An Application of Logical Absurdity: Beginning with a Note on Children

It has been suggested that when humans are young, their brains are not developed enough to let them understand personal forecasting. That is, children cannot realistically conceive of their lives in the future. This may be largely due to a lack of relevant knowledge regarding what their expected role in society and life in general is supposed to be in the future. Children only conceptualize their current situation – “I want to be an astronaut when I grow up” does not mean they clearly understand the pathway from their current state to their goal; instead, they simply want to be an astronaut now!

This is simply one startling change that occurs for people as time passes. Societies have a tendency to mark the passage of time for its members with pomp and circumstance. A likely derivation of these coming of age rituals stems from the physical and behavioral aspects of puberty that resulted in events (namely, sex) that ancient civilizations came to understand as integral to their continuous existence and also the existence of the species as a whole.

As societies developed, this concept of coming of age emerged into a complex web of limitations and initiations. Entire social structures developed in order to ensure that the progression from adolescence into mature adulthood (i.e. formal education) occurred in a way that the individual in question would grow so as not be a detriment to society as a whole but in fact benefit the greater good of all. It is interesting to note that these social structures are devoted to developing youth into mature adults who can responsibly procreate and produce more youths, as if these social structures act to serve their own existence by simply ensuring the existence of more people.

Nowdays, the idea where children are simply miniature adults is gone. Instead, there is a complicated period of time that sweeps over the individual youth as he/she must deal simultaneously with previously unknown burdens and expanded legal freedoms. It is the combination of this peculiar dualism - with social and natural pressures - that may hold back some from completely fulfilling their childhood dreams. Instead, people find themselves dealing with social structures. Structures that involve complications which are more far-reaching than they initially seem.

When one considers the entire scope of humanity, it is hard to grasp that there could have been non-human civilizations existing billions of years ago. The reach of the theories of natural science are so grand in scale that the events occurring in the time passing between an individual’s birth and death are rendered largely irrelevant in proportion to the overall scope of what a collection of species can do over thousands of generations. This unsettling concept probably has helped in advancing otherwise meaningless coming of age celebrations. It seems that a genetically developed and perhaps subconsciously beneficial response to these events exists (i.e. orgasms are supposed feel good). Humanity has taken great care to construct positive reinforcements when the issue at hand is sexual maturity. Not only do societies need to encourage procreation to ensure survival, but they ultimately need to ensure that there are incentives beyond a natural, pleasurable release during sex. Thus, human culture is naturally littered with long-term events, rituals, and day-to-day activities which reward evident maturation and sexual prowess.

In this sense, nearly everything in the human world can be traced towards collective, long-term self-survival via procreation, even if it only exists on a severely subconscious level to any given individual. However, we have seen completely illogical behavior exhibited by humans that seems to counteract this social prerogative. Despite the social structure’s best efforts, not all people are buying into this model of existence.

I propose that it is philosophically absurd for an individual to challenge these social structures in any manner, except one that results in complete annihilation of the human race. I also propose that this manner is itself highly illogical, and thus absurd.

As individual humans with the capacities for abstract thought, logical reasoning, and self-awareness (consciousness), any attempt to determine the meaning of any sort of purpose of life will ultimately end in an absurd situation, where one can only provide answers for oneself at best. Development of such answers will not necessarily even suggest a method of living that results in any sort of actual behavioral change.

Thus, from the point of view of the individual that acts appropriately within the social structure, if we are against the social structure, then we are illogical and thus absurd. However, consider that even if we exist at any level within the social structure, we are still only able to ultimately provide inherent meaning for ourselves. The collective set of every single individual's “meaning of life” will always include a point of view which another individual’s meanings may find absurd. Eventually, the entire human population may be able to find every other human absurd at some level.

Philosophically speaking, everything that physically or mentally exists is absurd at some level. Combined with the passage of time, we now enter into a realm of “absurd change” – everything that can possibly exist will be absurd as well.

The only conceivable solution for escaping the absurdity of life would be to remove the capability of thinking and consciousness from all humans (extinction). This, in itself, is also an absurd concept. As, anyone who would pursue this solution would invariably be able to discuss it with us.

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