Athenian statesman Solon contended that no man’s life could be regarded as happy until after he’d died. More recent data suggests that Solon’s timetable might have been optimistic.
Here’s the great benefit of embracing a determinist perspective: one finally knows that his efforts are futile, rather than merely suspecting it.
OSCAR WILDE is in the rural South, where he’s confronted by an AREA RESIDENT.
You don’t look like you’re from around here, boy.
Given the impression I’ve formed of the place, I’m inclined to regard that as a compliment.
I used to regard it as the purpose of literature to facilitate brief moments of ecstasy. This is one way in which I’ve improved, perhaps. Now I don’t burden anyone, myself included, with reflections on the use of literature.
Periodically, one is compelled to perform some existential calculus — namely, to determine if the trouble of being alive is outweighed by the pleasure that life facilitates. Fortunately, one isn’t also compelled to show his work.
To be struck by lightning or by inspiration? Only the former guarantees some kind of recognition.
My concern isn’t with having squandered free time. It’s with having squandered it correctly.