Friday, December 16, 2022

Life Is a Sisyphean Endeavour

By Sumit Paul, New Age Islam 16 December 2022 A few days ago while reading the French existentialist Albert Camus, I chanced upon a startling sentence: ' When there's no soul, how can there be a soul-mate? ‘Life’s a Sisyphean endeavour and no one else carries our burdens. One has to bear ones cross all alone. Age teaches you that the so-called soul-connection is a dysfunctional or dystopian idea. We find several soul mates who walk along the path with us but despite the concept of 'till death do us part’, each of the duo walks a singular path. What seems like total compatibility, is apparently one making compromises to make the other happy by choice or by compulsion. Every being has a singular journey. Individually, those who amount to nothing, need the collective to feel some strength and need the wrap of hollow concern and care to get a sense of belonging. A sojourn or an odyssey is for the individual to choose according to his mental make-up. In the inane act of living, man afraid of his mortality, seeks company, inane conversations, and groupings. Man fears lest he should face the unavoidable truth that he came into this world alone. This is his singular journey; an eternally solo trip undertaken not always on smooth highways and bituminous roads. It is he who makes or mar it. Often we need silence and solitude to sort out our inner moorings and steer the ship of life along its true journey: A journey of courage and conviction, far from the machinations of the maddening crowd to listen to that inner voice that you have quelled in your need for inane fun. Everyone needs solitude to comprehend that he or she is the captain of the ship and the mistress of one's own destiny. Nobody but the person is responsible for the onward journey. You cannot allow anyone to make or mar your life. There is no need for fear or favour. It calls for solitary onward rowing. That's why it has been found that extremely individualistic people (including yours truly) choose to stay alone if not aloof. The great Sahir Ludhianvi and the legendary singer Sir Cliff Richards chose to stay single and when someone asked Sir Cliff, why he never tied the knot, Sir Cliff wittily replied, “I’ve always loved solo numbers, I could never like duets." ---- A regular columnist for New Age Islam, Sumit Paul is a researcher in comparative religions, with special reference to Islam. He has contributed articles to the world's premier publications in several languages including Persian. URL: New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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