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Apr 03, 2019 14:12:45

A man's search for meaning

by @basilesamel PATRON | 263 words | 299🔥 | 336💌

Basile Samel

Current day streak: 299🔥
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There are two books I always have in mind when it comes to life and its meaning: Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl, and Albert Camus' Myth of Sysiphus.

Frankl proposes that humans need meaning to be able to strive, survive, and flourish. He then formulates there is no big or small meaning. Children, art, science... any meaning works as long as it has a positive impact on your life and others.

Escapism is both humanity's greatest strength and the root of all evil. Civilization is the ultimate attempt of humankind to avoid facing its own mortality. Camus talks of escapism as "philosophical suicide", a denial of reality. Escapism is the vector for change. To Camus, life is meaningless, and that's precisely what makes it meaningful. It's only when we acknowledge the absurdity of life ("to imagine Sisyphus happy") we can rebel and be free to create our own meaning: "What is a rebel? A man who says no, but whose refusal does not imply a renunciation. He is also a man who says yes, from the moment he makes his first gesture of rebellion."

A common idea between those two authors is the perception of meaning in a healthy life as something not to be obsessed about. Any will do, as long as it acts as a positive mana for humanity as a whole. Likewise, not having a meaning is fine. Just do something you feel good about, which benefits others, and get better at it. Do not relinquish your gifts. Do not escape. There is no other way but upward.

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