I’m only 1/4 of the way though it, but this article in the September 5 New Yorker (am I seriously that behind? Yep.) is seriously blowing my mind. Like, in a weird (god, I can’t stand this word): spiritual way. Like, I’m still sort of, processing it or something and am not yet ready to talk about it. (It has, however, turned my writing style into a Holden Caulfield parody. [More accurately: a Franny Glass parody.])
First thought: this dude manages to mush Ayn Rand’s theory of Objectivism (which, as you know, pretty much saved me from the most godawful childhood of all time but which, as you know, I am now forbidden to talk about because Liberals Cannot Admit They Might Have Ever Learned Anything From People Who Are Not Liberals)—in short: right and wrong are objective concepts, and if you don’t have values you’re worthless—into a Buddhist concept of the (lack of) self (=we are all one) in some mixed up weird and wondrous way that is, like, doing something to me.
Second thought: WHAT IF WE REALLY ARE A PART OF EACH OTHER. And….like…indivisible. Not linked like in the sense that we’re all humans blah blah, but literally our atoms are all mixing and it’s really not clear where you end and I begin and our minds are these complicated little traps to make us think we’re these separate entities but in reality…is this getting crazy-cheesey? Is this something everyone knows but me?
Here’s why I think I’m thinking about this lately: I DON’T LIKE ANYTHING.
I mean, there’s lots I like. Sake, my cats, my shop, masturbating, my boyfriend, noodles, books, hard work—you know, the usual.
But most of the world, and particularly the people on it, make me sick to my stomach. The other day someone friended me on Facebook and I caught myself thinking “Just what I fucking need, another goddamn friend.” –as if the very idea of human connection with someone I haven’t already let into my pre-screened circle was so useless that even clicking on someone’s profile to see what movies we both like was a ludicrous exercise in wasted time.
This feeling doesn’t feel so good. Pre-judging people and closing myself off so tightly. But what’s the alternative? Being let down by the world, over and over and over until you find those little scraps of light you press to you—that whole thing, I guess.
Anyway, when I came home last night after a typical “driving when you’re so exhausted that the road is spinning is the closest thing to doing drugs I’ll ever experience” drive home (just 1.5 miles, don’t be worried about me!) and collapsed into bed and started reading about this guy who says that the idea of the self is ludicrous, I thought—yes.
Maybe if I could get it through my head that I’m actually a part of the world, and I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together (yes, I am seriously being blown away by ideas that were best expressed in the song lyrics to which I was conceived) I could calm down a bit about hating the world so goddamned much.
I don’t know—maybe?
Seriously, I have only had one wee glass of sake tonight, I swearz.
Read the article until then, OK, and we’ll chat about it? Does it show up as free for everyone? I fear not. That’s dumb. Maybe, like, email me and I’ll give you my New Yorker password thing or something if not.
PS: Ume sake = amazing! Finally, a decent use for the awful terrible umeboshi plum!
PPS: Your guess is as good as mine as to why there’s a paintbrush in the linen closet. The knitting needles hold my hair, but the paintbrush, not so much.