Yesterday my dad died. Then let me say something about death.
My dad had become nigh blind in his last days — though he could read with a 5x lens, but he didn’t recognize people on the street. Oddly, most of the things that gave him pleasure were not vision-related, he perceived the world through what he ate, mostly, and through ass-sucking (actually, being ass-sucked). If i was to get blind, my basic savoring-the-world skills would be impaired, but not his. The only thing he really missed was driving, even if he did not go anywhere, he lacked driving just for the fun of it.
First of all, when i was little, i used to think there were lot’s of things worse than death. Like panalgia, or being crippled, or maybe even becoming blind. Maybe the old man’s fate should make me even more entrenched on that opinion, but not really. Now i do think death is the worst that can happen. It is the only thing that cannot get worse, ever. You simply can’t go deeper.
The very idea that pain or handicaps can be important enough to make life itself unworthwhile seems, to me, to be an inversion of values: what makes pleasure or ableness or anything else worthwhile is life itself. Therefore, life is worthwhile even without any of those things.
Maybe you disagree. I am not exposing a logical expression here, it is a conviction, and i do not see how far can this kind of thing be discussed.
That said, it might seem that i would think that death is a very, very bad™ thing. But not really. I don’t think death is bad at all. I think that there are no after — notice this is not a statement about life after death or reincarnation. I think after you are dead you do not care or lack caring, you neither suffer nor feel pleasure nor long for feeling anything. There is not really a YOU to speak of. It ended.
I, for some time now, stopped fearing death. Not in the sense that i don’t flinch in the face of danger, actually, i remain just as coward as i’ve always been. But i do not fear death in the sense that if i died just now it would be OK. I do still want to do lots of things in life, i do still need to accomplish a whole big lot of goals, i do still think the world is much bigger and that it craves exploring it’s possibilities. But, on the other hand, if nothing of that works, well, i had my try, i fought my fights.
Living for the now and accepting eternity and accepting the possibility that you do not mean anything after all are the same thing.
If there is something you can’t die without saying to someone, or something you need to do before the end, do it now. No, not after you read this blog post. Actually, it was the now of the sentence before the last, why are you still reading? If you are not ready to die, you can’t really fight — you’ll be on the defensive, you will be running and not turning yourself into what you should, into what you could be.
If you can’t die right now, your life isn’t worth living.
Obviously, my dad never understood this, or more likely, he never thought like i do.
It might be that he killed himself, the exact circumstances are far from clear. And his relation with death was strange, he seemed to, at the same time be certain that he would die very, very soon and to fear death terribly.
But, to finish, i would like to say that i do not think suicide is a bad thing. Not at all. To be able to kill yourself shows an enormous amount of self-control, of strength of will. And it also shows an ability to disengage oneself from the basic, inbuilt, fears and drives of everyday life. It has an obvious larger-than-life quality.
If you combine my conviction that happiness is not the most important thing in life and this do-not-fear-death idea and my attempt to make people see their own existence through larger lenses and my disregard for rigid moralities and constrained value-assigning mentalities, you’ll see that suicide is a linear, clean, conscious choice if you choose it facing it straight on the face.