Friday, 21 September 2012

Guided by Wrong Questions,Tripping on Fake Answers:Tears of Foolish Joy on our Grimace

I always found quite funny when people say: “death is a mistery, because nobody has ever come back to tell you”. Now this attitude exhibits a clear worry, a concern directed, towards the event of identity annihilation. Which is quite understanble, no doubt. My issue with the sentence regards the way you put it: the contradictiory experience of the limit of experience. Without recognize it. That creates a lot of epistemic red herrings.
In fact if you tell them: look at the last raws, yes, that little hands up. You know whose hands are those? The Tibetans. When you state that nobody has ever come back, there is always a Tibetan raising his hand. And you always ignore him. But he's a nice guy and without anger or resentment, the next time he'll do it again, for you. But why you never pay attention to that little hand?

Of course, because these people, wise needless to say, are just too involved in their culture. They are not really coming back, it's just a tradition, a way of speaking. Nobody really believes that you close your eyes when you die and after a while (3 days? doesn't it sound familiar?), YOU re-open them. Not even the Tibetans believe that....
Yet you are more than ready to believe (with more than one doubt) that a Jewish guy of 2000 years ago is the creator of the laws of physics, he was slaughter for you, so your annihilation won't take place. All right. I mean, I have no problem with that. I love weird thinking. And I don't think the Tibetan is much more right than Jesus. I'm only inviting you to reflect. On the little hand.

The Tibetan is not saying “I'm back”. Maybe someone means it, but THAT is tradition. The Tibetan is offering you a way to deal with the limit of experience. What is fading away? Structures most of all. The structures that link your body with projection of society. For example, your national security number, your pension, your properties. Human societies deal with actual carriers of identity, especially with regards of material property. Assets. Money. But on the other side of the spectrum they heavily encourage continuity amongst selves far beyond the material support. Culture. Nationality. The tribe, the clan. We love to give our name to a future buddy. We like to believe that we belong to the same kin of a guy lived 1, 2 ,3 or more thousands years ago. And after Darwin we ignited a lustful odyssey of tracking down. Millions of years back. 

We are handed down the same flame of curiosity , the same malice of Australopitheci, who were walking in Africa very long ago. I really like it. Do you believe in continuity or disruption? Well, the primary experience, the feeling of being there, is very attached to the beef, to the moment. Here and now. So, we happen to be and we'll happen to die.
Your driving license, yes, will die. Your memories. Kind of. Many are very excited now with the potentiality of technology, they want to store information, the more the better. If you could store all the information, you'll never really die. So any picture is a prayer of immortality. Good. But then it is true that a photo is stealing your soul: if you want to stand firm against mortality, shooting pictures you'll be so screwed by the limit of experience, that yes, death will grab you by the balls.

We fall in love with being there, with the impersonation of being there. When on stage, no matter what, we increasingly focus on the character, rather than with the acting. The acting is a recursive role-playing of human brains, which step by step assumes a specific identity. When we first walk on stage, we are following the same footprint left by our ancestors many years before in the Valley, in Africa. The very same. It's always the same walking. You are literally playing the role that your Australopithecus ancestor was playing, you are back. Breath, my friend, those very lungs belonged to Ichtyostega and the mud skipper fish. Stretch your back, a bit more: can you feel it? You are your backbone, you developed from it, you rearranged from it. Before, without such axis reference, you were growing like a starfish, radiating. Then you grow, your head like a bit a turnip-flower springing from the dorsal spine. 

Yes, you are back. What is the limit of death then? That you won't afford to go somewhere? Or no more sexual encounters? A chance less to gamble? What is tomorrow denying you today? The self is always back. That's not the problem. The problem is when you call self all the small actuations that entertain men in their walking on stage. And I admit, they are absolutely funny. But when you want more, you lose the meaning of their smallness. And if you chase the small habits of being there as the most important thing, you miss the opportunity to join the beauty of being there. It is difficult to join the universe with all your national security number, your passport, your archive of pictures, music, your expectations about yourself, your partner, your offspring, your resentment against the government, your parents, that bitch in secondary school. Very difficult. 

Breath, stretch the spine and smile. See, you don't have to smile because life is beautiful. Fuck that. Smile just to flatter the muscles of your cheeks. Smile to show your primate gum. Smile to give sense of a central nervous system. Do you know what is the best posture ever? Squatting. Dawkins thinks that our ancestors started bipedism because of that. Feed-squatting. For Westerns is quite painful at the beginning. Take it as an exercise for immortality. 10 minutes a day, squat. After few weeks the excruciating pain in the knee will pass. The thigh pressing the chest will go from unbearable to pleasant. And you'll have a chance to feel like the first Australopithecus, who started to walk the walk. If you don't find it cool, you deserve many more re-incarnation, or a million year in purgatory. Or whatever.

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