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Why The Only Way Out (TOWO)?

In his book, The Status Game, Will Storr begins…

“Life is a game.
There’s no way to understand the human world without first understanding this.”

I read a lot of nonfiction and gain much from each read, but The Status Game was a real turning point in my journey toward understanding. The book opened up a portal back to my essential nature. This portal helped answer the question: Why do I struggle to live within the boundaries and conventions of reality?

Despite inner wisdom, I have played by the rules of games that were never meant for me. It is that simple. And most likely why I have spent most of my life somersaulting between contentment and melancholy.  

We all do this. It is part of the unwritten contract of being human. It is how we organise, mobilise, build, innovate, strive and survive. I am an adult. I have day jobs, pay bills, maintain a home, care for my plants and love my partner.  

But if a prerequisite for life on Earth is to play the game then the #1 game I want and need to play—even if for only one hour per day—is expression through art. Not for the status. Not for social position. Not to win some all-consuming prize. 

Expressing ideas through art, listening to music, and time spent in nature is the only way out of the melancholy I often experience. I know people say that love is the only way out, love is all, but for me the energy of love is so enormous and ephemeral there’s no way I can rely on it to safely shepherd me through. 

Art is tangible. It is material. It takes the esoteric and makes it familiar. It involves my body and my will in the now. It is curiosity, movement, feeling and emotion. And it is a safe way for me to explore these phenomena. To me, it is love in action.

The final chapter of The Status Game ends with:

“Nobody wins the status game. They’re not supposed to. The meaning of life is not to win, it’s to play.”

I am playing this game until I die, for the fun of it, and especially in the face of Big Tech. I will create against the machine if I have to (I hope I don’t have to!).   

That is why The Only Way Out.