You too?

It doesn’t require far-reaching scouring to unfold in the lives of others a drama resembling one’s own. The details can be punishingly familiar. Though there are limitless ways to live one’s life, the rude conclusion is that most of us assign ourselves to very similar misadventure and overall behaviour particularly in the realm of the visceral (things like food, booze and lasciviousness including that much undefined arena of pornography). Based on the 5 senses (sight, sound, smell, taste and touch), the options are naturally confined.  The cerebral scope of drama is by comparison vast; but its products (things like art, literature and music) are normally only background to the more scintillating theatre of existence. One need but recall the opera Le nozze di Figaro as an example.

The relevance of this inquiry is to remind us each that we’re essentially concocting or manipulating the identical product even to the point of using the same utensils. This too accounts for what is often so mystically portrayed as coincidence (see Thomas Hardy) or serendipity (see almost anything by Hollywood). The truth however is far more refined, even clinical.  Basically there are only so many corruptions of whatever we do. Our passage in life is rowed by two oars; viz., the cerebral and the visceral. The connection between the two has never been fully understood, where one stops and the other begins, what translates substance to thought, action to sound. And none of us is spared the likeness. Ultimately it is only old age that fully exhausts the adventure and the peril; in short, we’re too decomposed or attenuated to go any further or to get into any trouble.

Thus the relieving part of this analysis is that, barring acceptable differences in perspective, we’re all looking at the same thing and predominantly doing the same stuff. By way of example, consider the absurd life of an ant; its diversity is as limited as its functionality. Yet both are so magical that none of us knows of its creation. Though I credit humanity with some truly amazing accomplishments, I do not for a moment disregard the astonishingly elemental (and some would say limiting) features which insinuate against all odds the native character of mankind. It is a constriction which is both magnificent and treacherous. The human expression can be both earthly and divine. But we mustn’t pretend to exclude one from the other. Nor either one of us from the others. We’re in this together. The hero is the one who accepts that, not the one who rejects it.