So here I am once again musing over this conundrum. Not that I think I can find an answer. Just because sometimes it feels nice to think that while everyone seems to be passing another day, another week, another year trying to meet the deadlines, shaping their future, climbing up the ladder, I am somehow vaguely aware of the futility of it all. If I remember correctly, Watterson, through his mouthpiece Calvin, once said:
"The problem with people is that they don't look at the big picture. Eventually, we're each going to die, our species will go extinct, the sun will explode, and the universe will collapse. Existence isn't only temporary, it's pointless! We're all doomed, and worse, nothing matters!"
As painfully vestigial life is, it no doubt has to be led. Thats not the worst part. The worst part is that most of us lead hating it. Not hating in the 'I am suicidal' kind of way. But just in the 'It sucks' kind of way. And this is where the question rears its ugly head. There is only so far you can go pretending to be happy before you are forced to verify the authenticity of the facade.
Frankly speaking, I have only met one person in my life who was definitively able to answer this question for himself and I did learn something very important there. Its called passion. Not in the Orkut Profile sense of 'I am passionate about reading and hiking and sports and movies........'. But in the more muted sense of way. Such a passion becomes something so personal that it seems kind of vulgar sharing it with the society on as futile a stage as a social networking site.
Anyways, being a graduate student I often come across people who are constantly bargaining away their time for meeting deadlines and studying hard. I am not saying there is anything wrong with that. I just hope they find the effort worth the investment of something as precious as life and that they seriously enjoy doing what they do. If thats not the case, I hope that they are atleast trying to do something which makes them happy for a considerable portion of their day.
As far as I am concerned, I must say I cannot pinpoint one single thing I could devote my life to. I envy those who have an answer. I am just trying to find it for myself. It might be music (even though I suck and it doesn't matter). It might be Physics. It might be something entirely unrelated. Or it might just be the fun of exploring uncharted waters. Its certainly not money. Its certainly not a lot of scientific publications. Its certainly not a plum job. Life is too priceless to be wasted on things so ephemeral. And its too worthless to be spent doing something "meaningful".