Retreating into myself

I toy with the Aurelian notion of retreating into myself, and find it works. I’m by no means a master, and resolve is something that takes years to forge in the fires of an unbending aim with an unbreakable hammer, but I’ve found it changing the little things. And if I can bottle petty fireflies of distracting thought, until their false glow diminishes and then cleanse the jar, then who is to say that bigger emotion cannot be caught too? Anger throbs, irritability pulsates, guilt swirls, and sadness echoes, but it’s ephemeral, and impulse makes a man a beast, but transcending it by withdrawal into oneself despite the situation, scenario, place or time begets a joy or satisfaction which is more than mere catharsis or a transient solution. Going a bit off tangent here, I’ll say that existentialism stripped off its clothing regardless of the positive or negative spectrum that a person who believes in it adheres to, gives us two nude reflections: responsibility and meaning. And losing sight of the first is more catastrophic than the latter. I’m not responsible for the lives of others or the problems of this world, because I don’t adhere to a collective responsibility at an individual level like some nihilism suggests. But yes, I’m responsible for me, my faults, the hurt I’ve caused, the happiness I’ve given, the love I’ve shared, and the person I am: both good and bad. And for me the question of God is irrelevant. But that’s not saying that my life has no purpose. My meaning changes each day or each hour, and I can either lose it or accomplish it. And when I’m losing it, because of emotion or resignation or circumstance, I retreat into myself, and acknowledge my responsibility, and will my drive. And yes, fate exists, because sometimes unwarranted and unnecessary circumstances place obstacles, but I’ve realized that the key is the present, and looking at those obstacles as challenges I must savor and not burdens I carry, and here again retreating, irrespective of if I’m in a bar, or in my bedroom, or smoking on the balcony, or in a park, or somewhere idyllic helps. And trust me, it isn’t easy, because I often fail. But if I just lay there and didn’t ultimately gain the mastery I need, then I’ve lost both responsibility and meaning.

© Nitin Lalit Murali (2018)

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10 responses

    • I’m not too much into metaphysics, because it doesn’t really work for me, but if it works for you, then that’s your prerogative my friend. Thank you for reading and commenting.

  1. We must, allow ourselves, to experience the negative emotions that we feel inside to the fullest extent, like a volcanic eruption, otherwise, we will, NEVER be able to, work through them, and figure out where they all came from…

    • I’m not for suppressing emotion, but I’m not for a volcanic eruption that disrupts reason completely. I think confronting them in a good way is the best solution. That’s my perspective at least. And thank you for yours.

  2. I’ve spent a lot of time (years) inside, and a lot of this resonnates with me. I’m so grateful for God our father that helps me sort out when the inside feelings get tangled up. Emotions lie sometimes. Do you find that to be so?
    I think it’s great that you can express all this so well.

    • You’ve got me thinking about emotion lying. Like really thinking. I think that in the end it comes down to love, and yes it is an emotion or religious affection if you’re a Christian. That particular emotion for either God or another person (and I’m talking about true love, not lust) doesn’t lie. If you have that then perhaps it’s time to do away with introspection. Thank you for your generous comment.

      • I suppose that love doesn’t lie because it goes beyond emotion to a choice. You are very intuitive and smart–you’re right, it’s time to come out of my cave and myself and engage. I am at that point right now of growing and getting out again.
        What was cool about writing was that even when I was silent, I was expressing something.
        Take care–I appreciate your reply

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