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June 19, 2014

Don’t Be a Sisy! (phus)

by alive

Short Take: Living Fully

In Greek mythology, Sisyphus was a king who sought to be cleverer than not just men but the Gods, including Zeus himself. His life story is filled with trickery, plots and machinations all toward some nefarious end.


The Gods punished him by condemninSisyphusg him to roll a huge boulder up a steep hill. But always before he could reach the top and tip it over, the boulder would roll back down to the bottom. So he would have to repeat this again and again. An ironic punishment for the man whose every scheme held a very definite purpose.


Hence we derive the word “Sisyphean” meaning an endless task with no end and to no purpose or effect.


An interesting and amusing story, but lest we dismiss it with a laugh and a shrug, think:

Are we, right now, doing the same thing?



Are we straining to roll a giant rock up a hill, only to have it come crashing down again?


Sure the answer is no? Do any of these examples ring a bell?



Are you toiling away at a meaningless job or a menial task that seems to have no end?


Have you questionEmail overloaded why you’re doing what you’re doing now… and then returned the next day to do it all over again?


Are you the victim of bad management, bad planning, or a seat-of-the-pants, fight-the-fire culture that means you’re always doing a lot, but accomplishing little?



Is your relationship an endless cycle of quarrels, disappointments, accusations, fear, and insecurity?


Have you invested so much in someone, and yet, time and again, they repeat the same mistakes, hurt you the same way, and nothing has essentially changed in one, three, ten years?


Are you trapped in a self-defeating, self-perpetuating cycle of hope and depression over someone who can no longer be a part of your Life?


Are you a giver, who has continued to contribute to a cause, a person, or a situation, but without any improvement, all the while being drained of your own energy?



Have you been so busy doing that you’ve forgotten to get busy living?


Have you given your best shot to an endeavor, a quest, a goal, but despite your best efforts been unable to derive any sense of accomplishment?


Have you always had a dream you wanted to become reality, but years later, nothing has moved forward at all?


In short, are you currently engaged in something
in which you cannot find MEANING and
for which you cannot see an ENDING?


Albert Camus, in his essay The Myth of Sisyphus, suggests that people engaged in the same tasks over and over again can – in their ignorance of there being something more – still be happy.


I disagree. I believe it is only when we realize aspects of our Lives have been lulled into Sisyphean ignorance or complacency, that we can truly take steps to start living.


Because realizing that we could do more, achieve more, love more, and indeed, LIVE more, is when we break free of the chains of monotony and ignorant slavery, and actually start to DO something different.


The gods thought no punishment greater than futile, meaningless and hopeless undertaking.


Don’t punish yourself like that!


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