How I Activized My Life – A Response

In the period when I wrote the How I Activized My Life article, a serious era of identity crises emerged in my life. Ever since, my style, beliefs, and opinions have been evolving each day. What I wrote was honest – with the knowledge and understanding of the world I had at that particular point in my life. The incessant self-doubt and confusion led me to add a few notes on this article, exactly a year later.

In this short skit I will look at some of the points I made in How I Activized My Life and present my outlook on them as of now. Read the original piece to understand the points I make here, as I will refer to my claims directly.

Campaing for the Earth and crusading against the system aren’t mutually exclusive. Trying to maintain a good relationship with your partner, friends, and family is obviously important. But humans exist in many spheres: social (collective), private, professional, informal… The world is vast and hard to wrap one’s head around it. Sure, it’s great to give up on drugs and face your own demons, but it’s also important we stop living in a clown world run by corporations that exploit the planet, people’s labour, and our mental health, for the sake of a better camera in your phone.

Leftist activists scapegoat politicians and CEOs, yet I believe their responsibility is not fully accountable. The evil talking heads are symptoms of a broken system, not the cause. The system is not a perfect hierarchy, and there can never be a single tangible enemy to blame, whose defeat will resolve in the victory of the people. Representative liberal democracy, global capitalist market, and so on, resemble the Kafkaesque model of bureaucracy. The enemy is invisible and impossible to track down, as we’re trapped in a hopeless stagnation.

As concerns Markus Aurelius’ quote, it’s very cheesy. That’s all I have to say about it in hindsight.

When it comes to activism, I’m not sure where my mind is set on right now. In a year, I had gone from central left, through right, through centre, to radical left. I try not to be confused by it – I accept this process.

Sleep deficits, hurting people, nihilistic hedonia – some of my problems had their cause in the way how our society is constructed, how the pressure can kill your motivation, how sometimes things are so hard all you want to do is get wasted and forget you’re alive. ‘Taking responsibility for yourself’ sounds superb and noble, but sometimes reality shows a big middle finger to such resolutions.

Of course How I Activised My Life was influenced by the conservative public intellectual Jordan Peterson. As I see it, the dilemma of individual vs. societal responsibility (see Peterson vs Zizek debate) shouldn’t be seen as binary, but rather as a spectrum.

Anyway, a year ago I saw myself as a great moraliser of my generation. The only thing that I’m certain of now is that life is tough and I have no clue what to do with it. My only advice at the moment would be to ‘just try,’ but I know that even that can be hard sometimes.

Published by Dawid Tysowski


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