The Death of Solid Philosophy

 

I will always know that it is the case that I could just die.

I could die today or tomorrow  

from natural causes

from a person that wants me dead

or from killing myself.

I could die, and be proud of my accomplishments.

I have done so much.

I have helped and healed so much.

I have written and shared so much.

But what if the impact I am meant to create is not finished?

What if I am supposed to aspire to more?

And what if more is less?

I am not finished healing.

I am not finished writing.

I am not finished fighting.

I am not finished caring.

I am not finished…

but I am.   

  • The Death of Solid Philosophy

There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Judging whether life is or is not worth living amounts to answering the fundamental question of philosophy. All the rest — whether or not the world has three dimensions, whether the mind has nine or twelve categories — comes afterwards.

  • Albert Camus

 

Why should we live?

We should live to pursue an answer to the question, “Why should we live?” I think I’ve come to believe that this circular answer is the answer. Life is one huge pursuit of the question, and often we don’t ask this question verbally, but we ask it ‘verb’-ily. In other words, we often times ask this question to ourselves in our actions even if we never explicitly ask the question ourselves. The pursuit of purpose is the purpose of life, and it is the reason we live.

 

What is the value in the pursuit of purpose?

The value of the pursuit of purpose is the formation of all-value. God is not dead. God is purpose. God is the energy that permeates all life. Life is the pursuit of that energy, and the culmination of that energy until that energy dissipates. The “Death of God” is not the end of an externally imposed system of value because value is always both externally and internally imposed. We pursue our purpose from within and without. It is what the World gives us, and what we take from the World. We live for the sake of finding this purpose. Meaning itself is the meaning of life. Locating meaning in the field of meaninglessness – that is life. Something more than biology wakes us up in the morning, something more than that ringing alarm. It is the run, the chase, the pursuit of the meaning of life. Even the nihilist pursues meaning, perhaps never finding it, but lives in the direction of striving for meaning itself.

 

What is the importance of purpose for this generation?

I think that this is the question that haunts my generation. We are not a purposeless generation. We are spectacularized generation, driven into anxiety in order to prove to the World that we are not just pursuing our purpose, but we are living it each and every day. We are an anxiety-driven generation – economic, racial, gender, and sexuality-based anxious generation – attempting to find a purpose and often we find it in our victimization. “My purpose is to fight on behalf of the oppressed.” Even white people are starting to think they are oppressed. It is a perfect purpose pursuit because the run is infinite. We can live and die and believe that our life had meaning, even if there wasn’t any meaningful sociopolitical change. Social media fuels the anxiety of our time, our externally imposed pursuit of purpose, and the feeling that we may never find our purpose. And this is because we seek our purpose – on a macro-level – in comparative terms with the World. How does the purpose that I have compare to the purpose of everyone else? Am I living up to my purpose in the eyes of my peers? How can I share every episodic display of my purpose? How I can have this pursuit of purpose reaffirmed (retweeted) and approved (liked) by the World? Social media doesn’t help or hurt the pursuit of purpose – it just increases the anxiety associated with it because we must not only pursue our purpose, but we must also perform it to the pleasure of the World.

What is your purpose?

I have now tried to kill myself twice, and there was nothing spiritual about me not finishing the task. It was a weakness that prevented me. However, my purpose has since changed. I used to believe that my purpose was to be a career politician. When I was younger and I played football, I wanted to play football for Navy in college, then go do the 4 or so years you have to complete in the Navy, then play football in the NFL for 2 or 3 years, and then start a career in politics. My reason? I wanted to change the world. This was my pursuit of changing the World. But, when I got diagnosed with my heart condition that changed. I couldn’t play football nor go to the Navy. So I started to write and read more vigorously. Eventually, I found purpose in activism. My reason? I wanted to change the world. Same purpose, different pursuit. Today, my purpose is to love my family and friends better, to care for individuals on an individual level more, and to be happy. I simply want to be happy, to spread love, and to care. It is simple, but it is the least I can do in a World that can never be rebuilt, that can never be undone, that can never be made anew.

 

What is the Death of Solid Philosophy?

 

Solid Philosophy, in a lot of ways, was a person and a persona. It was me and the spectacle that I made of myself while doing activism. However, Solid Philosophy is a calcification of myself. Solid Philosophy is a monolithic portrayal. Oftentimes, when you have a monolithic portrayal people see you as that one-thing, and they don’t allow for fluidity in your person. However, I am Many. I am a collection of people, pursuing different meanings, in one body. I did not physically die by the tree I tried to hang myself on, but I did symbolically die. So the Death of Solid Philosophy is a memorial to the man I once was. The man who loved books as much as he loved people, the man who cared for others more than he cared for himself, the man who wanted to show men that to be a man you needed to cry and you needed to be held, and the man who lived his life as if every day might be his last. Solid Philosophy is dead, and I am all the more better for killing him.

 

What is the last thing you want to say as Solid Philosophy?

 

In this World, we are all performing. We are performing authentically and inauthentically. Solid Philosophy was an authentic performance. I never thought I loved myself more than when I was Solid Philosophy. However, I wasn’t loving myself because I was turning myself completely into what the World wanted me to be, which was Solid Philosophy. The World wanted me to be simple, definable, and confinable. But, I never have been and I never will be…. I told a past lover, if I ever was to die, and I was only allowed to say three words to her before I did, I wouldn’t tell her that I loved her, I would instead say, “You are multiple,” because for me that would be more than love. It would be wisdom, and regardless, there will always be something about Solid Philosophy, and the solidity that is Solid Philosophy, that places wisdom, and the love of wisdom above all things. To say, “You are Multiple” is to accept the stage and the multiple scripts one is forced to play while on it, and instead of crunching oneself down to something simple and easily digestible for the world, allowing oneself to be all that one is supposed to be to their fullest potential is what personal multiplicity allows for. Social media doesn’t allow this. The World doesn’t often allow this. It wants something/someone constant. It wants someone linear. But we are all quantum – non-linear, paradoxical, multidimensional, and indefinitive. We aren’t supposed to know people, we aren’t supposed to know the world, we are supposed to experience it as one might experience a show or a play. We never know what will occur, but we allow the performance to take its course. And we allow the characters on the stage to be multiple – even if the person who wrote the script, whose mind brought it to life, was one.  Solid Philosophy needs to die because life is hard, and life is even harder, living under one umbrella, when you were born to have multiple.

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On Fucking (and Loving).

I want to apologize before I begin if what follows does not make much sense, if what follows is not clear, or if what follows is absolutely incorrect, generalizing, or simply false in its attempt to explain what has escaped explanation since time immemorial. I want to plead with you, whoever you may be, wherever you may be, to follow what follows to its end because what is written is in need of the same kind of consolation as the one, the writer, who writes it. The same love as the one who writes it, with love. What follows is a meditation, a musing, on fucking, and the relationship between fucking and loving. I should be clear that the love that I’m primarily discussing is of a romantic sort, a relationship between two/more partners. My question being: Why must I fuck you in order for me to prove I love you?

To ask this question is not to attempt to return to a Puritanic discourse on fucking where “real” love is ONLY that love which can exist in excess of fucking, but instead it’s to ask for a kind of romantic asexuality that locates itself at the point of the “occasional” or at a “from-time-to-time” where sexuality may go dormant, or where one may decide to scream-shout-yell-sing “I Love Yous” without this fleshly encounter. But it’s also an attempt to push against the former sentences’ attempt at defining “I love you, but I don’t want to fuck you” as an asexual remark. It’s an attempt to redefine the relationship between fucking and loving as something so consensual that it’s not implied that they who love will fuck, as it is not implied that they who fuck will love. I am trying to expand the understanding of love in order to open up the possibility that I may love you, but may not want to fuck you, and may not want to be just your friend. I may want to hold you; I may want to help you; I may want to never go days without you; I may never want to see you suffer, struggle, hurt. But fucking, no, fucking I can’t do. Fucking you will mean nothing, and I may want everything we do to be in a vortex of something; or vice-versa, fucking may mean something horrid, something miserable, and I may want everything we do to be within the context of a perfect nothingness.

Now against what I have written, whoever you are, wherever you are, you will say, “What distinguishes what you have described from being asexual?” And here is where may I lose you, here is where you may begin to think that the secrets, the darkness, or the plague of this piece begins to come to light. But remember, you have promised to hear what I have to say to its end, to its conclusion. You are here now, whoever you are, wherever you are, stay here and hear. What if I love you, and we love each other, and I don’t wish to fuck you, but I wish to fuck other persons that I love? Assuming, as I believe to be true, that our love is capable of loving more than one; and in fact, that our love, and our world would perhaps be better if we all, men, women, and non-binary folks, accepted and transitioned to a polyamorous worldview. Additionally, assuming, staying stuck in this world we are in, that my love for you and my love for this other person is both transparent and consented to by all parties involved.

Is there reason to believe that I love that other person who I most certainly can/do love, more than I love you whom I most certainly can/do love, but don’t fuck? Is there any reason to believe that there is a POSITIVE relationship between loving and fucking?  I know scientist will speak of the adrenaline, the sharing of fluids, and of the mind and bodies in synchronization, and the religious will speak of the consummation of love. But I, the philosopher, will speak of fucking. I will speak of fucking because there is a tendency to conflate “sex” when that sex is with one who one loves as equal with love. That somehow love erases fucking, somehow love has some auto-transformative quality that makes all fucking with the one who one loves “love-making” or “sex.” This auto-transformative quality in “love” makes the word “fucking” or the act of “fucking” not just undesirable, but impossible when the body in contact with fucking is one whom one loves. But, I am skeptical of this separation. In fact, I believe this is an attempt to make all sex with a lover a “sexuality from the heights,” or, “a sexuality that recreates the moral ideals of the oedipal family, or the subjectified couple, founded on promises, principles, and mutual expectations” as Phillip Goodchild put it. Versus a “sexuality from the depths,” or a sexuality based on “sordid carnal pleasures,” as Jared Sexton put it. But following this thinking we would be right back at where we trying to avoid – a kind of Puritanism that occludes “fucking” to the depths and love somewhere far away from it close to some transcendental morality.

But I have the tendency to believe that each sexual encounter is always fucking, by which I mean, is always a “sexuality of the depths.” The question is more about whether or not that fucking includes love or excludes love. But to fuck is always carnal, it is always desire, it is always what we have psychosocially come to see as improper, wrong, or “immoral.” Love does not occlude that, no matter how much we’d wish to act as if it does. Love does not negate “fucking.” Love, and love-making, includes fucking. If one wished to debate the question, allow two lovers to fuck in public and see if their “love” is enough for us to psychosocially see it as “decent” behavior. We have been tutored, trained, forced into a kind of “anti”-fuck that I believe has ultimately hurt the very thing we wished to save it for, namely, love.

Somewhere against/with this background where we’ve learned to name love, we’ve learned to place it within this field of desire. We’ve learned to unconsciously mathematicise love with an equation that reads: (Love + Fucking = Love-Making). Thus, making [(Love – Fucking = Love) < (Love + Fucking = Love-Making)]. “Real” love has, with an almost inverted Puritan logic, become for us the place where fucking and love meet, disguised and distorted as the location where “love-making” and love meet. However, I would like to believe that love could supersede fucking or that love can supersede the love one has with a different lover that they fuck. Not because there is something wrong with fucking, but because there can be a love stronger than a love-that-fucks. There can be a love-that-holds, a love-that-helps, a love-that-cares, a love-that-struggles-with, a love-that-grows-beside, a love that is absent of fucking, but in excess of any kind of love-that-fucks. A love, whatever “love” may mean, beyond fucking.

I think here I shall conclude. I do not know if what I have mentioned here makes complete sense. What is written is a part of a stream of conscious writing, beginning at 3 am, attempting towards some kind of logic that may have only obscured something that is already obscure. I hope there was something here that you have understood, whoever you are, wherever you are, and I hope that you don’t see me as crazy, but as someone attempting to save love and to make love in a million ways, sometimes through fucking, sometimes through struggling, and sometimes, as in right now, through thinking and writing.

Love is Not Colorless

           The Huffington Post recently posted an article on Romeo Miller, hip hop artist and No Limit Forever record label founder, entitled, “Romeo Miller Can Teach Us All Something About Interracial Dating.” The article highlights Romeo’s new relationship with Toneta Morgan, a blonde haired white girl from God knows where, and goes on to talk about the backlash Romeo received from the black community on Instagram for being with a white women. Romeo responded to this backlash in foolishly colorblind fashion saying, “Love is colorless at the end of the day,” a quote which the Huffington Post just praised.

            “In other words, love has no limit,” Taryn Finley wrote to close out the article. But the fact of the matter is, Romeo’s statement proves the complete opposite to be true. Advocacy for colorless love implies that love’s limit lies within the confines of blackness as a significantly, recognizable aspects of a person’s identity and personhood. Romeo’s will to colorlessness negates the fact of blackness and anti-blackness that manifest within the social and private sphere of black social life. Love doesn’t render Romeo free of the white gaze that imparts criminality onto him regardless of his status and celebrity. Love doesn’t render Romeo free of the unconscious and preconscious racism that will find itself conscious and distinguishable the moment the “Negro” attends the first white family dinner. Love doesn’t render Romeo free of white murmurs that will forever question the integrity of the relationship as a relationship consummated by affection and tenderness first, and sexual phantasms of the “animalistic black phallus,” second.

            Love is full of color, struggle, and power dynamics. The interracial relationship is not exempt from that, on the contrary, the interracial relationship is permeating with the socio-political context of race and gender. Whereas the black man (and it is different for a black women), being a man, may dominate the private sphere with physical prowess, the white woman, being white, dominates the social sphere by being the institutional queen of white supremacy. Her position as queen in the systemic structure of white supremacy will become known when the police stops you on the highway and wants to ask her and her alone if she’s “okay.” Your position as dominant in the private sphere will become known when her Aunts, friends, and cousins want to know if, “What they say about you [the black] is true.” It is this fact of blackness that made Fanon say, “Whoever says rape says black man.”

Interracial love is a power struggle built on an asymmetrical racist, patriarchal foundation. But to love and love truly is to love the struggle you’re engaging in. For Romeo, a black man, and Toneta Morgan, a white woman to be involved romantically they can’t ignore this crucial part of the struggle. They can’t cast color to the wayside as if anti-blackness doesn’t cast a question mark on Romeo’s entire existence. The problem has to be faced head on. It has to be discussed, argued, disagreed on, and solidified as part of the communicable discourse in the relationship. Race is as significant, perhaps more significant, as the rest of the discourses that make the struggle in love worth the struggle of love.

As a black man, in an interracial relationship, I’m not here to say whether or not you can be pro-black and date a white women. Personally, I love black people, and I love my white Hispanic girlfriend from the Basque Country. But what I am here to say is that interracial love is not and cannot be colorless. It has to be as color-conscious as the world is, and this consciousness need not be an obstacle. To love and love conscious of color is to love the person as the person is in their fullness, whether it be black and ostracized to the margins of civil society, or white and postured as the symbolic beacon of civil society. And truly, if the person you love can’t love, can’t handle, or won’t attempt to understand your blackness, then that person loves a false imago of you that’s neither helpful nor honestly loving.

To Choose Love is To Choose Love Activism

A “wise philosopher” once said, “We live in a generation of not being in love and not being together,” and regardless of how true this phrase is statistically, the overall sentiment and its pervasive approval is at the very minimum a collective agreement on the point that something about this generation, and the will to love in an exclusive fashion is thought to be, or may actually be, rare. Although it is possible that past generations weren’t much better, and/or that the negative orientation towards love in the millennial generation could be a direct reflection of a positive sexual politic wherein women, who were formerly trapped and chained down to unsuccessful and potentially harmful relationships with patriarchal men, now found themselves liberated from the pains of those love relationships, the question, is love still possible in this generation, still remains a question of considerable concern.

Perhaps the odds are stacked disproportionately against those who wish to love in this generation. Perhaps our generation is a generation overworked and overwhelmed to the point of seeing love relationships as fruitless pursuits; perhaps our generation is freedom-starved, and happily so, to the point of seeing love relationships as a form of enslavement; perhaps our generation is disenfranchised to the failures of our parents, and well aware of the pain and hurt that can result from an unsuccessful relationship; perhaps our generation has developed a rather revolutionary love wherein love cannot be broken down into a simple one-on-one relationship, and in the wake of an ever-connected planet, love has evolved into a communal polymorphous interaction; perhaps the information age has allowed for too much information to disconnect and disenchant the romantic sentimentality of the past generations, and our love for endless information has grown alongside our love for endless sexual-romantic relations, and because of this, perhaps, love has died. While we may never know which of these, or, if all of these are too blame, those of us who wish to believe that a monogamous love can still exist without the stains of the traditional oppressive structures must weed through the disenfranchised, the disengaged, and the unwilling to find a solid ground somewhere with someone.

This act, this desire to love among the disenchanted, is a revolutionary act for love. For in the moment you choose love, the world begins to watch and wait. All of those atheist of love begin to whisper and gamble. The question among the crowd is not so much how did you start to date, but how long will you last. And soon as the world knows that you have begun to embark on this journey with your partner, the world begins to turn against you. Your ex will send you a text message confessing an untapped will to be with you again. That person who you had been waiting to hear say that they are interested for years will start pursuing you in a relentless fashion. You’ll find out that you have to leave soon and the relationship may be heading towards long distance. Your parents will divorce and the model you had to follow for future success will begin to decimate before your eyes. And everything, everywhere will seem to be working against you.

A few months will go by and some of those early concerns will wither away. The ex and that relentless person of former infatuation will start to get the hint, you’ll work out the mechanics of the long-distance conundrum, your parents will tell you stories of how they failed and you will work to not fall into the same traps, and the world will begin to see that they placed their bets far too short. This is going to last. But this comforting sensation will begin to pry at the stability of love. And Love’s Paradox will begin to show: stability in love is unstable. Monotony will begin to desecrate the stable foundation on which your love was built upon; the will to more and the desire of spontaneity will begin to make you question why you started this in the first place. You were born to be free. You were born to explore. And somehow this love has stifled your growth. Your arguments are no longer about the world. Your arguments are about your partner. Everything you’ve built will become a question mark: Why am I doing this? Do I really love them? Do they really love me? Do I really want this right now? What could I be doing differently? When the questions emerge, the world will return. And you will begin the darkest part of your relationship. Whereas the first dilemma was solved by focusing your sights on the love of your life, this second dilemma is caused by them. And you don’t want to leave, but it’s harder to stay. You don’t want them to be with someone else, but you feel like you can’t be with them. It’s circle of love and a circle of hurt. And you begin to ask yourself: Are the tears worth it? Is the fighting worth it? Is the hurt worth it? Is the struggle worth it?

This is love. To love someone is to give someone permission to destroy you and believing that they won’t. And anyone who chooses love becomes an activist for it. For in every act of activism there will be tears, there will be fighting, there will be hurt, there will be pain, there will be a struggle against the world, with the people, persons, or in this case, the person you love the most. The task is to not fall too deep into despair, to understand that love is nothing but a power struggle where lovers must remain vulnerable and passionate to find the little ways to amend big issues. The task is to make love personal while understanding that it is universal in its concept and particular in its application. The task of love may be bigger than you, but like all activism it is possible for an “us.” Perhaps the odds are stacked against this “us.” Perhaps we do live in a generation of not being in love, but it is that very statement that makes those of us who choose love so important. We are possibility. We are opportunity. We are hope. To choose love is to choose love activism.