Close this search box.
Previous slide
Next slide


Feeling Redundant: Meaning and the Matrix


How can we find any meaning in our lives when we feel haunted by an innate, nagging feeling of pointlessness? While this may be an academic discussion prevalent in nihilism, in an everyday context it can be a challenge to move beyond a visceral malaise and fatigue in the face of an onslaught of negative, self-negating inner talk, and toward something over which we can have any kind of objective perspective. 

The loss of an important relationship can be one of the most significant contributors to feelings of redundancy. That relationship may be romantic, platonic, familial, or even professional. Neurologists tell us that there is a direct correlation between feelings of being cut-off, loneliness, and the ensuing depression, and the onset of neurological decline that can often result in a total lack of mental capacity. Many full-time parents, especially full-time single parents, will feel this sense of redundancy as their children grow up and leave home, often with no appreciation for the years of input for which a parent may have sacrificed and bled. This can result in feelings of being literally drained and devoid of life-force, devoid of a place in the world, and devoid of an idea of what to do next. Years of servitude and tongue-biting can lead to a feeling of muteness. 

In keeping a lid on the inner furies that many of us bottle up—knowing that unleashing them may result in a torrential explosion from which there may be no coming back—there is the risk that all of the private tears shed have run the river dry. What do we do when we want to throw our toys out of the pram, curl up into a ball, and never leave our bed? When want to scream from the top of a mountain, push everyone away, and vanish from the world? When we only want to be hugged and told that we are loved and valued? When we need to feel appreciated and thanked for being alive?

This last year has seen many of us struggle with isolation. And many of us are now struggling to reintegrate as lockdowns are eased. We can once again hear the happy murmurings of people enjoying themselves together, but you do so from the coffin of your room. And your kids disregard you, unless it’s as fuel for humor or complaints, regardless of the thankless years of dishes you’ve cleaned up after them. In this case, the kids may be considered a metaphor for an ex-partner, a former friend, a work colleague, and so on, although I’m sure a few parents will identify. It’s certainly not easy to come back from this place of numbness. And like a numb limb, there will be painful pins and needles as the life-giving blood rushes back after some movement is resumed. 

The adage “this too shall pass” reminds us of the impermanence of any situation. What we do with our realities and where we go from the situations in which we feel lost is a subjective reality, but change, one way or another, will occur. Like the gears of a car, we are in free-wheeling neutral, readying for the power shift. This can be highly liberating: as the rules change, the limit of the last gear is realized and a world of possibilities is now open for business. This can come as something of a balm for our hearts in the midst of challenging times.

Another fact that can be challenging to consider is the interconnectedness of reality, from quantum physics reminding us of the “spooky action at a distance” of apparently discrete particles, through to the matrix running at the biological level. At a personal level, not only are we composed of a mass of cells and host to countless bacteria, and not only does our body work 24/7 doing things that we are not even conscious of—many of which scientists are still only just discovering—we are also a biological system connected by a matrix that wraps around every part of our body. Like a complex, intelligent, wet spiderweb starting just under the skin, communicating with itself.

The fascial matrix is considered an interconnected, intelligent, tensional network. — Mary-Jane Porter


Knowing that nothing is solid in our apparent material reality, knowing that everything around us is interconnected energy, I visualize the greater picture like a vast fascial matrix, energetically wrapped around everything we consider solid. And as solid things are simply frequencies, as are our thoughts, it seems to me that this type of matrix connects everything.

It’s when I remind myself that this is not magical thinking, but a fundamental understanding of reality that it makes me think of how actual magic might work. How things really do communicate with each other as part of a whole. How every little contribution counts. I’m reminded of how, in our pursuit of the “me, myself, and I” of manifesting a life that we think we want, or even in pursuing spiritual selfishness, it really is more about how we can help make the whole a better place. And in doing so, we make ourselves better too, as if we are a minute aspect within the matrix of a body. If the body is well, so are we. If we can help improve the life of another living creature, then we have already done something of more value than winning the lottery or becoming a rock star. And this global body of ours needs all the help it can get.

In the words of pretty much every wise person: “be kind.” I can’t guarantee that we’ll ever be truly appreciated for all the dishes and laundry we wash, but it will help the matrix, of which we may be only a very small part, but we are a part. And in that fundamental way, we are far from redundant.

It is important to note that should any feelings of depression or worthlessness be a chronic issue, it is important to seek professional help.

See more

Tilly Campbell-Allen (Dakini as Art)

Related features from Buddhistdoor Global

Related news from Buddhistdoor Global

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments