Jean-Paul Sartre says, “Everything has been figured out except how to live.” So perhaps the better question is not what are we to do with death, but what are we to do with life?
Life exists in individual moments and it is up to us to make sure those moments are vast, interconnected, and grand. To make a masterpiece out of life. One that we would willing live again and again for all of eternity. This is what we could strive for.
And I love this idea, this idea of aestheticizing our lives, of italicizing our experience. Of turning our story into the story. Of seeing the universal in the specific and sort of, aligning ourselves, with the archetype of the hero’s journey. Of trying to see a departure from the ordinary in every single instance. A chance to learn something new, a chance to leverage obstacles and learn from them and meet people along the way that can teach us something.
Its what that movie Eat Pray Love talks about: quest physics. The physics of the quest; if you believe and you’re willing to step out of your comfort zone, life will begin at the edge of your comfort zone. If you are able to treat what seems like despair, what seems like hardship, as an opportunity to reinvent yourself, if you transcend your own limitations-as Steven Johnson says, “the world is full of clues and you can read your way through it”-if you are able to turn your life into an art piece, if you are able to turn your narrative into the narrative then you become that hero. You become the god of your own life. Its the archetype in every film. Its the Joseph Campbell, hero’s journey.
And um… that’s just rad. That’s just a cool idea.