Responsibility vs. Spontaneity

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by Vard0n, May 11, 2010.

  1. #1 Vard0n, May 11, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: May 13, 2010
    Both responsibility and spontaneity are positive aspects to ones life, yet I find each as somewhat of a measure of the other. The more responsibility, the less spontaneity present in ones life and vice versa. Which brings more joy?

    There have been many philosophical debates on the situation, my favorite, being Daoism vs. Confucius. Daoist philosophy suggests that one should follow the path of least resistance, which, consequently tends to be the path of least responsibility. For example, the Chuang Tzu uses the metaphor of a tree being useless to a carpenter, yet, this uselessness saves it from the wrath of the axe. A lack of utility can bring about joy. This path of least resistance leads to an esoteric stress free existence.

    Confucius, on the other hand, enlightens one in regards to their obligations, which are both filial and societal. You don’t even have to take on responsibility; you are born into it, like original sin. An example Confucius employs is that of your hair and skin. It is your responsibility to keep your hair and skin in tact because it is a gift from your parents, and, if you are destructive in your actions, which result in the destruction of either skin or hair, you are directly disrespecting the obligations of your parents. By following your obligations and fulfilling your responsibilities, you are in tune with the way, which, through its pursuit, leads to joy.

    I, personally, prefer spontaneity. It may be because of my lack of responsibilities (Unless I were to consult Confucius). I am a soon to be sophomore in college and my responsibilities are generally trivial. I am also engulfed in a world of suburban entrapment, failed dreams, and overall disappointment. I feel as if people lock themselves into responsibility that doesn’t necessarily bring them joy, such as an overbearing job or debt, and are no longer free. Spontaneity is a measure of your freedom, in my opinion, because your ability to alter decisions shows your personal grasp on your own life.

    Responsibility is a positive thing, but I only see it as positive in the superficial world. Most responsibilities are bullshit tedious exercises that fill up your mundane existence. Only responsibility in regards to another human being is truly worthy of your time.

    If you are crammed into a miniscule schedule, due to an excess of responsibility, how can you truly enjoy life? You are a puppet. Some people believe responsibility correlates with power. It does, to a degree, but it also robs you of your primal nature: freedom.

    If you want to measure your spontaneity, try this. Smash your fucking computer; who fucking cares about your aunts statuses on facebook, you are wasting your time. Drop out of school. What is that piece of paper really going to do for you? It’s a certificate to cash in at the giant pile of material bullshit emporium. Apply some socio-emotional selectivity to your life, find all of your acquaintances that you hate, but due to the social norms you are polite to them. Tell them to fuck off; life is to short to lie to people. Throw your cell phone as far as you can. When is the last time that someone texted you something truly important? Grab your ipod and make a play list called “Freedom” and put on the best fucking pieces of music you have ever experienced. Sell your car and every other big ticket piece of shit you own. Take the money and walk through the shittiest neighborhood in your town and just give to a random family, they need it more than you. Then start walking. Think of that one human being who is the incarnation of God, just the thought of them fills you with comfort and totality. Walk to them. I don’t care if it takes a fucking month. That is the only responsibility that matters, responsibility to the ones you love.
  2. theres a man that has lived in the woods his whole life, is friends with the trees and brother with the animals. i asked him how he reasoned and not walked in another direction.

    his answer

    "for who would the trees whisper to? who would the animals play with? i know the dirt as i know it holds me standing, each step i take is supported by this very dirt why trail another path? this is our home"
  3. Cool shit man.

    I'd like to think that the middle way or the balance of the two should be an option too. Responsibly spontaneous or spontaneously responsible

    As much as I'd love to do what that last paragraph suggests, I'd rather keep under a cool roof so that I can enjoy the pleasures of having a home no matter how temperant. I feel like one day I will walk along that path and growth will take its course, but until that day I'll grow in my own little way.

    I agree with the notion of simplifing your life and tossing out the things you do not find emotionally or mentally exceptional. Remember to love always, and nurture those whom you can.

    Despite all this madness in the world, there is still peace in the orderly way of things. :)
  4. If you are responsible enough, then you can act spontaneously and still make responsible decisions...

    Spontaneity is is not synonymous with recklessness.
  5. Real spontaneity, in my opinion, can't involve compromise or else it truly isn't spontaneous, but slightly planned.
  6. That's true. Spontaneity in it's truest form is just acting without thinking.

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