A strategy for success… greed and the Good Life

I am pleased to welcome back my lovely husband with another chronicle of thoughts concerning candy crush and all things philosophy.  For those of you who may not play this game that tends to suck in anyone who tries it for the first time, I apologize if this is gibberish.  Stay tuned for recipes and other thoughts this weekend. ~Joanna

The Candy Crush Chronicles

candy crush picI am presently concerned with Greed, The Game and the Good Life.  Much has been made over the years as to the source of happiness.  I have yet to meet a single soul who desired to be miserable.  So to this end, let me assume that all sensible people want, at their core, to be happy and I will add, there is no shortage of people willing to suggest how this should happen.  Plato and the Greeks called the greatest goal one could achieve, the Good life.  Cicero referred to it as, the Summum Bonum. Boethius says, “it is what all men want… the supreme good, the one that leaves room for no others, for if there were anything further to want it could not be the highest good” (The Consolation of Philosophy). Could this good that Boethius speaks of be attained in this life?  Many think not, for how could one attain perfect happiness.  For our purposes however let’s assume that there are indeed some perfections, I will call these transcendentals, in the world that humanity can and indeed grasp (of these goodness, truth and beauty are most widely known).

Let’s begin with a thought experiment.  Say you were out, walking your dog when you stumbled upon an old tin can.  To your astonishment, within its confines was rare coinage said to be worth up to 10 million dollars.  What would you do with this sum and why?  One scenario may sound something like this: I bought a nice house.  And why?  To be in a better neighborhood, so my family will be safer, so they could enjoy more opportunities, have a better chance of succeeding in this game we call life by meeting the right friends, having the right influences, attending the right school and so on and so on.  In the end, it all boils down to one underlying principle that I submit is happiness.  You are probably saying at this point, what does this have to do with Candy Crush?

Plenty, I surmise, especially if you are like the kid in a candy store and because there is nothing more damaging to a batch of candy then the toxicity of greed.  Greed begets selfish desire.  It says, “I will have at all costs.” In it’s prodigious consumption, it will never be satisfied.  It is the antithesis to the Good Life.  I suggest an ulterior strategy to The Game (this principle also applies to life).  This hard truth that I am proposing is not for the faint of heart but says, “It is better to give than to receive.”  For all intents and purposes, you must be willing to sacrifice, give something up, empty in order to be filled.  This is the greatest indicator of one’s love, no better legacy to leave than the relinquishing of one’s self for another.  And why not, isn’t this the underlying characteristic of all great men?  Yet, there is another deeper mystery that takes place, a divine reversal if you will.  Andrew Peterson says it best in his song, Lay Me Down.

So when you lay me down to die
I’ll miss my boys, I’ll miss my girls
Lay me down and let me say goodbye to this world
You can lay me anywhere
But just remember this
When you lay me down to die
You lay me down to live

As far as The Game is concerned one application should suffice.  There is one item any serious candy crusher is after, it is the infamous color bomb or, as we like to call it, “the disco ball.”  If this is your desire, and I can’t think why it wouldn’t be, then you must scheme, plot and strategize how to acquire it.  But once you succeed in this endeavor you have embraced our fundamental principle.  Stripes and wrappers become dispensable, there is no other way I can see it, unless by happenstance.  And it may come to this, but I wouldn’t count on it.  The Game is sacrifice and sacrifice is The Game.  Think about it.  The modus operandi of The Game is to get rid of candy.  Some neophytes are content with three candies, some may stumble onto four or the occasional wrapped ones, but nothing compares to five even with the inevitable sacrifice it produces. 

In life the things most valued are the things, which you believe bring the most joy.  Whether I esteem wealth, power, or pleasure these things will never fully satisfy because they feed on greed and not sacrifice.  In the end, they just become dull idols that I worship.  We are all destined to worship.  It is unavoidable not to worship something, so why not choose to worship the one who offers everlasting joy, the one who also buys into our principle and empties Himself.  With arms outstretched, he offers for the taking not only the highest good, the Summum Bonum, but the real secret to success, sacrifice.

May your gaming be profitable and your sacrifice plenty

~By David Euans