The science of absurdity


“If at first the idea is not absurd, there’s no hope for it.”– Albert Einstein

When Copernicus put forth the heliocentric view or when Newton talked about the gravitational pull of the earth, everyone in their times with the conventional existing beliefs perceived that they had been spurred by devious philosophies but centuries later, we acknowledge the brilliance of these intellectuals on whom rest the foundations of our physical Universe.

However, William Thompson’s second law of thermodynamics in 1853 further shook the pre-existing notions of physical world with the realization that the level of disorder is constantly rising and the amount of potential energy is steadily diminishing in the universe. It is the anxiety of this realization that there is no longer a predetermined course which determines the course of present world. It also had a considerable effect in field of literature with works of prominent playwrights who laid foundation of “Theatre of Absurd” such as Samuel Beckett, Tom Stoppard, Jean Genet who defined with their eponymous characters, the paralyzing of man’s inclination towards autonomous action due to relentless reliance on a pre-determined system.

Delving deep into the human psyche, we understand the dynamic process of life where what exists this moment, might not exist the next moment. Therefore we should always be ready to accept the the new and better because what is pre-determined might not always be flawless and what seems absurd might make sense the next moment. In the parable of modern life, the limiting of everything within the confined dimensions of black and white can have debilitating effects in keeping our knowledge and intellect updated. We need to keep our minds open for the change in the era of multi-dimensional perspectives and multi-faceted diversities, because what makes water clean and clear is its movement and not the stagnancy.

Two years back, if we would have been told that a party with common men without crores of fund will rule the national capital of India, we would have dismissed the idea as out of reason. Or that a guy who can barely earn square meals a day, will make it to the most reputed technical institute of the nation after clearing the toughest exam; we would have probably believed it as absurd. But what makes the absurd ideas to succeed is the will and determination of individuals to work towards carving the goal with absurdly undying passion.

In the world of brilliant yet unrealized possibilities, we need to mould and shape ourselves with changing ideas and philosophies in order to prevent succumbing to prejudices and chauvinism, but never at the cost of our ethics. Because as Descartes suggests, it is essence which perceives existence and it is the ethical dynamism of the science of absurdity which continues to define the individual and his core values.

About The Author

Urvi Sharma

Urvi Sharma (English Dep. PU Campus)

Currently pursuing Masters from Department of English and Cultural Studies, Panjab University, I have a knack for writing as well as reading and wishes to develop her skill-set to be utile to society.


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