How To Live (A Maze of Questions, Concern, and Answers Towards Existence)

Can I live?

This is the question we face each day.

Can we choose to live as spontaneously and sporadically as the cosmos – where meteors collide into atmospheres of planets we’ve never seen or studied, supernovae destruct from light years away, and black holes swallow galaxies alive?

Is this not enough?

Can we handle missing an invariable heart beat or are we all too stuffed into our preconditioned programs to miss the perfectly arising moment immediately before us?

What will it take for us to begin trusting the flow of experience? When will we allow ourselves to expand past our self-imposed limitations?

Do we not want more of Reality? Or is it easier to safely obtain our objects, demean our subjective selves, and circle around setting both aside and seeking elsewhere. It’s always there, but never here. Aren’t we missing the point?


Our immediacy to face the question of existence every day comes at a pause.


How do we live?


And more importantly, do we live by our own choices or exist around those that others make, determine, and demand of us? Are we being selfishly selfless? Or are we pretending to give, to be free, and to convince ourselves that we accept those individuals who deep down we still desire to seek revenge upon. Is it easier to hold onto our vindictive grudges against those who anger us, preferring the reinforcement our self-conceptual pride over the taste of humanistic forgiveness? Are we so different and better than them? Or just fools?

The Illusion of Separateness

The multilayered, multifaceted maze sticks to us all in a webby mess. Our maturation inevitably involves walking through a labyrinth of mental spider webs thinking there is an escape from this. At first, we run amuck covering ourselves in containers of confusion all the while readily convincing ourselves of the reality that others exist entirely separate from us. This is the trap we are in, a patterned landscape of separation that has become so vaguely familiar that we have become unrecognizable to ourselves and that essential force which truly bind us.

The more we try to fit into the dresser by taking the drawers out, the less useful we are.

The more we try to fit into the maze and squeeze in-between cemented cobblestone walls, the deeper we bury ourselves into the unforgiving chambers of labyrinthine loss. This begs the abrupt question: who’s tired of fitting in by removal? Who’s tired of constantly running along a wheel so irreducibly small that the package we are rushing towards no longer fits the threads of our desire? Who is ready to escape from their life into Life?

To begin, we must sacrifice the safety of our cages, our tiny little hamster wheels, and jump from the dresser onto the bedroom floor. Shoot for door like any escaping rodent. Run through the living room and squeeze through the barely-cracked window in the kitchen. Can you fit? Do you see outside you from within? Does the grass not glow greener and more magnificently than you ever could have possibly seen before you now in this always immediate & illuminating moment?

The key is seeing that once we escape the house, there’s crossing the street to get to the neighbor’s lawn, then rounding the cul-de-sac, and shooting through the neighborhood’s bushels of conveniently stacked and similarly assembled and assimilated houses. As we move onwards toward the city covered in street signs, railway crossing, and traffic lights, we make it to the highway; yet again, another busy road we must carefully follow to the border. As our transition continues and the journey to liberate ourselves seems close, we’ll start wondering the most enlightening question: Should we have ever left the confines of the cage? Will we ever reach true liberation? Or does each step away from initiation take us into another, deceptively bigger framework? Is it turtles all the way down?


The Question, Again & Again


With an endless potential continuously before us every moment of the day, can we choose to see past ourselves and society’s conditioning to see clearly? Do we make possibility our priority, meaning do we allow the possibilities to be possible, or are we preventing their realization from existing? Or are we too busy separating who we think we should be from who we actually are? Have we sacrificed the enjoyment of diversity, of being alive, of allowing the spontaneity of life itself to arise over the domination of our self-conceptions?


How do we live?

Should we be required to follow the subset of known?

Or, do we expand and explode?

Should our meltdown solidify into the baseness of stability?

When do we begin to release the “shoulds” and begin?

Are we we?

Do we see through crafted lenses, personified glass, or frameless frames that look past culture’s narrow criticisms, our sub-cultures of design and differentiation, and verily see social escapes into platitude as what they really are?

And how do we evidently release the leash of boredom and unproductive solitude?


As As An Answer


By letting loose this righteous strangle of individual concern, we can begin to live wholly.

Where does our suffocating stem?

Avoiding the moment. Thinking elsewhere. Pretending. Imagining. In my opinion. In yours. By how it affects me. Through a lens of what I care about. Lost in mental wherewithal of physical ramblings. Is it our consistence to believe in permanence even though we know everything changes? In what you did or how I caused the falling. What is behind this indolent stupor of pauselessness. Words I don’t understand though you may still together fail if one cannot muster the strength to admit his falter. I alone prevail though weak in my valiance, moreover my coherence.

All we must learn is quite simple: live immersed into each moment. Ice cubes taste great melting like sunshine cools. And the lawn chairs are the sofa.

Experience every moment originally, for the first, last, and only time ever.

When you are taking a shower, shower.

Become showering.

Feel the water touch your scalp for the first time.

Imagine it’s the last shower ever.



When someone is talking to you, only listen.

Stop waiting for your turn to speak and forget considering your own opinion while another’s speaking.

Become listening.


When you are reading a novel, read.

Sink into the words.

Share characteristics with all your characters.

Be reading.

Become the story.


When you are walking, walk.

Be the in-between of steps; become the continuous motion of stepping.

Forget everything.

Arise from nothing, presently in each moment, find nothing more than is at every twist and turn off the radio inside your mind.

Reset the frequency to scramble like eggs.

Then begin for the first time again.

This is how to live.


Image Source: Thank you, Robson#’s Flickr. This image has not been edited in any way from its original design.


About Stephan Stansfield

Stephan is the owner, creator, and editor of Peregrine Poise.
He is currently traveling and teaching around the world. When he is not helping others discover their true potential, he finds time to surf, read, and reflect on the important issues of living a good life.


  1. Bonny Brockhouse says

    it looks like a maze to me we always have a choice in it continued learning experience we live we learn to grow from 6512334692 we do meet th we got fun we expand me explode we come back together looks like a fantastic site looking forward to the future

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