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The Paradox of Values

November 16, 2010

Even though I never did writing to be praised or even to be understood, this has served to be my primary motivation for writing. For example, Because my page views have recently been stagnating, I have been writing less; in response to writing less, I get even less page views– it’s a vicious cycle. Thus, we have a paradox of values. I write to understand myself, but I cannot write without another motivation, which is for my writing to be appreciated by other people. Why is this a paradox? Because in order for others to appreciate my writing, I must write about things I couldn’t care less about; after all, my values conflict with what most people care about. If people do appreciate something I care about, it is coincidental and will be inevitably be the refreshing break from long periods of people not giving a rat’s ass what I think.

The paradox isn’t anything as simple as this, however– it’s far more menacingly complex! Take for example, the concept of communication: I know very well that true communication is impossible, and that the more people try to understand each other, the more ignorant they become, being inevitably blinded by the very prejudices they created to understand in the first place. In this sense, not just I, but everyone in this world has become trapped in a paradox of values. However, it only has a visibly negative affect on those like myself– those who have become aware of this terrible knowledge and are no longer able to return to the blissful ignorance.

For me, this paradox is a curse, whereas for others it is a blessing. after all, only a paradox can uphold the absurd construct of the Ego that permits people to continue living in such happiness, despite the lack of reason for them to be happy. Happiness is an illusion created (or more accurately, evolved) to support the human condition, and the strongest of all illusions are paradoxes– such as paradox is the human Ego. That I am able to see this paradox in its candid wretchedness is perhaps only because my own Ego has become contorted, that my very existence has already begun rotting.

Then again, we are all already dead. The only difference between life and death is acceptance and rejection. Living life is, in the most fatalistically pessimistic sense, the process of rejecting death, until Death forces you to accept its existence. Those who accept death of their own volition either commit suicide, or self-sabotage. Those who reject it are only postponing the inevitable. You have already died, and the only reason your body does not match that reality, is because your soul has not accepted this truth. To live is to lie; for a dead person to try to live is nothing short of absurd. Human beings are, after all, absurd creatures.

There is even more to this wretched paradox: you are not the same person you were a day, an hour, or even an infinitesimal moment ago. The person you were then has already died, and you were just born in the last moment. That you even believe yourself to exist is absurd, because the “self” to which you are referring to can only exist because you are conditioned to believe it as such. the self is itself an illusion, as is the reality that you claim to reside in. “you cannot walk in the same river twice”; the world you are so desperately attached to never existed in the first place– it was merely an illusion you created because you could not cope with the bitter truth.

The truth is that nothing you do will matter, because the whole of reality never existed to begin with. It was only a dream. This is the true paradox of values: that motivation can only be found in values, and yet there is nothing of value to be motivated by. Human beings are such wretched creatures, motivated by values that don’t even exist! To survive, we have to create meaning where there is none, imagine a reality that has long died off, pretend to understand each other, to communicate  where this is no such cohesion. It’s no wonder I can’t be happy, when I let my mind indulge such bitterness! And yet without such indulgence, my own motivation to write would not exist! This is my paradox of values!

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