Thinking about thinking
I was happy today. At least for a brief moment. Four months into my job and I'm stuck with it. It's not the best job in the world but it does more than paying the bills. It makes putting off thinking about the future possible... even in abstract.
But wait a sec... Why do we think about the future anyway? Especially when it never turns out the way we expected?
That's exactly my point... Let's think about it for a sec... How does it work, this business of "thinking about the future"? What's the step-by-step breakdown of this mental exercise? We close our eyes, right? We take a deep breath and concentrate real hard, right? We could lock our brows if it helps while keeping our eyes closed, and try to think forward to a point in the future where... no, wait... we can't do that!
No siree, we could never think about the future. In order to think about the future we need something concrete that is in fact in the future for us to think about. It assumes possession of a definite knowledge of the future, which we don't have. It's a humanly impossible task unless we possess the omniscience of God or a late-night TV psychic.
If we can't really think about the future, why have we heard so many people, including ourselves, talked about it like it's a natural thing to do? We say we "think about the future a lot." Sometimes we even offer it as an advice for others to "start thinking about the future." But the most honest among which has to be, "I can't see my future." Which is not a depressing thing to say, but in fact the only true thing one can say about the subject.
I can't see my future, even as I try very hard. It's time I stop trying to do the impossible. We can't think about the future. We can only live toward it, moment by moment.
Labels: just thinking