Day 21 of Year 26
Introduction to The System
One of the main concepts I want to discuss through Year 26 is the idea of The System and what it means to me.
The System is the mainstream idea that achieving the good life is accomplished by following the pre-designed societal norms of the 21st century. Concepts like the 40 hr work week, American Dream, consumerism, nuclear family, karma, religion, social status are some of The System’s principles.
The system is opposite of The Unknown. Both The System and The Unknown need to co-exist and require people to populate in both for society to work.
The basic logic of The System is that by joining and continuing the rat race, life checklist, and rules, you will be happy and rewarded later on.
Our natural direction is to follow what is safe, and already mapped in front of us. The System provides security and the frame of what people do. It is easy to consider auto piloting this frame, which I think some people do. The Unknown is obviously a lot less secure, and there is not a predetermined way to do it. The System is more stable.
I think the flaw to The System happens when people believe they will be rewarded later on and are not. It is basically an investment into these ideas having big dividends later on in life. While there are people who win and enjoy the entirety of The System, I think there are some who do not. I feel people can become stressed, depressed, sad, disappointed, and defeated if they play ball without knowing the rules – that the universe is indifferent and there is no guarantee of winning – despite effort and hard work. That life can still f you over for fun even if you slam home runs every inning. It is just how she goes sometimes.
The System’s life checklist essentially runs something like this:
Go to school
Study, work hard
Go to school again, this time pay for it
Get a job, keep your head down
Work hard, hard work equals rewards and promotions
Meet someone, like them
Buy a house
Bring kids to school, soccer practice
Kids grow up, move out to college, are successes
Travel, Euchre, nice family gatherings
Wildcard – go to an amazing place in the sky because you were a good person.
I think that sounds pretty good, and while I do plan on completing most of those (not Euchre), I think people (myself included) can become confused at points.
Is this what I am suppose to do?
What if I do not want to do these things?
If I am doing these things, why am I not happy?
Is everyone else doing this really that happy, or are they just full of shit?
That is just the list though, that is not including all of the obstacles and barriers thrown into the mix. It is interesting that 50 percent of marriages end in divorce. That is not on the checklist – for half of the people that is a big one to recover from.
People spend so much time and money on getting married to convince everyone and themselves they are happy and this is the one – then 6 months later walk out of it. Damn, that sucks.
But, if they realize they are not going to be happy, then I applaud them for doing what they think will make them happy.
The System is inherently good, however I think it is important to be aware of the indifference involved. That it is okay to question the direction of your flight path, and it is okay to deviate from what others think you should do, in favour of what you feel you need to.
I should note that I identify myself as a realist, occasionally fluttering around nihilism. However, I am aware of this, and also believe since I am on the rollercoaster I should might as well enjoy the ride. So, I am fun at parties.