The human life is a marvel. Those little hairpin turns and grand, swooping bends; those subtle flavors wafting up from an undetectable undercurrent; those smashing impressions of individual moments, pressed into our faces and crystallized as memories.
For a long time, I thought that there was no point in living if I did not know why I was living. Life could not be lived without direction. How could humans function without the “greater purpose” of contributing to the global network? I believed that humans were useless without agendas. Meandering musings had no place in productive society.
But these were my preconceptions. Hammered by experience, all preconceptions come crumbling down.
I began to look at what life is—not what progress of society is, but what individual human lives are. Human lives are everything that timelines and paychecks cannot encompass. Human lives are so much more than the glittering peaks; they are the roaming slopes, the sudden turns, the gradual escapes into peripheral consciousness. Human lives deserve to be rounded out, filled up, appreciated for every gradient of light and shadow in which they take place.
I learn every day that “career” is a fluid term. “Success” is a fluid term. That life is not a resume and that human hearts aren’t iPads. That bankers and bartenders seeking purpose are the same. That everyone might be a little bit muddled, searching for truth, lost in the current. Because everyone is searching for something, and most of the time, I think it’s something they can’t see.
It’s something unquantifiable. I am a firm believer in the duality of knowledge—the sharp reason of the mind, always in conversation with the incalculable yet unshakable intuition of the heart. Imagination matters; experience matters. Life cannot be lived in a pouch of thought. Idealistic, untested notions hold little weight against the whipping, wild winds of human emotions, instincts, and impulses. The most ordered schemes unravel in the chaos we cannot untangle. And our carefully-crafted reasoning faculties cannot encompass the throbbing muscles in our chests that produce knowledge we cannot calculate, and which we cannot ignore.
The most enduring lessons of life are the hardest to learn because they can only be grasped through grinding, gut-wrenching sorrow. The most beautiful truths of life can only be glimpsed through uplifting, soul-opening love.
Sometimes it’s disastrous. But disaster is a beautiful thing. When a man stands at the foot of his dignity, with his fists hanging listlessly at his sides, with his heart shriveling somewhere in his chest cavity, and he has nothing but to spin out along the razor’s edge of his hope—to stretch into unknown territory, to test his limits like he’s never known, to burst from his cocoon into the kaleidoscope of himself—that is what makes a man.That is the soul-sucking gravel, the jagged edges of humanity we ride until we triumph over the trials of our lives. Only then are we truly human—when we have lived fully. Because that is the triumph: the boldness to really live, stripped of fear, worry, and hesitation. Victory is in the pursuit, not the trophy; our lives are the quest, not the horizon.
And so let’s thrive in the chaos. Because there is a point in living if you don’t know why—to ask that question. To ask, What does it mean to be alive as a human? Who is humanity, and how do I fit into it? What purpose do I have amongst an entire species who may have no purpose at all?
This blog is the musings of a girl who is asking these questions. Who the hell am I? I’m a spirited girl with a curious mind and a tumultuous heart and a ticket across the globe. A girl who isn’t determined to find answers because she’s not sure that they exist. A girl who is living life with light—determined only to love every day and to never stop asking questions—who wants to discover humanity as it constantly unfolds around us. A girl who is living life with eagerness, hope, and boldness.
I am asking questions, but I will not bring back answers. I am going around the world and I will bring back glimpses into humanity—pieces of our collective, millennial mind.