Re: A case of bad faith?
- Dear Een,
I suppose that, at bottom, I don't perceive that the self qua self is
bound by any ethical requirement which pre-empts the individual's
freedom, responsibility, and burden of making choices--and existence
or non-existence is a primary choice. We are dealing with extreme
situations here: O.W.'s suicide, and an individual lying in a
vegetative state on a hospital bed, continuing to exist without the
capacity of choice, simply because a machine has taken over his
I must admit that I generally consider ethics in terms of an
individual's relations with another. Concerning the self's ethical
relations with itself, I believe the striving to be authentic is a
major facet of the self's quest of becoming. I don't think in terms
of ethical absolutes. We all know the conventional ethical
principles, and we all know that behavior has consequences. We come
into existence without our choosing. If we choose to continue to
exist, then we make choices, we act, and we confront the consequences
of our actions. In my opinion, arguing about ethics is not
productive. I keep things simple: I see the self's ethical
requirement toward itself consisting of the self accepting
responsibilty for its own actions. And I see the self's ethical
relationship to other selves as pretty much covered by the golden
Most suicides don't appear to be the product of a reasoned, measured
choice. But, if an individual has chosen to express in his last will
and testament that, should the occasion arise, he would not want to
be kept in existence, without brain function, by mechanical means--
then I submit that he has not breached any theoretical ethical
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Een Enkelte"
> Dear Dennis,be
> Thank you for your reply, and further clarification. It may be that
> the difference in the thoughts behind our expressions may also now
> You write that (my formatting):
> ----To me there is a world of difference between
> i) not accepting oneself as the self one actually is (bad faith)
> ii) accepting oneself as the self one actually is, but choosing to
> longer exist--in response to ethical choices.resist.
> For my part, this is exactly the sort of distinguishing that I
> The ethical requirement emphasises precisely this: that one exists.and
> It is in existence, within one's existence, that one is becoming.
> When a self relates itself to itself in relation to an absolute,
> that self (here it is) EXISTS - and does not forget this; then thethe
> absolute appears within existence as a REQUIREMENT. Further, the
> ethical absolute, since it is an absolute which is related to by
> self in relating to itself as the positive third (that is this selfits
> has posited itself, relates itself to itself;which was is a willing
> to be oneself) appears as a requirement with regard to willing and
> therefore ACTION; that is, the requirement is with regard to
> becoming, becoming more able to act in accordance with the
> requirement, ie a TASK.
> Becoming is within existence; Eternity is finished, is complete.
> It is certain then that one can only relate oneself to the ethical
> requirement WITHIN EXISTENCE; that it is only within existance that
> one can act according to it (in the relating itself to itself in
> ethical understanding of itself, and so relating itself to theTASK.
> Note: It is through this relating of the self, by means of thetask,
> eternal, absolute requirement of the ethical, that the self may
> perceive its eternal validity).
> To step away from existence is therefore to step away from the
> the arena of the ethical requirement and the self's ownunderstanding
> of itself.
> Put again the way we started: Ethically viewed, the requirement to
> become oneself is understood to be the task of concretion. That one
> be oneself is understood to mean that one be willing to be the self
> that one actually is, that one be willing to EXIST - as oneself.
> Your distinction, however, seems to imply the self may take itself
> along as it leaves existence, that it remains itself self as it
> leaves existence.
> Now this may be possible; but not for an actual self, since if one
> leaves existence one leaves also actuality; and not for the ethical
> self, since it understands itself as a self that is bound to a task
> (itself) within existence.
> Een Enkelte.
- Hello again Helen,
Seek and ye shall find Helen. I'm surely rootin' for you. And let
no man, woman, or child get in your way either(Luke 18:29-30). Do you
feel a deep inner compulsion or 'calling' toward 'self-discovery',
rather than simply because it's the trendy 'in thing' to do, which,
now-a-days especially, seems to be an overwhelmingly prevalent
Beware of the many false and severely limited gurus, groups,
followers, religions, etc. everywhere. And the lies, schemes, and
dreams are slick and thick in all arenas. Take what you need(that
which edifies) and let the rest Helen, which is not always an easy
thing to do, and the task of which becomes part of your very own
trials and tribulations in the growth of wisdom and fullness of being.
And likewise be watchful of the many unfortunate intellectually
warped 'space cadet' types who serve for little more than to get
their jollies off playing with people's heads, especially here on the
net, along with putting a drag on life wherever they may happen to
be. Christ spoke of the many wolves, and they sure do come in all
sorts of fine looking clothing in these last days. Love them but keep
Eclecticism, I feel, is the best approach and the one I've been on
for many years, though more and more it seems that I'm really a
Christian at heart, though one without a church or friends.
Biographies of those from all walks of life who followed the beat of
a different drummer were, for me, the best help when it came to
reading, which I've done much of over the years, and still do. My path
(and one which I find most perfect) remains AA's 12 steps which were
formulated from Christian principles, though free of the air of
authority, hero worship, doctrines, dogmas, thou shall nots, gross
limitations, and just plain lies, as is so prevalent in present day
Christendom virtually everywhere.
Nietzsche and J. Krishnamurti were perhaps my best teachers,
although after many years on the mountain-side, I've come to view
Krishnamurti as well intentioned, wise, and even enlightened in a
sense, but essentially just another false prophet with an anti-
religious bent who, as a result, has done far more harm than good.
I know little about St. Vitus Dance or epilepsy, except once again
that my mom was said to have had the former, and that seldom do you
hear the term anymore like you did years ago. I do know however, that
the so-called experts very often don't have a clue about many things
either, which is scary, but a fact. One needs to get smart for their
own sake Helen, especially in these last days. The striving for the
almighty buck has gotten even good men's minds badly warped, often
making them propagators of lies and producers and perpetuators of
suffering. Seems, for instance, we seem to have a chemical drug or
fix for everything now-a-days, and they don't come cheap, nor with
any guarantees either, save for their comsumption filling people's
pocket-books very well.
You mention your interest in the connection between neurological
conditions and insightfulness and brilliance. My interest in this
area would include, and especially, sensitivity too, along with the
importance of the early formative years and their effect on the
mind/brain development. As I find insightfulness and brilliance alone
don't necessarily make for a wholesome and well-rounded human being,
and very often quite far from it. Einstein comes to mind here for one.
At the following url, I have placed some ideas I've found
insightful and helpful over the years, including some on the early
'Sci-Fi' is a field I have no interest in whatsoever. I suppose
it's because of my inherent down to earth, hands on, nothing but the
truth nature. Nor was I ever part of the drug, sex, & rock and roll
scene either, thank God. Although I do enjoy nearly all kinds of
music, but again, I never had a need to be part of any scenes.
Actually and in retrospect I've always been an 'outsider lookin' in'
and a loner, and remain that very same way today, though now and
finally with a clear understanding of life and self, along with
having recaptured a happy heart and sane mind. Though not without
also having to bear at times a deeply felt sorrow, which sometimes
borders on feelings of madness. But my co-pilot, Karen, keeps me
living on, though often I'd just as soon be back 'home' once again.
Best wishes Helen,
P.S. "And so long as you haven't experienced this: to die and so to
grow, you are only a troubled guest on the dark earth." Goethe
And this is so whether ye be a friend or a foe of the (dark) earth, I
> Hi Bob,nothing about the guru in question at this point I like your
> I'd say thats more than many and I'm not talking numbers here...
> I have been reading your contributions to the Kexiles. Tho' I know
responses.....your tune is melodic.
> For some time I have been deeply engaged in the intriguing businessof self discovery. A journey that's taken me through parts of, some
of, the sometimes almost impossible-to-fathom tomes of the great
existentialist philosophers and personality theorists, to the
writings of the Sartre and the Beats to contemporaries like Tom
Robbins, Taoism, Buddhism and all kinds of related and unrelated
stuff..................Trying discover about me, being and the
meaning of life. Strange how one can go along in a complete vombee
like state for the majority of ones life then all of a sudden the
bottom drops out of your world and there's nothing holding you up
> I was looking for your mail about St Vallias Dance and yourbrothers, which I seem to have lost...I had never heard of this
condition, which is odd since my oldest daughter is a JRA sufferer
another autoimmune illness, luckily St V's D must be pretty rare.
> I have been looking into the connection between neurologicalconditions and insightfulness and brilliance (which is a subjective
term... I've chosen to use nevertheless)....Yes, Nijinsky's diaries
and those writings of Dick after his 'visions' (the sci-fi writer
described by Dennis) would be good to read....most of the stuff on
the websites is just too brief and tantalizing and there's a lot
about entertainers...brilliant musicians who were often heavy drug
> friend of the earth if not the world