Think hard

Despite an interview for a scholarship/job, plus the applications I’ve made to study some form of humanities/social science at university, and the impending need to be thinking about Universities/Jobs/Scholarships, I find this stumble much less interesting than this one. Despite the sheer relevancy of the former with regard to The Future, the abstract, elegant, beautiful latter seems more attractive.

Excuse me as I attempt some self-psychoanalysis

Perhaps I find myself overly frustrated by the sheer practicality of planning for the future. Because sod weighing the choices and making informed decisions, sod writing essays and applications to pander to organisational needs, and sod almost-lying to myself and the organisations about what I want to do or intend for the future. Sod it all, because when I still haven’t thoroughly thought it all through, the best I can do is give half-formed answers to questions about my future, my principles, my beliefs, and my aspirations. And right now all I want to do is chase down the next interesting idea and understand it. (It’s considerably harder being a polymath in the 20th century than, say, during the Renaissance. Unfortunate.)

And this lack of self-actualisation gives rise to an anxiety about whether I’m doing the right things or not. Whether the choices I’ve made are the right ones, the ones good for me, the ones meant for me. Whether it’s a mistake to apply to do International Relations instead of Mathematics, to do Philosophy instead of Physics. It comes and goes, like a periodic function, and it cuts to the quick when the right triggers appear: when Stumbleupon throws up a flash app about trigonometry and wikipedia makes me realise, deep in my gut, the potential for beauty and elegance in mathematics that currently lies beyond my grasp. And I know that, somewhere deep within me, I desperately want to understand mathematics as the language the cosmos is written in, much more than I want to know how to ace that next interview or write that perfect application.

(And yes, that math is a ton more elegant than this post is. Forgive me, I’m venting. I’ve been doing that rather a lot.)

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