An Old Man From Jersey Explains

50 I klAS SITTING ON TJ.lB F!20NT PO!2c,J.ITJ.lB OTJ.lB!2 DAY!2BADING TJ.lB PAPB!2 C.OMBS UP TO MB AND SAYS,

wue» TJ.lIS KID

HEY, MISTE12!

SO I TJ.lINKABOUT IT FO!2 A MINUTB, AND TJ.lBN I ASK,

FAI12ENOUGH .. NOW, t..OOK. IF:r 12UNAC120SSTHE CONTINENT,

OFFEl2eD YOU $1 TO WOUt..D YOU DO IT?

THAT1S I2IGHT. YOU WOUL..DN1TeVeN HAVe TO THINK ABOUT IT 012 W012K UP THe MOTIVATION BECAuse THe12E WOUt..D BE NO CHOICe. THe12elD JUST Be ONe PATH IN F120NT OF YOU.

IF YOU DON'T UNDE.2STAND HOW IMP02TANT I.,..IFE.S 012 WHY I THeN YOU WON'T HAve THe APP20PRIATe MOTIVATION TO TAKe I,...IFeAS se1210USI.,..YAS YOU SHOUL..D~THeN YOU WON'T PUT THe APP120P2IATe AMOUNT OF eFFOJ2T INTOL..IVING ..

SUT IF YOU TT2UL..Y, 12U(...Y T UNDe25TOOD THe VA(...ue OF L..IFe THeN YOU WOUt...DN'T HAVe TO DeBATe WITH YOU12Sel.,..F012 W012K UP THe ST12eNGTH TO SACl2lFICe ANY OF THe l2et...ATIVe TeMPTATIONS OF THe W012I.,..D TO PUI2SUe t...IFe'S HIGHeST PU12POSe~

YOU12 MOTIVATION WOU(...DBe SO STJ20NG THE-J2e'D ON("'Y ee ONe
CHOice, ONE. PATH BeFOI2E. YOU.. SO THe FIJ2ST t...eSSON YOU NeeD TO t...eA12NABOUT t..IFe IS HOW VAt...UABt...eIT IS AND WHY..

NO YOU'Re NOT ~ YOU'12e CI,...OSe12TO 14 BII,...I,....IONeA12S OI,....D~ Y ~I,....I,... THe STUFF IN YOUR BODY WAS THe12e AT THe BIG 6ANG~ G-AI,....AXleS120se AND Fel,...l,... ROUND YOU AS YOU FI,...OATeD TO A A p/.....Ace WHe12e THe ATOMS IN YOU12 BODY COUI,...D FINAI,...I,...YOMe C TOGeTHe12 IN ,A WAY THAT MAKeS YOU, YOU~

SO tIM 6ITI1E12 DESTINED 012 t,..UCKYTO COME At,..t,.. HIS WAY JUST TO DIE?l? T WHATIS TI1E POINT OF EXISTING FOI2 A SECOND IF 11M NOT GOING TO eXIST FOl2eVel2? DoeSNIT THE 812EVITY OF L.IFe MAKe L.IFe POINTt,..ESS?

THe FINITe AMOUNT OF TIME YOU GET TO t,..lve HE12E IS INFINITEt,..Y VAL.UA6L.E BECAUSE OF ITS SCA12CITY AL.ONE~ YOU ASKeD ME HOW VAt,..UABt,..et,..IFe IS~ WEt,..L. He12E'S MYANSWEI2 .. t,..IFE IS INFINITet,..Y VAt,..UA6t,..E~ THATIS A BUI2DEN OF I2ESPONSIBlt,..ITY BOI2DEI2ING ONA GUIt,.. T12IP~ T

AN'fINAY, GWeN THAT eVeRY seCOND OF YOU12SH012T, L..ITTl,...e112T26PL,ACeABL..e L.IF6 IS INFINIT6L.Y VAL.UABL.6, THAT MAKes THe FOL.L.OWING QUeSTION INFINITel,...Y IMPOT2TANT: WHAT'S THe MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU CAN DO WITH YOUT2I,...IFe?

NOBODY.

DID YOU GET AN INST12UCTION BOOK TO f....IFEWHEN YOU we12E BORN THAT EXPL..AINeD EVE12YTHING? r see YOU SHAKING YOU'Re HEAD/ NO~ wef....L../ NOBODY Ef....SEDID EITHER~ NOBODY HAS ANY IDEA WHAT'S GOING ON~ THE12E ARE NO EXPERTS/NO AUTHORITIES/ NO G120WN UP5~

WE M.IGHT GET TAf....f....e12, AND we MIGHT MeM012lze A L..OT OF FACTS/ BUT /12e Af....f.... PHlt...OSOPHICAL..f....Y, we STUCK AT 5 YeAI2S Of....DGUESSING AT L..IFE AND FAKING OUI2 MATUI2ITY f....evef.... NTIf..,we STAI2T Sef..,leVING WHATEVEI2 U I IT IS WE I2E DOING IS WHAT HUMANS A12e SUPPOSED TO BE DOING~

ASK AS MANY PEOPf....EAS MANY QUESTIONS AS YOU CAN/BUT NEVE12 TAKE ANYTHINGF012 GI2ANTED SECAuse THE ONf.."YPERSON 12ESPONSIBf....E FOI2 GeTTING THe MEANING OF f.....IFE 121,GHT FOI2YOU IS YOU~

SO WHAT I.Fwe DONITKNOW WHYwelge Hel2e? THe POINT IS welge STII.A ...Hege~ we STII..... GOTTA DO SOMeTHING~ SINce we DONIT HAve t ANYTHINGMOl2e IMPOI2TANTTO DO THAN FIGUl2e OUT WHAT well2e supposeD TO Be DOING THeN we MAY AS wet..t.. DO THAT~

THe12e Age THINGS we CAN KNOW ABOUT oUl2set..ves AND THe UNIVegSe weve FOUND oUl2set..ves STgANDeD IN~THe MOge OF THose THINGS we KNOW THe BeTTeg we CAN t..lve~ we MIGHT NOT Be ABt..e TO P20ve we t..lveD I2IGHT ACCOI2DINGTO THe Ut..TIMATe MAXIM, BUT we CAN DO SOMeTHING GOOD WITH WHATweive GOT, AND THAT WHICHA MAN CAN DO, He SHOUt...D DO~

YOU CAN'T UNDEI2STAND HOW A CAI2WOI2KS UNTIt.. YOU UNDEI2STAND THE PAI2TS THAT MAKE UP A CA12. SAMe THING WITH t..IFE. t:lND WHAT'S t..IFE THEN? I,..IFEIS BEING A WAt..KING, TAt..KING, BI2EATHING, THINKING C12EATU12EST12ANDED IN THIS G12EAT, BIG, BEAUTIFUt..., t..ONEL..Y, INDIFFEJ2ENT UNIVEI2SE.

IF YOU WANT TO UNDE12STAND t..IFE THEN YOU GOTTA UNDEI2STAND THe UNIVel2SE THAT GAVE BII2TH TO YOU AND THAT YOU t...IVEIN. I,..E.AJ2N t..t.. THE SCIENCE YOU CAN, A BECAUSE THAT't...t.. TeACH YOU THE FACTS THAT EVEI2YTHING et..SE IS BUIt... ON. T

Hey G12ASS! WHY Al2e YOU At..IVe?

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NO- IT JUST SAT THe12e AND Gl2eW-

THATtS GOOD THAT YOU ACKNOWl,..eDGE YOUtRe A P20DUCT OF YOUR eNVIRONMeNT ~ NOW YOU NEeD TO ACKNOWt...eDGe THAT YOulve YeT TO 6t...OSSOM INTO A SIGNIFICANTl,..Y INDEPeNDENT IDeNTITY ..

THe GRASS IS HEi2E TO BE G12:ASS, AND YOUI12:EHe12:E. O BE. T YOU~ IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT HOW TO Be YOU THeN I SUGGeST YOU TAt...KTO THE peOPt...E WHO STUDY "YOUS .."

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