I’m progressively having more free time as the holidays unfold, and I’ve been trying to pass Final Fantasy VIII. Somehow it’s gotten me thinking about some of the big questions in life.
In most RPG’s, or games really, there’s an ultimate goal: defeat the final boss. Everyone has a purpose: in FFVIII, they start as SeeDs, an army of mercanaries whose job is to obey orders, carry out missions, and earn money for Garden. The story gets progressively more complex, and as new events unfold, Squall’s purpose changes again and again, from "Defeat the Sorceress and save the world" to "Rescue Rinoa by going through absurdly difficult trials" etc. And because so many of the characters in the game have contrasting purposes (the White SeeD ship’s job was to protect Ellone, the purpose of the Galbadian soldiers is world domination assumingly, Zone just wants to liberate Timber), it makes me wonder which is the noblest goal, the purpose most worth pursuing. I have no choice but to follow the storyline and let Squall make all the decisions about what happens next, but really, is anybody ever doing the right thing? Are the dreams they pursue meaningful? If the Galbadians are wrong then Squall might be, or the Sorceress, or Rinoa. They’re all fighting for different things, and I have no idea what’s worth fighting for.
What is our ultimate purpose in life? If it is to find contentment, not everyone can achieve it in the same way. So who’s way is the right way?
No one’s, of course. So even if Squall’s quest seems meaningless to me, let him do what he wants if he feels he’ll make a difference.
What really bothers me is that he’s changing the world. I’m using him to change the world. And I don’t particularly want to. The origins and future of SeeD have forever changed, the power balance between the nations has been completely disrupted, the purpose of the world has been undermined… Big changes are being made, and I can’t say they’re for the right reasons. I wish I was more sure of myself so I knew that the differences I was making were for the better.
I think people need a vision. One they can believe in and stick to. But of course, the problem is finding the right vision. And any action made without knowing why it’s made is a wasted or harmful action if it contradicts one’s ultimate goal.
So, in short, What is the meaning of life? lol.