suicide

As some of you may have guessed there is some dark shit happening in my life. I will not go into anymore detail about the specifics but I wanted to write something that once had a purpose and now does not. These words were conceived in a very dark moment, after years of contemplation coming to a head, only to be cut off by a simple act.

Suicide –

What is suicide really? At the age of 31 my father took his own life. I was 12, my brother 9. From then until now I have had very strong opinions about what death is and ultimately what freedom is.

I have thought long about the nature of the soul and our path as individuals through the shape of reality. I have what I believe to be answers, though many may say I am wrong, these answers are ultimately the religion of one that I inhabit.

But the question is not what happens after, but what about the actions and decisions that lead up to killing oneself? Many people have said to me that the act of killing oneself is cowardly, weak, and most of all selfish. (I am not talking about assisted suicide to those in pain, but simply people who want out for whatever reasons).

Based on mankind’s pure speculation about what is on the other side of death religion has told us what to believe about the very shape of reality. We are told that suicide is a sin, is morally wrong, unethical, etc. But why?

Are we not free to do as we please with the body in which we inhabit? Our governments tell us not to do drugs but many, many of us do. Is this not my body to dispose of as I please? How is such a basic freedom, the freedom to exist or not, denied to people through religion and social norm?

The idea that suicide is cowardly to me is ridiculous. To face ones death is a noble thing. To step across the threshold of death willingly has got to be one of the bravest acts anyone can do. The answer to what is beyond death lies only in death itself. No one will ever “come back” and tell you about it.

I feel that people suffer at the core of their beings from a superhuman fear of death. Under all decisions we make is the decision to actively avoid being dead. Thus, through programming by our genetic makeup and our socio-cultural infrastructure we have learned to not die. But isn’t crossing willingly better than succumbing to the randomness of fate?

I think that those who believe strongly that suicide is wrong are ultimately afraid of death and their uncertainty about the beyond makes them uncomfortable with the idea that some people just want out of their lives.

True, suicide is the most selfish act a person can do. Other people can not be a consideration in deciding to take one’s life. Of course the world will be affected. Everything you do affects the world around you. Your choices and decisions are constantly changing your environment. Exiting reality will leave an unfortunate ripple in the shape of time. But isn’t that decision yours to make. It is your life, right?

separable

The path that we take on our life is so delicately inter-tangled with those people in our lives that each of our decisions affects everyone in proximity to us emotionally.

Every movement we make must be calculated enough to forward our progress without both negatively and positively affecting those we love. How is it in our lives that we have come to depend on others so strongly for support, or is this something we have always done, simply the animal nature of caring spread across the social grid like thick butter?

As we continue down our path (whatever path we have chosen for ourselves) we are unable to bring along others. Though we may try to share this path we take with them they can only be here with us if this is also the path that they choose.

Sharing a path is not easy and the stumbling blocks are greater the longer one is on the path with another. In the east it is believed that all life is pain and that all pain is illusion. Pain is all things, all emotions, all ideas. Friction of any kind in the progress of the soul is pain, any form of stimulation at all. But then if all of this is illusion, and we create this illusion as a way of teaching ourselves about the now, then when will class be dismissed?

coupling

What has been on my mind as of late is the whole concept of “coupling.” Obviously this tendency is based on the social mating rituals of a given culture. But why is there a sense of attachment to specific people in your genetic and mating pools? With only 2 exceptions any person I would say that I “love” is either already related to me genetically or having sex with me regularly.

I can think of dozens of reasons why it would be better for a species to create a sense of physical attachment to others in proximity to there genetic code. But what draws us to those who are not already related to us? Are we seeking to modify our genetic pool through traits we somehow know we should have?

Is it possible that we are ultimately attracted to the things we do not possess as individuals?

We all want what we don’t have?

When we consider the outcome of a long period of social change that affects our mating instincts and habits it seems inevitable that man is being genetically affected by the media and the corporations that own, protect, and fund the media.

Men and woman (but women in particular) are being told constantly what to like and dislike about themselves, their mates, friends, eating habits, etc. – mostly through the conduit of entertainment. Your horoscope, gossip column, TV sitcom, anything in your environment is passively and aggressively telling you who you should be as a person.

When we choose the person to whom we will give our emotions, and often our genetic code, how much of what we like about them is taught and how much is something we have no control over? Are we destined to be attracted to specific things because we have been shaped by our environment to want those things, or is the freedom to give one’s emotions to another an illusion and our code (and its animated algorithm of linear evolution) will want simply what it wants?

departures sigh

Returning home to pain, despair and loss. I find myself at a distance, wandering alone and wondering what is happening all around me.

I wish that somehow these thoughts could go away, as easily as a heart breaks. So many hopes of future reward are shattered as you go.

What tomorrow brings is always elusive, but then our dreams just fade away on a river of time. Drowning under a sound of departures sigh.

return (travel – last day)

Well my week of west coast retreat is over. I leave tonight to fly back to Chicago. I have had some interesting revelations both inward and outward during this stay.

The screening of my films at New Nothing Cinema last night went well. The crowd was receptive to the work, even if they didn’t really understand what it was about. The pieces I showed (One of the Sigils of the Heptameron, YHVH, and the Tree of Knowledge/Tree of Life pieces) are difficult to sit through all at once. But the crowd stayed on until the end.

In Chicago, to get a group of 30+ people into a room to watch dense experimental film would be a miracle. (Unless the artist was in the Whitney or something and the local film students were assigned to watch by a professor) The west coast, specifically the Bay area, has a great feeling of community that is perfectly represented by New Nothing Cinema (Thanks to Doug for making it all happen).

I return this evening with a head full of new ideas, thoughts and experiences. Hopefully in the wake of this trip good things will come.

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shadow

Some days a shadow falls over us, we can not explain what this shadow is or how it changes who we are but it is there, a lingering doubt on the edge of consciousness, a hand pushing you forward to your fate.

We move, even in the brightest light in a semblance of darkness, a shroud becomes our skin, our life is a blur of motion, jealousy and hurt. Why? What form have we taken through our actions that has led us here, this path a garden of forking ways, this journey now reaching its conclusion?

My mind works like a child’s toy, wound up for a moment of play and left to extinguish itself after its owner has grown bored and wandered away. I spin and I spin and I chatter in an ever descending rhythm of clicks and clacks, until I stop.

cable tv – travel (day four)

Last night I stayed in with Randy Lee and Ursula and watched cable tv, something I almost never do except in hotel rooms. TV continues to baffle me, but its misuse is something that has been talked about for decades (see the Glass Teat by Harlan Ellison). The one thing that does become more and more clear is that the effort involved in creating a 15 second national ad campaign is much larger than the effort involved in writing, scripting and acting a television show. The Simpson’s satire machine aside the average television program is less complex than an episode of Sesame Street. (But with sex/violence/human stupidity instead of education)

The human stupidity factor is becoming the greatest form of human expression and communication in the content of media in the early 21st century. By simply filming the events of normal people doing uneducated and senseless things and rebroadcasting these events back to the same normal uneducated people the media is creating a feedback loop of popular stupidity as an act of comic relief .

We are as a culture reflecting on the painful delight of watching someone hurt themselves, embarrass themselves, or otherwise create a simple situation that could have been avoided by foresight but was not. I am not saying some of it isn’t ridiculously funny, I am as inculcated in the cult of dark humor as anyone, but is that all the media has to say? “Look! Stupid people do stupid things! Isn’t that great!?”

The web is bringing us the ability to actively take a role in the form, structure and content of the data we are pounded with mentally everyday. We are becoming ever complex in our way of thinking as a race and the mind’s ability to adapt is evolving rapidly to meet the influx of data the average person is being exposed to by just going about their day. Shouldn’t the TV be trying to keep up with this architecture of active, rather than passive, media consumption?

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