sun and its questions

November 25, 2012

When you leave the orbit of something so giant and golden it colours everything you’ve ever known with its light, light and shadow both (the place where it is and the places where it isn’t-) the world becomes suddenly something ugly, dissolved, murky and unsubstantiated. Everything is duller, everything is off-axis. Driftless. Loose. Nothing makes sense anymore. Grey, glum, gloomy, grim, grappling with constant questions you’re too tired to answer.

Questions are what got you here. You gave the sun the boot because you were looking to see if it was the only sun out there, if it was the right sun, if perhaps you only thought it was the right sun because you’d always been in orbit around it, all your known growing living, and that was all the colour you’d ever known, and the gravity you’d ever understood. That was the pull of your universe. And maybe you’d been circling the wrong merry-go-round the whole time, trying to get a ride on the shiny purple pony with the pink plumes when really, the right merry-go-round was just around the block with a pony made of REAL PONY and TRUTH PLUMES. How would you know? You’ve never left this one before. You’ve only ever ridden this one. You don’t know until you ask, until you start looking, until you go just around the block and check to see if the REAL PONY is hiding behind the traffic. This is getting too involved here. Get out of the traffic.

So. Question everything. That’s what you decided. Is this sun actually the sun? Is this just some desklamp someone’s set up in their garage and the real sun is actually out there, glowing and golden and good? Have you been living a lie? Is there more to this? Go look. Go ask. Break out of orbit and find out.

Questions are how. Questions are the grappling hook and giant boot of your existence now. You like questions. Questions are good, right? Question everything, right? Right guys?

Why is questioning everything a good idea?

How will I know when I find the truth?

Who am I to know what truth is? I could be totally blind. Elephants and all. I could never know. How am I to know?

Why do I even want to find truth? Why do I want to find something to orient myself around anyway, something to fall into orbit around again? Maybe life is supposed to be like this. Maybe I’m just adjusting badly. Who says what life is supposed to be like? Who says I should decide? I’m looking for another sun, another source of life, something else to reorient my existence and principles and ideas and methods of hygiene and dress sense and basis for conversational topics around, something that pulls everything into place.

I’m worried that because I grew up around one sun only, I’ll only ever fit that one, whether or not it’s true. That I’ll go back to this one sun because I’ll just be miserable elsewhere, because I can’t move far enough from its orbit in the first place, because I can’t breathe any other atmosphere. But who says misery is any indicator of whether something is right or wrong? Who says happiness is the point of it anyway? How will I know I’m maladapted to other planetary systems until I find out? Back to work. Back to questions. I’m looking for a meaning to existence.

Who the hell says there should be any?

Who the hell says there shouldn’t be?

Who is the arbitrator of all this and when they step forward with a big sign saying ME, I SAID SO, why should I believe them? And what made me a fit adjudicator for these things? I don’t have a giant TRUTH gauge in my head, I make stupid decisions all the time. How will I even know what the meaning of existence is if it comes and hits me in the face?

This is my world and it is chaotic and formless and grey and miserable and nothing makes sense, nothing fits; it’s like the key part of everything has been taken away and everything suddenly limps in circles on itself now, cock-eyed and droopy. I’m looking for the key. I’m looking to see if what I left was the key. I’m afraid that I might go back to what I left just because my world has built itself so well around the key I had- whether false or true- that everything will fall apart without it and it will take too much effort to build it back up again. I don’t know where to start. I’m tired. I get tired easily. Humans do.

Or another way of saying it is: now that gravity has been taken away, everything drifts. Now that the sun has been taken away, everything wilts and all the ecological and zoological systems have been entirely disrupted. And I’m afraid that because I’ve grown up around this one sun, whether or not it was the right sun, my planetary system has so aligned and oriented itself to the effects of this sun that taking it away results in absolute chaos and an inability to adapt to anything else. Tidal waves destroy cities, small children die from strange plagues, the ecosystem collapses entirely and everyone starves. Where they’ve not been drowned or buried in lava by tectonic upheavals.

I don’t even know where to start looking. The world away from the sun I’ve known is bewildering and meaningless, like I’ve experienced a huge language shift and I’ve got no babelfish to help. I’d have made a terrible galactic explorer. How do people who grow up without that sun do it? What are their suns? They have light sources and founts of meaning too, I’m well aware. How do they survive out here? I feel like a stranger in a strange land, surrounded by entirely different customs and a life I don’t know how to build back up around a thousand different myriad suns.

How in the name of God do atheists manage this?

And who says truth is something I have to orient myself around?

Who says I need something to orient myself around anyway?

Why am I looking?

I don’t know if you can look for truth without some ulterior motive. If you can want truth simply for the sake of truth itself, to look at it and admire it and put it back on the shelf and let it sit. I think we all want truth to change us in some way. I think we all want truth for our own reasons. No-one searches for truth without a motive.

Really?

Why am I looking for truth?

Because I don’t like the old one? Am I running away from my old planetary alignment, my old orbits? Am I reacting to something, being propelled away, rather than looking for truth for its own sake? How would you look for truth for its own sake anyway? And why would you want to?

What do I want from this?

Am I asking the wrong questions?

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2 Responses to “sun and its questions”

  1. Polly Says:

    O Val! ❤
    I have no idea how to respond to most of this on a blog but I'm back in two weeks if you want to talk about what's important because the serious stuff is important!

    But once you're through the serious stuff please come back here, because I think you have the potential for the most beautiful children's book about the little planet that left its sun.


  2. […] I wrote in November last year, when I was questioning everything, “And what made me a fit adjudicator for these things? I don’t have a giant TRUTH gauge in my head, I make stupid decisions all the time. How will I even know what the meaning of existence is if it comes and hits me in the face?” […]


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