(A fiction by Sidharth Vardhan.
Please note that I started it as a fiction project that would use the disgusting ugliness to create some sort of literature. It was too close to reality to be worthwhile for anyone. If you are depressed or suicidal or are suspect-able, please avoid reading this diary. Those problems must be fought with all you have and the darkness contained in here can make your problems worse. Its only use can be found in the study of a very unhealthy and disgusting mind who has dumped his failures to find a value for his life in a dairy and ended up painting the whole world in black of his self-piety. The arguments he presents are all highly subjective and debatable and thus should not be considered wise at all. They prove nothing except the fact that he is a pathetic loser. You, whoever, are reading this, are a far superior person and should ask for help which is your birth-right as a human being and should ask for it and know that your life will be beautiful again. Yet I won’t take it offline as that seems to be cowardly. If you are curious, you can find all parts of ‘Diary of a Cynical Suicide’ here. )
Pain and beauty
There was a time when, after considering how much pain I am always in, I thought I would make a great artist. I mean think Van Gogh with his anxiety attacks, Proust with ridiculous sensitiveness, Woolf with her secret wings of imagination that she could not use to fly because she didn’t have a room of her own, Dostoevsky with his epileptic attacks, Kafka with his fear of never understood, Passoa with his self-imposed loneliness. I believed that everything beautiful must be born of a touch of a suffering hand. The mothers going through extreme pain give birth to children. A lover’s teardrops must surely have dropped, as that Sufi poet claimed, where flowers bloom now. But then I realized all of us are suffering to some extent – all seven billion of us. How many of us ever create something beautiful? The relationship that I believed to have existed between artistic creativity and pain arises out of the fact, that artists have the art required to present their suffering in a beautiful manner and thus getting our attention and compassion en masse. We do not generally spare time to think of sufferings of other, what is more, if they were to talk about it, it would bore us and we would want to run away and forget the monotonous episode in no time. That is why I am talking here in open, I know no one will care to read it through.
At other times though when I come across a kid, a rose, a beautiful woman with a charming smile – it fills me with a kind of hope, even though they may stay ignorant of my presence. This hope that suddenly inflicts with a wish to live is something that would have stayed inexplicable to me, had not a similar hope prompted Myshkin to announce in a moment of false epiphany “Beauty will save the world.” If I remember it right, Myshkin made this statement upon coming across a miracle of feminine beauty. Though Myshkin may be fictional, I wonder how many real people would have felt the same way. And before another moment has passed, the memory ( for though I haven’t seen him do so, I seem to remember seeing him) Van Gogh look out of his window of his asylum at the end of painful day and paint the starry sky (one of a handful of truly beautiful things in the world). I am sure if I had asked him (for as I told you, I was there,) silently watch him, work his miracle on canvas why must he paint when he suffers so much from all that is brutal, cruel and wrong in the world, he would have answered that beauty gives him hope amid all this suffering.
For myself, all these hopes no longer deceive me. Yeats once said a thing I beauty is joy forever but nothing is joy ‘forever’. The truth is the most beautiful woman of the world as well as saints as big as Jesus farted, shitted, ditto is true for artists and if you were to cut open their corpses they would stink as terribly as the rest of us. The youngest of the kids already are suppressing the most traumatic of the memories of terrible parents, dark dreams and who knows what? If for nothing else, the experience of being born – of being pulled out of your home of 9 months must be traumatic enough. A rose or all flowers if that matter is nothing but sexual organs of plants often castrated by those who claim to admire them. God save me from my friends, Voltaire had once said …
And if it be something beyond physical beauty that you consider true beauty than my friend know you share my values but I have learned this hard way – what is abstract will change and change faster than something physical and solid.
If art manages to create something beautiful than it is because the artists choose to ignore the ugly aspects of so-called beautiful things. All works that are beautiful are thus, by definition incomplete and beautiful only because they are incomplete. Complete them and like the last work of the sculptor in the story of Lazarus from that Russian writer of silver age whose name I can’t remember, everyone will find the work detestable. Beauty might have saved the world, Myshkin if it wasn’t an illusion born of looking at an incomplete picture.
Yeats once said that a thing of beauty of joy forever. In as much there is nothing beautiful as no joy lasts – that much I think I have talked about already. But the statement is ridiculous in another way. Even what goes down as things of beauty do not necessarily fill ‘normal’ people with joy. Normal people quickly reach out to pluck out the flower they find beautiful and thus starting it on its death, hill stations that were once seen as beautiful are now cluttered with garbage and pollution by those who find them beautiful and go there for trips or to live out of love for their beauty. A man finding a woman beautiful because of her shapely body will marry her and have children with her and thus spoiling her bodily curves which he loved in the first place ( not that those making that much of looks have much to be said in their favour). Normal people aren’t filled by joy even by what they might think beautiful. They are filled with an unconscious desire to destroy the thing because the perceived beauty reminds them of their own ugliness.
I am fortunate enough not to suffer the ease of normality. I am disturbed to no end on seeing a beautiful thing end, if I ever do find something such. This griefs me enough to want to kill myself rather than see a beautiful thing end even if the beauty of the thing is a mere illusion in my mind.
I laugh in face of those who think humanity is a wonderful thing and that we have a great future ahead of us. I laugh and point to them to the stray puppy in my street whose tail is now constantly inside his hind legs of fear. You can’t pass the street without intimating it and scaring it to withdraw a few steps away from you. The innocent creature has learned to fear humans – and what tortures it must have gone through to be like this, I leave to your imagination. That dog presents you the true face of humanity – in all its ugliness. Cruelty is first nature of humans and it is why we will never stop producing wars, psychopaths and riots. If you still doubt what I am saying and want to argue that this was don’t by people frustrated by their lives to relieve their frustration. Then I will tell you – that no, it wasn’t. It was done by kids as young as five and for sake of entertainment.
Rape, child molestation, slavery, child pornography, murder, genocide – there is not a single crime imaginable that at least some human beings haven’t committed. There is nothing beautiful about humanity.
I am a Spider Jerusalem who wants to run away to a mountain away from this sewerage of humanity. I don’t need to go traveling the world, like Gulliver, to see through the masks of love and compassion people wear.
Perhaps you will call me misanthropic for what I just said. But you can’t obviously hate me for being like this – or, in at least as much as you hate me, you will be misanthropic yourself.
I hear you arguing that it is one thing to complain about what is wrong in the world but one must be the change one wants to see. And I agree. I am the change I want to see. I want the human beings – all of us to leave each other alone to die. And living almost all the day in my own room, I have left the humanity alone already. I even avoid newspapers so that humanity might not enter the privacy of my room from the window.
Pain Letter -3
I failed to be a friend to you and you failed to be a friend to me. I loved you and your efforts to humor my love by your little lies also failed to achieve anything, though they made things worse. In the end, I failed to be a decent person too. I asked you to cut me off, but you refused and kept on refusing. Then you did cut me off, and I suffer now and want to have you back – knowing it will always get worse. In your presence, I had become so pathetic that I had come to hate myself. And yet I want you around again, knowing fully well that I would be my same old detestable self. I feel sleepy but am unable to go to bed for fear that you will torment my thoughts.
Pain letters – 4
You once said I am unhappy because I avoid happiness. But now you know what happens when I chase happiness.
Despair and Screaming
Screaming when in need of help seems to be an act of self-defense that must have an obvious evolutionary incentive. Actually, all the urges to scream are born out of despair IMO. Despair is what you feel when you are no longer at peace with the world around. Danger, needing for help are just a few such cases. The evolutionary incentive lies in the fact that screaming does sometimes changes things – gets help.
Despair is the most natural state of life. Dead don’t despair and they don’t need to. Living, on the other hand, are in despair even when they are happy, perhaps of fear that this happiness won’t last. Nothing despairs like happiness. Women in act of sexual intercourse, scream in despair of their pleasure.
Even the animals and infants scream when they need help. By the time you reach adulthood though, you lose this habit to a social conditioning in which you learn to ask for help when you need it is pathetic. You must look happy, you must pretend to be if you aren’t, for been seen unhappy will get you mockery. Thus people suffer in silence for fear of being labeled drama queens if they were to chose to talk about their suffering.
But then you might have seen adults scream when in anguish – for example when they have lost a dear one. Well, yes, the society does permit you the particular length of the period in which it is okay to be miserable, in given real conditions like losing a dear one or when you have a terminal disease or lost some limb etc. But after that certain mourning period, you must start to hide your suffering or risk being labeled ‘abnormal’.
Moreover, even when adults scream in such condition as above, they scream not asking or expecting help. The screaming in such cases is an act of despair just like other forms of screaming, but it is no longer call for help, for such adults never actually expect help. The screaming in such cases is just a desperate and miserable effort to enact such a change. You scream, not so much to be heard, but just to break away from things as they are, to break the silence that surrounds you and seems to be in process of smothering you. Other acts done with similar motivation is breaking and throwing things and trying to hurt/kill oneself. Such acts are not the calls for help – that stage was long skipped over by these people thanks to the culture of shame but acts of despair at their inability to accept the fact that they can’t be helped.
If you are unable to bury deep inside you this need for screaming and breaking things, you are labeled lunatic. If you bury them but not deep inside or not successfully, you are likely to commit suicide. If you do bury them deep you are that pathetic thing called ‘normal’.
Value of life
Those who talk about valuing human life must know that a life is of different value to different people. And the only value of life that really matters is the value which each person attaches to his or her own life (and not the value we attach to the life of to others).
A coward is someone who knows what is the right thing to do is and fails to do it of pitiable fears. I am a coward, not because I want to kill myself but in that, I keep on failing to do that. I am a coward in that I know the right thing to do for me is to kill myself and still am unable to do so, choosing instead to make a big drama with these notes when I know every bit of food I eat is wasted and might have fed a starving child who might have made something of his/her own life or, at the very least, fed an animal whose life is important to itself and thus important. On me, it is entirely wasted.
Pain Letter – 4
It is happening again. I feel like contacting you again and start accusing you of coming back. Why couldn’t I ask you to stay away that day when you asked what I want? Why couldn’t I question you for cutting the call that day? Tell me if there is a way out of this other than death? I’m hating myself, I am hating how pathetic I have become and I would rather be dead than be this. I won’t ask you to help me because you can’t. You are incapable of it. Yet I wish to pick up an argument with you. Every argument with you is started by me as that one last cigarette before I could quit smoking.
This diary must stop here, I’m tired of whining about my life.
Hey, saying that ‘im tired of whining about my life’ itself sounds like whining.
Copyright – Sidharth Vardhan