Equilibrium: a state or feeling of mental balance; composure
When I first thought about this post, I wanted to entitle it “Pursuing the truth.” However, I then realized that this would have represented an improper use of the word “truth.” The truth and all the issues related to it are probably one of the most debated issues in the history of human thinking. I wouldn’t have been able to add any new significant contributions to this huge topic. I am just saying that I’ve come to the conclusion that it is probably too pretentious to pursue the truth in our own lives, as we would not even be able to define it in a universally-accepted way. In actuality, there are so many ways to define the truth that this is not that surprising (if you don’t believe me, try to ask “what is the truth?” to a philosopher, to a priest, to a mathematician and then let me know).
Due to the slippery nature of this matter, I thought then that the use of the word equilibrium for my title might be a good idea instead. To me, achieving equilibrium seems a more feasible goal indeed, as this is a relative concept that everybody can define according to his own view of life.
In my personal quest for equilibrium, I have faced tons of questions that I was—and I still am, in many cases—not able to answer. This is due to the fact that, according to my definition of equilibrium, it is a state of mind I strive towards and that embraces almost all the aspects of life: how to relate to other people, the role played by your job, and how to deal with spirituality among other things. Inevitably, such a definition leads to a myriad of questions and doubts about ourselves and the world we live in.
Trying to unravel this intricate tangle is a complex and endless journey. Throughout this journey, I strongly believe that everybody should always think with his own brain and should maintain and cultivate a critical spirit. Nevertheless, I think it is a good idea to listen to other people’s opinions, especially if they have spent almost their entire lives dealing with your interests. This is why I have come across numerous intellectuals such as writers, journalists, and sociologists. Even though you don’t necessarily agree with them, being confronted with different points of view and experiences is a good exercise to keep your brain in top shape.
Among these intellectuals, very few of them caused me the “click effect” while I was reading their writings or listening to their speeches. This effect happens when you come across what you feel is the right answer to a question that you have been asking yourself for months or even years. Suddenly it appears right in front of you. At that very moment, you are upset because you don’t grasp why you couldn’t figure it out for yourself. On the other hand, you are very grateful to the person who has just helped you to connect the points and you are, as it were, shaking his hand warmly. I would like to say once again that you should never think that these people—if you have been so lucky to find any throughout your journey—have the truth in their pocket. Therefore, you are not supposed to agree blindly with them about anything they claim. However, their thinking may help you to shed some light on your path.
This post led to the creation of a page where I’ll be listing the people who have played this role in my personal journey. Even if one doesn’t agree with their arguments, I think that confronting such people’s viewpoints is a useful exercise, as their statements are generally thought-provoking. They have, in fact, the enviable capability to see things from an original perspective, often in contrast with mainstream thinking. After all, questioning the status quo is the foundational trait of the Western thought born in ancient Greece, of which we are all descendants.
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