(An Old Rant: Choice & Accountability)
You are what you decide to be. I believe in choice, free will, independence, strength… what I do not believe in is some predetermined path, whether by god(s) or circumstance, that an individual inevitably walks upon simply because it’s fated. The only fate or destiny that exists is the one we create for ourselves. We all have the power of choice, everything is choice, and in many ways it is the ones we make (or don’t make), the manner in which we deal with challenges, adversity, and lack thereof that define us as individuals. With the average person, there is an obscene lack of any accountability or drive to excel that, to be perfectly honest, astonishes me. There’s always someone or something else to blame when an individual makes a choice and must deal with its undesirable repercussions, there is always someone else who can do the footwork, always someone else that can get their hands dirty because most people are unwilling to do it themselves.
Confronted with this, I’ve often asked myself: what happened to putting effort into what needs doing? You see, in reality I don’t believe we’re obligated to do much of anything, it all comes down to choice, and it is for that belief that I must ask: if you’re going to do something at all, why not do it well, why not make an effort towards excellence? If you don’t want to live in filth, take out the trash, wash the floors, vacuum, wash your clothes, etc. If you want more money, work more hours, do your job more thoroughly, more efficiently, seek promotions, or look for a better paying workplace.
What is the point of being alive if we don’t use our time to learn and improve upon ourselves through what we do, and change what we do to suit what we desire when the need arises? Why can’t people, especially the elitists among us, put in the sweat, the effort, and the work to accomplish something with their time instead of complaining about how hard everything is or else avoiding it entirely? I don’t have all the answers… but what I do know is this: these people are weak. And many of us are, or have been, just like this.
Given that, this is the point where most people saying what I’m saying adopt a more forgiving tone. I accept there’s weak people, that I have been one of them, in some ways still am, and may find myself to be that way in the future. But I also believe that for some to be on the top, it’s inevitable that others will be stepped on in their rise and will be stood on until the strong fall. Whether I’m weak or not doesn’t change that, and pretending that’s not a) the way it is and b) fucking awesome won’t change my personal situation. So I don’t forgive people for being weak, and I don’t spare myself from that. I think this is where a lot of older Sith teachings appealed to people, frequently resorting to the metaphor of Sith as wolves, as those that worked to be above the weak. I came across lectures like that in my early teens, during a time when I despised society and nearly everyone in it. When I felt I was surrounded by people that, within those metaphors, were sheep, and when I wanted nothing more but to be a wolf among them. But I’m getting off track here…
With regards to the metaphor and mentality of “sheeps and wolves”, I think that it was an invaluable inspiration at the time, that it can inspire others, and I think it places an admirable emphasis on the stance that, as Sith, we should continuously work to strengthen ourselves and we should put effort into everything we do. But such an opinion should only need to be voiced so many times; those that get stuck in a “me against the world” mentality indefinately, failing to pass through it as a stage of devedopment, are weak. Even revisiting it isn’t necessarily contemptible, but it can only take you so far.
If you are going to do something, do it well, pour your soul into it. Hell, if need be ask yourself this from time to time: If I were to die at this very moment, would I be satisfied with how I am spending my time, or would I see it as a waste? By no means does this mean you shouldn’t have fun, or relax, but live life to the fullest extent you are able to, experience as much as you can, don’t be afraid to feel, and live as if every moment is your last. And hold youself accountable (to yourself above all others) for what you do, whatever the benefits and costs of your choices. Forge your own path, and acknowledge that you are the one doing so.
(This is an old post from my journal at Order of the Sith. I started cleaning it up and making adjustments to it back around the time I started this wordpress blog and never got around to “finishing” that. I played with it a little more the other day though, and despite its slightly “unpolished” quality I‘m tired of revisiting it, so I figure what the hell, why not post it. I can always revisit it again if I want. Really, the whole thing could be rewritten to better reflect my current outlooks, but we‘ll see.)