We make constant efforts to attain some measure of understanding in this life, we always have, but it is so rare that we ever reach this goal. It is this struggle, even against the certainty of failure, which defines us. In this absurd endeavor lies our essence, our humanity.
History has shown us nothing if not our propensity for cyclic repetition. Our dichotomous nature is eternal; there is no escaping what we are. It is likely, even probable, that there will always be hate and apathy and war. With that realization comes the knowledge that there are those who will ever be made to suffer. Uncertainty, also, is a foe destined never to be conquered, but we strive on regardless.
Life is hard, so much so that many things become quite easy by comparison. It is easy to believe that there is a God, that life is not some random string of inconsequentiality, that ultimate purpose is not ours to assign, but awaits us nonetheless; but it is just as easy to believe otherwise, that there is nothing waiting, that we must give life our own purpose and cherish it in the brief instant that it is ours to possess. We forget how easy decisions become when faced with the often overwhelming conditions of life, and in our forgetting we appoint blame and falseness. It is easy to allow consciousness to become a burden, it is easy not to recognize common similarity; it is easy to give up. The remarkable thing is, we never do, neither collectively nor completely.
Albert Camus wrote, “Man is an idea, and a precious small idea once he turns his back on love.” Love can be directed at many things, but finds its truest expression only when we share it amongst each other. Whether we realize it or not, we are all bound to one another. It is at those times that this bond is forgotten, when the absence of decency threatens the foundations of our common benevolence, that the more negative aspects of our duplicitous nature are revealed. It is then that we are measured, that our humanity is stretched to its utmost; but though our bond is sometimes tested, it has never yet been fully rent.
What then, do I believe? Even after years of experiences and evidence that invariably lead me in inclination to the contrary, I believe in us. Every time I see my family smile, or hear one of them laugh, I am reminded of the fact that I will never stop believing. At the risk of sounding like a hippie, and perhaps in spite of my nature, I suppose I still believe in love, a sentiment behind which hope is never far.
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