The Intrinsic Paradox of Life

There is something intrinsically paradoxical in life. Probably there are more paradoxes, but lately I’ve been struggling with this one, and that is definitely enough for now.

It has to do with this wanting to live. I truly don’t understand where this will comes from. Especially if you live in a world like ours, in which the most one can do to create meaning, is to be helpful, supportive, or any such other rather positive things, for someone else. Someone who is just as average and whose life is just as meaningless as your own. Then what is the reason to help this other person? (Or, for that matter, to bring someone new into this world. Although I get how cute children can be, it is really just another mass of cells waiting to die, and to suffer this meaninglessness in the meantime.)

Of course, the people who really are thinking things through and cannot settle for the enjoying-life-principle as a sufficient reason to live, those people have already taken the one exit-option available. The ones that are still walking around the earth are the optimists, or the pessimist who have settled for the next best thing. It is the Darwinian principle that makes the settlers to continue living, and in a sense it makes the enjoying-life-as-meaning the correct theory.

But this is only the case when life itself has value. And this cannot be proven. Still, it seems wrong to live life merely as a way to fasten the way to Death.

If there is any reason for art to exist – besides the process of making art I mean – than it must be to heal the souls of anyone who is facing this fundamental paradox in life.

Time for some Canto Ostinato, by Simeon ten Holt.

Author: Nobyeni

Freelance Philosopher (PhD). Writer. Thinker. Interested in radical change and human being. Playwright. Dutch World citizen. Lover of books, language, art and coffee.

5 thoughts on “The Intrinsic Paradox of Life”

  1. Wow. Sounds like you’re contemplating the question about life, the universe and everything. Does the number 42 mean anything to you? 🙂
    But I understand where you’re coming from. I’m no philosopher, but it’s safe to say I’ve spent more than a little time considering questions about the meaning of life. What’s interesting here is that you consider life to be a linear proceeding subject to a concept called ‘time’, meaning that is has a beginning and an end. Most religions probably have an answer to your question/paradox. For me personally, the question is moot. The reason for that is that I believe that ‘life’, the ‘universe’ and ‘everything’ is a construct of the mind. As is time. I believe there is only existence. All of our ‘minds’ together create what we consider life and the world, expanding its parameters as we grow mentally. There is no beginning or end, no space. But that’s a bit of a complicated theory. I just observed the world for 25 years and that is my conclusion, but I’m still working out the details as in the end I’m just as clueless as anybody. Okay, I’m probably not making a lot of sense. I just wanted to say I like your post. 🙂

    1. Thanks for your response. Your position is what Meillassoux would describe as a correlationist view, and is very problematic for me. But this does not mean it might not be true…
      The Wikipedia page on number 42 is hilarious btw 😉

  2. Life’s only purpose is life itself (*). Which, in its own way, is the best excuse ever to live it the fullest.
    (*: this is stolen from Nietsche. Just saying ^^)

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