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Apathy – Some Phenomenological Analysis

April 19, 2013

So this is my state of mind today. I find myself walking around almost like a zombie. Nothing seems to grab my interest at the moment. It doesn’t help that my legs are not in great shape today to do some exercise, which would normally lift my mood. I read that some people are genetically predisposed with a brain towards producing chemicals that mean your mood is low, while some have a naturally more joyous temperament. I am not sure how much of this is true. There may be some truth. But largely I think circumstances and periodic processes of ups and downs in life determine our mood.

My circumstances for apathy.

  1. Poor ability socialising, and lack of interest in forming friendships.
  2. Lack of interest in most people around me, with whom I have little in common
  3. Lack of money and work
  4. Lack of intimacy
  5. No career related goals, and no interest in getting any
  6. No relationship or prospect of relationship and minimal desire for all the stress and attachment, heartache and responsibility of a relationship
  7. Introverted, contemplative person with low self-esteem

You can see the factors beginning to stack up. But many of these factors are still there when my mood is much better. I just interpret them differently, so mood really is a difficult thing to determine.

Lets have a look at some words similar to apathy, according to my thesaurus: Indifference, inertia, coolness, stoic, unconcerned, listless, impassive, unresponsive, torpor, sluggish. I think they all apply. Maybe I can learn to be happy in my apathy. Why do I judge it as a bad thing? Stoicism can be a positive moral connotation. The truth is, it would help me a lot to change something in my circumstances. I am very good at retreating into my own world, and making do with what ever scraps are available to me. But why settle for that? The apathy in me is resisting the presumed answer in this leading question fiercely as we speak.

There is a lot to be said for apathy, I am not going to be drawn into some impulsive error, for starters. I am not going to be bullied or pushed around. I am not going to blindly follow the orders of someone else telling me to do something. At the same time, if a genuine emergency arises I feel I will be ready to react in an appropriate way for survival and to do the good/right thing. Why bother filling my mind and my time with distractions, like a busy bee? Just accept the emptiness of the apathetic state. The sooner I do, the sooner I will come out the other end of it I imagine.

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From → Philosophy, Writing

One Comment
  1. HeartSpace permalink

    I like your last statement there. I think that it is true that we have to embrace our feelings in the moment if we want to get through them. Stuffing them down or shooing them away doesn’t help. I wrote a blog about apathy recently- would enjoy hearing your response: http://heartspace1111.com/2013/04/25/the-apathy-epidemic/

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