"There are no limits. There are plateaus, but you must not stay there, you must go beyond them. If it kills you, it kills you. A man must constantly exceed his level."
"Other animals do not need a purpose in life. A contradiction to itself, the human animal cannot do without one. Can we not think of the aim of life as being simply to see?"
John Gray (Straw Dogs)
Why Descartes was wrong
Descartes’ famous quote ‘I think therefore I am’ is flawed for the sole reason that intelligence is independent of being.
There’s a discussion in Achebe’s Things Fall Apart between an Igbo religious man and a white priest. The two men meet often and discuss each others religions. They both try to convert each other, but fail every time. The white man argues that Igbos have several Gods, and that that’s false because there’s only one God. The Igbo man explains that they have one God of all the worlds, and the other Gods are his deputies on earth. The Igbo man likened their several sub-Gods to the white man himself, claiming that the white man is his own God’s deputy. There were two things that caught my attention. One, the fact that ancestral religions are very similar to monotheistic ones. Two, the white man didn’t understand the concept of the Igbos’ earth Gods, he looked at it literally. And that’s exactly the problem.
"When the hunter learns how to shoot without aiming, the bird will learn how to fly without perching."
Thoughts are funny. The other day I was thinking about going back to university. Then I remembered my friend Nathan, who used to wear a G-Unit vest for his birthdays during our university days. Which was silly. Because now, G-Unit is silly. It wasn’t back then though. Then I thought about how rich 50 Cent is now because of that useless water he made. Then I thought about water. What is water. Why is it necessary? What is H and what is O? And why do we need two H’s and an O to make water? And why do we drink it? What happens to it in our stomach? And why water? Then I remembered that water is actually scarce. And that there are actually people dying from not having access to water. Then I remembered that I have access to water and that I’m privileged. And that being privileged is a privilege. And that water is a weird privilege. I actually always have a water bottle in my room. Then I remembered that my room is nice. Then I thought about nice rooms. Hotel rooms. But my parents’ room is the nicest. What are parents? What do they want? What’s a parent? Then I thought about my father and how I always wanted to be like him in every single way. I even want to look like him. I like being tall. But I want to be exactly like him. But his achievements are not a realistic goal for me. Then I thought about goals. What’s my goal? Why does there have to be a goal? Then I realised that my goals are not well defined. Very vague. My goal is a person. To be someone else. Which can’t be right. It’s wrong actually. But he’s my father. Then I remembered that in order to be like him I’d have to go back to university. Which brought me back to Nathan. Fuck Nathan.
I started reading novels. I never cared much for novels. I thought that if someone wanted to tell me a story they should make it into a 2 hour movie. But I was wrong. Oh how I was wrong. See, the thing with novels is that they give you the freedom to imagine. Movies tell you what the situation is. Which is boring. Novels challenge our imagination. They take us to the edge, and back. And it’s fucking exciting. I can never get that excitement from a movie. However, I’m still generalising, because I’m currently reading African novels. Only.
I go to your blog for inspiration. Now imagine the inspiration I get from speaking to you.
I’m not very rational. I try to be. But I’m not. Not many people are. Rationality requires complete emotional isolation. So why is being rational good? Emotions are good. I know that. So the lack of emotions can’t be a good thing, right? I don’t know. Either way, fuck rationality.