We, the survivors, are the heroes of humanity's history. Often though, heroes are not appreciated. In fact, all too frequently, we are villified for our joy by those who could not make that same transformation of consciousness during one of life's many trials; who instead, choose misery, bitterness, becoming jaded--and in that state, dragging everyone else into the miserable mire with them.
Life is only as complex as we make it. More and more, the Buddhist's truth reflects the reality of humanity. We find things complicated when we must compromise--which is a constant in life. But it is only a constant because humanity insists on assuming a permanence that isn't real. We feel better for the fantasy of permanence, but because it's only an illusion, that comfort is often short-lived.
Understanding impermanence is part of what makes a survivor a survivor. We don't always accept it--because impermanence is quite hard to accept in that it means the death of all things. But it seems only those of us who have glimpsed that truth, through an application of wisdom and maturity in order to understand what we saw, are the ultimate beneficiaries. It may not seem that way to most people--how can you be the beneficiary of death? You are when you meet it and can still walk away recognizing the true meaning in life.
You might find this amusing but the true meaning in life is...death. We have a beginning and there will be an end--probably as messy and awful as our beginning. Being in the present moment is all any of us truly "have," at least, for that moment. And it's not depressing--it's freeing. The downside is that if you're one of the rare survivor's out there, you are, well, rare. Most people, even those closest to you, won't share your hard-earned perspective. More often than not, this may make you feel isolated or alone.
The problem with that isolation is that humans are made for companionship. You're not alone by choice; you're alone because others lack the sensitivity or compassion necessary to relate. And you can't explain it. If you feel like you have to, don't bother. Because if you have to explain, that person is already unable to understand. Frustrating, I know.
So not only do we survivor's have to survive terrible things, but when we come back from that trial changed--almost no one we knew before will understand or want to understand how or why. Soldiers have this issue often. Unless you lived through their experience, you can only relate to them based on your own limited, linear view...and frankly, it's never enough.
Humans are all connected. It doesn't always feel like it, but we are. We're connected through a shared history; we're connected through our planet; and according to people like Jung, we're connected through a shared collective unconscious.
The caged bird doesn't just sing because she's in the moment, despite her limitations--she still sings because it connects her to the rest of the world. Not even a cage, visible or o, can keep us from connecting...especially in 2010.
Thank God for philosophy...without it, we would all surely go mad. Until next time, dearest readers, until next time....