Nothing in Life Matters, Until You Make it Matter


Photographs courtesy of Giang Nguyen

We’ve heard the sayings, seen the pictures and might have even considered it ourselves: nothing in life matters. In the modern age we’ve seen this thinking become more and more common in daytoday life. So many negatives happen all at once, and with the constant gloom and impending destruction this current era has to offer, we might as well think that nothing in life matters. This feeling is often attributed to nihilism, the belief in which all things are meaningless: pain, emotions, everything. But even if we feel this way, should we continue to live as if nothing mattered in the world? 

We can make the argument that nothing in life really matters, which is a typical nihilist belief. If nothing in life matters, then what is the point in going on in daytoday life? Should I even get this college degree? Should I even bother writing this column? Really, in the end it doesn’t matter, we all die and the Earth keeps spinning, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t live fulfilling lives and try to make things better for ourselves or others.

The idea that nothing in life matters because there is so much pain is a selffulfilling prophecy. We expect this pain, act accordingly to this pain, and thus feel more painbecoming more sick and fed up with the world without doing anything to change it. What is the point then, if we do nothing to change the world to make it better and continue to feel this pain? Believing that nothing in life matters to me merely seems as an excuse to complain about the state of affairs in the world yet still sit on your hands and do nothing to change it. What better way to create meaning in your life than to help make things better for people? That should be the true end game for those of us that believe that nothing in life matters: to create a purpose for ourselves so that we can feel as if it does matter. 

The Buddhists hold the belief in which nothing in life matters, howeverthey still make an effort in living out a fulfilling life so that they might be reincarnated without suffering. Perhaps if we follow in those footsteps we might be reincarnated into a life without suffering; or even if you do not hold this belief, you might be making the next person a little bit happier and end the cycle of suffering.