“It’s me. I chose this. I chose all of this. This rock. This rock has been waiting for me my entire life. Every since it was a bit of meteorite a million billion years ago in the dead of space. It’s been waiting to come here. I’ve been moving toward it my whole life. The minute I was born. Every breath I’ve taken. Every action has been leading me to this crack in the earth’s surface”
This is monologue from the movie 127 Hours, which is based on a true story about a guy who is hiking in the canyon lands of Utah. He falls in a crevasse and a boulder crushes his hand and wrist against the sandstone wall and traps him there. He survives 127 hours in the crevasse and finally lives by breaking his own arm and crudely hacking his arm off below the elbow with a dull pocket knife. Watching this movie was one of those deals where I didn’t expect to be hit in the face with words and ideas that resonated to my own marrow.
“This rock has been waiting for me my entire life… I’ve been moving toward it my whole life”. In a metaphor a lifetime of meaning is exposed. This thing that has me trapped and is going to kill me. This absolutely insurmountable object that cannot be moved, or dislodged, or wished away, or ignored. This situation, so unfathomably contrived, has created the ultimate confrontation. The one no mortal being could orchestrate. No intellect could devise. So diabolically absolute as to manifest most elemental reality of existence. It, by the nature of improbable perfection, forces the dialogue to be between the ego and the universe. The self and the universe. The self and what bone, and flesh, and rock, and air, and water, and blood comprise.
When he says this rock has been waiting for him, and that he has been moving toward it with every action, he depicts a raw exposure of life’s meaning. That it is a contrivance. A means toward an end. A delivery to the crux of the very confrontation we make manifest by our existence. The meaning that we create by our actions, that we are born to manifest, that all the ancestries, and combinations of circumstances, and decisions, and flukes that ever transpired before we came into being have formed. We are dropped in these circumstances, and in this time, and under these particulars of environment. And all that we do from the point of a first breath, and all that conspires, and coagulates, and coalesces around us… in this soup we made our decisions, our will took shape, and all that befalls us is ripe with the beg of an answer the meaning of why? The very issue of which we make a living avoiding, hiding from, protecting ourselves against, insuring ourselves against. But all our efforts only fall into the perfect origination of the inescapable result. And the universe provides what it must. What we have to be provided with to live. Because that is what the universe is. Because that is what life is at its core. When everything else is stripped away and nothing that we have provided ourselves with works to save us. When we must face the reality of our existence or die. That is when we are given the chance to be born. That is the moment when we can know what we are, and live in accordance with knowing, or when we refuse to know and pass into the wasteland.