The corniest metaphor ever!

Here it is: as far as meaning goes, I’m like a spreadsheet. Its contents don’t matter to a spreadsheet – only its users care.

This is hugely important to a spreadsheet’s survival – to it’s being started up in the first place. How it gives back what’s put into it determines everything: how many times it’s started, how often it’s used, how many other users find it and want to use it too.

It’s my use by others that is my life. All the attention and energy I put into managing my own content is simply dead time – I don’t learn what somebody else wants by looking at myself.

Jesus was famous for this: love your neighbor.

Science is pushing this: what you do for others – outright self-sacrifice – is where happiness comes from.

My life isn’t determined by anything I can understand from within. Self-reflection, therapy, soul-searching: it’s all dead time. I’m just an unused spreadsheet. The single dumb rule: ‘if you’re asked for your coat, give your shirt also’ – that’s life itself.

It seems bizarre and un-natural. If I don’t take care of myself first, how can I care for anyone else?

And so I don’t really care for anybody – and I’m disappointed and uncomfortable to my last gasp.

If I’m cut up and broken and lying in the road next to an unconscious stranger, with headlights bearing down on us, the best thing – for me – will be to push the stranger out of the way first.

(of course, try living that)

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