My thoughts on life
I lived in Singapore. I have driven GrabHitch, a ride sharing platform, and Rode bike sharing platform. I read about scientists and famous intellectuals. I have access to library of Western history and current affairs.
I have listened to Tim Ferriss, Sam Harris and watched Colbert Show. Seen presidential election 2016 videos on youtube and even visited Google Asia Pacific headquarters door located in Singapore.
My father was born in Singapore and received little education. He worked as a car mechanic throughout his life and mother was a factory worker for tech companies like Apple and some others. She died young from breast cancer. They raised me and my two other brothers up. Two of us received university education while my other brother did not get to study in higher education.
Despite having 15 years of access to science and self improvement materials, I still feel that I procrastinate more than what a guy who have always been in touched with self improvement stuff.
I listened and read a lot of people’s story. I did not manage to travel the world and open my eyes. The only country I visited were Bangkok, Melbourne, Sydney, Johor Bahru, Genting Highland and Sarawak. My experience was only restricted to South East Asia few places and small parts of Melbourne. In short, I only travelled outside Singapore for roughly about 1 month my entire life of 35 years.
I read Stoicism, Buddhism, psychology and particle physics. I also read the history of the universe.
I am acutely aware of death of my body one day. I did not have much friends, let alone girlfriend. I sort of supported Arsenal, Roger Federer and is very lousy in eating healthily.
I liked to travelled in Singapore since I always failed to save money. I just explored around Singapore and be curious about science and history of local stuff since I could not afford to travel abroad.
I hope to travel to Iceland and other countries before I die.
But for now. I think I have achieved all the main desires of life. I am ready to die if it happens soon. At this age, I do not really have any operation or big illness before. No trauma or major accident other than losing wallet and almost getting into trouble on several occasions.
No drugs, no smoking and no alcohol.
I respected Oliver Sacks, Richard Feynman, Carl Sagan, Bertrand Russell, Ayn Rand, Nathaniel Branden, Epictetus and other scientists. I have seen Lawrence Krauss and Freeman Dyson up close before while they visited Singapore. I was about 1 meter away from Freeman Dyson and his wife. He was a bit uncomfortable with me taking videos of him.
I have kept a blog to write about stuffs but mostly to share important links and videos I found on the Internet. I categorise it in a certain way and have updated it once a while. There is a lot of topics on death, but there are also light hearted and interesting self improvement stuff on it too.
My core skill or rather job experience are engineer, waiter and math tuition teacher for small groups or individual.
So what are the lessons that I can share with others?
Like Tim Ferriss , I am a walking bookmark for self improvement, life hacking and scientific methods. To some extent I can be quite confident of the value that I can offer to human beings.
My conclusion of life is like that of a small but growing group of people, and it is nihilism. There are several variants of nihilist groups and i prefer to be in the camp which fundamentally states that life has no meaning whatsoever except for the short time that you have.
Yes , Einstein, Schrodinger all of them are brilliant people and have a fulfilling life but ultimately, they do not exist now. George Michael, Linkin Park frontman does not exist now. Famous astronauts who walked on the moon, quite many of them of passed on. Famous mathematicians and scientists from all races to genders, and computer pioneers who invented to Internet have slowly but surely died and not existed since their immense contribution to the humanity.
And despite humanity progress, there is still a significant chance that human race will not gone one day, not that I really care about it a lot. My main concern is that I will be gone one day.
As such, the inevitable conclusion is that I will die one day. And like what Marcus Aurelius or Seneca has said, we have to accept it. They have also been long gone and our imaginations of their words are just that, our imagination.
Whilst I am alive, I am still motivated to wake up everyday. I have been consumed with worries about my family health but I am lucky personally to not have suffered any long term depression before. I have known people whom have suffered mental illness.
In the blink of an eye, a child who is 8 years old and is afraid of ordering at Macdonald because of fear of speaking wrongly and being judged upon has grown up to be a rather fearless person of 35 years old who is raring to stand on a stage filled with 50000 spectators.
I do not have aircon in my life all the time but for the past 2 years, I have gotten back my aircon in my room. Never have to pay a single rent before as I still live with my aging dad. But my family finances are not looking good.
I always talked about my possible death one day with my best friend so I am a walking bookmark about the topic of death. If Steve Jobs think about it frequently, then it serve no harm to think about it too.
I have seen and gotten a lot of stories of young people who died by accidents or illness. Some died due to very unlikely events too.
I seen Zen Habits articles, and also believed in mindfulness, non existence of soul, no afterlife and no god to say the least.
Given my not so good situation, what juncture of life am I in?
Personally, my only wish is for my family members to live to 70 years old. However, I also do not believe in wishing or hoping. And I also do not believe in free will. People who do not believe in soul sometimes still believe in free will but not me. However, it still feel as if I am choosing when I want to order Macdonald meals. It did not occur to me after choosing a meal to think that the choice is predetermined. I just acted and thought that it was a decision I had to make.
I am every insistent to remember that I is merely just the brain. I is merely the movement of fingers on keypads.
I followed and read the words written by other humans who talked about mindfulness and the nature of reality in the form that we are merely sensations in all aspects. sensation is our basic form of existence. without it, consciousness is all just empty talk.
I also do not believe in the sharp line dividing life and non living things. We do have a lot of similarities in that we are made up of atoms and experienced the same equation in law of gravitational attraction and physical laws. We are primarily matter to say the least.
Self and ego and consciousness and soul are just narration of the mind. Yes, they exist as reality, and also as a useful concept but we do not have to jump to conclusion . There still is no god, no afterlife, no free will and self will surely end one day, given today’s technology. A primitive one when discussing about immortality.
I am not the first person to think and write down their thoughts about immortality and death of self. Sheldon, Kluber Ross, Plato and Socrates have talked about how we need to accept death of self one day. Then , some of them have not existed since for decades.
In fact, if you scoured the Internet, I guess million of hundred of thousands of people would have talked about death of themselves one day.
That is why nihilism is my cup of tea. It does not matter at all in the end. However, I still have desire, although I know that the desire for safety for my family members is irrational, because we can never be assured of it.
The important thing is to do our best, which a lot of people failed to do.
Do our best, and whatever things happen in life, we just accept it as it come and then deal with it the best we could. The key is to ensure that we do not escape with activities that is merely used as a form or running away from our problems.
Even I am prepared to die of accident tomorrow and some illness. I will surely be shocked still if I had a heart attack tomorrow, but I have think enough about death and the randomness of life to know that it is nothing surprising should I face with a serious incurable or unrecoverable accident or illness tomorrow.
That, is life. The indifferent life. It does not go out to haunt you, neither does it go out to save you. No karma. It can just spring out a million dollars to you suddenly, or it can dissolve you like a quick sand.
Or like what lawrence krauss says, our reality and fabric of matter and existence of everything in the universe is not even a given. We are just possibly an accidental existences when right situations causes everything to be still existing. It could all be just gone in the blinker of an eye.
Therefore, I rest my case with this final sentence. Nihilism is my understanding of the world, but I urged everyone of you to still be willing to wake up everyday and know how to live your life given such life recipe.
Nihilism is not an excuse to be depressed. Nihilism is to be seen as a impetus for you to talked openly about your death one day and therefore on the same breadth talked openly about how you want to live each day when you consciousness comes about, even though free will is not real, even though the next second is not assured.