Monday, May 19, 2014

Taking the Red Pill

"This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill -- the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill -- you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes. Remember, all I'm offering is the truth -- nothing more." -- Matrix (1999)

If I could return to the days before my doubts, would I? Would I "take the blue pill," wake up again a   passionate believer as if nothing had ever happened? I know many people who would. I know even more people who are too afraid to venture this far off the coast of their convictions, thus the question is irrelevant to them. 

I must declare that, no, I would not want to return. I would rather die an honest person, than a happy person. I would rather a life steeped in insurmountable doubts, than a life lived blindly. 

My soul is in torment, my heart in pain. I seek and seek for the illusive truth -- the meaning of life. Truth, the very word is queer to me now. What it is, I do not know. Whether I will ever know what it is I cannot say. And so, on and on I stumble down a path beaten with the footprints of heavy-headed philosophers. I read their writings: their findings, their doubts -- their misery.  The way is dark and gloomy, and I would have it no other way. 

I do not criticize, nor look down upon someone who lives within his beliefs and does not challenge them. That is a choice, a good choice. A choice that will lead him to live a life of happiness and meaning without having to work very hard for it. I respect his life decision, it is just not mine. 

[Of course, I am not saying anyone with a belief in God or religion, or anything else, should be considered as to have not challenged their beliefs. A statement of such arrogance I -- someone who has amassed little to no wisdom -- could scarcely make in good conscience. There are people far greater than I who have found what they call truth, and I am sure they came to it through careful critical analysis. I would just demand they could prove it to me before I would accept it.]

I do not take credit for my decision, it is who I am. I was raised to think outside of what was comfortable. To question relentlessly. I was taught not to settle, and to take my questions with me where ever I go. This, among other unknowable factors, created in me the need to pursue knowledge, the desire to find truth at any cost. 

So here I am. A ship lost in the sea of doubt. Seeking to know the seemingly unknowable. Grasping the wise men's books hoping to find some direction. My questions on God, religion, the nature of good and evil, the meaning of existence, will not be satisfied with the common answers flung from mouth to mouth. I know most, if not all of these questions, are unknowable and therefore, by inquiring into their nature I am inscribing myself to a life of intellectual suffering; and I would have it no other way. 

I will journey forward. I will become wise. And on the day of my death I hope that I am proud of who I am, proud that I took the red pill.  

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