Damn It!! How will I ever get out of this Labyrinth?Simon Bolivar (Reportedly on his deathbed, 1830)
Has there ever been a more profound examination of life and its mysteries than this line.
What makes this line even more special for me is that it was spoken by one of the most iconic figures of human history. Simon Bolivar was a behemoth of a man. He single handily liberated almost half of South America from colonial Spain, and presided over a country consisting of modern day Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Ecuador and Panama for almost a decade, and yet he died in a quasi exile – unwanted in any of the countries he had founded. His vision of Gran Colombia – a unified, centralist South American state – was in ruins. The man who fought over 100 battles died of tuberculosis at the age of 47. “El Libertador” didn’t even receive a proper funeral for 12 years.
For all he achieved in his life – the adulation and respect of people wherever he went – and his inescapable legacy in modern South America, Bolivar died a sad, lonely man. It is this inherent tragedy of his life that makes those aforementioned words even more powerful.
Life is like a labyrinth which each and everyone of us try to make some sense of. But we can only hope to try our best and live a good life, because the meaning of existence is still to convoluted for our tiny minds to comprehend. We can’t get out of the labyrinth because its as inescapable as life itself. That is what its all about – living in this maze of life, through thick and thin.
And if you ever feel like your life has no meaning – think of Simon Bolivar. On his deathbed, the general would have given anything to escape his labyrinth and live in yours.