March 13th, 2016
The truly conventional and dreadfully boring people talk about their day but the interesting ones talk about ideas. And it was over a conversation with an interesting friend recently that I came upon an idea, a part of my personality, which I was not aware of, at least with any sort of clarity, earlier. Our conversation came to the general topic of extra-sensory perceptions and I have, as a matter of principle and practicality, always maintained that it is all a lot of hot air. That wasn't the point that I found interesting though. It is absolutely idiotic to argue whether there is a God or not and I try not to lower myself to to the depths of intellect where I'd be forced to partake in such a conversation. Similarly it is absolutely ridiculous to argue about other supernatural phenomenon and it is waste of life to argue one way or the other. However, it is supremely interesting to think about whether one would like the possibility of a given supernatural phenomenon and if yes then why. Because it tells something deep about the person in question, about his or her personality. During the conversation I mentioned that I see two broad categories of people in this regard, one which is simple minded and numerous in its members and the other which is devious and very small. However, the latter category is small only because people are hypocritical and cowardly, especially when it comes to those characteristics in them which they see as being flawed.
The categories are with respect to the question, whether one would like the possibility of life after death and the possibility of any communication between the two realms. Allowing for this possibility may be greatly consoling for those who have lost someone dear (but perhaps not.) In this respect the first category comprises of those who would not want to accept this possibility but would instead try to provide an alternative form of hope. This hope generally goes along the lines of this life being precious and meant to be enjoyed, a life which is but waiting to be distilled into whatever meaning one would like it to have. The vision is one of a great and curious explorer, one who looks courageously in the distance, his eyes set forward, and has no business looking back and no need for much consolation from without. I do not belong to this category but to the second one. The second category comprises of those who, again, would not like to accept this supernatural possibility but would like to provide no hope and no redemptive possibility either. I did not have to think twice in order to conclude that I had no interest in being in the first category and that it was, indeed, the second one where I naturally felt at ease. The follow up question, obviously, is why, and the answer to this is not very clear to me. A related question, which I asked my friend, was on the nature of the kind of God that one would like to have. Whether one would like for there to be a benevolent God - who then must be incompetent in order to account for the great misery in this world - or whether one would like for there to be a devious, vile God who is having fun at the expense of poor humans. Again, I'd go for the latter. I feel that it lends more meaning and more dignity to human misery than a bumbling buffoon almighty who just happens to suck at his job. I ultimately have infinitely more respect for an intelligent and devious entity than a foolish and "good" one. And this perhaps is the central point here. My vested interest is not in whether the world turns out good or bad or whether people turn out happy or sad. I do not feel any automatic connection to the broad liberal goals of human emancipation and/or environmental protection, seeing much of it as a perverse extreme of self-congratulatory and self-delusional behavior anyway. My vested interest, which is much more modest, is only in whether they turn out interesting or insipid. A peaceful world full of good and happy people is the stuff of my nightmares. Like the very limited imagination of those who dream of it and hope for it, this world is pale, colorless, tasteless, featureless, and pointless.