a.nihil

philosophy

sisyphos

Human life as we know now is dependent on each other for absolute survival. The days where we dream of living as hunter-gatherers in disjointed tribes is a fantasy and so is the modern equivalent of living in an individualistic society where the “personhood” of each person is the most important thing. This identity is sanctimonious and is a “brand” that we carry ourselves in, marketing ourselves with our names and faces and the illusions they have to offer. We are disconnected from the nature around us and in a way formulate our whole dependency on other beings and in this case humans. We can say “we are not dependent on anyone” but the supermarkets have to be open, produce must be cheap, and our rooms clean. But we forget that outside our windows, far beyond the cities there are worlds where even our descriptions are void exist. The complexity of observing our interdependence reveals a magnified struggle with nature itself [1], in this case, with other humans (aren't humans nature after all?). To acknowledge the labor it takes to live this life is a starting point in reformulating our struggles against oppressive systems, philosophical ennui, and rebuilding a purpose that seems largely absent from modern life.

[1] This interdependence was largely ignored in the last 10,000 years of human civilization, leading to the near irreversible destruction of the planet we're living on. Could it be that we as humans do not possess this trait to see consequences beyond the immediate and strive for nothing except selfish goals?

#labour #philosophy #boredom

Boredom and Real life

Human achievement is everything. Be successful, own a house, and propagate more of your kind onto the planet. Happiness, success, smiles, and ambition. Radiate and flex, wealth shining in the sinews of your forearms gleaming with a Rolex or an iWatch, photograph to venerate, bow to the masters of success. Us, in the dream, toiling, imagining the greats: The capitalists, the artists, and people immortalized through pop culture and collective memory. People who have given words to our words, meaning beyond any meaning can derive from our problems of existence.

“I know you, I know you. You're the only serious person in the room, aren't you, the only one who understands, and you can prove it by the fact that you've never finished a single thing in your life. You're the only well-educated person, because you never went to college, and you resent education, you resent social ease, you resent good manners, you resent success, you resent any kind of success, you resent God, you resent Christ, you resent thousand-dollar bills, you resent Christmas, by God, you resent happiness, you resent happiness itself because none of that's real. What is real, then? Nothing's real to you that isn't part of your own past, real life, a swamp of failures, of social, sexual, financial, personal...spiritual failure. Real life. You poor bastard. You don't know what real life is, you've never been near it. All you have is a thousand intellectualized ideas about life. But life? Have you ever measured yourself against anything but your own lousy past? Have you ever faced anything outside yourself? Life! You poor bastard.”

These words had a stronger effect on me than the morning double espresso as they put a mirror to my thoughts, the only part being off was one of being a college graduate. It made me wonder about the cynicism that has gone under my skin, finding connection with other cynics wandering over the dense clouds of social media or public art. These words from William Gaddis reflect my face filled with the faces of thousands of humans, I exist as the fragments of all those who have lived before me who themselves are fragments of the people before them. These thoughts, the endless permutations of words and ideas that permeate the deep recesses of our everyday life mean nothing, our brains whittle away in idle chatter over topics both real and imaginary. An endless news feed, problems that require our attention and re-attention, the world going to shit and back, our hooplas and hurrays after day's work over a beer.. all events where our thoughts parse invisible meaning feeding into the shadow of our selves. Who are we? Thought processing, carbon-based machines have turned their lenses elsewhere.

What is real life? At what point do the vagaries of the everyday structured around capitalist ideals of efficiency and profit blend into the metaphysical aspects of living? The ethics and moral considerations of living in societies, our traditions, and our lives are synthesized to a point there is nothing beyond the artifice of these systems to imagine our place in the world. Our hope is through the passive rejection of what we're offered and waiting in meek silence for a natural ending to the boredom we've trapped ourselves in.

#boredom #civilization #philosophy

In my last essay, I talked about demolishing places of religion as their place in the world is done, but the blanketed destruction of these places of worship will create a further circle of violence that well into the future. One idea would be to convert these spaces into museums of “what-went-wrong-with-the-world”, museums of archaic thought whose cultural and moral relevance can be talked and debated about, without the central authority of a God or in extension, a cabal of humans propping up a mythical demagogue to further their interests.

Religion through the ages shaped our culture and paradigms , which in a scientific world can be distilled through means of reason and calculation. It is important to know our history and where we come from and in this sense religious institution can serve as existing set-pieces of knowledge of times past. Stripping these spaces of all power and converting them into places of real education will serve as a net positive for society, for when the dust settles the world will be a better place without imaginary control. What will become of such a world is a mystery, but it requires a belief in the total renegotiation with the ways of life as we know them now. These actions cannot stem from smaller ones, as the forces that wield this power will not yield their access to them. Cumulative, coordinated radical action is the only hope, erasing millennia of human inquiry (worthless for our age) in hopes of a better time to come. The moral learning from these religions have now formed the core of our social character, it is time to move on to pastures that can help us unveil our true potential.

As I write this, there's a new conflagration in India regarding Hindu temple remnants in the Gyan Vapi mosque in Varanasi, another burning flame to further fuel the right wing Hindutva ideology of the RSS/BJP. Issues like hunger, reducing power of democratic institutions, inflation, income inequality have all taken a back seat in the big dick competition of which stone has to be worshiped. Though the current batch of hyper-religious, politicized Hindus might want to avenge for past wrongs, the future will not be so kind for their misgivings in other fields.

#religion #politics #philosophy

A few days ago I wrote an essay about the plight of the Indian Muslims and the perils of rising Hindu majoritarianism in India. Though it was a small slice of refracting India through a religious lens, the basic point remains that a State should be free of all religious influence, no matter how hard it is to shake individual religious beliefs before getting into political office. Can religion stop being a performative act, with thousands upon thousands and of temples, mosques and churches, each vying for a growing market share? Are the subliminal metaphysical beliefs be outsourced to a cheap god, expending our collective energies in the worship of the unknown unconscious? Can we dream of a world without the weight of idle stones and crosses, our beliefs extending to the primitive beliefs from nascent past civilizations?

A true land of for the people will not harp over imaginative pasts and glorious futures, our dreams should structure around what is possible, through work that is legitimate not mythical. Break those temples, stone the mosques, raze them churches, what is political is not hidden in the confines of a book or that appeals to the lowest common denominator of the human self. A true leadership will rid of the ills of past lives we cannot shake off, our culture is worth only if there is space for us to live within it. For all the blood spilled over the name of religion, let's shun ourselves from the intoxication from a false set of beliefs.From the dust that will remain in our public spaces, let us fill our amnesia with rational knowledge. A desire for a sip from the fountain of knowledge must remain, but the methodology shouldn't be outsourced to abstract gods created in our identity. As long as these archaic institutions remain in our midst, we will be draining our precious mental resources for stone cold pieces that have no interest in our lives. Burn them, break them, bury them, their job here is done.

#religion #politics #philosophy

A recent trip saw me losing a memory card with over 60 GB of photos and snippets of the internet I found interesting, along with other media whose existence I do not remember now. I would've assumed that my first reaction would be panic and beating myself for not having proper backups but my stance has been one of relief: What I do not know, I cannot miss. This brings the volume of data consumed and generated by me in the process and a reflection of history to a greater prospect.

We are generating data at a pace greater than any point before in human history, with our collective dossiers piling up in the server farms of internet companies and dusty hard drives at our homes. Our memories are now secure in storage devices that we often can pull up a certain past from photos and texts, where re-imagining our life stories without hard skeletal evidence almost becomes a thing of disbelief.

Certain histories must be forgotten, in particular, if they're the boring and the mundane to let us color the voids we left in the pastels of our vantage today. Harsher realities can also get a fluid makeover to give a dramatic tuning to our past which might be hard to do with reminders of exact happenings of events. A common belief is that the internet remembers everything, but will it remember everything forever? It seems to be improbable, what incentive will for-profit corporations have for sustaining our digital selves into perpetuity? Neither do we have any incentive to do the archival on our own. Will having a complete record of the past help us live in the present? The diaries of our forepeople gather dust in termite city, with an odd page or two finding their fifteen minutes of fame during a lazy news cycle.

This leads to a bigger question, what if we did not look at data as the things we've created on paper and in our heads but also the things that invade our physical spaces, something we see as being more absolute. Aren't 5000-year-old ruins of a city, the statues of a Stalinist leader, or temples and mosques of national importance have the same value as individual memories of ourselves? Aren't our associations with them as absurd as the random clicks that line the profits of a mega-corporation? Can we imagine a world where are pre-histories no longer define us, where our memories are malleable by immediate happenings – would it also mean a resurfacing of all the horrors of the past? Burn all books, destroy all the monuments, go back to the glory of the Stone Age, there's nothing to worry about here as there's nothing to remember. Waking up in such a world would be confusing, where we have to start from scratch again and perhaps endure pestilence and the capacity to interact with the world. Will it give us a deeper connection with our surroundings and distance ourselves from the anthropocentric worldview we've become comfortable with?

Another question is who will have the power to destroy our shared pasts and histories and what agendas will drive them. It shouldn't be motivated by politics but by idealism, where voices with an emotional attachment to memory should be coddled by the hard actions of transition. Another debate will be about what should be erased, would our weapons go, and everything we know about the world? A new start will give us possibilities that we do not know exist yet and with that comes the fear of the new. The 60 GB is out in vapor for now, I go on to generate more data including this piece and if there's any history to destroy, perhaps starting with this essay is a good idea.

#history #philosophy

note to self

In certain moments of living a strange thought pops up, who am I really? There is this body in which I carry myself around and I think for myself and other vessels like me. Under the hood of my body, thoughts come from nowhere and as time passes this vessel shrinks and perishes. The body moves through a 3-Dimensional space which in the context of the universe is largely lifeless. Other forms of life around me have long been conquered and shown their space. Trees forms beautiful shapes and dogs march behind owners. Rules, like straight lines appear everywhere. There is a pattern in which vessels must interact, there are strict sanctums that are not to be violated. I have an identity, a name, a photo and a passport. These are all external, summoning bits of personality when called upon or identified.

On this same planet, dinosaurs ravaged and early life forms emerged through single-celled organisms. A past where my kind were not even the heroes, a hostile planet when lived in the wild. This human life of mine in the same line-of-command of the forces that have fought against an unkind world, braving heat, famines and disease. This illusion of human civilization from a vantage within it seems invincible, yet my fossilized self will have a different story to tell to a yet unimagined species that will rule this planet a billion years from now.

Within the deep silence of myself there is no name and there is no face. I look at my hands and wonder, who is the one looking, who is the one wondering and whose hands are these? Looking around, I belong everywhere and to everything though that is not the case with the world of straight lines and rules. I have to obey and I have to display necessary characteristics of a normal human. Inside me are urges that are at odds with each other. There is a nonsensical attachment to the immediate human world and then another that is far removed like the view of the planet from the a rocket that has achieved terminal velocity.

Why am I even alive? What final purpose does this being alive bring forward. Amongst other vessels there is the question of sanctity, which arises from a self-importance that is illogical when dug deep. Humans telling other humans that they are important. Humans worshiping other humans, these vertebrate, two-legged animals whose nascent evolution has morphed into an inflated, cocaine lined self-worthiness. I am a human but only because I am classed as such. Within the silence of my head there is just confusion of how all signals convert into the live video feed of my day. In this day I have to assume my avatar and give it dialogue, I have to stand for my character and perform day after day.

Chatter, chatter, chatter. Words, faces, smiles, ideas, improvement, skill, focus and perpetuation. There is a cardinal boredom we are all endowed with, a constant tinkering as a mass of animals we have to endure. There is no escape from within this body and this society, the straight lines run in infinite parallels with all of them leading to everywhere and nowhere. Do not ask too many questions, ask the how but not the why. There is a great peace in knowing that there is an upper limit to curiosity. Be curious but within approved domains.

I look at my hands and I wonder about the I. There is a cold breeze and the synapses fire automatically, clenching my jaw and my fists. I take a deep, involuntary breath and the icy breeze works its way inside. For a moment the whole world disappears and in its void, I am free.

#self #philosophy #living

open the window

Yeah, a day happened. Three different beers, rum balls, cardboard cigarettes, chips, and spice. Christmas. Or the day before or in the mood before. A half blotter of LSD, a treasure found along the way. A way of life, Tunisia, Morocco whatever you like. A desert storm, a perfect triangle of dark green almost black. coming from an asteroid covering aluminum foil. A gift, eat it – it's too old to survive the storage. A kiss of mushroom salts, something DMT. Chemicals. Inducing directions to the frameworks of life, an aspect, a reality. Off to sleep, lost in a doomsday scroll as purgatory English comedy plays off on the screen. Mark and Jeremy, the Peep show they introduce you to. Or the writers behind, people who write or do not. Dreaming about life as a face of life itself, lost in a desert – cut to stone in summer, a bright Mars burns bright. A snake unfolds as a face melts away, the eyes of the squid globs of a cat-eye that was floating next to a rotting corpse. The cat was never found, a mystery up for imagination. Snakes, a family of four or six or sixteen, characters amongst characters. Each individual in this game is a reflection of someone else, connected through birth, art, and love. A perch to live love and life, behind screens, as you probably are right now. OR on a book, or in sentimental thoughts, each our drug. Survive and commit to survival, a game of dice with oneself. Explosions in triangles take numerous shapes, programmed by smiling machines dropping neon flashes against the pitch-black like a ghost wedding reception in the Indian hinterlands.

A solar energy burst destroys the networks of electricity we depend on for connection, obliterating the shared knowledge of centuries. Who remembers to read anymore? The fascists come for the literature, burning books by the tonne. Amidst all this chaos, Newtonian physics will traumatize young students, propagated by the minds polluted by the narrative of action and reaction. The day of Armageddon will come destroying everything in its wake but calculus will live on, as a religious canon, until the last breath of humanity. Neon machines spiral in patterns with the eyes closed sucked through a vacuum tube of a pipe of cosmos. Me, a product of copulation, in a planet filled with the things we think are perverse. Everyone comes from the same slime of existence, for a brief while we possess beauty and muscles. Feel equal in the sense of the word to my fellow people, for the realities we live go far astray than the principles we assemble by. Open your eyes, a family of four sits on the ceiling. An ambulance speeds by and the lights flicker for a moment, a nest of vipers slicing against the white of the room. Awake you're asleep, sleep and you're awake. Look outside the window and the day doesn't seem to start, the sun has finally fled.

The day of annihilation is here and long live Newtonian Physics.

#philosophy #tripreport

Loss isn't about losing an object of affection. Loss is about losing the view of ourselves with the object that is no longer with us. It is everything that could have been different, a yearning for a life that is not now. When we lose we do not cry for our object of loss, we instead cry for who we have become and the choices made in this becoming. It is the painful re-writing of personal history, painful because we are now aware that our destiny no longer matches our fantasy.

When we possess objects and people, we put a part of ourselves into them. We cannot isolate these parts and view them as they are – the birth of these selves are a result of interaction with the object or person. These selves have their own life contained within them and with each loss, we have a micro-death. We know how we react to death, the possibility of not being. A weird imagination to have, unimagining oneself. A unit of time that has come to naught, a brief being and by all means sporadic.

Loss is normal. Loss is what we all are left with. Pleasure is to surf and feel the wind against our faces, loss is that endless jump from the cliff into the sea.

#loss #love #philosophy

Do we ever know what it is to love? Love is one of those things that everyone has an opinion on but no-one can define. It is an abstraction we are made to believe, often confused with sex as we are product of one or both. Love is that sunny photograph embalmed in memory, always enshrining a fleeting moment of happiness to permanence.

Love seems to require a reflection outside ourselves, the ability to touch, feel and talk. To know that humans outside oneself can feel the same way as we do, come to the same conclusions or learn in seeing life through the same pair of eyes. But all this happens through the eyes of the singular lover, what appears to be shared is still an independent byproduct of one being. The haze of love confuses these connections, the independent overlaps the dependent, the effect overshadows the cause. Programmed to fetishize the imaginations of impossible love, we are caught in an oxytocin frenzy of emotion and legalese of commitment.

In moments of deep harmony where one is aware of their sense of loneliness, love manifests as an inverted mirage, a weekend bender on the finest grain alcohol. All languages, description, romance and actions are for the outside. The mind when alone does away with social conventions, seeing that it is after all an inconsequential being walking a negligible part of the universe. This realization is in a silence that no words can describe. In the vacuum of existence, love is that pale blue dot, improbable yet possible. Is this a source of hope or of claustrophobic detention? This meaning is lost to life.

#love #time #philosophy

on rules

To live is to have an assembly of atoms react in randomness which when seen through the lens of consciousness manifest as order. The consciousness arises from within the domains of the individual atomic components, meaning the order is hallucinatory while giving a framework of comfort and control. This order helps us take stock of our everyday actions by categorizing them, lending predictability in a void of randomness. Rules by themselves are arbitrary, falling victim to the whims of consciousness and constrained by the randomness of existence.

When interacting with a person or a whole ecosystem of living and non-living things this randomness becomes exponential, neccesiating codes of conduct. Society is a good example of this and within it the the social, familial and work units which are all comprised of their own system of rules to reduce the randomness of interaction. Taking these rules on their face value shields from confronting the chaos of consciousness. But what happens if we follow all rules? We become homogenized with small personal quirks as the only distinguishing element for self identity.

The established rules need a medium of trust, a unit that can be analyzed and measured for an optimal design society. One of the loci of these rules are the moral codes of conduct that govern our social life. These rules are easily disseminated and executed but they lack the ability to be quantified. The quantification is necessary to enforce one of the unspoken rules of human existence, the drive for constant betterment. This where the stricter employ of law comes in tied to every human across the world.

Designed to preserve order, the rule of law constraints each person to set courses and predictable outcomes. Only cool, rational thought becomes accepted at its exalted gates and in return we apply the principles of law to our moral code of conduct as well. There is no deviation from this exactitude, it is the common currency underlying all our transactions. To create any kind of system this notion of order is necessary which is not surprising that our financial system is also built on a foundation of order which is mathematical at its heart, finally, everyone has a quantifiable value.

It only takes a bit of disillusionment to let this nascent order evaporate along with our sense of identity. Living in a false identity, like a fish in a bowl – we accept everything that is given to us without question, fighting tooth and nail for its preservation. Who we are is imaginary. Our faiths, our hopes, our worth are all misguided attempts of creating a caricature of humanity we all relate with, a relation that has connections in its atomicity than the ideals of thought. The blind trust of rules is myopic, perhaps that's the only reality we have to contend ourselves with.

#philosophy #life #thought