There is a pandemic of nihilism infecting our times that is opposed by the few in pursuit of excellence. It is a conflict between the undeniable values that spring from within versus a word-game virus.
I want you to ask yourself: have you been infected?
The symptoms are not knowing who you are or why you are here. You look about yourself for cues on how to behave and what to think, only to find others looking back at you with the same questions in their eyes.
This is from The New York Times:
“There is some kind of hard to define spiritual crisis across the land, which shows up in rising depression rates, rising mental health problems. A survey the Pew Research Center released last year captures the mood. Pew asked people to describe the things that bring meaning to their lives. A shocking number of respondents described lives of quiet despair.
“I no longer find much of anything meaning, fulfilling or satisfying. Whatever used to keep me going has gone.”
From an old Wall Street Journal:
“Science, technology, the free market and the liberal democratic state have enabled us to reach unprecedented achievements in knowledge, freedom, life expectancy and affluence.
But they do not answer the three questions that every reflective individual will ask at some time in his or her life: Who am I? Why am I here? How then shall I live? The result is that the 21st century has left us with a maximum of choice and a minimum of meaning.”
This nihilism is the real pandemic; it’s like a dark tsunami sweeping over civilization. There are now so many movies set against a cyberpunk dystopian background. Go ahead and do a search – you might see many of your favorites.
But why so many?
Because a deep part of the viewing audience recognizes what is already going on about them. Not surprisingly, the protagonist often prevails against these nihilistic forces by displaying the excellence mentioned in this article’s opening sentence.
Now on to our three questions and how to make excellence a constant part of your life.
Consider that you are an agent for Excellence, in an eternal struggule with Nihilism.
First you must decide where and what you are.
QUESTION #1: What is Your Prime Value?
What is your main driving value?
As you execute your “normal” day-to-day life, are you guided by a Kardashian or so-called opinion leaders or influencers? Do you wonder if your clothes compare well with others or if they are in fashion? Are you driven to get and display more?
The Excellence Habit is not a self-help program, but if it were, it would be customary at this point, or sooner, to describe how seemingly rich and successful The-Whatever-Program will make you. Often, this is conveyed by way of a YouTube video shot in a mansion with beautiful people in the background, all drinking around a sparkling pool and laughing while they wait for you to join them.
Not a value for excellence.
This is nothing like that. If I could make an introductory video, it would have you stranded in a cyberpunk world where meaning, purpose, and identity must come from within. This is for man alone, a sole survivor in a world gone mad, and it will make you rock-solid inside. The 1eye Life System is meant to carry you across the planes of Hell and serve you well in the far arenas.
In other words, we don’t seek to change what you have but what you are. This is your transformation into the best possible version of what you were meant to be, and on a continual basis.
So, our prime value is this: It’s what you are, not what you have.
QUESTION #2: Who and What are You?
Are you the hero of the adventure that is your own life? In the movie that runs in your head, do you play the hero, or simply a face lost in the crowd?
If you were asked to complete the sentence, “I am___________,” how would you fill in the blank?
In our system, our sentence is: “I am the man in the arena.” There, you have affirmation, power, and identity in a single sentence. You also accept that your everyday life is your arena, your training ground.
To get a feel for this, I have enclosed a film clip.
Consider the various gladiator-themed movies. There are always scenes where the protagonist enters the arena, with the drunken mob of non-entities screaming from their tiered stone seats.
In the movie in your head, are you, metaphorically speaking, part of the mob, or are you the gladiator? Do you have a movie in your head at all? If not, you truly are one of the living dead.
Otherwise, I want you to say to yourself: “I am the man in the arena.”
Thus, when you experience fear or anxiety, or when the shit hits the proverbial fan, you won’t scream or piss and moan like someone in the audience. Instead, you’ll accept the role of someone who can deal with it.
This happens when you say, “I am the man in the arena.” In these six words, we have a powerful affirmation, an emotional invocation, and a heroic self-image. Even if you did nothing else but fully comprehend the power of these words, you would do yourself proud.
None of the living dead can do that. They are all waiting for an influencer to guide them.
QUESTION #3 What is your Purpose and How do you find Meaning?
In what I am calling the 1eye Life System, the path toward excellence is its own reward, just as the caterpillar’s journey toward being a butterfly is its reward. This is the finding of “Meaning,” and “Purpose,” in being and doing, not in words.
Check out this picture by M.C. Escher.
Just as this is a “meaningless” picture, so is the question of the meaning of life. By continually asking yourself a meaningless question you create grooves in your brain that eventually grip you, and take you over a cliff called suicide.
If not the actual death of your body, then the zombification of your life.
If you wish to place a name on The Matrix of your life, then call it Nihilism. It makes your thought-language a negative life affirmation. We will only discuss this enough to point out the Dark Side in your life. So you know why you have, “a splinter in your mind, driving you mad”.
People are not guided by information, witness so many overweight and smoking, but by emotion, so we will use the power of emotion to drive inner change. All of this is in accord with neuroscience, the theory of narrative identity, and transformation theory, which we will briefly discuss as the need arises. And we will need to touch on them to describe the part of your life that is being hijacked.
These are Meaning, Purpose, and Identity, and they are not easy to communicate, because they are a process. Take your time with this and read it again. Because what I am saying is that these are not words. And this is very important. These things spring from within, and can only be grasped by those who do the work. Spring from within means that they are a natural part of you, just as a bird’s song is a part of it.
When the young sit down around a small coffee table and think themselves sophisticated and intelligent, they use words to try and attach semantic density to these vital categories. And after much late talk, cigarettes, and heated argument, they think themselves very clever and superior. This is similar to them having the most intense conversation about swimming, and then going out to drown.
I offer the 1eye Life System, and while this is not exactly as simple as taking the Red Pill was in The Matrix, I am going to present it in a manner that is very doable. Instead, we will work with a much simpler training tool. I believe that a single paragraph, of seven points, can serve as an affirmation, and inner guidance system, to provide transformation into what you were meant to be, and eliminate doubt, fear, and confusion.
To communicate more effectively we will demonstrate the entire system using a movie, The Last Samurai,And then as we proceed we will illustrate each step with another movie, how cool is that?