Exploring Existential Questions: Finding Meaning in Chaos


Originally I wrote this in response to a subject "Faith, Hope, and Charity" forum entry, but I think I should start fresh. Thank you, Mike, though, for your inspiration.

It actually made me feel better after I stopped typing and helped align my ducks slightly. Sorry if I seem to preach, but I am talking to myself more so...

Here we go.... real deep breath in....

There is no real meaning to anything.. everything is a construct.. a metaphor.. an idea.
The lines and shapes our minds draw around things are just lines and shapes.
We bring meaning to life.. We bring a conclusion.
We are not born into this world, but we come out of it.

Forgive me.. Thinking like this makes me feel better. This is an amazing place here on OstoMates, so much I want to chat, rant, and get stuff off my chest. I am at this moment more so.. totally submerged in these concepts. I have always been thoughtful and sensitive, but when our guts give everybody on board this fine vessel problems.. Then they are amplified and our bodies/minds ( Is it the same thing? ) go into hyperdrive.

Makes me wonder actually, about our bodies. Maybe.. ions ago.. This body was a lot simpler.. Our guts were our first mind.. we were just a tube.. just a gut really.. floating around filtering specs of proteins and we were just a gut. No need for thought.. no need for questions.. no massive philosophical quandaries.. no question of faith, nothing complicated.. just a tube... bobbing around.. lonely stoma.. ha

( I know that recent research does actually confirm that our Gut has masses of the same brain-like synapses and cells that are present in our upper mind. And these TWO brains communicate on a super nerve highway ).

But then.. stay with me...

Out of the end of this tube slowly grew limbs.. and on the end of one of these limbs grew light-sensitive holes, and other energy-sensing apparatus that required another brain/mind to interpret these signals. That is all this other brain was for. Nothing else.. But it grew so powerful and overtook the raw natural body to comprehend its stimulus. Over time it confused us and drove us insane.

My gut told me this. My gut feeling.. My heart and soul.. It's making my stomach turn.. I had butterflies in my stomach.. Let's listen to our guts instead of our heads maybe.. Go with your feelings and instincts and not this data-gathering lump... Having had done what we have all had done to our bellies maybe switches them on.. reboots them.. makes us feel things more.. I know I seem to now...

Hear your mind but do not always listen to it. Its continuous chatter about stuff and things is just most of the time intolerable garbage. Zen mind. Thoughts dust and dirty the mirror of our pure self.

Take kindly to our emotions and feelings for they are clues and insights to deeper things. Faith, Hope, charity. Look, Listen, Hear, touch, taste, whatever... Then open our horn boxes quietly and just hum...

Look.. I am new here on Ostomates, and you bring all this out of me with your questions.. I feel good and better writing this.. knowing it has some sensitive ears on the end of your tube, to fall on.

Let's all take care of our tubes and cherish its insights, its everything and nothing at the same time. What is the question? What is it all about? Who and what are we?... really. EVERYTHING is overcomplicated..

Maybe I am simplifying things for my own understanding' ha.. because it seems to me there are far too many shapes, lines, patterns, laws, and rules. The current world ideology is messed up.

I am going to stop.. Read this.. then forget it... It's just an idea like everything else.

This is exactly who and where I am... Hope I am not talking out of the other end of my tube... Oh.. I cannot even do that now.. our tubes are different.. hmmm.. is that why we.... ahhhhh shut up for GOD's sake..

and breathe out..

Sincere Thanks And Gratitude to everybody here.


"I feel good and better writing this."  That's one of the most important things that you said, it seems to me.  Perhaps that's why writers write, eh?  I know that it's true for me.  It's a way to keep the stew stirred and not allowing it to boil over and make a mess on the stove top.  Keep it up, I say.   HenryM

Gray Logo for MeetAnOstoMate
Top 5 Collections

Hello OstoMorgan.
I do like this sort of reasoning and appreciate the link between the gut and thinking.
In order to try to make sense of this concept, I tended to differentiate between thinking as logic and emotion as instinct (the instinct being the ‘gut’ feelings). Sometimes it is difficult to prise these two entwined concepts apart. However, your take on it seems to be as pertinent as any I have come across. It is useful to have a forum in which to discuss these sorts of ‘odd’ thoughts, which tend not to be readily acceptable in general conversation, so thank you for giving us the opportunity to respond.
It goes without saying that when I contemplate this sort of stuff, I try to capture the concepts in rhyme so,
here’s one I did earlier:

Best wishes


From the first intake of breath.
To the last upon our death.
Life is life, no more no less.
At meanings we can only guess.

Some recognise that life is odd.
Some console themselves with god.
Some believe that life’s worthwhile.
Some believe it’s all futile.

In search of meaning some will go.
Because they think that they can know.
They find out all sorts of stuff.
But all they learn is not enough.

Their searching goes on undeterred.
They won’t believe that life’s absurd.
They think that knowledge is they key.
A window to eternity.

It might come as some surprise.
That learning may not make them wise.
When they’ve learned all that they can.
They’re just a learning artisan.

Some stay in their naiveté
And think religion is the way.
Blind faith I find is full of rules.
To trap unwary naive fools.

Once knowledge has belief debunked.
Faith’s philosophically defunct.
So those who are much more astute.
Might seek to find another route.

Life can seem hopelessly pointless.
Weird, mad and remorseless.
Your suicide might make you free.
But you would then no longer be.

You could accept life’s meaningless.
With death it has no worthwhileness.
Deep down inside I think you know.
That this is not entirely so.

Your birth is where all things begin.
Value and meaning grows within.
When you accept that life’s absurd.
Then your life might move forward.

                               B. Withers 2011

    (in: A Colourful Rag-tag-Bag’. 2012)


Hi Morgan, I love the way you express yourself and I get what you are saying. We should listen to our guts a lot more and ignore all the extraneous chatter and rubbish out there. It is easy to go through life without really thinking at all, a scary idea. And yet it seems there are many who simply stumble along reacting to the constant stimulus that is all around them with no insight or desire to find meaning. One of the things you have already realized on this forum is that we are much more than our ostomies and therefore the things we talk about are wide ranging. I look forward to reading more of your posts! And if this is you talking out of your ass, just keep it up my friend!



Careful Henry, or we are going to make you an honorary Canadian!


Words of Encouragement from Ostomy Advocates I Hollister

So I don’t know whether to thank you, OstoMorgan, or ask “Why the heck did you do this to me?”. Not sure that period belongs. Unfortunately, for me, I need to really study your offering to even attempt to reply with anything near what it deserves. I deliberately didn’t look up your bio ‘cause I just want to guess if you’re a 22 year old prodigy doing post post studies at Dartmouth or a 106 year old guy who spends a lot of time thinking about what he might’ve changed during the last hundred.
I’m gonna go with, “Thank you” and ask you to be patient with my reply.


Good evening, O'mates

Morgan, thank you for putting your thoughts, concerns, considerations, and questions in writing. No doubt, it is cathartic, and perhaps typing it out helps you make sense of "Life, The Universe Everything" - to borrow an iconic book title. : )

Henry, Bill, Terry, and Mike: Thank you all for your responses to Morgan's Forum post. Your commentaries are so philosophically refreshing.

I have wondered for some time if I were the only person I knew having such similar thoughts - deep, outside-of-the-box thoughts that rail against convention...the status quo. And I'm happy and grateful to find others with the willingness to question our reality and the meaning of it. Unless...there isn't any?! )

Some philosophically "educated" minds ask: Which came first, The Chicken or The Egg? My response is: It doesn't really matter because, either way, my omelette still tastes wonderful! LOL

I believe we make our own realities. And in that spirit, I share this clever quote from a magnet stuck on the front of my refrigerator: Don't Let Reality Ruin Your Day




Wonderful response thank you guys.
Lily, Henry, Bill, Terry, Mike and all that poetry.
You all real kind words. Yes this helps in some keyboard bashing kind of way. I am actually both a grad and an old wizard at the same time. But actually just an engineer. Working on a new project. No replies necessary guys. We were all supposed to forget it ever happened. The egg had mixed emotions about staying safe or bursting out into the light.

I am not afraid of the storms because I am learning to ride my boat. I am not of belief, as that is what we can only feel. My boiling pot is dry. The stove is dirty. Our bellies are empty. Hitch a hike with me new shipmates. We all be captains together. Is it blue skies or bad storms coming over that there horizon, sir...? Stay in the boat, get out of the boat.

Could I ask please...?

What type of boat are we in..?

We're all supposed to forget this post by the way...

This typing thing could be drums, could be a poem, rat, tat, t

Thanks guys


#The Guts of the Internet

P.S. Morgan, when you read this again, please stop replying and talking to yourself with all that ducks in a line... and don't forget to put the bins out..


Lily, Henry, Bill, Terry and Morgan together have just created or constructed a wonderful collection of things that might be correctly identified as thoughts; or feelings. At least that’s what I think or feel. I’m calling it a “tube stew”. Not that anyone cares if I call it anything but all you contributors must care that your concoction has some meaning if only to the contributors and replyers, if there is such a word. And, even if it’s not a word, I’m sure we know what it means here. And, if we’re concerned about the use of the English language, we should never begin a sentence with the word “and”. I do believe, however, that none of you give a crap. I’m not sure if that belief came from thought or feeling. I do believe, however, you folks do care about what you’ve shared. My belief comes from the feeling that you wouldn’t have expended the energy it took unless there was some level of importance to it. Of course, if I thought about it I might conclude that you labored over your keyboard to punish yourself so you might get a favorable review when that time comes, if time actually exists.
Unlike you, I have no idea where I’m attempting to go if there is, in fact, a destination. AND if I had an idea I wonder if it would’ve been a function of thought or feeling. I might start drinking again and that thought is from both.
With respect,


To Morgan and all of you others who replied to this post, it suddenly occurred to me that there are two things you all share, and that's not counting your ostomies! You are all deep thinkers and yet none of you take yourselves seriously, what a wonderful combination! It is lovely and refreshing and a welcome distraction from the daily crap we are all dealing with. I say bring on more of the same! What a great group to be a part of. I feel privileged indeed!



Hey Terry, I think/feel the privelege is shared and appreciated.  

Thanks for your kindness.




Good evening, Mike.

Thank you for joining us on this thoughts/feelings excursion, led by Captain Morgan.

I express further appreciation for the gentle reminder about the word "and" being used at the beginning of a sentence. Some of us do "give a crap", actually. When caught up in a moment of creativity and joyous expression, I may forget myself.

I believe you are correct in your observation that we "wouldn't have expended the energy it took unless there was some level of importance to it." Along with expressing my more humorous tendencies, I am enjoying the camaraderie of like-minded souls. (That, itself, is odd phrasing. I wonder how Descartes would have responded?)

As to seeking a "favorable review"? I feel that your possible supposition may be based in cynicism. I am only attempting to have a little fun, and blow off some proverbial steam, which for me is long overdue.

Whether or not there is a destination on this posting is a question that can only be answered by the individual. If you care to think no further about this particular issue, then just enjoy the journey, my friend.

Be well.




Hello Terry.
One of the many things I used to do, was to help/enable/encourage people to explore their thinking in ways that were often not possible as communication with other people. However, if we can break free of the concept that communication 'should' be with others, then we might embrace the alternative, that we can effectively communicate with ourselves. It is within this notion that these sorts of meanderings of the mind can take form and be expressed. Many, if not most true 'artists', indulge in their respective activities with an internal motivation of 'pleasing themselves' rather than being focussed upon how others might appraise their 'work'.
One of my interests is in how the 'mind' works. I have spent some time 'thinking about thinking' (what I call 'TaT'ing and, it is purely coincidental that a colloquial word for rubbish is 'TaT'.)
What I have found to be a major impediment to people thinking for and on behalf of themselves, is criticism, sarcasm and bullying. Thus, if people can be protected from this, then they are more likely to express their thoughts and emotions freely and in whatever form they manifest within.
Rhyming verse is a great way to express all sorts of otherwise weird thoughts and feelings, without attracting too much criticism from the general population, as they tend to either accept it or reject it for what it is. Needless to say, I tried to encapsulate this concept of ‘TaT’ing in rhyme way back in ’89.
Best wishes


I ‘think’ and therefore I ‘am’.
The way I think is the way I am.
My future is the way I can.
Our future is the way of man.

‘TaT’ing is the way for me,
it opens doors so I may see,
loosens chains so I am free,
heals my wounds internally.

                                B. Withers 1989
                           (in: ‘Evidence’1992)



Hi Lily. Thanks for the invitation and sharing your wisdom. I don’t know where to begin so I’ll start at the end. Is the “particular issue” to which you allude the “What’s it all about? Who am I” thing or the “think/feel” thing or both or all three depending on our perception? Having asked that, I need to answer what I think/feel is a question on your part and I apologize for the “favorable review” comment. I was referencing a “Judgement Day” that seems popular with lots of folks and some get offended with religious suggestions.

I think this journey began a few thousand years ago and I became interested when I realized how little I knew compared to what I didn’t. The “Who am I” part can’t be answered unless I know who’s asking. My perception of “me” might be way different from those of others. Who’s opinion matters? Probably everyone’s who engages with me. If the guy at the department store thinks I’m a jerk because I’m wearing a mask, his opinion matters; to him. Should I care? Well, I do. Maybe not as much for me but for him. I try to respect every person’s opinion. Though I might not agree I do have the opportunity to evaluate and, perhaps, learn. I think I use too many commas. Bill told me he got around that by using hyphens more often. AND, BTW, I only care about my own ability to communicate accurately and I have neither the authority nor the responsibility to judge others’ grammar. But I do appreciate when it’s done well. And I think I should’ve started a new paragraph about five sentences ago.

I have so many more stops to make in this journey and you guys seem to have been to a lot of them. Cpt Morgan writes “There is no meaning to anything” then “We bring meaning to life”. It could make lots of sense to me if I was smarter but I’m too bogged down trying to figure out how we got here in the first place. I respect Charlie Darwin’s ideas, especially after OstoMorgan’s tube explanation But a guy named Jesus claimed his Father put the whole thing together. Who knows? All the theories I read reflect upon “the beginning” and what happened from there. I want to know what happened before the beginning.
Hey, thanks all. Am I nuts? I feel like I am but I don't think I am.

Hello"What is Life all about?"Your Journey is a personal Path.Your observations are very valid and you have open thinking and blue sky logic and do not appear to me to be ego driven.When we leave our intellect and 'suspend judgement' then I feel we are BEing, in ourselves and also out of ourselves at the same time - In tune with the Universal Consciousness one may say.BEing it seems to me is a willingness to 'let go' .... to cease to try and 'define' but more a state of being in the flow.I am a naturally shy person - except for business networking or that 'party circulation and sometimes [rather ashamedly] functioning in the default 'social response, or 'as appropriate' communication with the 'group'.However, when it comes to 1-2-1 WTF - what is the point of not really communing on a 'feeling, touching level' .... i.e. ceasing to hide behind facades and such social conventions.Taking on board the WHOLE of your post ..... Yes evolution is a long term business - but so is our Soul Life ..... I FEEL and SEE we come many times around and Life it seems to me is the evolution of ALL THINGS.i.e. Humans are not the be all and all of the Universe. That is not to say I am into some fantasy alien culture - but more akin to the deeper questions which the intellect can overly become entangled within. Circular thought, in some ways akin to the Scientific extrapolation of Theory.SOMETIMES the Quantum realms are consciously accessed ..... but usually, in my experience, not through intellectual debate, for even the most advanced scientific research and the most open of conceptual 'THINKING' fogs the Mind - to a point whereby we still come back to the Question:"What is Life?"For me it is the opportunity to learn to BE, to become the entity that my interaction with Folk including many animals and 'Happening' I have been privileged to encounter.Usually,
* Please, do not post contact information, personal information or advertising.
All times are GMT - 5 Hours