Functional Nihilism and Creative Hedonism

If you’ve read an earlier article of mine, The Nature of Reality and The Meaning of Life, you would know my core philosophy lies in nihilism, but I suppose it’s a bit unfair to drop a black pill like that without at least explaining how to navigate this new realm with out a floor beneath your feet and no roof over your head.

Functional Nihilism

I’ve chosen this name because the typical nihilist, I suppose, may present some lethargic or pessimistic qualities, giving the philosophical school a bad rep, hence, being called the dysfunctional ones.

The Nihilist half of my concept would be the full recognition that all efforts from myself, humanity, and nature itself are inherently meaningless and purposeless in the macro perspective, but the Functional aspect is simply not applying anymore unnecessary resistance to the fact that Nature has willed my existence to be.

Although it is our Reason that separates us from the more instinctual animals, interestingly, we don’t always use this Reason to our benefit, and we very often are the victims of our own consciousness. We assume animals operate on a lower state of Being, but that would at least save them from ever having to contemplate suicide, for example.

This is why I am tinkering with a model of Functional Nihilism, because I don’t want my philosophy to conflict with nature.

Creative Hedonism

With humanity not being tethered to an all-encompassing purpose, many take the stroke of luck that is existence as an all-out pass for a life of hedonism. I’m personally not opposed to this, argumentatively. As a nihilist, the monk and the prostitute are the same to me. The only difference between me and them is that I’m not particularly good at gambling. The monk gambles a life of material and physical pleasure for a non-guaranteed spiritual gain, and the promiscuous or other over-indulgent person gambles their own health for frequent physical pleasure.

However, I still am pursuing pleasure, but it is through creativity. Consider the quote, “I think, therefore I am.” Well, as a Creative Hedonist, my motto is “I was created, therefore I create.” I stretch this a bit, because materially this can be used as a reasoning for me to continue to populate the species. No, I mean I was created and create on metaphysical terms.

I write. I design. I create art. That’s what I’m talking about.

A life full of the creative pursuit is still Hedonism because the completion of my works provides no guarantee that I’ll ever step off of the hedonic treadmill, especially since my interests are so varied. Even if I struck gold on my first novel like Harper Lee, I would most likely pool my earnings to adapt it into a graphic novel, or start developing video-games.

Another reason why I consider my perspective on creativity to be Hedonism is because, well, the nihilism. I’m not banking on my artistic efforts to leave a great legacy. Yes, we remember Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo now, but we’re a relatively young species; I think even Jesus and Buddha will be forgotten one day, especially if we manage to outrun the sun in this universe.

The best thing I could hope for is that I do reach a point of satisfaction that I truly can create no more, similar to Quentin Tarantino’s recent comments that he’ll step away from the director’s seat after his 9th or 10th movie (He’s on #9 already, by the way).

But then again, you never know when he’ll come out of retirement (ahem, Hayao Miyaziki).

Conclusion

All in all, I think Creative Hedonism is the most productive of the other typical pleasure-inducing pursuits, especially since most of them involve direct consumption and are dependent on external sources.

It gives me a purpose, to strive for personal satisfaction, as opposed to fulfilling some unreasonable and egotistical grand role for humanity or the spiritual realm; a concept thankfully crushed by my functional nihilism.

What are your thoughts on hedonism and nihilism? Let me know in the comments.

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Creativity Is Leisure: Why You Should Consume Only What You Intend To Create

Photo Credit: Kaspar Eligitis

The average individual’s definition of “relaxing” after a long day at work is coming home and watching TV. I see a problem with this, because the first thing you look forward to after spending the whole day producing for someone else, is to now consume from someone else.

Retreating to entertainment media for leisure is actually increasing the total length of time you are passive throughout the day.

What parts of the day are you experiencing something solely derived from you?

If you truly wanted to relax, you could work out, stretch, meditate, or just go to sleep.

But if you can still keep your eyes open, then you can still work.


I know someone who claimed they wanted to get back into their old artistic passion, and decided to wake up at 5 AM in an effort to create space for this new habit.

They never once woke up to do this. The weekend passed and it was back to the same old eat-dinner-and-TV routine right after work.

Why did this person fail? Because they saw the time spent “unwinding” with entertainment media as a necessity, and didn’t register at all that this was the exact old habit that had to be sacrificed to create space for the new habit they desired.

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I don’t think entertainment media is all bad. I am a fiction writer and would love to contribute to the industry one day. But lately I haven’t felt the juice for that type of creative work, and it’s most likely because I’m not immersing myself in that type of environment right now.

This is why I said Consume Only What You Intend To Create; If you want to make movies, by all means, watch movies! But if you’re not going to work on your script, or at least write a movie review about it afterwards, then seriously, you’re just masturbating.

“Energy Flows Where Attention Goes” – Tony Robbins

We need to stop putting our energy towards things that are going to result in dead-ends.

You have to be even more mindful about what you consume especially if you are an artist or entrepreneur, because of your easily stimulated imagination. Hardly anything is a true dead-end because you can extract some artistic value or a business idea from almost anything. But this sort of behavior can spread yourself thin.

And you know the exact type of people I’m talking about; the ones that always have a brilliant new idea and plans, but never actually produce anything in the long run.

It’s because they have not allowed that space for themselves to create, and are most likely filling up their time with passive, unfruitful garbage.

I could even extend this idea to MGTOW. If a man has already identified that he will not extend any long-term commitments to any woman, then there is truly nothing of lasting value that can be created through your relationships with women. Short-term dating thus becomes another form of cheap entertainment.

So, finally, Creativity Is Leisure.

After I’m done working, heck, even between breaks, I’m at my blog site and drafting a new article to publish. And now, editing videos! (Here’s my first one). It’s only when my laptop finally dies and is recharging that I can turn on YouTube or read some articles on mobile to enjoy other creatives that have common interests.

I think I just began to realize that with all the media I consumed over the years I have very little to actually show for it. But by becoming a content creator myself, I can develop my own personal media library, and have something to contribute alongside the other creatives I’m inspired by.

I’m always thinking about what skill or content I can offer to a community.

There’s no reason why we have to always sit on the sidelines and be spectators; Always the worker and never the boss. We should all have an opportunity to express ourselves and have our own voice.

Creativity is Leisure simply because working for yourself, and expressing yourself, should always be the most fun. Even in your passive state, your antennas should always be up looking for the next point of inspiration.

If you want to relax, go to sleep, so you can have more energy to do the important work the next day.

But if your eyes are still open, see yourself through greatness, and not through the reflection of a screen.

And I’ll SEE YOU on the Far Side, my friend — Monk Moon Base


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