Does anyone have a perfect life? What is perfection? What is life…?
Well if you ask me, then yes, I would say that there are people who have perfect lives. And not because they live in a continuous happiness, or because they were born rich and healthy and are popular.
Most of us think of happiness in terms of needs: the need for food, for shelter, for a partner to share the biological needs with, for support, social life, fame – on a smaller or on a larger scale, and some self esteem. Doesn’t that sound like a perfect life… to have all those? Is there anything one could ask more for? Sure, we would add: love, kindness, friendships, inner peace… And still, is that all we need to be happy? No, this is perfection…
What is life? Stupid question, ones might say. Well life is a fact. That’s it, you wake up one morning and your brain is developed enough to acknowledge that you are alive. And when that moment comes, you start worrying, you’re not a baby or a child anymore, to let others take care of your life and guide you; and that’s how real life starts, you feel responsible for what’s happening to your body, for how others feel about you, for your grades in school, for the deadlines at your job and for what your parents and friends might say if you stop following the unwritten guidelines of this journey. Day by day, you feel life.
Now let’s see. A perfect life is a life without worries. But there isn’t such a thing, is it? To have a perfect life would mean that you were not actually acknowledging the fact that you are living, you’d act like a plant: here comes the sun, let’s produce some chlorophyll so we can “eat”, wait for the rain, and get numb when the sun goes down.
But I was so convinced that there is a perfect life! So how should it be then? I’m thinking of “being satisfied with what you have would make you happy and live a perfect life”, but that’s just silly, as so many people are homeless and starve to death around the world. On the other hand, thinking that “you should always aim for more, never rest from chasing your dreams, so you can reach happiness and self satisfaction, never ever give up” might lead to a happy life in terms of being a strong ambitious person. But that’s also wrong, because people tend to have crazy aspirations, convinced that those would make them have a perfect life and they end up at that point where they can only see the past and the present, being so old and tired that the future means nothing to them, they live from memories and get to think “how I wasted my life, how stupid was I!”
About two years ago I went to a zoo and I was cheerful to see more than my natural environment could provide. The attraction of the season was a baby gorilla, recently captured and put in its new “home”. It lived in a huge cage, with plenty of food and water and green stuff, obviously put there to make it believe it was in its “dream house”. But it looked so depressed… tourists would try to take pictures and poke the glass to draw its attention, but the big brown eyes were wet and sad… So I thought that nothing would ever make that poor soul enjoy life again, that’s not perfect at all for it…
This year I got the chance of visiting again that zoo. On the way out, I remembered the baby gorilla I was telling you about and with a bit of nervousness I went checking what has happened to it. I was surprised to see a huge black creature, jumping around and literally making faces at the cheerful crowd. It couldn’t have been it… So I had to ask. It was that baby gorilla.
So I got to think about it… How come it was happy? Is adaptation what it takes to get a happy life? Well the only conclusion I got was that you don’t need to hold on insanely to things in the past… Sure, sometimes it is very hard. Letting go of your dreams might be close to impossible, but it is worth it, to hang on and stay sad? So I’m figuring that a perfect happy life is achieved when one is strong enough to accept reality, but also keep faith and follow the dreams which come close to what they have always wanted… I think that perfect life results from harmony.