One day even computers may become depressed.
For me the appeal of Utopia is that if I am going to suffer melancholy I should prefer it to be in comfort.
Is there time in a void? Time exists in relation to matter.
People are a perennial disappointment. Some are distinguished by a fathomless lack of depth. The vacant head might pass for enigmatic.
Would precognition imply a future ready to be seen: a finished universe? Slices through static eternity.
How many times do we feel something is going to happen that does not? The correct hunches get remembered.
A sense of immortality coming from our dreams, where we seem to defy nature. Back to an age when laws of physics had less meaning for us.
I can easily envisage circumstances which could cause me to renounce my disbelief in the supernatural. Can believers say the same about their own openness to correction? A belief able to cite conditions for its falsifiabilty has more claim to reason.
Whatever indeterminacy affects this table at a quantum level, it retains painfully determinate abilities to impress itself upon my shins.
Space has no taste
but swallows everything.
How could anything infinite occur within time? What do we imagine when talking about infinity? Very large amounts are not even close.
Nonsense may feel better than silence: when urged on by our will.
Feeling and touch. From a womb-embrace into baby clothes. A baby cries to be held. In stress we may hold ourselves.
I feel my muscles and organs as forms of internal touch. Vibrating eardrums touched by sound.
Feelings coming before language.
One effect of philosophy could be that the world does not change but is viewed differently. But my world as experience is changed by perception. Data goes through channels of interpretation, it does not traverse a neutral ocean. Hence experiential relativity: what is seen relies upon who, what, where, when, and how, we are. Seeing depends on the “I”.
I imagine our ancestors struggling for morale in the midst of suffering and mystery. Why not make-up some explanations for it all?
Unfounded beliefs may require protection against inconvenient questions. Stories can turn to dogmas. Clashing narratives lead to fights for hegemony.
Interactions produce outcomes not predictable from separate examination of the elements involved.
Once man can cease battling for survival, he faces the obstacle of himself.
A lost object still exists, or there would be nothing for which to search.
Finding blades of dried grass, some crumbs, even a tiny bloodstain, as I turn pages in a library book. Reading about imaginary characters, while passing evidence of real lives:
those who touched these pages before me.
Belongings of the dead remain, like mute triggers for our guilt, over loving words we found no time to speak.
How many kinds of silence are there between us? Perhaps it is a sign of closeness, this ease in each other’s silence.
Do I really know someone if I am deaf to their silences?
Memories or geology: darkness and metamorphosis, seething in unseen masses.
Bad enough that we must die: to spend life tormenting one another is a sort of obscenity.
Death approaches. People fall away. Bringing realisation of primal aloneness.
Can I love for a moment?
What else is there but the moment?
Should I write about women when I have never gone beyond their eyes?
When thoughts are a part of the universe, we are part of the universe thinking.
Logic is of little use without true premises. If we cannot live with truth are we fit to survive?
Do even gods escape determinism? How can a being choose to exist, unless it already exists?
It may be easy to love an abstraction. People are more difficult.
Some belief-systems take prior morality and claim it for their own. Virtue-thieving?
Faith sees wishes dressed as truths.
I try to have no illusions except the illusion of having no illusions.
Beyond the window
in cold moonlight
stars seem to mingle
among restless branches
of a tree.
We tend to take more interest in a truth which reinforces our bias.
Swept by pity for history: imagined in a stream of suffering bodies, helpless as mine.
A frigid jewelry of frost lay slick on the pathway. It was lit by distant city light, glowing like a frontier post against infinite night.
Does love open us wider to life, or confine us in petty cares?
Demanding too much can spoil even what is there.
Happiness is transitory. Love on passing moments.
The eternal only touches us in moments.
A perfection of moments.
Can we hope for more?
It is easy to forget being less than half our adult size as children. I remember when fields seemed wide as plains to me, and the world sat farther from our house.
If a hero requires a cause: what would a hero do in utopia?
In the existence I seem destined to lead, many feelings are a drawback.
Does a happy person ask if they are happy?
At my school any pretext sufficed for bullying. Yet perhaps this was more a sign of animal health than my own isolation from the pack.
Tasteful eclecticism as a method of avoiding totalities.
If the unknown is more exciting than the known, one could find searches for new information tinged by anticipation of inevitable disenchantment.
But do we really know any part of the universe?
In that case we could face disenchantment at the impossibility of knowledge.
Novels can spoil us for real people.
So much time spent sleeping: what we might give for some of it at life’s end. Though, if we try to live without sleep, that end will probably come a lot sooner.
Intellect may be sabotaged from within. (31/12/1978)
My going to parties: as evidence for the incorrigibility of optimism. (1/1/1979)
Sunlight on evening grass. Little pats of warmth touched him, like faint invitations to desire. Being alone felt somehow wrong.
He stood waiting, as life slipped past. Wounded awareness. A sliver of the infinite. Wanting to give love, while there was still time.
Yet he knew, watching the sun lower behind trees, that this would be another night of going home to silence. And a last stare, in the bathroom mirror, at his characterless face: which sealed him off from those girls he longed to know, trapping the bird of soul in clumsy flesh.
Inexperience made him shy. Shyness kept him inexperienced.
Happiness often seemed a product of action.
Passing a block of flats where he spent childhood years, there came an impulse to look inside.
On its first floor stood a small boy. He climbed past the infant, quickly reaching the top landing. Outside that door to his old flat, a strange feeling he still lived here moved through him. And a memory of how those large windows in the stairway would sound when hit by gusts of wind on stormy nights.
Love can be a faith. Its main drawback being the other.
Do not fall in love with a mask hoping to find something behind it.
He heard splintered impacts as myriad raindrops scattered across concrete. A storm had crept over the area swiftly. Suddenly roofs were lashed by a sweeping curtain of water, which rose above pavements in fine spray. An angry rushing noise reached its furious peak, then fell, via flickering hiss, to staccato mutters. Soon only dripping gutters and pipework were audible.
Dark cloud now clustered along a distant hillside, amid bristling trees.
He turned away from the window.
An open notebook lay on his bed. “One has to choose to live,” read the last line.
Once we dislike a person their virtues become even harder to bear.
Some find a dark road across boredom to evil, via the stimulant of destruction.
Feeling demonically alive by damage to beauty. Feeling strength against weakness.
Denying final insignificance in the vast delirium of space-time. King on an anthill.
Esteem defending itself in recoil from the profound.
In masochism, where a shamed son can punish himself for his own weakness. Striking at the heart which quaked before power.
In verdicts passed on characters who provoke by wretchedness.
Or order maintained to a point of suffocation, as if to prompt the exclamation: “Any healthy creature would rebel against this!”
Yet such victims may continue to blame themselves for injustices they suffer.
The world seen as a judgement upon those who live in it.
Life becomes never quite possible for the lost.
Their limbo a soul-sickness.
Consciousness that has origins in stress and anxiety cannot simply free itself.
Overshadowed from birth by irrational condemnation, which is internalised
with toxic sensitivity.
He sat in a hard plastic chair. The room had doors on each side. One way led to offices, unseen by the public. Another to a waiting area.
He had been summoned here, but not told why.
A man entered, leafing through a large file. He spoke without eye-contact.
“I asked you to attend to inform you of the decision of the Commission.”
Who were the Commission, he wondered. What did they know about him?
“As empowered by the Act of 1976, section 25, it has been decided that, in view of your persistent and wilful inability to obtain suitable employment: you should be charged with failure to maintain yourself. Which carries a possible penalty of a fine and/or a period of imprisonment, not exceeding three months.”
So the state would have its revenge against an offence of nonconformity. He must grovel before the dismal god of work?
What to do next?
He wanted to be a writer or artist, but could not see the path forward. Some way beyond his current isolation and depression. A critical inner voice undermined such hopes. With fear that any feelings of potential were just another illusion.
Daily notes (1)
Participatory evolution: We reach into our genes to begin playing with ourselves.
Loneliness can be exacerbated by human contact. Some relationships would fracture from honesty.
Yet this hunger remains for a love I have never experienced. Inside me contend both need for connection and recognition of its improbability.
Isolation is also a defence. (7/12/1978)
As armour against compassion winners may assume their status is simply a matter of justice.
Religion is not beyond the sphere of human vanity.
One danger of questions: by casting them in a certain form we are led toward compatible answers.
A flow of perceptions and memory. Can we extrapolate “Self” from this: like the projectionist in our cranial cinema? What if we find his room empty except for a turning mechanism?
If I am always becoming, along some stream of present moments, where is a complete self to be found? (14/12/1978)
Of a father who appeared so dominant that only by passivity might his rage, at any rival maleness, be avoided.
Yet a father who demanded this intimidated son be strong, active, masculine.
Creating a personality afraid to be assertive, and ashamed of its fear.
I wrote this thinking of Kafka. But perhaps I was describing myself?