Life Is Action, Not Contemplation (Essay Sample)

Life is action, not contemplation

Human beings were created so differently from other animals. While other animals exist just for the sake of looking for food, sleeping and reproducing, man has the freedom and ability to do more. Life for man, is quite expensive compared to that of animals. As a result, there is usually an expectation that a man needs to do more with life and not just the basics. Man shouldn’t therefore live like an animal; to eat and reproduce, but should do more in terms of making life more interesting, meaningful and productive.

The saying that life is action and not contemplation came from Goethe, a great thinker in the nineteenth century. He had vast knowledge regarding life, and his opinion creates a profound meaning and understanding of life. Goethe meant that if an individual concentrate too much on thought, they are likely to forget the basic law of life which is action. People should, therefore, act in their lives and strive to realize the visions that can lead them to prosperity.

The human habit of aimless contemplation, therefore, leads them nowhere and kills the desire for action and thus he regards it as a vice that curbs an individual’s will. Contemplation does not guarantee one’s happiness, and despite the fact that action does not always result in happiness, it’s clear that there can’t be happiness without action.  Action is, therefore, the law that dictates the existence of human being, and body idleness not only corrupts the soul but also weakens the individual’s systems.

Life can be described as a system of responsibilities and duties. A person’s duty is doing what lies in hand and not see what lies dimly at a distance. Our thoughts, therefore, adds no value if we don’t translate them into action. A person can be thoughtful, but unless he or she carries the ideas into practice, then they only become more sound or words and have no significance in the long run.

Man can only identify his possibilities through action. However, life can never entail just action. Indulging in contemplation excessively and neglecting action could result in disaster but then, real thinkers are benefactors of the humanity. An original and compelling contemplator succeeds in giving out new philosophies and outlooks to others. A thinker beautifies and builds, and thus life requires both action and contemplation.

The value of a man’s life lies in his ability to be more proactive, not contemplative. An example can be taken from the nations of the world. Throughout history, there are those nations that have worked hard through their citizens. They have built great industries, made great strides in technology, and even managed to mitigate abject poverty from within their boundaries. This has in turn made them stronger and more influential. In the process, they have even been more determined and gone out of their boundaries, to conquer foreign nations and built great kingdoms as well as empires. This is a typical example of being active and proactive.

On the other hand however, some nations have individuals who are more contemplative than proactive. As a result, they have ended up being dominated by others, while failing to even utilize their own resources. This therefore, brings great disadvantage to them.

Thinking and executing the thoughts are what set aside action and contemplation. It is what sets aside productivity and negativity. A life of value needs action. It creates satisfaction and fulfillment.

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