“Hast Seen the White Whale?”

I thought about maybe reading a chapter or two of the Dickens book. Either this or pick up Carl Jung where I left off in Symbols of Transformation. But I can see the inevitable goal of all the Christian doctrine, and that is self sacrifice: you have to give up everything. And it’s the same for Buddhism. So I imagine that to achieve permanent sobriety, I’d have to snuff out all my personal desires and throw myself into charity. But you know, this is the hardest thing to do. My motivation has always been egocentric, and anything else is totally alien to me. I can understand altruism with my brain, but my heart doesn’t buy it. Life without desire and passion would be quite meaningless and empty to me. Why do people hunt down Moby Dick, and then is it really possible to destroy the white whale? Remember how the ending goes: he pulls down the whole ship, drowning the entire crew but for one survivor to tell the tale. Did you know that Herman Melville had an alcohol addiction when he wrote that novel? Conceivably, the whale might symbolize alcoholism. Melville’s wife weaned him off the drink and he recovered. I think the hunt for Moby Dick is a wonderful allegory of what world religions do. They extinguish selfish desire and passion…

Yet still it’s a very difficult decision to make, laying waste to the human heart in order to serve other people.