Where did all the Curiosity go?

Photo by Jeremy Thomas on Unsplash

I have been stuck trying to figure out the answer to this question for what seems like an eternity. More and more people have no curiosity left in their lives. No one wants to know why anything happens anymore. Questions like: “Who am I?,” “Why does the universe exist?,” “Why is there a universe and not something else?,” and “Why is there even something rather than nothing?” are pawned off as meaningless. To take a step back, means to rethink what you are doing. Trying to answer the questions above (and ones that are similar) force people to step back, and rethink in this case, the meaning of everything. Is this really why people lack curiosity? Are they afraid to answer these overwhelming questions? I think there are many more reasons to address.

What went wrong for me

Questioning why things were the way they were was a normality for me when I was younger. However, school was the one thing over the years that shattered my curiosity completely. I would not say that I loved math growing up. The main reason for caring about math, in my opinion, was to figure out the purpose of the concepts being taught. I would adamantly ask my teachers about how we could use the concepts in math in our daily lives. To my dismay, no one could give me the answer I was looking for. A lot of the teachers that I had growing up did not have a background in the subject that they taught. Therefore, they could not encourage students to ask deep questions because they themselves did not understand the value of the concepts they were teaching. I soon realized that there was no use in asking deep questions. My curiosity, once a raging fire, was now nothing more than a pile of embers. There was one thing that saved me from going into the abyss of people that didn’t care about anything.

Discovering the wonder of things again

Teaching myself how to program changed everything for me. I finally became curious about anything that was brought to my attention. Programming was something that I truly loved doing. It was a challenging activity that forced me to think rigorously in order to understand how concepts worked. It finally allowed me to unleash my creativity in ways that I never thought possible. Now, I do not think that the problem of fading curiosity will magically be solved if everyone taught themselves to program. Well, then why was my curiosity reinvigorated? Let me continue. If you think you are interested in something, then try to teach it to yourself. This process, although extremely difficult at times, is also incredibly rewarding. You can acquire a kind of understanding like no other. Learning through self-teaching forces you to think. Thinking leads to deep questions and deep questions lead to curiosity. Curiosity may seem like some worthless entity, but it has more value than meets the eye.

Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash

Why does it even matter

Curiosity is the driving force that pulls you towards something. Without it, there is no reason to pursue valuable goals in your life. This is why losing curiosity is an existential crisis. Continuing to live day-to-day without a kind of wonder and desperate need to make discoveries is a recipe for disaster. People keep running through the trenches of life without taking a second to think about what it all really means. Thinking about what life really means can bring you to start questioning what more you could get out of it. Why must one follow the usual path of working a single job for the rest of their lives and hopefully be able to save up enough money to retire in their sixties? I don’t know about you, but this doesn’t sound too appealing to me. Unfortunately, too many people have been thrust into this terrible routine. It pains me to see people that do not care about anything in their lives. Their lack of curiosity clouds their vision and keeps them from stepping outside of themselves. Curiosity must not be seen as some kind of mystical thing that individuals have no time to contend with. This quality leads you to many unsuspected avenues that end up facilitating a life worth living. There is no getting around the fact that life is beyond difficult. People need things that pull them in order to stay afloat during chaotic times. It is inevitable that failures and misfortunes will ensue. Maintaining curiosity will generate more paths than you know what to do with. The ability to fall back on something may save you when you least expect it. Cultivate your interests and follow your callings. Giving up on wonder means giving up on life.

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