Tuesday, April 26

Life is so fragile. It can be there one minute: millions of chemical reactions occurring simultaneously to keep your lungs moving and your heart pumping; to keep you alive. And then, in a split second, it can all be gone. Just like that. Like turning a switch off, or snuffing out a candle. Everything stops. Your lungs stop working, your heart refuses to beat. Every aspect of self-awareness you possess is swept into oblivion. Every thought you ever had- every memory, every dream, every worry – is instantly erased, as though you never existed.  And then think about how easily we, as beings of free-will, can take everything away. Not just from ourselves, but from anyone we are exposed to. People put their trust in each other –and indeed in themselves - to stay on the road when driving a car; to not be pushed off a bridge; to not walk in front of a bus; to not be stabbed in the subway. All these things are simple expectations that we almost assume from humanity as a whole. But instances do exist where people ignore these expectations, either because they no longer care for other people’s, or they no longer have them for themselves. What is it that causes a murderer to pass beyond the ‘I want to shoot him’ or ‘I need to shoot him’, to the physical act of pulling the trigger and planting a bullet in a persons’ head? What is it that gives some people that extra motive to step off the safety of the platform and into the path of moving train? We can’t understand because somehow we’ve learned to fear this thing called death so much, that we put in every effort to protect ourselves from it. Even when we don’t –when we smoke and take drugs- even those that find themselves with a gun in their hands, or on top of a tall building- when it actually comes knocking on our door, are we ready for it? Ready for nothing.

Loneliness is one of the ways we experience partiality. We can never experience the world as a whole because we are mortal. We are fated to seek assurances of our existence, even though such assurances can never overcome our basic doubt. We negotiate a path through this life with others, both with those who are far outside of us and with those who have penetrated our interiors. We hear voices composed of the fragments of those others, we speak, we listen, we touch and are touched, and we always fail to achieve an understanding that would allow us to rest. Our unending desires remain unsatisfied. -Jeremy Seabrook

There are those odd optimists among us who, having made a lot of optimistic speeches, go home and turn on the gas, or make use of a skyscraper in quite an unexpected way. They seem to prove that our proclaimed cheerfulness is based on a dangerous readiness for death. Brought up in the conviction that life is the highest good and death the greatest dismay, we became witnesses and victims of worse terrors than death- without having been able to discover a higher ideal than life. – Hannah Arendt

It's only you,
who can tell me apart.
and it's only you,
who can turn my wooden heart
(Portishead-Only You)