A parenthesis about living a meaningful life.

“What you’re doing is as useful as rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic!”

And yet, there we were, commenting on social media— extolling the virtues of living meaningful lives while binge-watching a carefully orchestrated stream of reality television!

Nonetheless, let’s say one of us decided that action was the very element that would lead to a meaningful life.
He decided he would scale a heinous-looking mountain each day to take food to a small group of poor people living at the top.
Of course, all the scrapes and scratches associated with extreme climbing would assist his elevation towards achieving “meaning!”
Self-flagellation might be frowned upon unless it’s for a good cause!

In such a manner the pursuit of meaning is mindfully engaged.
One treacherous foothold at a time.
It needs to be a tough and deliberate process!
Unfortunately, the inhabitants of the mountain had left without notifying anyone, therefore potentially rendering all hopes of deriving meaning from the mission potentially null and void?
But could there have been meaning in the climb itself?

Of course, it could’ve ended on a sour note as well, what if the people at the top were there, and rejected the food that was offered to them within a thinly veiled cocoon of validation?
Are there truly so many factors that bind the pursuit of meaning into a fragile thread?

Our dejected and disillusioned friend headed home and stopped at a toll-booth to pay that which the King was owed.
And without overthinking his position of importance within the universe he smiled at the lady who handed him his change in coins.
He was rewarded with a smile in return.
Without knowing it, his random act of kindness helped elevate someone else’s bad day into something that ended on a bearable note, infused with a civilized gesture.
But the intrepid rock climber would never know that.
Meaning isn’t always a handout, sometimes it’s merely a reflection, long after the sun has disappeared over the horizon.