La Vita Semplice
Because Living IS Easy (With Eyes Closed)
Diogenes and the Philosophy of the Simple Life and a Planksip Praxis
La Vita Semplice
As humans, it has typically been the case that, at least given the history of the last several thousand years of observed and recorded human activity (indeed, the only form of human history we would ever be able to access to, as a matter of fact), we tend to roam through life as if we are all one in a herd of befuddled elephants, each one of us carefully tip-toeing the line behind the other, making sure not to deviate from the rest of our trunked beasts, lest we be met with the fierce wrath of conflict between deeply held internal moral convictions, the flicker of awareness that keeps our footprints from completely blending together in an infinite trail of uniformity, and widely held external societal standards, of which we have been conditioned to believe (from quite early on, at that) that the refusal to uphold will surely result in our doom - constantly misunderstanding all that we see.
Well, here at planksip, we don’t just believe - we know that just “going through the motions” in such a manner is far from the only way life is to be conducted. This way of living, in fact, only really stems from none other than the archnemesis of all progress and evolution: fear.
Fear of the weird; fear of being the “other”; fear of judgment; fear of being free - ultimately, fear of one’s own soul. Indeed, we are more comfortable going through our entire lives, right up until the day we take our final sip of dihydrogen monoxide and slip into the neverending dream world that awaits us on the other side of this one, without ever stopping to acknowledge this very soul, agogly knocking at the chamber of one’s conscious like a precocious little house cat craving the second half of the canned yam and salmon, which you’ve got tucked away up in the far left corner of the kitchen cabinet, strictly to be served after six (and not a second prior). This is not because we are unaware of the existence of this soul, for all of us are always making mention of it, whether it is in reference to our “soul”-mate, our original pressing copy of Rubber Soul (thanks, Uncle Ed!), or our desire to sacrifice it to the devil (a la Robert Johnson); the fact of the matter is we are simply afraid to confront its contents.
At least, this is the case with the vast majority of us. There are, of course, occasionally those very rare few that manage to wiggle past the rest of the herd, glistening like the moonlight on a starless night; their souls can be seen, on full display, in the likes of Plotinus, Abu Yūsuf Yaʻqūb ibn ʼIsḥāq aṣ-Ṣabbāḥ al-Kindī, Siddhartha Gautama, Elmore James, Aretha Franklin, Patrice Lumumba, Moms Mabley, Guy Fieri - alas, the list goes on (and on and on and on). They took the road less traveled by, and that, as Robert Frost famously opined, “has made all the difference”. Indeed, anyone who conquers this particular fear, most likely the final frontier, will enter an age of absolute and utter cosmic liberation, in which quite literally anything is possible. And folks- this ain’t no joke, so stay woke or stay broke.
...Got all that bloke?
Now look here:
You see, this could be you. You could be paddling as the sun’s rays pat your back like an eager racquetball teammate, amidst a pristinely green scene, glimpsing back at your modest home as you float along the river towards paradise, where future good times surely await. But, of course, you aren’t doing any of that - and that’s why, rather than those good times, the only thing that you’re headed for is bluesville. This is because you, for one reason or another, simply can’t seem to get no satisfaction, no matter how hard you try. But, as the song goes, it is precisely because you try that you can’t get no satisfaction.
I mean, this was the kind of stuff the Buddha was talking about, for Christ’s sake (who himself had quite a bit to say about it, as well, but Buddha was banging on about it much earlier so we’ll focus on him for now). The whole idea behind Buddhism, that very notion that first struck young Siddhartha in his head on that fateful day in Bihar, is that nothing lasts forever, so why waste any time growing too attached to the fleeting objects that make their way into our possession throughout our temporary time of being, at least in this form, on this sphere. This isn’t to say one should just not care about anything - that’s nihilism, which is totally lame. It just means that maybe the modest home ain’t so bad - what do you really need all that junk for anyway? All you need is you!
You and your jelly roll soul - sweet as can ever be.
MM...mm...mmmmmm...sure is sweet!