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STOIC POETRY | More to life than living

Updated: Sep 4, 2021

There is so much to occupy the time of life. So much to do. So many people to know, and love, and pass the time together with. One thing after another, from the age of understanding on, we pass our days one thing after another, and then dream ourselves busy when asleep - no rest then even from the incessant work of living. In fact, we would not live if not for this busyness, our kind would surely die and fall away. So, it is important, this work of making life productive in some way; important to us all, and part of what we are, and why we live, and thrive even. So many of us, so busy being - and remaining - alive. But is there more to life than living?

I speak so much, So I mustn't hear The deep silence

But, there isn't more to life. At least there doesn't seem to be more. And this too is a good reason to work so that we mustn't find this fact out. But the seeming fact that we are alone and without absolute direction is a false problem - in fact, it is an opportunity. For, instead of the universe being constrained by imposed absolutes of life, and justice, and purpose, and meaning, and even some sense of immortality; we instead occupy - briefly - a wilderness of boundless frontier on every side; a place without footprints of any sort; where no others have found or roamed or discovered or loved; a universe for us to make and call home - though we must be up to the task of making it such; and not just through our industry and invention - which blinds us to ourselves - but also through our willingness to cease our distractions for a time, to turn our heads towards the night, to stare out into the darkness, or close our eyes to invite the dark inside, and hear the deep silence.

This is the calling of the poet, and the artist, and the sage. A listening where there is no muse to hear speak. A watching where only physics puts on a show. A speaking where our words explore less than distract. Action to the same end. A good life of purposeful moments of finding, and sharing, and reflection, together with one another, of where we are and what we have found. A purposeful life of sincerely contrived meaning forged from a universe which does not care. A life of individuals come together to form friendship, and family, and community and kind.

A good life. An honest life.

Undistracted days from now until now is nevermore.


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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