YspeopleExplore tab

Life: How is it going for you so far?

About Philosophically

I think, therefore I am.

This is a question I ask myself every day. And here's why.

I recently made good use of my Netflix account to watch the 2017 remake of the Magnificent Seven. It had a grittiness and realism not evident in the original, 1960 version. That said, I preferred the original. I felt it embodied social comment not evident in the remake.

Magnificent Seven.

Magnificent Seven

One scene in the original version featured the character Faraday, played by Steve McQueen. In this particular scene, Faraday was encouraging an old man living outside of the town limits, and therefore outside of the protective ring created by the Magnificent Seven, to move into town. 

After the old man told him that he had not been in danger to date, Faraday responded by suggesting that the old man reminded him of a ‘fellow I once knew who jumped off a ten-story building’. Greeted by a confused look from the old man, Faraday said, ‘As he passed the fifth floor on the way down the fella was heard to say, so far so good!’

While understanding the point, the old man was not moved and decided not to avail himself of the protection offered in the town.

That said, regardless of the response of the old man in the movie, for me the point was clear - as I'm sure it is to you. Maybe I was reading too much into this story, but to me it suggested that we don't often consider the ultimate consequences of our actions well enough.

Life going well to a point is no guarantee that it will continue to go well. No matter where we are right now,  it is no guarantee that we will be where we want to be when the process concludes.

So, ask yourself, how are things going for you so far?. No matter whether you are 25 percent, 50 percent or 75 percent of your way along the journey, how are you feeling about your progress right now?

Of course, we know that this journey will have much the same outcome as the story about the fella jumping off the building. It will not end well, but how is it going so far?

This is a question I ask myself every day. I really do not want to get the first floor, centimetres from the ground, only to find that I have left so much undone - or that the journey was not worth jumping in the first place. (And when I say jumping, I do not mean being born. Being born is involuntary, jumping is deliberate). 

I chose to jump. I realised when I was in my teens that standing on the roof and looking at the view, no matter how magnificent from the 10th floor, was not living. It is existing. It is breathing until I stop breathing. To truly live, we have to jump, and I took that jump in my teens, and I have been ‘falling’ ever since’.

Jumping is a metaphor for breaking free of those things that hold you down, that prevent you from being yourself. It is all about cutting the safety net of socialised behaviour and the attraction of social acceptance to try and live life my way -  according to my rules. It involves not considering what others think of me and realising that it is their issue, not mine.

For others, jumping may be something very different and perhaps more extreme. I know I am a conservative guy. Whatever it is, I cannot see how we can live until we jump. If you have jumped, I ask again, how are you feeling about your progress right now?

Quoted often in another more recent movie, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, is: "Everything will be alright in the end – and if they are not alright, it is not the end.'' I like this notion very much. It is positive and motivating.

It is very different to the sentiment arising from the line from the line in Magnificent Seven. In my view, it is also much further from the truth. My experience suggests that for most people, it will not be alright in the end, no matter when the end is.

I find that some quotes from popular movies stay with me and make me think. Yes, I know, I am weird.

Another example is a line from Rocky III, the third in a franchise of movies not known for wisdom. In this particular edition, Rocky’s trainer explains to him that he cannot beat his opponent because he had done the 'worst thing a fighter can do – get civilised’.

This brought to mind the tendency for people to take chances when they are young and play it safe as they grow old.

I could write a book about this, and I will write a blog article – soon!

But for now, how is your journey going?

What movies have you seen that have left you thinking?

What famous lines have you pondered?

Banner 1
| Your rating
No ratings yet

Related stories

Embrace training to stay relevant in an ever-changing workplace.

How to stay relevant at work


Companies are moving toward automation over human skills. Here's what you need to do to stay relevant at work.

Money Work
11 months ago
(Ys Comment)
That desperation to ''know'' and be right can cause so much unnecessary conflict.

When 'knowing' is dangerous


Nothing starts more conflict than people ''knowing'' stuff.

Community Politics Philosophy
About 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
Do you trust politicians? Picture: Shutterstock.

Why don’t we trust politicians?

Here are my top five reasons that politicians are not trusted -- and they all relate to behaviour.

Social Issues Politics Australia
About 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
Who is going to make their country better for their children, if they don’t? Picture: Shutterstock.

The real refugee question

All three of the common arguments against refugees have ignorance at their root. But there is one question yet to be addressed.

Social Issues Politics Middle East Australia
About 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
Lines of people wait to collect natural spring water for drinking during the Cape Town drought.

Water: a crisis in the making

Cape Town is about to run out of water -- and 11 other major cities are facing the same plight. Horrifying, isn't it?

Travel Environment Australia
About 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
PM Malcolm Turnbull attends another military show of strength.

Why the obsession with war?

Why we must rethink our view of the military -- and care more for our returned soldiers.

Community Politics Australia
About 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
Finding your mythical purpose.

Perhaps it's your 'fate' to read this post

Why it pays to create your own purpose ... and other philosophical musings.

Community Phhilosophy
About 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
We have a beautiful country but is our national anthem accurate? (Image: Shutterstock).

Australia's national anthem a disappointment


As far as national anthems go, Advance Australia Fair fails to mean much to me. Here's why.

Culture History Australia
Over 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
Boofhead and Moralising.

F**k boofhead Barnaby and moralising Malcolm

The grubbiness of the Barnaby Joyce affair shows there is pain ahead for many, including the good voters of Australia.

Relationships Social Issues Politics Australia
Over 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)
Shop safely from the comfort of home by following these simple rules.

Shop safely online with these simple rules


Wondering what all the fuss is about with online shopping, but scared of being ripped off? Don't worry, we'll steer you right.

Money Technology
Over 1 year ago
(Ys Comment)

Message board

Derek, 11 months ago:
I am great
George, 11 months ago:
What's up Thomas?
George, 11 months ago:
Messages are now updated in real time on other browsers.
Thomas, 11 months ago:
Thomas, 12 months ago:
DJC, 12 months ago:
George, 12 months ago:
Message board active from June 2018

Have your say!

Your Great Australians

Trending stories
When it comes to great bloggers you can connect with, this list has you covered.

20 mature bloggers worth following

Looking for Australian...

(Entertainment & Culture) About 2 years ago
They may be hideous, but geez, some toby jugs are valuable.

Is your toby jug worth a fortune?

Did you know that some of...

(Nostalgia) 11 months ago
JB Hi-Fi is on the money when it comes to customer service.

JB Hi-Fi Vs Harvey Norman

When it comes to comparing...

(Money & Business) Over 2 years ago
Baby Boomer men are having more unsafe sex than their younger counterparts.

Why are many older men so stupid about sex?

Baby Boomers are much more...

(Love & Relationships) Over 1 year ago
These brownies just get better with age.

Rachel's 'liberated' brownies


(Epicure) Almost 2 years ago
Weekly Poll
Photographic memories
It's 35 years since the Ash Wednesday bushfires in South Australia and Victoria claimed 75 lives and more than 2500 buildings.