To live is to suffer. To survive is to find meaning in the suffering. I heard DMX say this at the start of one of his most popular songs “Slippin”. I am not sure if he coined it, but he was right about one thing. To live is to suffer. There is no meaning to live. We come alive to die. And until we die, we suffer.
He goes on to say “to survive is to find meaning in the suffering.” I agree you have to survive, but I doubt you’ll have a happy life if you’re only looking for meaning. Don’t get me wrong, its great to want to be wise and all, but honestly, who needs that much wisdom if I have to struggle to get it. Plus wisdom won’t get you anywhere, in this world or the next. Jay Z said “9 to 5 is how you survive….”, and I couldn’t have agreed more. You will survive with a nine to 5 job, but you struggle to make it.
So what do you do? Don’t sweat the small things- like that crappy 9 to 5 day job. And don’t survive it. If you are gonna fucking struggle, strive for bigger conflicts (how to make a million, how to save a starving family, how to eradicate AIDS in Africa.) Why? Because that’s LIFE – you are gonna struggle (uh, did you read the first paragraph yet?). So you could waste your life in a rut, struggling to find happiness (or a meaning to your unhappiness), or except that happiness and sorrow are both equal parts of the human experience. (Yeah, I guess your buddhist homey put you on this already). Conquer one struggle to begin another. Conquer the struggle of childhood to begin the struggle of adulthood. Conquer the kids in your classroom, then aim to influence the kids in the neighborhood, then the gangs and kids in jail. Struggle harder. Survive. Live on fumes ass you knock over new obstacle after the next, until you have nothing but accomplishments behind you, and then find new challenges and struggles.
If you don’t get what I’m saying yet, don’t worry. This is a new philosophy and I’m working out the language and allegorical examples still. The next time I visit the topic, I will have a lot more to spew about.
Until then, struggle on. Your life depends on it.