Author Topic: Theory of the absurd.  (Read 565 times)

Lydia

  • Guest
Theory of the absurd.
« on: Jul 02, 2016, 07:40:58 AM »
Having experienced another night, my time for productivity and creativity, peaceful then, but another time spent coming up against the sheer impossibility of having moments without them being filled with tension. So I turned to the Myth of Sisyphus, the Greek story I heard when young, the abbreviated form of this.

Knowing that the majority of members are educated on here, I thought I'd throw out some questions to see if anyone can supply any counterpoints to life's absurdites.

As Camus wrote, with me too, when I was young the world seemed full of wonder, surprise and romanticism. That's all been removed now by the revolt to life that I feel at the daily struggles with reality.

Camus talks about a meaningless world, and when you realise this you become free(r?). But i believe I have a vocation in life, with my creative writing and hoped for career, even at this late stage in my life.. That's my personal absurdity and daily struggle with life's torments... Any thoughts on this.. ?

Offline valerie

  • Gingerbeer Goddess
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,372
  • Gingerbeer.co.uk - The Lesbian Guide
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #1 on: Jul 08, 2016, 06:55:08 PM »
First, Camus is too negative. Frankl says,"the last of human freedoms is to choose our attitude".
I have had a positive attitude and succeeded.

No, not really. When I failed, I just said,"was not meant to be",suffered, then transcended.
I will read Camus' myth later. The Stranger was enough for me.
accept what is,let go of what was and have  faith in what will be

Lydia

  • Guest
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #2 on: Jul 10, 2016, 04:20:12 PM »
I value your opinion, Valerie. You're obviously educated and experienced. But that's how negative life has become for me.

Just how do you cultivate a positive attitude when all in life seems bleak, unendingly so.

The Stranger really spoke volumes to me when I was studying it. The idea of all those quirky characters in life, and it really opened up my eyes to the reality of life that I had so been, somehow, so shrouded from.previously.

Still have that book. Might reread it. 'Myth..' might be a good one for the Kindle library, too..

Offline outoforder

  • Gingerbeer Goddess
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,329
  • Gingerbeer.co.uk - The Lesbian Guide
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #3 on: Jul 10, 2016, 08:59:16 PM »
I have come to the conclusion that life is about getting a little buzz out of every day. (Where possible, outside times of grief I suppose and whatnot). The simple things. Don't take it too seriously. I am aware this is a luxury of our time and place, relatively speaking, so I'm trying to grab those moments.

I'd love to get published, successfully, and you know, avoid the world of 'real' work, but really I write coz I am compelled to and I enjoy it. On a good day.

Roll on the buzz in every day.

Lydia

  • Guest
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #4 on: Jul 11, 2016, 05:17:48 AM »
But that's just it. There seldom are any days that 'buzz' along. Most are to be endured. I cannot 'switch off' the moments that are making me misserable here and I don't have the kind of contacts which are supportive, so I am dealing with all this, basically on my own.

I yearn to be among people who care for each other, and a community that is supportive too, but everywhere I go, I feel complete alienation and facing my own unique experience entirely alone, with no understanding, empathetic types to lend a helping hand, to rebalance me.

That's it. Feeling like I am constantly being destabilised, in my mind, by the chaos going on in this community here where I live, and not having an alternative to counterbalance that. A case of feeling that I am drowning in amongst all this...

Offline Jˇhanna Sigur­ardˇttir

  • Gingerbeer Diva
  • ****
  • Posts: 380
  • Gingerbeer.co.uk - The Lesbian Guide
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #5 on: Jul 11, 2016, 06:22:15 AM »
I feel similarly, that life is mostly terrible, and a thing to be endured until it ends. I sometimes think that people who are able to be happy are possibly going through life very blinkered, but they are very fortunate.

I do believe though, that if any modicum of happiness is to be found, it will have to come almost completely from within. We can't control our outside world - we can't make the world or people better (e.g. you mention wishing for people to help you more, for better communities).

You just have to work with what you've got until it all ends. Misery hopefully punctuated by fleeting sparks of non-misery.

Lydia

  • Guest
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #6 on: Jul 11, 2016, 06:49:04 AM »
It is refreshing when someone calls out the big issues in life, as they are, rather than the accepted, standard response we are all expected to trot out on these occasions.

Evidently, extremely wise men and women have debated these issues. Valerie mentioned Camus and his meditations on the absurd. Having to face that absurd world, every day, with no real vocabulary to make sense of it at all, leaves me frazzled and fragmented. Despairing that things will ever improve.

So it is helpful to have someone say they face this absurdity in their life, too. Sometimes, I glimpse the misery on another's face, and think to myself:- 'What must they be going through in their lives', but here, this is a disempowered community, where there are lots of mental health issues and, being a radical feminist, lesbian, as you can imagine, my thoughts on life are not welcomed here. Simply talking a different language..

To just add that, people who proclaim or look as if they are happy, I smell 'bravado' on their breath, and they too, are equally as miserable but, for whatever reason, are as powerless to change their lives as those proclaiming despair. I sometimes wonder what on earth this planet is all about? It's purpose? God's design for it? Seems a preposterous thins to say but, God, He's a little bit insane, don't you think..?('The Scream...?'.

Offline Jˇhanna Sigur­ardˇttir

  • Gingerbeer Diva
  • ****
  • Posts: 380
  • Gingerbeer.co.uk - The Lesbian Guide
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #7 on: Jul 11, 2016, 06:52:43 AM »

To just add that, people who proclaim or look as if they are happy, I smell 'bravado' on their breath, and they too, are equally as miserable but, for whatever reason, are as powerless to change their lives as those proclaiming despair.

I know some happy people. It is most bizarre.

Offline Jˇhanna Sigur­ardˇttir

  • Gingerbeer Diva
  • ****
  • Posts: 380
  • Gingerbeer.co.uk - The Lesbian Guide
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #8 on: Jul 11, 2016, 06:53:54 AM »
These happy people also have good hair. I suspect it is no coincidence.

Lydia

  • Guest
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #9 on: Jul 11, 2016, 12:27:22 PM »
It's the psychological games people play, even those you do not know, and have no desire to, but have the unfortunate accident of 'coming across' them when out on your daily journeys. Always, there is someone seeking a negative response, a way to get strokes, if no positive ones are forthcoming, and when they rub up onto you, the individual, revealing a little about their own small world that you, the individual, have no desire to be offloaded onto with that, well it kind of ruins the day, that.

Didn't one member on here, used to have an excerpt from one of Meryl Streep's recent films, which went something like:- 'Your incompetences are of no consequence to me...?'. That's what I feel like screaming out when yet about unimportant person clashes with me, during ordinary daily outings, and insists on giving a taste of their lives. Uninvited, as Alanis Morisette sang. Outoforder put it well when she said she'd love to get published to be able to get out of the rat race. So desperate for that, myself.

Offline Bewilderbeast

  • Gingerbeer Scene Queen
  • ***
  • Posts: 216
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #10 on: Jul 12, 2016, 03:34:34 PM »
Quote
Camus talks about a meaningless world, and when you realise this you become free(r?)

I have always understood The Myth of Sisyphus to be about the freedom you gain through choice, even if it's not the choice you want you can still none the less freely choose it (as opposed to doing it in sufferance because you have no other options). The idea is that Sisyphus freely chooses each time to push the rock back up the slope even though he knows it will roll back and in that moment of choice (even though he has no other options to choose) he is free. For Camus, Sisyphus is happy in that moment of freedom through choice, it's a pretty bloody hard thing to do though. I realise this pretty abstract but practically for me this resonates with the experience that my anxiety gets the biggest grip on me in inaction, as soon as I can make myself decide on and start on a course of action the anxiety will start to, at least, loose it's grip a bit.

I think the point about the meaningless world is this, meaning is not something you find but something you give. There is no intrinsic meaning in the world but that doesn't mean there is no meaning. It just means that meaning is what we invest in something, meaning is always something we create for ourselves. What's truly miraculous is that given that we all create meaning in our own little words for our own little selves and we frequently can't understand each other at all, we none the less frequently do actually share meaning (not even deep and meaningful either, think about how great a smile from someone you have just let go ahead of you in a bus queue feels), how brilliant is that?

Lydia

  • Guest
Re: Theory of the absurd.
« Reply #11 on: Jul 12, 2016, 05:02:54 PM »
Certainly worth investing in that book by Camus, methinks. It sounds like there will be a wealth of luxury of thought to be discovered there. Ones to luxuriate in at my leisure. It really strikes me at times just how fortunate I actually am to be able to find some quiet moments to myself, to shut out this cruel world, and its demands on my precious time, to dwell on such matters...

That's a good point about life and it's lack of meaning. I actually possess some meaning in my life which I am determined to see through to my last breath, and which every day, someone else's life clashing with mine, negates my attempts to live that meaning.

That's what is causing me my own individual pain and heartache. The daily obstacles that are placed before me to jump over that get higher and higher each day.. Creating a feeling of despair when there should be happiness like there once was for me...such is my complete disenchantment with life, these days..