Albert Camus (1913 – 1960) — Wiki – Pic – the French existentialist philosopher suggested that the best option for humans is to accept the absurdity of life as the starting state and then to participate with what is available. That is my take, at present, on how to live the life of contentment suggested by the Stoic philosophers of Classic Rome like Epictetus (55 – 135 AD) — Wiki – Pic –, and Marcus Aurelius (121 – 180) — Wiki – Pic –.
There is a popular semi-religious Beatles song, “Let it be” – Let it be, let it be; Let it be, let it be; Whisper words of wisdom; Let it be.” — “And when all the brokenhearted people; Living in the world agree; There will be an answer, let it be.”
That is a wonderfully sentimental song, and my spiritual friends still sing it at meeting quite often, but if you read the lyrics above, you see that it is directed to all the brokenhearted people. It makes the unsubstantiatable assertion that there will be an answer … and so the suggested life procedure is to just “let it be.” But that is truly just groveling in despair and accepting a horrible life, without choosing to struggle.
That wimpy assertion is the opposite of what Camus asserts, that life and the universe are absurd and that there will be no answer, but rather than just wallow on in misery, as the Beatles’ song recommends, Camus tells us to accept the absurdity of it all and participate to the fullest with what is available. To intentionally choose the parts of the reality’s messes that are available, the things that you feel move you toward some attainable goal that you choose to value, and enjoy your participation in the here and now.
Ultimately, no matter what you do, it will make no difference to the Universe, but it can make a difference to the people with whom you associate, and for the time that you are here and conscious it can make life into an wonderful experience for yourself and those you affect. The value may be temporary, like taking a trip to the Louvre museum, but while it exists it is as real for you as anything.
Life is made of experiences and you can make those experiences meaningful, or you can choose to fantasize some incredible alternate existences, and let your present life slip from one uninfluenced disaster into another. If those postulated realities don’t come into existence after your death, your present life will have been less wonderful than it might have been.
Choose to live life in this world the way you want to live it in this world.