Wednesday, January 27, 2010

"A world without suffering - how is it possible?"

We need to continue to find ways of recognizing the meaning of suffering in the world. These theodicies are the only things that can help us cope with the ever-present existence and constant eruption of suffering into our everyday, rational view of the world. This issue of "nihilism" seems to stem from a push to see a world that has no suffering - or the suggestion that we could in fact entirely eliminate suffering!

"A world without suffering - how is it possible?"

The obvious answer would be to amass such an amount of surplus value and material ends to the extent that one could never go hungry, receive illness, be harmed by anyone, or feel unhappiness or pain, etc., etc.. And initially this would seem to be a very great thing. But there is an even simpler way: rid yourself of all desires, values and meaning in this world and you will have all you ever want or need.

It is not insignificant that the achievement of the so-called "simpler" thing depends on one's ability to achieve the will of the monk. (And this would be the significant thing!) But when an entire culture of such ingenious "individuals" aims for the first and supposedly greater goal - as we do now - one must aim for the will of the ant.

1 comment:

Ryan Engelhardt said...

Interesting... however your imagery with the Ant might be a tad misleading. Especially, since the Ant is able to carry many times its own weight, is able to communicate minute tasks to others in order to create a very complex goal, and will defend it's queen and territory to the death, even against a predator many times its size. Therefore, I disagree that the Ant would be a proper mascot for the aspiring Nihilist.

This being said, I would agree that we should all have the "will of the ant."