“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Saturday, September 19, 2015

"I Don't Exist" Doesn't Mean "There Is Nothing"

The insatiable European/American desire to dissolve everything thought it had found an ideal motivation in Buddhism, for the sake of which fantasy one could dissolve one's traditional entanglements (such as thinking one is Christian, European etc.) as well as continuing to practice the other kinds of reductionism.

This kind of Buddhism ("Buddhism without beliefs") is just "Western" logistical functioning on steroids. Obviously it doesn't even "believe" that it's Western at all.

"I don't exist" means "Every time I hold on it hurts me and others" on a first pass and "Everything is quivering" on a subsequent one.



cgerrish said...

This is a parallel thought, but your post brought to mind Archimedes and his saying: "
Give me a lever and a place to stand and I will move the earth." It seems like the prototype for so much Western thought. I've found a firm place to stand outside of reality, a place I can get a really good look at it; and with my lever, which I've conveniently brought along with me, I can manipulate/move reality. To put this idea on steroids, one might say, the firm place I've found is "nothing" and while I coud, I will take no action. I boycott earthly action as a moral action.

The ecological thought shows us that there is no "away" and there is no "outside" from which to set one's perspective. Or for that matter, to gain firm footing and apply a lever against the world. (Or choose to refrain from applying the lever)

Kaat said...

I wrote this poem when in grad studies in Philosophy (Kantian epistemology):

Some say to be

Is to be perceived

I hope that means


Nothing is alone.

Now I'd not use the word hope. Or even nothing...