So I’m reading “The Woman in the Dunes” by Kobo Abe this week. I picked it up at the library because I wasn’t sure if a movie I had seen long ago that I remember as “Woman of the Dunes” might have been based on it. Anyway, reading this book has been very motivating for some reason.
It’s been my general understanding that existential philosophy is supposed to make people think that there is no point – that pushing on every day is tantamount to a punishment, as in the myth of Sisyphus. I see it as otherwise. If you know that you are going to have to do a certain amount of work in order to continue to survive, what is the sense of putting it off?
This leads me to feel more motivated for some things in my life that I have a hard time with on occasion. I am especially referring to exercise. When I am on the treadmill, I have a tendency to start off feeling very negative about it. Once I have been going for a few minutes, I feel good, and I generally feel terrific right in the middle, even though that is the hardest part.
In thinking about this, I realize that when I do not look at my life as a whole, and consider all of the things that I want out of my life, I can get very negative or lazy (or both!) ‘in the moment’. It’s when I realize that to live the life I want to live – simple really, I want to be healthy and energetic, then I am more able to simply do the daily things that need to get done.
It’s the opposite of how I would ‘think’ one would react to existentialist literature. I guess the experience of life balances out our mental faculties with our physical realities, and maybe that’s why there’s a difference.
Anyway, keep pushing your own stone up your own hill – life is short, be in it! Sheila