This is part 2 of the absurdist but brilliant philosophy of Rosencrantz and Guildernstern… here’s part 1.
All the medical progress that’s been made over the years is good, right? And all the scientific and engineering progress too, right? And the fact that your parents had you is also good, right? Well, of course it’s good, but you have no say on the matter. You were thrown into this life. And if you hadn’t been, well you wouldn’t know about it.
It’s not like you were a non-alive person floating around invisibly before you were born and were thinking, ‘Cmon. Cmon. Pick me. Make me alive!’
Think of all the scientific progress that’s been made to this point, to extend life quality well beyond the average lifespan of centuries ago. And think of the progress being made now, like, even say, the talk that we’ll be on Mars in not too long.
Is Elon Musk doing that for the future generations? Maybe. But the future generations don’t know they are going to exist, so who do we make the progress for? Vanity? For our fear of being forgotten in death? For legacy?
You may be grateful that your parents had you, but their parents also had to have them, and so forth. So think of all the coitus that was about to happen and didn’t – there are so many kids that were close to being born but never were. Do we feel bad for them? Of course not. So you can’t actually be grateful for being alive, because that implies there’s an opposite attitude towards it, that of taking it for granted. But you had no say in the matter, so all you can do is live, and try find joy and meaning to your own life.
It’s absurd to think about it, which is why I don’t think of it either.