I awoke suddenly this morning, slight headache reminding me of last night’s drinks, with one inspiring question: “What if you knew you were to die 5 minutes from now?” I wrapped my arms around my husband, kissed his back, breathed in, and let go. At that moment, at that ungodly time in the morning, that was the most truest thing I could be doing.
As I lay awake, and the 5 minutes passed, I began to mentally apply that same feeling of truth to every situation in life and quickly saw how much lack of true self had been in my actions and speech. From work, to in the line at the supermarket, too much was filled with falsehoods and lies.
There was no need to walk this hypothetical down into months, years, or decades… for the truth was apparent. I am dying. We all are. I for one, have left things undone, unsaid, unshared, unfelt, untasted, unseen, and unaccomplished. The realization/acceptance has created a great urgency in me to patch myself up anew and genuine.
In any life situation, with any person, what is the most truest thing to do? Would you deny love if it offered itself? Would you fake a smile? Would you tell a lie? Would you procrastinate?
So, why are you now?
Answer yourself, if not this post. But I will gladly pay you a penny for your inner thoughts, if you would be so generous to share them with me for so low a price. Perhaps we could learn to live, and die, together.
While discussing the meaning of life with bloggers and friends, this video experiment came to my attention. I watched it amidst the all encompassing big questions of life and meaning, carefully observing and soaking in the raw human experience.
There is something beautiful in consensual non-sexual intimacy. Could it be there is also something evil in our (American? Anglo? Judeo-Christian? who is “our”?), thought that intimacy should be limited? In the culture I live in, at least, experiencing our fellow human with any other sense other than sight is extremely limited. We shake hands in professional encounters, but everything else is deemed inappropriate or uncomfortable.
In classical philosophical discussions on love and intimacy, there is found hardly a trace of our concept of romanticism and monogamy. Socrates and many other philosophers were married with children, but also would have a young boy they shared an intimate relationship with. The sexual interactions aside, it was seen and accepted largely as a mentor-disciple type exchange with the elder imparting himself into the acolyte.
Judeo-Christian understanding, at least, seems to have interpreted and encourage this type of imparting of the self as something only properly expressed through child-rearing and creating. Why is this so? Life, knowledge, wisdom, and experience are all surely more broad then this understanding. A child is naught the only fruit of an intimate exchange. “Intimate,” furthermore, is hardly sexual in nature alone. Why do we shirk from the word in other contexts?
I find my mine reeling with thoughts difficult to put into words. The above has most likely hardly done any of this justice. But this is why communication is key, and exchange with fellow humans paramount.
How do you understand intimacy? Does the above video make you uncomfortable, or smile? Do you see it as sexual, or other? What does it communicate?
How does all of this fit into the meaning of life? Or anything?
Today I gave myself a huge headache by doing something a Philosophy graduate should not do: take an entrance exam for an entry level state job. Sitting in a room of 50+ humans, bubbling in circles on a scan-tron, and attempting to discern the correct answer for Business major type questions sent me over the line into full-fledged about to have an aneurism mode.
My mind has been hurting ever since.
As I laid on the couch contemplating my likely useless attempt at getting a “plain Jane” job during a short desire to “be like everyone else” and “keep up with the Jones’s,” I did what every good philosopher does: contemplate life.
Why did I do that? For the money, obviously. Then what? For what purpose? Is that really what I want to do? Isn’t it what we all want to do? If not, then what it is? Why are we here? Why am I here?
Well, clearly, not to file reports and be a good little secretary.
So then, what is it? A quarter of my life is spent, with a short span of fertility and youthful vitality left. There must be a purpose and meaning.
Far from a sorrowful contemplation. Today, a thinker’s pained head’s question by returning to the basics of it all, as a child:
What is the meaning of Life? Yours, humans in general, or LIFE in general. What does it all mean?
The title of this may be a little harsh, but as I was working today, complaining about how sick I felt and the fact that my job does not offer paid sick days nor vacation… I found my mind immediately drifting to my own post just a few days ago concerning First-world problems vs. Real World Problems. I felt horrible, until I thought about my last two posts on Rape, and realized that with those, despite my personal effort to stay objective and philosophical in all things, the reality is I have biases.
In fact, we all do. We are subjective creatures, incapable of devoiding ourselves of our own biases. Despite the common perception on philosophy, the goal is not to be objective for this is not possible, the goal is to attempt to be open-minded while being explicit of one’s own subjective reality.
So, a confession is needed to be open with my biased nature, to show that despite my efforts, the self will always creep in:
I’m a woman. 1/3 women have been raped, or molested. The later happened to me in my early teenage years, and many friends are victims of the former.
I’m an Atheist and ex-Christian. I do not hate religion, but then again I do. Sometimes, my past as a fundie Christian leads me to sympathize, other times, my Atheism leads me to scoff at the attempts of religious people. It’s a reality, one I try to keep in check.
I’m a vegetarian and animal rights sympathizer. Secretly, I find your meat eating disgusting. Secretly, I judge you for taking part and paying into the abomination that is factory produced meat products.
And in other words, I’m a hypocrite and possibly a horrible person. I remind myself that all that matters is the strive towards a better personal life and world, but how often do we do that and gossip behind backs, or silently judge? Surely we all do.
It can feel good to get the biases out, but it can also, as it does now, feel awfully icky. I tell most people I engage with to point out anything I say that is judgmental, harsh, or not logically consistent. I mean it, for I am a lover of wisdom.
What are your biases? Recognized, or not, there are there.
Can we learn to thrive with our biases? Did I over-judge myself? Can our biases be a good thing? Can we learn from them? Or am I entirely wrong, and true objectivity is possible?
I am usually the very philosophical type. However, with the past ongoing discussion on rape being carried out here and originally here, as well as on this blog’s Facebook, it has proved to be an emotionally charged topic. Rape is more than a concept, it is an evil reality that 1 out of every 3 women has had happen to them.
The above brings a pertinent perspective for the male audience: How would you handle rape if it was your daughter?
Leads to an interesting discussion on consent, consciousness, and the concept of self. When taken philosophically, and open-mindedly, it may take some hard arguing to get out. I am interested in everyone’s thoughts.
For your ease into the discussion, these are the last two interactions between self and OP:
ME: Hmm, amnesia =/= consent either. I hear your point, and it’s granted,
I can see the male’s side, but there is a female side as well, and rape ruins lives. However, if consent was given under the influence, then that it one thing. I see a difficulty in proving that if she did not remember. I, again, agree assuming based on that reality alone, is neither OK.
I can not imagine a person having not desired the act, thereafter. Remembered or not, it’s painful.
I’m still slightly torn on something though. Doesn’t the man have the ability to say no as well? I’m unsure why the man doesn’t carry at least some responsibility in this discussion. Especially if she is overly intoxicated, and him not.
Am I making sense? Or going in circles? Do tell, I-m honestly trying to wrestle with this.
OP: I don’t think so. If the man doesn’t consider himself raped, there isn’t an issue if he consumes too much alcohol. If he consents to it, then he consents to it.
Now the man who had sex with the girl? Same thing. They both /could/ say no, but why should they? It’s a consenting act.
My tip is to just not be shit-faced drunk in the first place.
I try to live my life in harmony when possible and not pass judgement. However, I have a difficulty with individuals with this perspective. Especially Senators, or even candidates, which is where I got this image from. Mainly, for two reasons:
How will a country under “God’s Word” handle nonbelievers, or other-god/goddess believers?
Whose interpretation of “God’s Word” is to be followed?
How does the believer respond to those questions? How does the non-believer react to such admonishments? Could it ever happen?
It’s hard to follow this up with commentary or blogging of any sort. However, it is something I try to live by when possible even though America has made it far to easy to be comfortable while not seeing the “real world” context.
What is something you do/say/don’t do that could be seen as a “1st world problem”? Ever stop and have a world-context moment? Does it bother you? Should it? Why?
In March, the wedding website TheKnot.com surveyed nearly 19,000 women who got married last year. Of those women, 86 percent took their husband’s name. The practice of women keeping their last names, first introduced in the U.S. by suffragette Lucy Stone in the 1850s… By the 2000s, only 18 percent of women were keeping their names, according to a 2009 study published in the journal Social Behavior and Personality. Now, according to TheKnot, it’s at just 8 percent….*
Attention world: I’m that 8%!
It is already disheartening to me how few females have chosen Philosophy as their career path, but only 92% of women are still taking their husband’s names? Why is it assumed of me that I have taken his name at all?
Why? For what purpose? Tradition? A sense of belonging and faithful wifery? The reason for me keeping my born name is simple and logical:
I don’t want to change my name on every document and institution I’m a part of.
I like my last name, it kicks ass.
I do not like his last name.
Why should I change it?
I’m an individual, not a wife. I get tax breaks and my man and I work well together and care for each other, so fuck it – we got married. That’s all.
As with all my posts, I’ll reiterate in case those who venture herein think I’m creating an argument: there’s no argument, just choice. I made mine and I am happy with it. I am more interested in the thought process of others.
Why marry? Do you plan to? If so, would you change your name, or want your S.O. to change his/hers? If you are married, what did you chose and why? Do you think this tradition is still rooted in religion? Is it a possession/property issue? What are your thoughts or reactions?
I am neither anti- nor pro-drugs, let me say that first. I live my life pro-choice, believing strongly that it is one’s right to do with oneself what one wishes. However, I am unsure of how safe it is to tout certain mind-altering drugs as entirely safe.
Amongst humanity there is the negatively connoted reality of mental disorders, and other neuro-biological conditions. The most scientific of studies (not CannabisTimes, mind you, actual medical journals) suggest that the use of these types of drugs, weed included, can lead to and increase the risk of psychosis.
Is it any coincidence that so many thinkers, artists, philosophers, and the like have killed themselves? Does their drug use have anything to do with this? They say that drugs can not make you do anything you would not otherwise, but for the deep thinker.. just how terrifying is that? We know that we are entirely capable of all things as a human being, so why not?
However, this post is not to arouse doubt but to discuss because it is something that must be:
Are mind-altering drugs safe for all? Would you do them, or have you done them? What were their effects?