No need to mince words here. Roughly a month and a half ago, I was blatantly suicidal. I suppose such a declaration might cause some degree of consternation amongst those of you who care about me. First, ahh, thanks! Secondly, to make a long story short, I’m now moving forward in what I believe is a constructive way, in large part due to the support of many of the most important people in my life. Which is to say (because I probably should be pretty clear here) that I’m not suicidal, haven’t been for a good period of time, and am generally quite stable (in some respects, more so than I was before that particular episode).
But enough about my mental health issues. Let’s look at something significantly more interesting: why I was suicidal. Now, an honest answer to that question would certainly take into account the more external factors of my situation, which included the fact that I was somewhat malnourished, my sleep and eating schedules were totally off, I had caught COVID, and was in a foreign country living with people I barely knew who generally didn’t want to be around me due to the virus. Heavens. When I actually write that down, I’m realizing it was a bit of a perfect storm for mental health issues. I should also note that a variety of caustic behavioral patterns into which I’ve fallen over the years were really starting to come back to bite me. Anyway, generally not the best combination of circumstances.
Actually, gracious, I’m realizing that perhaps the question isn’t why I was suicidal, but rather what I experienced mentally that I perceived as being the cause of my thought patterns. Also, I should mention for interested parties that at no point was I ever planning the means by which I wished to end my life, but rather was feeling an overwhelming desire to no longer live. Glad we cleared that one up.
Ok, enough beating around the bush. Let’s actually answer the question.
Basically, during the aforementioned moments, I was experiencing an utterly suffocating sense that everything in life was utterly meaningless, and there was nothing actually worth living for.
Hmm. I’m thinking about how I want to tackle this from here.
First, let me say that this moment was essentially the culmination of the last two years of me being an atheist. During that interval, I’d essentially adopted an increasingly narrow understanding of reality in the name of empiricism, which I was basically able to maintain through a combination of arrogance and a lack of willingness to engage with different worldviews.
In any event, suffice it to say that the trajectory of my intellectual exploits was pointed towards hell, and this fact was somewhat lost on me until I glimpsed the fires for myself.
I suppose in an effort to unite the present narrative with the direction I want to take with this post, I should note that despite my feelings of utter hopelessness and desolation, I essentially convinced myself to try find a logical reason to abandon the worldview I had adopted at the time, even though I was subconsciously quite convinced I would be unsuccessful.
To make a reasonably long story short, through this process of brutally examining the way I viewed reality, I have become increasingly convinced that this whole “oh, everything is actually meaningless; we’re just a speck of dust in the cosmos” is actually a maggot-ridden pile of horseshit.
Perhaps to put this in different language, I’m fucking enraged at the intellectual laziness and blindness we’ve permitted ourselves to have allowed such an unbelievably arrogant worldview to become such a prevalent ideology. Especially in “intellectual” circles. To that end, I wish to lay assault on the notion of meaninglessness. Welcome to my Ted talk.
There are several different angles from which this requires attack, but I think perhaps we should attempt to understand what we mean at all when we say something is “meaningful” or “meaningless.” Before I continue, perhaps meditate on that question for a bit. The “What is the meaning of life?” ontological question has become sufficiently cliche as to have nearly lost any meaning, but perhaps attempt to parse what that question is really asking.
What do we mean when we ask “What is the meaning of life?”? (Wow, look at that strange punctuation! Any grammar nerds, please reach out to inform me whether I navigated that edge case correctly) In any event, that’s a bit of a hard question to answer. Perhaps to do so, we could reformulate the ontological question: let’s switch from asking “What’s the meaning of life?” to “What’s the significance of life?”. Those are either the same question or sufficiently similar that we can learn something about the former from the latter.
Ok, so let’s unpack this new question: “What’s the significance of life?”. The key word here is, of course, “significance.” (We’ll deal with “life” in a second :)). What do we mean when we ask about the significance of some event, action, or object has?
Well, we might say that the extent to which something is significant is directly tied with the extent to which the particular thing in question is connected with other entities or events that manifest in reality. Well, that’s a bit of a mouthful. Perhaps some examples are in order?
We might say that the assassination of a President is a significant event. I believe we’re at least intuitively aligned on that fact. But let’s ask the question: why is this event significant?
Let’s give our fake president a name. Let’s call him Tim. President Tim. Despite his name, he inspired the nation.
Anyway, we’re looking at why President Tim’s assassination was a significant event. Or perhaps we could ask “what was the significance of President Tim’s assassination?”
There are a couple different ways that we could go about this. We could say that such an event has historical significance, insofar as the President’s assassination caused a variety of events and circumstances to unfold. We could say that the assassination had geo-political significance, in so far as other world powers took immediate political action in response to the death of a significant world leader. Oh ho! And why might he have been a “significant” world leader? Well this certainly would have been the case if his actions had broad consequences on the lives of millions around the world.
Ok ok. Let’s take a step back here, and attempt to generalize.
When we talk about “significance” in this context, what are we really talking about? It’s clear that something is “significant” in proportion to its degree of connection.
Carefully read this statement: “The President’s death had historical significance because it caused a variety of events and circumstances to unfold”. The incredibly important word there is “caused”. “Caused” is the word that demonstrates some degree of connection between the object in question (an assassination) and other events.
In order to really bring home this point, let’s look at what it means for something to be “insignificant.” Well, as I imagine you intuitively feel, if an event is insignificant, then it essentially has a very low degree of connection with other events and entities that have manifest within the context of reality.
I just lifted up my phone. Is that a significant event? Or perhaps, how significant is that event relative to, say, the assassination of a President? The intuitive (and honest) answer is that my physical interaction with my phone is infinitesimally significant relative to the assassination of a President, especially within our context. My lifting up my phone might have some (utterly imperceptible) physical consequence on me, but if doesn’t affect anyone else. Or perhaps to use more illustrative language, my picking up my phone in an empty rooms is the “cause” of very few (or no) subsequent events within the context of societal experience. The assassination of the President, on the other hand, could very well lead to an entire change in political power, which could easily lead to massive change in the lives of millions of people.
Ok, I think that we’ve had quite enough of that particular example. Let’s really lock down on the thesis that’s being presented. When we talk about whether something is “meaningful” or “significant,” to some degree we’re discussing the causal connection this particular thing has with other aspects of reality.
Ok, good. Now let’s go for the goddamn jugular. What are we daring to say when we assert “everything is meaningless”? Well, for one thing, we’re essentially attributing ourselves a godlike understanding of reality, which speaks to some unspeakable narcissism.
But let’s attempt to speak of this a bit more objectively. When you say “everything is meaningless,” you’re essentially making the claim of a universal degree of arbitrariness. Or, perhaps to put it in different language, you’re essentially asserting that there’s some particular context in which “everything” (to speak abstractly) has no degree of causal connection to anything else.
Now why on earth would someone think this?
Hmm, as a brief aside, you’ll notice that my language is becoming increasingly violent. I would like to make clear that in no way am I attempting to condemn anyone who ascribes to this particular thought pattern. That would be an incalculable injustice, because I myself have been the ultimate servant of this particular ideology. When I speak with rage, the rage is not directed at some other group of people who I believe have in some way deceived me. No! I am my own deceiver! In me is the ultimate spirit of totalitarian malevolence, that would dare set itself up against God! When I speak with rage, I speak to the satanic presence within us that would create intellectual idols, and worship them as though they the source of truth!
Goodness, I’m realizing this is starting to have a particularly religious feel to it. While I have no idea who might be reading this, I think I should attempt to put several other things straight. Though I’m speaking with some degree of “Christian” language, I feel that it would be extremely wrong to call myself a Christian. (I was actually baptized about a month ago, but that was a totally bizarre experience that frankly I still need to make sense of, and can therefore be ignored within the context of the present discussion).
There are two reasons that I feel particularly inclined to use “Christian” language when discussing these topics. The first is more personal, and the second is much more… shall we say, global.
Reason 1: As my beloved and wickedly intelligent sister pointed out to me within the last month, because of my intensely Christian upbringing, Christianity provided the symbolic framework that I used to make sense of my experience and interaction with reality. As a side note, this came up in the first place because for many years, in some sense I’ve “blamed” my experience with Christianity in my youth for producing some of the more emotionally painful patterns into which I fall. For example, I have an incredibly strong conviction that I can’t and won’t be accepted in social situations. In my arrogance, I had “blamed” this phenomenon on the degree to which I took Christianity seriously in my youth, which in turn meant that I didn’t participate in many of semi-disrespectful and rebellious activities with which adolescent boys engage in order to jockey for social respect and acceptance. However, beloved reader, what kind of seven year old takes Christianity that seriously? Why on earth did I care that much? Could there perhaps be some more intrinsic element of my personality that manifested itself through the symbolic framework of Christianity, which in turn lead to my particular attitude towards social acceptance? In any event, for better or worse, my involved history with Christianity means that I naturally find metaphors between my experience attempting to pursue truth and Christian teaching (and who the hell is there to say that’s a coincidence?)
Reason 2: Christianity and Biblical interpretation have been some of the most fundamental mediums by which people throughout the millennium have attempted to answer and understand the most central questions posed by the human experience. That of course isn’t to say that Christianity can’t easily become a tyrannical and idolatrous force in it’s own way (more on that in another post :)), but perhaps as a mirror of my own experience, Christianity has undergone the crucible of millennia of human interpretation and the human quest to understand matters of the divine. That fact used to make me a bit queasy, because what could be more arbitrary than human interpretation? Well, idiot (referring to 2020 Danny), who the hell are you to say that there aren’t actually deep emotional and psychological behaviors that generally manifest cross-culturally and inter-temporally? How do you explain love? Or greed? Or jealousy? There are a set of fundamental psychological patterns that are shared by the vast majority of humans. Who, then, are you to say that human interpretation and introspection is an arbitrary process? Well, you (again, talking to myself) must be an unthinkably narcissistic, blind, and intellectually tyrannical. Or perhaps, in an attempt to have grace with own (past and present) ignorance, we could say that the spirit of narcissism, blindness, and tyranny lives within me, as it does with every other human. In some sense, the project of life is learning to negotiate with the spirits that provide the experiences of consciousness.
Goodness, I seem to be totally lost in the sauce, don’t I! What was I even writing about? Oh yes! First I was attempting to justify my use of Christian language despite my (potentially) non-christian status. And the reason I was doing that was to continue to describe the arrogance of the statement that “everything is meaningless.”
Hmm. I suppose there are two things that I should attempt to do moving forward. First I would like to continue exploring the statement “everything is meaningless.” Then, depending on the context of that conversation, I might be in a position to reasonably assert that that statement is at best a theory, and should not be taken as a central ideology. Onward!
Ok. “Everything is meaningless.” What does this mean? I had briefly unpacked this, but perhaps let’s attempt to take this apart a bit more collaboratively.
Unless you have some superhuman (or potentially idolatrous) faith in God, it’s extremely plausible that deep within you lies a fear that everything is, in fact, meaningless. The reason that I bring this up is that it would be immensely helpful if you can bring to your consciousness this particular fear. For the religious among you, this is essentially akin to the fear that there is, in fact, no God. And I might assert that even if you would count yourself among the religious, it’s entirely intellectually honest (and even encouraged, in some spiritual sense) to deeply engage with this fear. Dear lord, what on earth is your faith in God if it’s unable to stand against the fear of his absence.
Anyway, please take a moment to bring this particular fear to mind. And, I apologize for getting off topic: I mean the fear that “Everything is meaningless.”
Really marinate in this for a second. I would recommend doing this late at night when the Chaos of reality is most readily manifest through the absence of illumination.
Ok, I’m going to assume that you’ve followed my advice, and are hopefully deeply engaged with the deeply intrinsic fear that everything is meaningless.
Alright friends, here we go! Are we going to attempt to convince ourselves that this fear is unwarranted? Hell no! Let’s feed the beast! Let’s make him strong! Only then can we truly approach him to determine if he truly holds the final word! Talk about the ultimate final boss!
And to be explicitly clear, my goal with the subsequent discussion is to attempt to justify the assertion that “everything is meaningless” as much as possible. Let’s begin!
Well, I think that probably a good place to start is arbitrary suffering. Evil, some might call it. Let’s try to be specific as possible with these. Let’s really try to engage with the malevolence of life.
Hmm, why not start with Putin and Ukraine? OHCHR reports that 1,480 civilians are confirmed to have died in Ukraine, though many speculate that this number is much higher. Why have these people died? I’m certainly no expert on Putin, but it largely seems that thousands have died because of a single individual’s extremely misguided understanding of what is to bring about the flourishing of the human race.
Does that sound familiar? Anybody catching whiffs of Hitler? Stalin? Perhaps Mao?
In what universe that has any semblance of higher order would thousands, millions even die because of someone’s ignorance?
Let’s move on to Africa, shall we? My brother recently worked in conjunction with a group that works directly in one of Africa’s many slums. This group recently held a celebration because the rate of rape had dropped to 90% in their particular slum.
Hello? Anybody home? 90%?? Are you kidding me? How dare we battle against the notion that “everything is meaningless” when a rape rate of 90% is something worth celebrating?
But in the immortal words of Joseph Stalin, “a single death is a tragedy, a million deaths are a statistic”. So perhaps instead of paying attention to silly statistics, let’s look at actual tragedies, shall we?
Perhaps let’s explore the life of David Berkowitz. At 22 (my age!), David stabbed two women to death on Christmas Eve. A year later, he approached two women at night, produced a pistol, and shot them both. Lovely stuff, isn’t it.
Hmm, I could continue, but what is the point? Goodness, do I need to convince you of the presence of arbitrary violence? Meaningless suffering? Lurking nihilism? That seems largely unnecessary. Unless you’ve lived an unthinkably insulated life, then no doubt is your connection with this particular topic particularly poignant.
How else might we strengthen the claim that everything is, in fact, meaningless? Perhaps instead of appealing to blatant demagoguery, let’s really try to give this some more theoretical meat.
In my experience (and this really says something about my life), when people say something like “everything is meaningless”, they typically aren’t discussing existential frustration with the injustice of life. Instead, this statement more frequently is paired with another statement like “we’re all just specks of dust, floating through the cosmos.”
So, perhaps let’s explore that particular statement in some degree of detail. “We’re all just specks of dust.” Another analogous claim that people frequently bring up is the notion that “We’re all just going to die someday.”
These sorts of statements are meant to invoke a sense of insignificance or arbitrariness of our current existence.
And actually, I was starting to get off track. I’d like to explore the “speck of dust” statement, because I think that it’s particularly useful for moving us towards the point that I’m making.
Why is it that asserting our status as a speck of dust immediately brings to an acute sense of meaninglessness?
Really think about this for a second. Pause the video, and then press play when you’re ready.
Ok, I’m going to take a crack at this. By bringing attention to the totality of the cosmos, you’re essentially bringing to mind a wide variety of cosmological actors which are, quite literally, almost totally unaffected by human existence (as far as we can tell). Is this unreasonable? Not at all! What would be the mechanism by which we could exert some degree of influence on the celestial bodies?
Well, perhaps the best answer that we could give is that the four fundamental forces could potentially be at work in influencing the evolution of the celestial bodies. So like, gravity and stuff (by stuff, I mean the electromagnetic force, the weak interaction, and the strong interaction).
Ok, and how much would these forces actually affect things like, say, the sun? The moon? Alpha Centauri? Geidi Prime (joking :))?
If you answered “like, not at all”, then ding ding ding! Someone gets a gold star! (If your reflexive answer included the term “infinitesimally”, then you get extra points).
Ok, so this notion of humanity being a speck in the cosmos brings to mind feelings of intense insignificance because within the presented context, the causal connection between the actions of humans and the evolution of these astronomical bodies is essentially infinitesimal (yay, extra points!)
This example is actually extremely helpful in allowing us to better understand what we mean when we say that “everything is meaningless”.
Much like the statement “we’re just specks, floating through the cosmos”, the statement that everything is meaningless implicit assumes the existence of some global context in which a variety of things might interact.
Now there are two ways that you can go from here. I guess I’ll just attempt to explain my own conception of this particular issue (instead of presupposing that my conception accurately describes your own) in order to maintain intellectual honesty.
Actually, I just tried to write down the first way that I conceptualize this issue, and it turned out to be quite difficult to coherently discuss. It’s also less important, so let’s just skip directly to the second conception. (You can safely ignore this last paragraph).
Ok, so let’s once again set the stage. “Everything is meaningless.” As previously asserted, this implicitly asserts the existence of some global context in which different entities might interact. Now, “everything is meaningless” is a bold statement, because it’s essentially asserting the sum total of “everything” lacks significance, or to use language that we developed earlier in this post, “everything” lacks some degree of causal connection with some broader context.
Ok, this is getting technical, and somewhat difficult to understand. I think that it would actually be illuminating to once again consider the alternative.
In that spirit, what if your life actually had meaning? What if your life actually had significance? What do we even mean by that particular statement? Well, for one thing, it actually doesn’t matter if the significance is positive or negative.
When we say that “your life has significance,” we’re presupposing the existence of… something (for lack of better word) on which your life has some effect. As (exhaustively) explored previously, the notion of significance is intrinsically connected with this notion of causal connection.
It would seem that part of the difficultly that arises when attempting to answer the question of “what is the meaning of life?” lies in the fact that it’s intensely difficult to even conceptualize the something that our life might have an effect upon. Are we talking about reality? The redemption of creation? The preparation of the world for the second coming of Christ?
As I explored in my previous post (about how we don’t know what we’re doing — pretty topical), there’s some very real sense that reality is trying to do something. I don’t mean to anthropomorphize reality (perhaps that’s the mortal conception of God?), but if you simply look around you, there has been a clear progression in the complexity hierarchy of reality that has lead to… well, us, humans.
Just to be a bit more clear about this, you have subatomic particles, which then form atoms, which them form molecules, which them form biological structures, which then form cells, which then form organs, which then form organisms, and boom! You get humans.
There’s a clear… well, let’s call it a “story”. There seems to be a clear story in the way that reality evolves throughout time.
Maybe to put it in more biting language, we could say that the evolution of reality, in some sense, seems to be the very opposite of “arbitrary.” While it’s extremely difficult (or perhaps, explicitly impossible) to clearly articulate what reality itself is doing, “something” seems to be happening.
And perhaps within the context of this theoretical understanding of reality, perhaps we have identified (though poorly) the overarching “something” on which your life has some causal effect.
“But Danny”, you might be saying, “if the ‘something’ that we’re discussing here is in fact some aspect of reality itself, wouldn’t my effect on this ‘something’ be trivial, like my gravitational effect on the evolution of the heavenly bodies?”
Well, to that, I might say “yes” and “no.” In a very real sense, this process is (by literal definition), much bigger than us.
However (and I’m going to speak mystically here, because I’m not really sure how else to do this), there’s a very real sense in which the actions that you take are in direct reflection of the fractally macroscopic actions behaviors of reality as a whole.
And what do I mean by that? In other posts, I’ve showed that I’m fascinated by the similarities that different structures show at different levels of the complexity hierarchy. For example, it’s fascinating that, in a very real sense, you can see something like “love” emerge in the interactions between atoms, or perhaps molecules. There are several common themes in how the most successful structures that manifest at different levels of the complexity hierarchy behave.
To take a step back, what I’m trying to say that is that even though something like a single electron essentially has no meaningful effect on the decisions that you make as a human (sound at all like the “speck in the cosmos”?), in some sense, the actions of the single electron are fundamentally what give rise to your existence. For without the actions of electrons, we wouldn’t have atoms, and without the intricate dance of multiple atoms, we might not have molecules, and so on and so forth! There is a dance, a game, that all entities in creation are playing, and success in the game enables continued progression of the story of reality.
So, truly blessed and anointed reader, you might ask, “what could possibly be the significance of my life in all of this?” Like the single electron, there might be structures scattered throughout reality on which your life might seem to have little effect.
But, again like the electron, by means of right interactions with the world around you, your life is the fundamental force that gives rise the continuation of the broader story of reality. What is the meaning of your life, you ask?
Your life adds a voice to the choir of creation, co-creating a hymn of the continual redemption of the entirety of fucking reality. Meditate on that for a bit, would you?
When I became an atheist (when I was 20), I felt distinctly relieved that I no longer felt the urge to justify the silliness of the Bible. It was such a relief that I didn’t have to constantly contort my mind, trying to actually believe that a man could turn five loaves into five thousand, or could walk on water.
However, in my old age (22 lol), I’m starting to realize that so much of the juice of the Bible lies in the fact that it has, quite literally, withstood the test of time. Instead of just trying to blindly believe that a man could turn water into wine, I’m learning to ask a different question: “What is is about [insert Bible story] that has so captured the human imagination that it has endured all these years?”
I suppose what I’m trying to say is that I’m learning to legitimately and carefully examine the significance of what’s in the original book (well, “book” as we know it).
More specifically, consider Romans 8:18-25: “I consider that our present sufferings are not comparable to the glory that will be revealed in us. The creation waits in eager expectation for the revelation of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own will, but because of the One who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
We know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until the present time. Not only that, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved; but hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he can already see? But if we hope for what we do not yet see, we wait for it patiently.”
If you have a background in Christianity, then just for two fucking seconds, please look beyond what you think you know, and actually consider this statement. If you don’t have a background in Christianity, then just for two fucking seconds, actually consider this statement.
What on earth might it mean that the “whole creation” has been groaning in the pains of childbirth? This language is pregnant (see what I did there?) with a sense of expectation. There’s an incredibly real sense of present suffering, present frustration, present anguish, and present angst.
And yet. As with childbirth, amidst the utterly encompassing pain, there’s an expectation of new life to emerge, new possibility to flourish, the possibility of redemption to once again become manifest. When we discuss creation, we’re tempted to over-spiritualize. This either leads to an idolatrous view of the divine, or it leads to the contempt thereof.
So, ok then. Let me attempt to put modern language to that which it seems St. Paul was at least alluding.
The life of an electron is chaotic. It itself is barely exists as we’re able to conceptualize existence. It exists, somehow, as both a wave an a particle. Not only it its own existence one of intense chaos, but then it also interacts with a whole variety of other particles. It gets pulled to electrons, buffeted between stationary states of different angular momentum, repelled by its own brethren.
And yet, through some miracle, eventually it comes in contact with a set of protons and neutrons in such a manner that for the first time, it finds some degree of stable respite from the chaos of its existence. Order emerges from what had previously been a situation of pure chaos.
Thus that we see in some sense the very existence of the electron and the proton speaks to an ideal state of being, where order can emerge, and greater things are able to emerge.
What then, should we say of the eukaryotic cell? There are 30 trillion cells in the human body. It is effectively impossible for humans to try to conceptualize that number (we’re actually very bad at understanding the relative size of different numbers).
For a single cell, how on earth is it to know what it should do, or with what it should interact? It’s constantly being bombarded by a whole variety of ions and bio-molecules. However, by some orchestration (beyond human comprehension, I might add), these single units are able to orient themselves in such a manner that allows for a drastic increase in both their individual and collective stability.
But should we stop at just a singular groups of cells? Certainly not. The groups themselves begin to organize themselves into arrays of increasing complexity and stability. Millions of cells come together to form tissues, and from these tissues emerge complex interdependent organ systems. The existence of the tissues is impossible without the dance of single cells, and the singular cells benefit from the higher level organization that manifests and subdues broader swaths of chaos.
What should we say of the human being? Of the consciousness that miraculously emerges? Is it fair to attempt the understand the individual without understanding the constituents? The human being is impossible without the tissues, and analogously to the dance between the tissues and their constituent cells, the tissues benefit from the actions of the human.
But what, we might ask, are the electrons, the cells, the tissues, and the humans doing? At every level of the complexity hierarchy these entities are striving against the forces of destruction and chaos and seeking where they might pull structure out of the void.
Hmm. How then should we characterize this process? I’d say that St. Paul hit this one straight on the head: “The creation waits in eager expectation for the revelation of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own will, but because of the One who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.”
There are a wide array of different tangents that could be explored, but perhaps I should close this post out for the present time, and delve into different matters in further posts.
As you might recall, the entire purpose of this post was an attempt to mount an attack against the idea that “everything is meaningless.” I naturally can’t say whether my words have had any particularly meaningful effect on you, but maybe think on these things a bit. What I have described here has been immensely beneficial to me in my struggle with suicidal depression.
Before I close, I know that I frequently say things like this, but if you find these matters important, and potentially want to discuss them with someone else, please, for the love of God, reach out to me. It is my heart’s truest desire to hear your thoughts on these matters. Please please please, send me an email, or a text. We’re not meant to consider these things in isolation.
In closing them, I’d like to include an excerpt from The Brothers Karamazov, which I think is the best book I’ve ever read. (Dostoevsky was an astute son of a motherless goat, to say the least). This is a quote from the last teachings of Father Zossima. This caught my attention because of how accurately it described my suicidal state. Do with it as you will.
“God took seeds from different worlds and sowed them on this earth, and His garden grew, and everything came up that could come up, but all growing things live and are alive only through the feeling of their contact with other mysterious worlds. If that feeling grows weak or is destroyed in you, what has grown up in you will die. Then you will become indifferent to life and even grow to hate it. That’s what I think.”