Marks and Remarks
Food for the Mind and Eye

No. 0063, May 8, 2015

DEPT. OF EXISTENTIAL PSYCHOLOGY


Whence the Angst?




Copyright 2015 by S. W. Paul Wyszkowski

     Imagine yourself a regular U.S. citizen living in this West Virginia home pictured above. What could possibly keep you from happily enjoying your existence? "I can think of a million things," says Prickles. What if you didn't think? "Hmmm..." she says. Exactly.

     I know, I know. You're about to point out that this moment won't last and unless we diligently work at it the next moment may not be so pleasant. And even if we do, things could still go disastrously wrong - at least in our perception. The problem is we don't know what exactly is going to happen next - all we know for sure is that things will not stay the same. We are not in total control of our lives nor can we be. Hence the angst.

     "So there's no conceivable way we can ever be happy?" Prickles is alarmed. Yes, there is. "OK, how?" she is all ears. By trusting. "Whom or what?" Both. Happiness is being able to trust someone (including oneself) or that transcendental universal desire that makes all being possible to assure that the right conditions tend to prevail despite the life degrading effects of imperfect balance between chaos and order. Even if some battles are lost, the fundamental faith in the continuing success of this jihad against potentially runaway imbalance makes enjoyment of life (a.k.a. happiness) possible. "Trust is the key then?" Prickles is not yet quite convinced. Trust me.


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