The Problem with Existence

4/14/13

What is existence?  Why live at all?  What is it that makes us live and breath?  Would it not be better not to be?

I’ll tell you what the problem is with existence. It’s that you have no choice about it.  Someone else who could not access your desires decided for you that you should exist.  How lame is that?  What if they decided wrong?  Then you are screwed – screwed by your own parents who thought it would be a good idea for you to live, but once you are alive you realize that it isn’t a good idea that you live.  This is why I don’t ever want to be a parent – and I won’t be if I can help it.  Not for my own sake, but for my unborn and never-to-be possible children who might grow up like me regretting their life, wishing they didn’t exist, and wishing their parents hadn’t made love that one night.  No sir, I have no desire to be part of that cycle.

“I think it would be better not to exist.  I’d rather not live at all.”  But what’s wrong with this statement?  If I didn’t exist, there would be no “I,” no “self,” to know that I wasn’t existing; and thus, “I” wouldn’t be better off since “I” wouldn’t be at all.  Perhaps the world would be better off if I didn’t live – but who knows?  I’m sure there would be a chorus of people who’d like to crow about how much richer the world is because I live…blah, blah, blah.

Ah, but wait you say!  I do have a choice about whether I live.  I can kill myself.  Well, I suppose that is an option – I mean, we all must die someday, right?  Why not get it over with and hurry up and go home; away from this hell and the demons running around in it?  But suicide isn’t easy…believe me, I know!  It’s scary because you know that if you succeed there’s no coming back, there is no tomorrow…or maybe there is a tomorrow but you don’t know where you’ll be or what it will be like.  Do suicide victims go to hell?  I think that’s an old Catholic teaching that’s outdated or something, but I’m not sure.  If it’s wrong to kill a life, would it not be wrong to kill yourself?  Yet if the just punishment of taking a life is forfeiting your own, then what is the just punishment of taking your own life?  Dying a second time or living forever in hell?  So there you have it!  Even if I choose to end my life by killing myself, I still exist.  I have not succeeded in vaporizing my existence…I simply live on in another form, with or without a body, in or out of time, in heaven above or hell below.  But I live on.  Alas, it is inevitable: I live.  To bad annihilation theory of death apart from God isn’t true.

Too bad it’s not possible to undo existence.  You know, to try this world out for a little bit – say, 20 years or so – and then decided whether you like it and want to stick it out for another 60 years or so, or you’d rather God unmake you, uncreate you, unthink you, unknown you so that you didn’t have to suffer here.  Oh, and undo all the memories everyone else had of you as well.

I think God is cruel to put humans in this world.  I think the first thought he had of me was a cruel joke, and I wish – oh how I wish! – I could reach back in time and snuff out that thought of me; replace it with another thought, another person, something – anything – else.  Because before God could create me he had to think of me.  So if I could just get rid of that incipient thought of me…but of course we know that’s not even logically possible since for “me” now to erase the thought of me back then would have removed the possibly of me ever existing so that I wouldn’t be around now to do anything about it!  *Sigh*  There is no good solution.

“But God loves you and he has a wonderful plan for your life!”  Sure, God loved me so much to drag me into this prison – my body, my sin, this evil world – and force me to live through it.  Sure, that was a really nice and loving thing for him to do.  Not.  Oh, you say that God is going to redeem it all?  God is going to one day make it all better?  He’s going to wipe every tear away and we’re going to see it was all worth it?  Well, I came to the conclusion long ago that there was nothing God could do in the present or throughout all eternity in the future to make up for all the awful things he’s already done, er…permitted to happen.  Unless of course he’s going to erase my memories and start me over with a brand new tabula rasa!  But I doubt he’ll do that.  In fact, I’m sure God won’t.

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