I just read a very short story by a guy named Andy Weir. You should read it too. It’ll just take a sec.
I have trouble really getting on board these days with any explanation of reality that comes in a story type of package like this one, but a physical/biological translation of it I can definitely relate to.
We give rise to ourselves. Along with physical traits, build, etc, we inherit emotional tendencies and patterns of thought from our parents and grandparents and great-grandparents, and the first living beings that ever were. We are all just different combinations of the same genes, the same chemicals. And different types of atoms are, again, just different combos of even smaller particles. And they all just keep getting shuffled around to change the manifestation of things. But nothing is really changed at the bottom of it all. Nothing is created or destroyed (at least as far as we can tell right now). We ARE all one big Thing, really.
Which is just weird.
And it’s even more weird that all this changing and shuffling matters at all.
But it does. For some reason it matters so much to us. For some reason this stuff that everything is made of has developed self-awareneess. And feels things about itself, and has wants and hopes and fears and questions.
Weird, weird, weird.
I love thinking about this. It kinda freaks me out, but also gives me this shot of adrenaline or something. Like a good-scary movie.
The thought that we are all one, and that every change in my life that I perceive as good or bad is really just a million little shufflings of the universe, makes life more handle-able. It doesn’t make those perceptions less real or emotional, but it makes them all okay. And it makes people more lovable to me, and my own shortcomings more forgivable. It makes fashion and money and love and lust and adventure and accomplishment more of a fun game to be enjoyed, and less of a do-or-die. It makes life more real but somehow less serious.
And as my dear friend (who found this story and thought to share it with me) has somehow known innately since he was probably about six and a half, life should never be taken too seriously.