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The Possible Purpose of Life: Free Time

Updated: 6 days ago

Not all may agree on this, but for many, whether they're aware of it or not, our ambition in life sums up to our free time; and in fact, much of what we do -- fulfill basic needs, pay the bills, work, and learn -- is to eventually have this precious resource, called "free time".

Some of us who seek higher meaning may ask themselves, "Why am I here?", and if we're to think about it more honestly, it's so we could watch more TV, spend more time with our families, rest, and play -- literally anything that translates to what we call "free time".

What is free time? It is the one period of our lives where we truly have the ability to do things according to our own genuine will. When it comes to work, we mainly do it for the money, and if given the choice, we would either volunteer or give up on work entirely, wouldn't we?

How many of us can come out clean and say that we work because we love working? That they learn in school or university because they love learning and are not just doing so for the grades or for the next degree?

Since civilization is built around money, it is inevitable that we need to strive to get as much of it as we can if it means we'll be able to survive, keep a roof over our heads, enjoy entertainment, and pass our genes to a generation whose childhood we'll be able to afford.

Beyond boredom, who doesn't like free time? It is the time when we have the sincerest say in it; not the teacher's, the boss's, or your lecturer's. Should you do something that you have enough of, when you have free time, you can just decide to do something else, and no one would complain, because when you have free time, you are the supreme authority.

This is why people love their vacations, their days off, their personal rooms, and their money -- it's because when we have free time, we are the most superior deciders of our actions.

When we have our own independent choice of what to do with our time, we are free to pursue our truest desires and interests in life, whatever they may be. Should we be aware enough of ourselves and of what actually interests us in this existence, that's when we'll finally be able to seize the most optimal potential of our time on Earth. Those who suffer from boredom in their free time are people who have yet to realize what makes them feel satisfied beyond the fulfillment of basic needs. Most likely, at least.

Boredom through leisure is like having an army of your own but having no idea what to do with it. That army can be trained, sent on missions, serve and protect, and even occupy and conquer. However, as long as you have no command whatsoever to give it, you're basically wasting resources on it, which is also your very own time.

Free time is the biggest individual potential you can have, and succumbing to boredom, instead of looking for something to entertain you, is by itself a very big waste. Why? Because unlike you, not all people have enough free time on their hands. Some of them work two jobs to make ends meet. Others are imprisoned or have tons of homework. Some even stay longer than they are required to at work just to earn more money than usual.

This is why human existence might just as well be summed up by the quality of our free time, where we can truly do whatever we want, after we've served the outside world.

Every obligatory action, is eventually served for not only survival, but also so we'll get to do whatever we want whenever that time comes in our working days, on our weekends, and on holidays. These are the times where we can truly be happy, and pursue interests we actually want, not because we have to, but because we want to.

I once needed to work when I wanted to have my own home in my country's metropolis, where I lived most of my life. It was simply because the living expenses back there were (and are) extremely high. This is why, back when I lived with my mother, I was required to help pay the rent, even though she was working as well, and it isn't that we were poor or anything.

It was only when we moved to the mountains, and lived in separate apartments, that I realized I didn't need to work anymore, simply because of how low the rent is in the farther reaches of this country. This very site is pretty much a product of the fact that I don't need to work to survive, and thus, most of my day is basically free time. I could find a job, but there is just no incentive for me to do so, because I have more than enough to survive, so why bother?

My situation is rare, as I'm not a part of the "rat race", but this situation is the one that made me realize that many of us basically live to have some free time, at some point in our lives. For some, it's on weekends; for others, it's when they retire.

For me, it's every day. I did it that way, so I could work on my greatest pursuit of all, which is this very site. All the insights I've gained wouldn't have been entirely possible if it weren't for the fact that I don't have to work in a job I don't like just to pay my bills. Hence, for me, my welfare money is there, so I can do two things. To pay for the basics, have enough time and focus, and contemplate.

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Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosocom's Founder & Writer

I am a philosopher from Israel, author of several books in 2 languages, and Quora's Top Writer of the year 2018. I'm also a semi-hermit who has decided to dedicate his life to writing and sharing my articles across the globe. Several podcasts on me, as well as a radio interview, have been made since my career as a writer. More information about me can be found here.

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