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The Relationship of Survival and Merit

The purpose of survival is to grant you more time to live. The more time you have to live, the greater is the potential for the actualization of your individual merits, regardless of whether you take an interest in the future or not.

Every choice we make creates two paths: one of benefit and one of loss. The result of survival itself is that it brings greater benefit and minimal loss the more you live.

Now you may ask why self-actualization is necessary, and I can answer that self-actualization is there to ensure your survival after your death, in the form of whatever you did and produced throughout your life. This post-death survival refers to people remembering you and leaving a mark on the world. Apart from that, self-actualization is a need.

The Relationship Between Survival and Self-Actualization

The relationship between survival and self-actualization is one of both necessity and mutual fulfillment. Self-actualization can give a sense of purpose and worth to one's life, which in turn may increase their level of will to continue to live and endure. The more one survives, the higher is their potential to actualize; the more one actualizes, the more satisfied they may become, which in turn may increase their chances of survival extensively.

I myself take no interest in the far future. This is not out of despair, but because the future will be in the present. The future will simply be, and will be entirely in the present. Given that one cannot predict the future, and that the future is largely beyond our personal control and influence, it is a waste of mental resources to care for something that always comes, but will never be in the present, for every future moment becomes the present, and that moment becomes the past, all over and over again to a possible infinity.

Time cannot be controlled, only experienced by a manipulating subjectivity. Regarding the inevitability of the future and its uncertainty, why, indeed, care much about the future, when the potential of the present is at hand?

The basic purpose of survival is to extend one's life, and more time to live means more time to produce. Imagine how much wasted potential there would be if survival wasn't necessary to actualize more potential. In the absence of the potential of our merits and its possible actualizations, I dare say that suicide would be inevitable for some.

But the thing is that everyone has merits, and thus, everyone has potential, regardless of everything that distinguishes one from another. Perhaps we all have potential, mainly because we are distinct from others. What justifies our living is our talents and the various uses we can give to them. Every second that flows by is either a waste, a break from actualization in the name of recharging one's energies, or a time for actualization.

These are the three categories of the time of the living. The more time you dedicate to the latter two categories, not only will you be more motivated to be amongst the living, but you will be better able to produce whatever your merits have in potential, for there is no self-actualization in an unnatural death - only many units of time that belong to the first category.

I know that everything I will ever produce—all my own-written books and articles—are probably not going to survive. A possible extinction of human civilization by some potential reasons might arrive to doom the next generations in the far, far future.

Regardless, I am at peace with such inevitability, and thus I don’t care much about the futility of the human race in which I am merely a tiny part. Things and beings don't have to live or exist forever in order for them to be beneficial, helpful, or contributive to others after the death of their creator.

There isn’t a good enough reason to succumb to the inevitable and die, when you can succumb to the inevitable and still live and produce. The benefit of the latter option is far greater than that of the former.

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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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