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STOIC POETRY | Leaves upon the sea

Updated: Sep 4, 2021

October 12, 2019

Dear Eric,

Would you ever have not taken your own life? Though I do not believe in fate, I'm convinced you had no real choice but to die when you did. Sure, it was your choice - yet you could have made no other. This is because free will is an illusion...

I could not do otherwise now than to type these words. My desire, opportunity and motive all drive me to do so. This pecking at the keyboard now is precisely what I must do now, though I believe this action was my choice. But now that I know I am not truly free, that the universe mindlessly requires my every decision and action exactly as I make it, I can therefore choose to exercise my motive will in the direction of improved and better actions, which strangely, I had no other real option to pursue. This game of feign control - of deciding, and then doing, and then deciding and doing again, until I'm dead - is the illusion I call my free life, and the false thing I call my independence. It's only that I cannot see very far past my seeming immediate self-management that I gain the false sense that I have some real control. I do not. I am just a result and consequence of thirteen-billion years of action and reaction and action again...on and on through time, like waves crossing a vast sea in every direction and lifting water here and there for brief moments at a time. A leaf floating upon such a sea is never free of the sea which supports and maintains it, and the consequent energies which come together to push and pull and animate its existence. And I too am never free of the great sea of everything from which I came, and now am, and will soon no longer be.

I was, am and never will be free. None of us is free. We're all leaves upon a tossing sea.


My name is Kurt Bell.

You can learn more about The Good Life in my book Going Alone.

Be safe... But not too safe.

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