The mission of The Eureka room is to help people feel more joy through charming absurdity. (Note: I’m still slowly working out a more specific definition of “people”. Right now my best wording might be “participatory experience seekers”).
So what do I mean by this phrase, “charming absurdity”?
These aren’t just words I threw together. I actually spent a lot of time with other words before these were the truest ones that were neither too wide nor too narrow a definition. Everything it was fits in the words and nothing that is needed is left out. (See more about this in my series about determining a mission statement).
Reality and Absurdity
First, let me talk a little bit about reality. This might sound obvious but it’s a subject I find immensely interesting. I write more about it here #post.
Reality is how you see the world. It’s not how you think the world works – it’s how you KNOW the world works. It is as certain to you as anything.
I believe that the genetically built-in, unconscious prime directive, number one priority of every person is this: Protect Reality. (I will argue this at length here: #post, but it doesn’t matter if you agree with me as much as if you understand the model I use to do my work).
One of the main mechanisms humans use to Protect Reality is this: defend reality by making reality bigger.
But if reality is everything that is, you can only add things to it which are NOT reality. Typically the things right on the edge between reality and no reality and the easiest to assimilate. Sometimes a trade-off happens, where you drop one smaller part for a bigger and more powerful, useful, or strategic part.
When things are first brought into reality, they are absurd.
Absurdity is when the world does something that does not agree with a specific certainty of your reality.
It is surprising. It is attention-grabbing. These are the sorts of things I try to build into my experiences.
Reality welcomes absurdity if the trade-off is worth it. Sometimes it isn’t and we make this kind of judgment all the time.
For example, take a moment that is designed to be humorous. Something happens that is intended to be funny and you can either laugh at it (which integrates the phenomena into your reality while providing enjoyment) or you can say it’s dumb (and keep your current reality).
Charm and Delight
Delight is defined as “an unexpected excess of pleasure”.
This is a great word for The Eureka Room. But…
The word is so overused in mission statements, company goals, and cringey buzzword salads from copycat marketing departments that it’s almost become meaningless and empty. Or at least well-faded. I don’t want to use it. I need a word that I can look at and immediately a light goes on and I know and feel what it means.
A quick thesarus search on “delight” and we get…. “Charm”. How delightful!
Charm is “to delight greatly”. We’ve one-upped you, delight. Move over.
Charming absurdity is when you are given the split second choice between keeping a specific part of your reality or trading it for (the replacement part) of great pleasure. Pleasure doesn’t have to exist in the moment. It can pleasure of remembering a moment. Or even anticipating a moment. Or some or all of those.
Charming Absurdity (if I’ve done it right) “breaks” your reality because you’ve given it your permission to and you have sought it out and prepared yourself for it.
Personal growth also works like this.Follow IRLXD: