Our Humanity

One o’clock 🕐. Played the turquoise Fender for only 15 minutes. It sounded different to me, yet I know it’s a brain chemistry issue. I started the gabapentin one week ago today. Materialism is only one perspective on the world. As a moral philosophy, it is hedonistic, like Epicurus and Lucretius. From a Christian standpoint it is unworthy and maybe pretentious. I don’t know: what is the ethics of a materialist? Isn’t it pleasure, and maximizing this? Cramming in as much sensation as possible before you die? And then what is the Christian ethics? Or what is spirituality, if not the practice of loving and giving of yourself? It is forgoing selfish satisfaction that others may benefit.

The Flies was a weird play. After all, Orestes commits a double parricide, a sanguine murder, then wriggles out of feeling any remorse for the crime. Somehow his freedom permits this. I think that’s a little extreme. It is human to have a conscience and to feel guilt for doing wrong. What Sartre proposes is inhumanity. And that’s like Ayn Rand’s ruthlessness as well. No pity and no remorse or guilt. Like Nietzsche, they offer us the overman, the superman without a trace of conscience, who blasts his way through life heedless of the bones he breaks. The predecessor of Nietzsche was probably Machiavelli, likewise brutally unscrupulous… Fortunately for us, our humanity is resilient and keeps bouncing back from the digressions of renegade thinkers such as Sartre and Rand. I was just an adolescent when philosophy enchanted me and perhaps steered me wrong. I think back to WW2 and the victory of Christianity over the depravity of Hitler, whose mind was fed on thinkers like Plato and Nietzsche; who got elitism on the brain and carried it to nightmarish extremes.

The history of philosophy is very interesting, and the way intellectual trends influence political events and vice versa. But after a while it’s good to come back to our roots and be thankful for them.

Globalism Lost

Nothing will ever make sense if Jesus turns out to be the answer. I deny it up and down, forward and backward. I always ask, What about other traditions in the world, like Buddhism and Islam? Indeed, Joseph Campbell was more of a Hindu than a Christian. I always loved The Upanishads for their profound metaphysics, like being in a dream. Why should one religious tradition be true to the exclusion of the others? It doesn’t seem right to me, but rather it impresses me as bigoted and tunnel visioned. People can dislike me for saying so. I don’t care…

I can’t get anything to gel into coherent sense. I remember a time when people knew the name of Milarepa, the great Tibetan yogi. It was during the 1990s, before the Millennium and the craze over the Apocalypse. Before everybody and their dog got baptized and brandished a cross in one hand and a flag in the other. Before the senseless wars on terror, as we were told. People’s memories are very short and not very comprehensive. In the 90s, the spirit was globalism, the global village, and not some manic crusade in the name of Jesus Christ. Life was peaceful and happy, at least for me. Wormwood fell from the sky around 1999 and poisoned our minds forever. I alone remember a happier time and cannot accept the trends I see today, when reason has deserted us probably for a long time to come.

Blood Draw and a Dream

Seven o’clock.

I’ve arrived at the conclusion that sexual orientation is a complete fiction. No one is innately disposed in any direction. This is true for at least me… Last night, I thought of what it would be like to go to Polly’s house at night. Creep up the porch to the front door. What would I feel? And I realized that I don’t feel related to the family at all anymore. I feel totally detached from them. Plus, they probably feel the same way regarding me. I could just see myself on their front porch, entirely a stranger, sticking out like a sore thumb. It was a little scary to imagine… Polly still hasn’t tried to call me… I saw some political headlines and was only disgusted. Politicians are the most impotent people on earth. It is so corrupt and dependent on big money that nothing will ever get done. This reminds me of a dream I had. I was in church, and the place was just packed with worshippers, more than I’d ever seen. I was happy about this, and after service I asked Tori what was going on. She told me that World War 3 had just been declared. But the surprising thing about my dream is that I was devout during the service. I prayed along with everyone else. Suddenly our small church had grown into something big and very real. There were no unbelievers. The need for religion was undeniable as the end of the world had begun.

Quarter of ten. Back from my blood draw. Very mass production and computerized at the lab. Not very comfortable. No one can be personal with you. We treat our dogs and cats better than people. There’s something wrong with that. The best part of the excursion was the taxi ride with Eric. It’s good to be home again. The sun has come out… My conscience doesn’t kill me like it used to. Even when people upbraid me, I don’t take it to heart anymore. It isn’t worth it to beat myself up… It’s my life and my house, so I feel like going back to bed. The depression gets worse and worse, because I feel like an anachronism while the world moves ahead faster and faster. The computers are getting smarter than human beings. But no matter how I complain, I know it’s a useless move. Polly wants to turn back the clock to the 1950s; I want a return to the 1970s.

One o’clock. Finally went to the market after first resting in bed a while. I felt cold and more dysphoric than ever. The sun has managed to stay out, thankfully. To be feeling so terrible must implicate the medication; I can think of no other reason why. But I got a chore done today. I’d been putting it off for months. And my blood wasn’t green.

Martial Beat

Permit the beat to dictate where we go

The tabor’s tune turns tables on the sense

Bah dum, bah dum, bah dum, bah dum, bah dum

We drop in morphemes to iambic march

And granted some imagination see

Through hearing synesthesia ought to be

A river of sound, a gravel road rebound

Of soldiers trudging, taken by surprise

Shellshocked, a blast from missiles splitting time

Rainbow of gravity, that moment when

The end so imminent will hover close

And be finality, annihilate

The line between the knower and the known

Then later drink a round, propose a toast

Immortalize in song the nameless graves

By bayonet and helmet only marked

Now exit to the martial field snare drums

Bah dum, bah dum…

Tensions

I just had a memory of Alf from the 2000 decade. We were having lunch at a place on Coburg Road. The sexual tension between us was taut to snapping when she referred to her a—. Or else it was just me. We became very close from November 2005 until I left my job in October 2008. There were times when I disagreed profoundly with her opinions. She could really exasperate me almost on a daily basis. Sometimes it didn’t matter what I said, she would take the opposite side. For instance, I once emailed her a little lecture on the motives of the Vienna Circle. I argued that wars were caused by religious abstraction and could be avoided if we focused on simple things. She read this and countered that wars were fought over the things and not religion. We wrote these messages during a time of holy wars and ideology. But we argued with each other every day, just to be arguing. The wars went on between individuals in a microcosm. I could never win a fight, and after leaving the agency I reached by Internet abroad to a newfound friend in Scotland. It was like emigration for me. People domestically refused to give up their jihads. They never woke up and smelled the bloodshed. After fifteen years or so it finally blew over and I could walk out my front door.

Now I wonder if Alf is as contrite as I am. Interesting, the word “contrite:” “with sadness ,” if I may gather from the French “triste.”