When is the right time to contemplate our existence?
[ When to contemplate our existence is a question I answered on Quora ]
Simple answer, begin as soon as you can climb out of the cot – waste no time!
From a young age our heads are filled with what others think we ought to know to succeed in the world. We are directed towards buying into conventional perspectives on life and (I would say) discouraged from questioning the wisdom behind them – often treated as taboo to do so.
Try opening up a serious conversation on astrology or the paranormal when next having a drink with friends, and you’ll no doubt know what I mean.
We buy into what we are told about such matters and come to own our response, as if we had done our own research and discovered the value or non-value in such topics for ourselves.
Most of what we learn is probably good but there are some huge gaps in our human story and existence on this planet. It is important we make this journey to our own truth – to awaken from our slumber. Most of us are looking at, or living in, a small part of the picture. Indeed it is a bubble we have created from our conventional upbringing, and which we endorse daily.
The “right time” can come out of the blue
Sometimes the right time can be sparked by events that we didn’t expect. Something happens to us or a family member.
Mine began when around 13 years old I was becoming an altar boy… To cut a long story short, I screwed up a mass when I didn’t really know what I was doing. I made a right pig’s ear of it.
The panic, public humiliation and lack of support I received, forced me to reconsider whether I was going in the right direction. I was seriously contemplating becoming a priest at the time.
I began questioning my religion; and not finding answers I decided to leave my Roman Catholic upbringing behind, and do a paper round on Sunday’s instead – later motorcycle racing became my alternative Sunday excitement.
This further led to my becoming an atheist/existentialist in my twenties, before a few years later I made another U turn, but this time towards spirituality, rather than religion – and I’ve been at that coal-face ever since.