by Dimitrios Michmizos
Life is all about choices. And we are defined more by the things we refuse rather than those we accept.
We all like to think that the decisions we come to are rational and meticulously calculated but the fact is that our conscious mind only makes up excuses after the decision has already been made by our subconsciousness.
And that part of us is made up by everything we have ever experienced, read, heard, imagined or desired. Our true self, the one making all the decisions, lies under the vast and deep sea of our Past, far removed from our rational reach and current control.
And yet we keep making decisions, oblivious to the limited contribution of our rational thought processes. More often than not, this is breeding ground for unhappiness.
Because life’s worse burden is regrets.
No mater what decision we make, there is always regret. Not only because there is bound to be a clash between what we want, what we think we want and what we think we should want.
But also because, even if we are lucky enough for time to prove us having made the right decision, there will still be the regret of the path not taken and the choices left unexplored.
This is true for everybody unless you have developed an unhindered moral compass.
The general morality is the average vector defining where most people think the boundaries between good and bad lie, at any given time in history (zeitgeist) and place (ortgeist). Often enough the general morality not only ebbs and flows but also the molarity standards projected by political regimes may be in dire contrast with the actual general morality in place. As a result, general morality can be at times a useful guide whereas at others a traitorous adviser.
Personal Morality, on the other hand, is one of the greatest assets a man can have.
Personal morality illuminates the right path, clears all obstacles and evaporates all doubts whenever one comes at a crossroads. The path not taken is revealed to be not of equal value and appeal. And, thus, you can approach that bliss of a regret-free(er) life.
Because the paths not taken were not for you.
Dimitrios Michmizos is a neuroscientist, philosopher and writer.