Again, I found myself on the verge of the most dangerous place I had ever known…my mind. Some days it was a garden of beauty, most days, a void not even darkness could fill. From this existential prison with only sleep for temporary escapes and the hope of death for a permanent one, wrestling with time was all I ever did. Time, after all said and done, the spending of this priceless commodity was all there was to present as the worth of a life. Most days, I woke up to the feeling that mine had been a waste so far, but more worryingly, I was clueless on what was worth it to live for.
In this world of childhood indoctrination, it appeared everyone else knew how I was to live. Many advocated the relentless pursuit of material possessions and pleasures for the safety and enjoyment of my mortal flesh. What more could a man ask for besides comfort and pleasure in these hellish conditions. And there was the promise of respect that came with that, a most tempting offer. Some were of a different notion. To these, the material world was but for the passing of time, and in the afterlife where the immortal soul dwelled for eternity, there was everything to live for. Personally, there were very few things if anything at all I found as painful as uninterrupted existence. Often I would imagine the material world we so rejected was actually the paradise souls clamored to get a taste of, other times, I would discard the nature of the soul as nothing but a fire destined to fade into nothingness when death inevitably blew. Either way, forever was a reality I dreaded with every fiber of my being. There were also the intellectuals to whose cult I fell an easy victim. But at the end of that road, there was only more road to walk. While intellectual inquiry was quite the thrill, it was just another hamster wheel in the grand scheme of things.
So what was I left with? The same thing it had always been, a longing from happiness. To this end I would toil away chasing shadows like most philosophers before me. The questions never changed, why are we here, how did we get here, what is the meaning of life, the meaning of being, how should one live, you know these questions. They are the same one man has always tried to respond to with reason, religion and all that is in between. It was when I finally reached that verge of my mind that I realized all this while I was afraid of falling into the void. I was afraid because I didn’t know, because I couldn’t know. We all were and it was okay. At first, I reached in with my toes. Strange lands, the unknown. Then I leapt. Alas I found it, what I was always looking for, bravery in the face of the unknown. All the philosophies I had immersed myself in to escape the pain of being were but lessons on how to fall best into the abyss. For the fall itself, for the pain of being, there was no escape. All attempts were futile and not trying was the best medicine.