We like to think of our lives in the world as an act of continual, reliable progress upward, but one thing this too neat and tidy philosophy neglects to factor in is the inevitable energy of chaos. Life may indeed be one giant act of continual progress, question is progress towards what? WTF are we all working so hard towards?! Where are we going with all this ultimately?
Humans are generally full of themselves, and there’s no end to the bullshit excuses and rationales we can conjure in the name of making things seem sensible in defense of whatever grand new scheme we wish to justify.
The only reliable way I know through life’s confusion is to dial it back and begin again. What I mean here is that it is often helpful to divest ourselves of any well-worn assumptions, expectations, judgments and preconceived notions about whatever it is in our lives that may require and deserve closer scrutiny. A thorough examination for the truth requires the mind of a beginner (yes, I’m channeling Shunryu Suzuki here). It requires a healthy skepticism and setting aside of any biases regarding what it is that we dream we ‘know’, and to the extent that it is possible approach life’s challenges more with the open mind and fresh eyes of a beginner.
But we need to act now you say. I say we need to beware of the impulse to act when we’re all so full of emotion that tends only to cloud our judgment and obscure the better part of our natures. Heroics are tempting when the going gets tough, but I think this impulse as noble as it initially seems just adds an extra layer of bullshit to an already thoroughly foul scene.
Observe carefully. Think hard. Love as well as you are able. Then let your actions arise from this more genuine, humble and organic place.