#ThoughtExperiment – The Net Benefit of Not Being Able to Stomach a ‘Real Job’

Having an aversion to working a ‘real job’ could be a net benefit in cases in which you’re looking to pursue an ‘alternative’ career – eg. an artistic endeavour with a much lower probability of success (eg. making a living), but with fame and higher financial rewards on the upside (music, acting, comedy, writing etc).

Put simply, it forces you to go ‘all in’. It does not allow you to get comfortable in a normal career.

However – it’s only a benefit to those with the talent and drive to pursue their art/high-risk, high-reward occupation. And even amongst those people, luck is a massive factor.

Which means you either succeed or fail spectacularly. You don’t get to live in ‘the middle’. To work in middle management, and live in a nice, middle-sized house, oh no…

As a glib example: you’re either a millionaire entertainer, raking in the royalties or you move from service job to service job, eking out a living whilst you work on your comedy until you die.

The deck is stacked against you, but if it’s what you’re called to, there is no other way, I suppose.

To me, this is the life of the artist – no compromise. All or nothing.

Photo by Free-Photos (Pixabay)

#Idea – The ‘Supply and Demand’ Problem of Modern Humanity / 06.06.19

We don’t value people
(As much as I feel we should)
Because we have ‘too much access’ to people.

This is something of a supply and demand issue.

As a general principle
We tend to value less which is more abundant
And this can apply to people.

You’d probably be much happier to see another person
After spending a year alone in the wilderness
Than you’d be
Spending yet another day (another year?)
Fighting through the crowds at your metro station

If there were less of us, maybe we’d value each other more.

Though seeing as this is probably not going to happen any time soon
We should come up with better ways to value each other
Ways that take into account how many of us that there are now.

Put another way
Come up with a way not to dehumanise people
Considering how many people there are.

The current MO is to treasure a small group of people
And look on at everyone else with some degree of ambiguity or neutrality.

black and white lovers photo
Photo by jepoirrier

Are there ways of valuing everyone equally without the ‘us and them’ mentality?
In other words – can we think of everyone as part of our ‘in-group’?
I don’t know.

Perhaps imagine that one of those people
In the teeming mass of humanity that surrounds you
Is the only person that you have seen in the last 10 years?

#ThoughtExperiment – The ‘Dickens Process’ But Worse / 06.05.19

Disclaimer: this is quite unpleasant if you think through it properly.

Imagine the far future
Imagine yourself long gone.

Imagine the person that you’re with
The person that you love (we assume?).

Imagine them
On their deathbed
Old, fragile, perhaps a little senile
Life ebbing away
Life flashing by.

In their delirious last hours
As they cry out your name
What would you want them to say about you?
How would you want them to remember you?

Resolve to be more like that person from now on.

Photo by arriba 

#ThoughtExperiment – The Long Sleep / 30.03.19

One day you awoke from a sleep
That you did not know you’d been in.

Since then
You awoke every morning
You slept every evening
And you went on
Like this was perfectly normal.

You probably did not stop to consider
How long you had been asleep before
And how long you will sleep, later.

You probably did not give much heed
To how short the number of these days
In which you get to wake up are
Before, of course,
You go back to sleep for good.

Photo by rmathews100 (Pixabay)

#ThoughtExperiment – Millions of Friends That Die Before You Discover Them / 12.01.19

Assuming that you’re a ‘normal’, ‘sociable’ person:
You have a group of people you’re close to.
You have love and compassion for them,
And if you were to lose any of these people, you’d mourn them.

And yet
There are countless people out there that,
If you got to know about them
You’d be sad to lose.

(Perhaps not all people,
Perhaps there are some people
That you’d never get along with, or care for

And yet
Why must you wait until you know someone
To feel compassion for them?
Dunbar’s Number?
Enlightened self-interest?
Something else?

black and white crowd photo
Photo by x1klima

The Buddhists (bless them) tell us to expand our compassion to encompass all beings
Very noble, yes.
But is it really doable?
It sounds exhausting,
Spiritually taxing.

If 151,600 people pass away each day
(…as the internet has just told me)
How many of them could have been your friend?
Given the chance?

It doesn’t bear thinking about.

Photo by eschipul