“What matters about myth and magic is not their truth, but their effectiveness."
For a sizable portion of my life I have thought that depriving myself would make me a better person and I am increasingly led to believe that this has been completely wrong.
While leading the life of a moralizing religious prude, I miraculously have not ending up stuck with any of those labels. If I were to give one, though, I would call myself a non-practicing moralist… but enough about me. *
It’s odd to learn that in the pursuit of being good and being happy, one must usually be compromised to benefit the other, especially when realizing that what is good is stupid and what we want is nonsense. Then you find yourself sitting on the couch, babysitting stupid so that it won’t choke on its own spit while nonsense is in the other room sluggishly eating dick-shaped desserts and playing videogames that congratulate you for murdering other human beings on a screen that is unnecessarily large and probably in 3D, or something. Y’all’re free to mangle this example to how you see applicable, but I think you’ll likely agree that this is the typical, probably wrong way of thinking about it. And because this is the manner that it is understood, it is by no means uncommon to see folks in joint custody arrangements between good and happy. Obviously, recognizing the nonsense doesn’t yield us good just as knowing it’s stupid doesn’t make us any happier, or even smarter. It’s an impossible position everyone is aware of if they think about it and I obviously won’t solve by saying anything, but I'd like to think about good and happy differently.
The position of depriving depravity is not only to pursue one facet of life unwaveringly, but also to wholly side with it. Consider those who can’t stand, can’t understand those who do not live as they do. ** Make sure to not just consider the first group that comes to mind. Think about the moralizing, never-ending assholes as well as the assholes that are only appeased when pleased. These people exist, but most of us live in between, in joint custody. The mistake to be made is to see that we’re in the middle and mistake this for not being on a side. Living sided calls for depriving, demanding condemnation and polarity and unbridled odium. I have been sided, constantly questioning how I could possibly hold contentment for those on a side I wish I could understand more fully. *** Example- I had previously rejected (in a tweet on a soapbox from the top of a nearby mountain) any form of “assisted happiness” because of reasons. **** Since then I have failed to bring to mind any happiness that isn’t assisted, and why the fact that it is should not be beautiful.
What sides us are our motivators, who we choose to live for. We believe we know who they are. On the list of yourself, others, and God, we either do great at helping one, work at serving two, or completely fail at capital L Living for all three. Never can we handle all three and difficult it is to cross one off entirely. Pray to God I made the right pick(s).****
What we require is to engage an uncomfortable honesty, to grossly prioritize our motivators more so that we may grossly prioritize our actions less; because we aren’t afraid of wanting to be good or happy*****, but of choosing whom we live for. Fearing as we do hinders us from both, and facing that truth requires a incalculable daily faith, inasmuch as faith is a currency, inasmuch as spending requires spending, inasmuch as we are never promised anything in return******, inasmuch as there is so much to be lost, inasmuch as it sometimes appears we’re more faulted than compassionate, inasmuch as expectation too often squalors reality*******, inasmuch as we have no choice but to lower-case l live, inasmuch as lower-case l living is easy, inasmuch as lower-case l living without really isn't capital L Living, inasmuch as love is an alternating current, inasmuch as being there is just as hard as it is easy, inasmuch as faith is fearlessly moving forward equipped with the knowledge of having lost some infinite thing (and being OK with that), inasmuch as wanting is so much different from needing is so much different from getting.
But still we spend. We need to because we live with when we capital L Live.
*This, of course, is a lie.
**Also accept the possibility that you may belong to this group.
***This, amazingly, is not a lie.
****Yes, I realized what I did just there. No, don’t ask.
*****We do this most of the time
******It wouldn’t be faith if we were.
*******Inasmuch as 500 Days of Summer isn’t complete bullshit.