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59266Re: [existlist] Do the map

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  • eduardathome
    Feb 4, 2013
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      I mean by "fatalism" that in all life, shit happens. As soon as you take
      the road less travelled, you are off on a different direction, from which
      you can't return. But then one road is as good as another. And overall ...
      You live; you die; and you do what you can. There is no point is saying
      that it was a lot of "trouble". Johnson was right in his comment. He chose
      the path he took. He could have take another path, but nothing is guarantee
      there either.

      eduard

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Mary
      Sent: Monday, February 04, 2013 11:43 AM
      To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [existlist] Do the map

      Bill, if by nonchalance you mean unconcern and eduard, if by fatalism you
      mean destiny, then I have to disagree. I feel we're discussing two different
      movies. If by nonchalance and fatalism you mean acceptance, I agree but
      neither of these describe Existentialism which is an argument against
      nihilism and fatalism, an argument against total negation and the
      meant-to-be. Existentialism argues for engagement in making a life which has
      meaning for you, only after which the average of the sum may be calculated.

      Besides, those lines of dialogue between Lapp and Johnson, although at the
      end of the film, weren't the end sum of Johnson's life; they were a
      perspective at that particular moment regarding his experiences over one
      fall and winter. Wiser for the journey, one can imagine he had more
      adventures ahead. When you use the terms fatalism and nihilism equally with
      existentialism, you can't really mean destiny, a total negation of meaning
      or value, or feeling unconcern.

      Johnson left society and its wars to live alone in the mountains. Ill
      prepared for his decision, he encountered hostile weather and angry Crow.
      The irony of his story, that nature and solitude also have their cost, is
      important. He couldn't avoid people and violence even in the wilderness.They
      were merely of a different order. He shunned one set of traditions and
      culture only to encounter a different one. I don't think fatalism was a
      theme but more his original intention, his series of choices, his growing
      respect for nature, limits, and the hard won respect he gained from Chris
      Lapp and Paints His Shirt Red who demanded respect for Crow tradition. The
      worst and pivotal choice in the story involved Johnson's bad faith decision
      to lead soldiers through Crow burial ground.

      If Johnson denied any trouble, it was because the distance he traveled was
      worth it, not because it was meaningless or was fated. He warred, he loved,
      he nurtured, he lost, and won. He meant 'so what.That's life.' He wasn't
      fated to endure those hardships. He chose, acted, reacted, adapted, and
      moved on. What appeared superficially as nonchalance wasn't a lack of
      concern or even a disregard for the lives lost due to his decisions. He'd
      come far during that short period of time, but it was worth the trouble. It
      meant his participation and acceptance of life's vicissitudes, not
      withdrawal, negation, or belief that things are meant to be. They're 'meant
      to be' only after you've done what you're capable of doing. Johnson learned
      his limitations, not that he didn't care or that all was meant to be
      regardless of his actions.

      I've forgotten the pains of childbirth, traumas of my marriage, and my
      disabling accident yet they were all well worth the trouble and whatever
      positive things they've brought to my life. They weren't meant to be; they
      happened largely because of my decisions to be in those particular places at
      those particular times. Many were bad faith choices, inauthentic choices
      based in fear and against my instincts and sensibilities, choices formed
      from cultural norms and not in freedom. Though I can now say after some
      perspective they were no bother and I've learned invaluable lessons, I live
      with scars from all three, I can't have a lack of concern or fatalism,
      because these long term situations have affected other lives. Johnson
      forsook societal bonds only to find himself entangled with different one,
      but his freedom was short lived.

      Jeremiah Johnson a fatalist and nonchalant? I don't think so. Engaged and a
      man of action, stoic perhaps and skeptical about romanticizing nature or
      trespassing on Indian Country. Mutual respect between competitors was
      gained, but none of these would have occurred had Johnson never undertaken
      the experience.He considered that time as no trouble, not because he didn't
      care or was merely expressing bravado. It was no trouble because of
      developing mutual respect and responsible freedom. It's all a new life can
      prove to be and more.

      Mary




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