S&F Camus Rising

S&F - Camus Rising sm“Is one going to die, escape by the leap, rebuild a mansion of ideas and forms to one’s own scale? Is one, on the contrary, going to take up the heart-rending and marvelous wager of the absurd?”

So writes Camus in Absurd Freedom, a small section in the book The Myth of Sisyphus (thank you J. Swift!).  As near as I can tell, in this section Camus argues against the constructs we use to try to define, understand, render meaning to, and ultimately constrain life – our “bureaucracy of mind and heart” which, regardless of our desperate efforts, do not write us a blank cheque on eternity…

Instead, he argues that dying unreconciled and not of one’s own free will is essential – – as, “life will be lived all the better if it has no meaning”.

Yes, you heard that right!  To continue to live with impunity and abandon in the great unknowable shadow of absurdity is the ultimate revolt against oblivion!

(Or, as per The Slow Room…)

photoP.S.  On a tangential note, this got me to thinking about how we tell stories.. with beginning, middle, and end, and especially through endorsing satisfactory resolution of all introduced threads.  It’s no wonder we struggle with accepting the non-reconciliation of our own lives, given we are taught that good stories should always have closure as well as karmic balance.

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S&F Nagel’s Bat!

S&F - Being A BatSo… this week’s S&F took a convoluted path.  I have been (trying to) read Camus’s Myth of Sisyphus and was ranting about how perplexed I was by certain passages.

My friend took that opportune moment to introduce me to Thomas Nagel, more specifically his essay on “What is it like to be a bat”.  Now who could turn down a (short!) essay with a title like that, especially when it also contains such rarities as: “Even without the benefit of philosophical reflection, anyone who has spent some time in an enclosed space with an excited bat knows what it is like to encounter a fundamentally alien form of life.”  Is that..  a sense of humour one can detect?!  I thought that was fundamentally alien to philosophers!

More seriously, it is a rather good essay that discusses how difficult it is to truly “get” something or somebody else without experiencing everything they do in their exact way.  I suppose our shared experience of life itself is the one major thing we all have in common, but within that so much else can differ, making relating to each other form a sort of tragic Venn diagram.

S& Svenn's Diagram - sm P.S.  I was trying to remember if “echolocation” is spelled with an “h”…  I thought it was just with a “c”, as in “ecolocation” but then it was pointed out that would only be used by environmental bats.  🙂

 

S&F Beware the Conversation Weasel, repurposed

S&F Conversation Weasel- small

 

You’ve probably figured out by now I’ve been redrawing a few older strips for another project, and here’s one more.  This one accompanied a post on Conversational Narcissim (a.k.a. beware the Conversation Weasel!)