Exiting Existentialism

I don’t know if anyone else has been encountering this, but as of late there seems to be some kind of influx of teen nihilists and kid Camus’s. It feels like the wannabe Nietzsche convention just let out across the block and all the new converts to existentialism are eager to give me their spiel. I’ve had plenty of people telling me something along the lines of “It doesn’t matter anyway” or “Nothing matters”. There are many variations on this but the sentiment stays the same throughout. Maybe it has something to do with a certain cartoon? Who can say?

All I know is that I’m getting pretty sick of it. It’d be a different story if these people caught me in my sophomore year of highschool. Back when I’d successfully convinced myself that no one beyond myself could be proven to exist. That I was an island of consciousness in a sea of pre-programmed encounters and interactions. Yeah I’ll admit it, I was something of a solipsist.

Me and all these new wave nihilists would have had a lot to talk about back then. But I’m over that now, being the only special individual with free will in a world of predestination got boring. I wanted my mother and father and friends back. I wanted light and warmth in my life again.

I pretty much subscribe to the whole “meaning is where you put it” philosophy on life. It’s a lot more fun that way. Sure I still have “What’s the point?” moments, seconds where the vast absurdity of everything comes at me like a tidal wave, but I’ve gotten fairly adept at shrugging them off. If I just keeping doing the things I love, the strangers from my subconscious will stay in their cellars, and abstain from holding that cold cloth between me and the world. However, this is a little more difficult with people yapping at me to abandon the futile torch I hold up to the darkness of the universe. “It’ll just burn out eventually”, sure it will, but for now can’t there be a little light?

Can’t I write some poetry, good and bad (I’ve always thought that the bad sort, in fact, is sometimes the most seeped in the human soul), read some great books, relish my morning coffee, converse with people I care about. I don’t have to be constantly reminded of my mortality. I’ve listened to Kansas’s “Dust in the Wind” enough times to know that I’ve got an expiration date and all I say and do will one day be forgotten. I don’t mean to rain on anyone’s parade raining, but please leave me out of it. I’m sick of having to compare the tenuous fibers of my happiness to the awaiting empty expanse of eternity.

 

One Reply to “Exiting Existentialism”

  1. This a common theme, I’ve noticed. Not only from my own experiences, but also from what I’ve heard about other schools. I think this mindset is a reaction to the high pressure put on kids from a very early age. There are endless reasons why millions of young adults feel this way, and it would take dozens and dozens of pages to accurately list the sociological factors leading up to this dark, zeitgeist. But, even that analysis could never truly answer that question because every person feels that macabre dread differently and for completely different reasons. It’s impossible to sum it all up in one post. But, it is a widespread phenomenon. Enough that you could call it a zeitgeist of the time. “…and the second decade of the second millennium was largely defined by a horrible, nihilist ennui!” I dunno, man.

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