Hey party people!
This one goes out to everybody who obsessed over The Myth of Sisyphus in their early 20s, at least partially motivated by a rumor about Albert Camus’s Bodhisattva status, and who then evolved their own philosophical notions partially from this reading and rereading, and who now 20ish later is trying to put everything together into some kind of coherent path while alcohol and other give-ups continue to beat them!
The Myth of Sisyphus starts out with a little note from the author explaining that he’s not claiming that the intellectual parameters within which the essay takes place are the Final Truth; rather, he’s examining these parameters and following them to their own conclusions, while still remembering that they may very well be nothing more than the errors of one time and place within the human-flow.
Something Deeperism agrees with some of the points Camus made in his youthful essay, but Something Deeperism also says: “Yes, this essay is in part predicated upon the errors of specific time and place, and the Truth won’t be caged therein: ENTER SOMETHING DEEPERISM.”
[A note to scholars: Please footnote this for us; we’re operating from decades old memories; please footnote this for us and forgive us this further indulgence.)
What we agree with:
First Thing We Agree On
There is no progress without awareness of where one is within one’s own thought and feelings. If you lie to yourself about what you understand and believe, you are not present in your own thinking/feeling and cannot really travel with your own thoughts to your own conclusions. You pretend to understand, believe in and care about your own ideas, but what you are really doing is confusing yourself while desperately clutching ideas that make no sense to your mind/heart. You make no real progress, but wander instead within a desperate grab for a SENSE OF REAL MEANING you feelingly smush your dogmas (be they religious, secular, and/or skeptical) onto.
Therefore, one must first admit where within one’s thoughts and feelings one finds oneself (apparently Nietzsche disagreed, but this was part and parcel of his ultimate nihilism: the sacrifice of a coherent search after meaning for grand feelings about fearless revolutionarism).
Second Thing We Agree On
Humans long for a salvation that they can understand. They cannot stand to live without a Meaning to Life that they know is True and that they know is there’s.
What We Disagree On
The notion that humans cannot have that salvation that they can understand. What, 20th Century Continental Thought, we humans cannot have is a literal/definite/mathematical understanding of our salvation.
I am so lonely.
I am just so lonely.
And for so long now.
It is too much.
And tomorrow I have to get to work at 8AM so I can have an hour of quiet while I work on payroll.
I am just so tired and lonely.
And the worldhistoric midterms are coming as US detention centers are keeping applicants caged like criminals–worse than criminals, since at least criminals are allowed to go outside.
I know because my friend who is married with children and working 50 hours a week volunteers his time to try to help some poor guy from Nigeria whose family is in hiding because he’s a crazy Christian and some crazy Muslims have it in for him and who just lost his first go because the judge has gut feelings about which countries are dangerous and which aren’t so bad.
I know because I waste all my free time in Brooklyn while twenty miles away in New Jersey this guy hasn’t felt the sunlight in over a year while his family hides in Nigeria and I drink.
The Problem Camus Wasn’t Allowed To Go Beyond
Albert Camus, sainted smoker (I quit, thank you!) and hallowed ecrivian, was not allowed to make this true statement:
Human beings cannot have literal insight into their own salvation, but they can still have adequate insight into their own salvation.
We can’t capture all our experiences with words and ideas, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have whole-being (ideas, feelings, and the Light shining through each conscious moment–all working imperfectly but still adequately together) insight into the meaning of our lives.
When I knew Camus, when we wound together around a foggy undersea peninsula, holding our gin, lighting our fags, and admitting that we weren’t all we meant to be: at that time I said to him: we’ve no reason to suppose that the intellectual and emotional aspects of a human cannot relate adequately well to a TRUE GOOD that shines through each conscious moment and shouts that and in what way human life is MEANINGFUL: obviously, the True Good is wider and deeper and more certain and perfect than our ideas and feelings, so they’ll never be a literal/definitive/1:1 intellectual and/or emotional understanding of the True Good, but all that means is that human life is not math, which, I mean, come on: of course it isn’t.
And he said to me: True that, but the real question is how are you going to help that poor man stranded in your defunct justice system?
Author: DL Hopeless, famous theoretical problem-solver