detour into insanity, I’m learning to accept the fact there are some things that will always remain a mystery in life. No one has perfect vision – we can only see so far with our human eyes. All we can do is assess – critically and compassionately – the truth of others, and our own truth, and try to live our truths with integrity.
Now, on my About This Blog page and in a previous post I described how I believe “absolutely” in the power of the mind and the individual, both as a philosophical idea and spiritual truth. I stand by that – with one addendum: I believe in the power of the individual to affect their own experience of life, to find their own “salvation”, (for lack of a better word without those pesky religious connotations) … and to help others do the same.
For what is the use of finding an elixir of life and not using it to help others? We’re not on this earth for long – we might as well use our lives in some way to bring love, beauty, joy and balance to the lives of others. To build better political systems, communities, families, and relationships. And I have a sneaking suspicion – which I am in the process of critically and compassionately testing – that this is the key to true abundance.
But that’s still just a theory. Give me some time to test it.
Or, alternatively, test it for yourself.