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Suicide or Recovery

Old 04-27-2011, 02:17 PM
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Suicide or Recovery

It happens that the stage sets collapse. Rising, streetcar, four hours in the office or the factory, meal, streetcar, four hours of work, meal, sleep, and Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday and Saturday according to the same rhythm—this path is easily followed most of the time. But one day the “why” arises and everything begins in that weariness tinged with amazement. “Begins”—this is important. Weariness comes at the end of the acts of a mechanical life, but at the same time it inaugurates the impulse of consciousness. It awakens consciousness and provokes what follows. What follows is the gradual return into the chain or it is the definitive awakening. At the end of the awakening comes, in time, the consequence: suicide or recovery. In itself weariness has something sickening about it. Here, I must conclude that it is good. For everything begins with consciousness and nothing is worth anything except through it.
-- Albert Camus
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:18 PM
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What 'recovery' is Camus referring to? I don't have more than a Wikipedia understanding of Camus.
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Old 04-27-2011, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by recycle View Post
What 'recovery' is Camus referring to? I don't have more than a Wikipedia understanding of Camus.
I believe he is saying that once the moment comes when we become aware of the futility of "the mechanical life" (what we are doing over and over again without thinking), we begin to wonder why we do what we do.

Once that happens, we have a choice: we disregard the question (denial) and go back to the chain - that is, back to what we where doing - or we accept what we've become aware of and we decide to see where it leads us.

If we do the latter, we are eventually thrown into a state of existential nihilism, neither able to go back to what we where doing, or having an alternate purpose instead, and we are faced with another choice: suicide or recovery.

The "Alcoholics Anonymous" book (1st Edition) describes this dilemma:

He cannot picture life without alcohol. Some day he will be unable to imagine life either with alcohol or without it. Then he will know loneliness such as few do. He will be at the jumping-off place. He will wish for the end.
Camus is saying that it is legitimate and necessary to wonder whether life has a meaning at this point, and, therefore, it is legitimate to meet the problem of suicide face to face.

He concludes that this is good, because he believes that it is possible to find the means to proceed beyond this nihilism, to find a new purpose.

I'm sure you can see the parallels to addiction and recovery.
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:39 PM
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To paraphrase:

Choose the red pill and go back into the matrix; choose the blue pill and go down the rabbit hole.

Way to catch my attention with a title!

I was aware and weary for a long time but could not change. I cannot give you a reason why this quit took and 100's others didn't. I have my idea but it probably doesn't belong in the secular forum.

As for life in general I understood years ago I had no desire to lead the life I was supposed to...corporates success followed by marital success. I knew I wanted something different, to be an artist, wife and mother, maybe work with horses. But since I could not figure out how to become the person I wanted to be I draank and I was the person expected of me.
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:41 PM
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Although I failed at being the person they wanted me to be anyway subconscious rebellion...maybe actually conscious.
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Old 04-27-2011, 08:41 PM
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Originally Posted by LaFemme View Post
I knew I wanted something different, to be an artist...But since I could not figure out how to become the person I wanted to be I drank and I was the person expected of me.

Although I failed at being the person they wanted me to be anyway subconscious rebellion...maybe actually conscious.
The artist is a creator, and creation is revolution.

The artist is necessarily a rebel. It cannot be otherwise.
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Old 04-27-2011, 11:01 PM
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La noche oscura del alma was Saint John of the Cross' description. In Theravada Buddhism it is called the dukkha nanas. Aleister Crowley called it 'crossing the abyss' in A.'.A.'. literature. Every spiritual/mystical tradition I have looked at, has a description of this phenomena where a certain amount of awakening leaves you in an untenable position. Either you move forward and forever change your life, or you attempt to maintain the status quo, or retreat, and find only despair. It is nice to see it repeated among gawdless French intellectuals.

I think it is a common phenomena of many people who get caught up addiction, we gain some sort awareness/enlightenment early on and we unwilling or unable to move forward. Then we get the bright idea since nothing really matters, so might as well be high. Thanks JB.
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Old 04-28-2011, 04:49 AM
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My favorite saying of all time; and I don’t know who said it (maybe W.C. Fields):
“ IF YA CANT DAZZEL THEM WITH YOUR BRILLIENCE-THEN BAFFEL THEM WITH YOUR BULLSH*T”
In my humble opinion there is a whole lot of one of those things going on in this thread, I’m just not smart enough to figure out which one!
My answer to this basically simple question is; I keep a loaded Ruger 45 semi-auto in my desk drawer. Every day I make the decision to live or not! The decision is fairly easy most of the time. I LOVE my kids and grandkids, my wife-gotta a lot of people depending on me. –That’s what keeps me going! AS far as the other choice; I would rather use the 45 than drink a fifth of booze a day- It’s quicker!
Interesting post-Thanks
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:38 AM
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Originally Posted by luckedog View Post
“ IF YA CANT DAZZEL THEM WITH YOUR BRILLIENCE-THEN BAFFEL THEM WITH YOUR BULLSH*T”
I like that quote. Although I like reading philosophy a lot, I often think of it that way too.

Originally Posted by luckedog View Post
I keep a loaded Ruger 45 semi-auto in my desk drawer. Every day I make the decision to live or not!
Looks like you're putting Camus theories into practice!
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Old 04-28-2011, 07:07 AM
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Ummm...luckedog...the fact that you keep a loaded gun in your desk disturbs me...sorry...is therapeutic a reason you do this?

Because I really like the person you seem to be and would hate for something to happen to you...hugs.
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Old 04-28-2011, 08:32 AM
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Thanks LaFemme, No worries though. The guns in the house are STRICTLY for protection!
The town we live in is less than 500 people and I live 2 miles out on a ranch of several hundred acres. Some of the neighbors have been troubled with “home invasions”. I have taught all my children and grand children good gun safety and to treat EVERY weapon as though it is loaded! IT is a little different culture out here in the west than the more populated areas. We believe “Gun Control” means using both hands!
I was simply trying to make the point that LIFE and DEATH are also within our control, and we make choices on a daily basis as to the outcome! For years I was killing myself slowly by my choice to drink. Some do it through obesity, or dangerous lifestyles. Sorry if I left the impression I was a gun toting maniac. I have no intention of harming myself! ( however if you should decide to break in my home in the middle of the night to hurt my family you better be well armed, lol)
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:44 AM
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The admission that I was committing suicide through drinking was the first step in my recovery. Once I had made that admission to myself, it still took a year to actually get stopped. Admitting it to myself was not enough, I had to admit it to others too. That started the process of getting some help I needed. As Camus states it was a beginning.

I do not think I have ever contemplated the weariness of it, or any value that came from weariness. I do remember being weary, really tired of the grind of breathing in and out, perhaps that was part of quieting my ego enough to begin seeing things differently. Camus has the advantage of going through it sober? When I go back and look at my journal from the early days of sobriety, which is hard for me to do, all I see is desperation, pain and insanity. I am not always completely sure how I got here, but as Winnie the Pooh says: “Wherever you go, there you are.”
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:52 AM
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Thanks for clarifying LD...I know the culture is different out there, you just worried me the way you phrased things...the limitations of the internet

Recycle...I'm not sure when I became aware that I was committing suicide through drink but I too lived with it for a long time before I quit. It's why I always say that if I start drinking again it will be because I want to die...it would be easier to break into luckedogs house to achieve that purpose I think
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Old 04-28-2011, 02:47 PM
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Suicide or recovery.

Those were pretty much my choices as well. It frightened me when I was sober how self-destructive my behavior was when dead drunk. I knew I would end up dead, and almost did. Death was just a bizarre coincident away.

But despite this realization I somehow managed to convince myself 18 months later that maybe, maybe I could handle my alcohol. So I tried, of course only to find out what an incredibly stupid decision that had been!

That was last February, it was only one night and I try not to be to hard on myself for it but still it sucks that instead of 20 months I technically have now only two!
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:45 PM
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Artoro, don’t let a "slip" ruin your future success, I never let the time be the most important factor! What did I learn, what can I do to keep the same thing from happening again. What positive thing can I bring away from this to help me in the long run! Keep striving for perfection, but face the fact you are human; and therefore subject to mistakes and setbacks--They are OPPROTUNITIES for greater success! Been there done that!
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