Where to begin. Possibly under the shade of the Tree of Knowledge, reaching up to pluck the fruit from its branches. God told us that we were his children and that our time on earth would be a show of our character and our love for Him. God warns us not to be greedy or to be jealous. Is this what it means to be human? Maybe this, maybe we begin with the big bang. The earth collides into being with a show of gasses, minerals, light, and color. Somehow our earth today began from nothing, from dark matter and nothing.
We believe what we see to be most logical, may it be what our parents taught us or our inability to NOT know. To not understand. We struggle with this, we struggle with the idea that we cant know everything. Maybe that is what being human is. How can we justify saying that any of our creation stories can be deemed right or wrong? How can we take the miracle of our very existence and logically explain that? To me, the idea that the big bang actually happened is equally as insane and illogical as the Christian creation story of the world.
My mind cannot even begin to open its door wide enough to let the secrets of the universe inside of it. As I sit and look at the shiny silver handle of an espresso machine handle while at work, I can see my tiny reflection in it staring back. How can I even begin to explain to myself the story of human existence? How can I even begin to explain what it means to be human? I have seen the greed and selfishness of a thousand people and on the other hand the resilience, beauty, hard work, and pride of a thousand more. WHO AM I? What am I here for? The answer changes every day, every hour, every second. I am here to travel and service an underdeveloped country. I am here to talk to my friend. I am here now to sit with my mother, to fight with my little brother. I am here for no apparent reason, whether it be connected with the earth, god, or both. I am no idea what I even am.
I believe I was created to do everything that I will. I believe I was created to live under the sun of whatever god created it. We are not ever given any true meaning of the universe around us. We must create the meaning we see to forge a path of passion and reason. For myself to be human is many things. My meaning for life is to give of my own life and in return receive pieces of other peoples lives. I want to die knowing that I have shared everything that I possibly can with the people i surround myself with. I want to look back at my time and see generosity and true kindness in my human connections because that is what gives my life meaning. To spend a day with someone with more wisdom than myself, and then spend the day with someone who still has yet to learn of the working of the world. I want to be rich in experience and truly believe that there is a reason that I’m alive. To be human is to create a reality for yourself to validate your being. For some, this is organized religion, for some meditation and deep thought, for others of us its action. For me I seek validation in time well spent, whether that be spending time with my family, going to church, saying a prayer before a meal to give thanks for the abundance of my life. Time well spent is a heart to heart conversation with a good friend or a year-long trip to Uganda, a day spent with an orphan Haitian baby or a meal with the ones I love.
In the human lifespan, there are ups and downs, high highs and low lows. This is the nature of our being, we seek the high highs and in seeking of that pleasure we sometimes reach our lows. My theory of human happiness is simple. Do what you can to help other people less fortunate than yourself. I believe that a lot of unhappiness comes from self-pity, doubt, and selfishness. As American humans, we tend to think almost solely of ourselves. We must bring back the age of giving and receiving. To truly be happy is not to have 5 cars, or to go to the best college to get the most money. Our happiness comes from meeting our needs and then helping those around us to also meet those same needs. We spend 24 hours a day thinking about our success and our pleasure, leaving the rest of the world to only think about their own pleasure and success. To come together is the purpose of humans. We are meant to share in our pain an suffering and rejoice together in our successes, not to gain pleasure from other human misfortunes.
When I die I want to know that I am a part of an Earth that is loved and revered as the goddess it is. I want to know that the people after me will treat the blossoming planet that we live on and take meaning from and treat Her with the kindness that they would treat t themselves. I want to die knowing that I am loved by many and that I have loved many in return. Our true meaning comes in the form of kindness and acts from your true heart of hearts and that’s how I hope to live my human life.