Stories that Inspire, Uncategorized, Wisdom

Death, But Not By Nuclear War

For the most part, I try not to bother with news. It is either negative, or repetitive, or completely unnecessary. So when I see random news stories that are actually positive, I find myself smiling and finding something positive, generally is a rare occasion. Earlier when browsing through my flipboard, I came across a story reported by GQ, and perhaps many others, about how our world might come to an end – and it might not related to trump after all.

If a headline or a story like that doesn’t ignite one’s curiosities, one must be going through an existential crisis or suffering from a lack of empathy or perhaps a looming depression. A super-volcano in the Yellowstone National Park, which scientists expected to erupt not very soon, is now expected to erupt in a few decades. The cherry on top of this cream was that… this was reported as a good news.

I agree.

There are two kinds of death one can suffer – the death one brings upon oneself, or the death that is out of one’s control. In most situations, the latter is more preferable than the former. We, a rational species, must be rational enough to ensure our own survival.

But that seems to not be the case. Why did we create nuclear weapons again? Oh, that’s what we do. We are inventors, discoverers and creators. That’s what humanity is and that’s what humanity does. Every time I hear about nuclear war, amplified now, by the idiocy of selfish and egotistical figures, I cringe. “It isn’t possible”, I think to myself. No one would be stupid enough to do that to oneself.

And then, I remember the time – and everybody has experience with this – the time when I met someone who’s life motto was basically this: “If I can’t have it, no one can have it”. It seems to be true for at least leaders of two nations. There are certainly more than that.

Generally speaking, I don’t want humanity to end. I love who we are, and though there are parts of us that we need to leave in the past, we are all that we have. We are all the chance that we have to understand ourselves, our world and the reason for our existence. I would, any given day, prefer my extinction at the hands of a force I cannot control than at the hands of a human being who humans elected to be powerful.

I suppose many others would agree with this. Perhaps that day won’t come when we do something so stupid to make ourselves history, but perhaps it will. When we need to pit one apocalyptic scenario against another… it’s a stark reminder of our own mortality. And for that wisdom is quite valuable. To think of not existing is actually a great way to motivate ourselves for the present – to make the most of what we have by doing what needs to be done.

It also reminds us of how little and illusory our sphere of control is. A volcano can wipe us out. An asteroid can wipe us out. A nuclear war can wipe us out. If we don’t do anything about global warming, then temperature can wipe us out.

What’s great about humanity, is perhaps that our embedded instinct for survival keeps us going – and we will perhaps find cures for all of these *diseases*. But I would prefer humanity to be gone at the hands of something we cannot control, something bigger than us, something smarter or more powerful than us, than at the hands of something and someone who we can influence and control.

Thanks for reading. What would you like to share?