12.27.2016

On Solitude: Balancing the Human & Inhuman



This is a bit more of a personal podcast as I take a quick break from talking about my book. This one was inspired by Christmas and my will to solitude — and the limits of this will.

I've long enjoyed the romance of the solitary man who takes joy in clouds and the sky. And, no doubt, these things bring me a certain ecstasy. But I run into the limits of my inhumanity as I feel lonely, as I grieve, as I desire. To shed my humanity is a false dream, a dangerous dream. There is much that is beautiful in the human experience, even when ugly. But, more than beauty, there is the inevitability of that human tug of childhood memory, of romantic desire, of a will to be loved.

I mention:

- What this hebe does on Christmas
- Kierkegaard's reading of Abraham and Isaac in "Fear and Trembling"
- Deleuze and Guattari's inhuman becoming

2 comments:

ayşegül said...

This is the fundamental contradiction from which we emerged apparently. OK, let's say entanglement. I used the word "contradiction" because there was something like "being intelligent is about being able to entertain contradictory thoughts."

Anyway...

There was a time when I believed that if I manage to understand something, anything, I would be free of that. Being independent, not being a slave to anything has always been one of my main themes in life, as I see. I believed I got over jealousy, for example, by simply thinking about it and seeing how ridiculous it is. Then, there came a time of so much aching that I understood (!) - sadly - that it wasn't about understanding at all. Understanding did not remove the ache, it did not heal the wound...

So, being human and not being into being human but at the same time being into some humans being with/near/in you... At the end, all I understand is that I am not that intelligent if we believe the above statement - I still can't remember where I heard it, but it stayed with me - since this creates a vertigo in my mind. And yet, here I am living in that vertigo. No. Existing as that vertigo.

I don't even know what I say now...

Sharing the solitude with certain humans - which are not solid, firm, or closed in their humanity - seems to be the key for some safe existence in the delirium of vertigo... Of course, they should be open to such an exchange. I still don't understand why most of them aren't. I guess this is another mystery I should just go along with and not try too hard to understand since understanding wouldn't make them desire sharing. Here, another mystery... Understanding makes me desire and I desire understanding. Why don't they?

Sorry, I just couldn't help myself and wanted to write something, anything. My solitude is saying "hi!" to your solitude, I guess. And she is bad at thinking before saying something. Also, she went a little crazy due to too much of herself.

Daniel Coffeen said...

Aysegul! Excuse my delayed reply. I love this. And, yes, "understanding" is not, in fact, understanding at all — I 'understand' that fear is stupid, that wishing things other than as they are is insane, that jealousy is idiotic, etc. But I don't feel those things, not all the time. Which makes me think I don't understand them at all. Maybe it's a semantic question — no doubt, it is — but we know it's something else, too.

I return your 'hi' of solitude, heartily, and thank you for it.