Dialed in coffees for work today today. Drank more than I should have. This is caffeine poisoning. An overdose. Has coffee ever killed anyone? I’ll find out; no one dies from coffee. Last year a couple of people died from caffeine pills and energy drinks.
So I won’t be dying but death would be a relief. This is torture. I’m coming apart, my molecules are leaving en mass. I can feel it happening. I’m sweating underneath my skin. Intestinal distress. Holes in my colon, bladder bursting pressure, stomach in a vice.
My eyes are raisins, tight and shriveled. There are bolts in the back of my head. My mouth has an oddly metallic, tinny taste to it. Heart is thudding, rocking my rib cage.
The feeling in my skin. I could peel myself raw. There are ant colonies inside me. Everything is covered in a fuzz, everything is brushed with grey. The world is losing its definition. All my senses converge on a paralyzing panic.
It’s a chemical imbalance. It’s all about the chemicals. The balance, ratio, proportion, mixture. It’s all matter and mass, interaction of matter. You’re made of a bunch of stuff stuck together. That’s your life, you being alive is dependent on your stuff staying together.
Well, at a certain rate of speed or in a certain relation to time at least. We’re always changing, losing and gaining parts of ourselves. But we stay alive, we maintain our organic form because we change slowly enough, at the right rate for stability. If you change from one state to another too quickly, you pass from a living organism to a body. Pass back into matter, disorganized stuff.
A dead body is uncanny. Why do you have a body when you’re alive and then become a body when you’re dead. Why is it so hard to look at the dead body of someone you knew. When a person is alive, they are an image, a screen, an immaterial spirit. They’re light enough they could float away. And then they become an object, a piece of matter. Solid, inert.
It all comes to down to chemical proportion. Imbalance. They say chemical imbalance when talking about mental illness. But chemical imbalance describes everything that disturbs or breaks down the relations between your component parts.
Your whole body is made of smaller bodies made of smaller bodies. Those smaller bodies compete, cooperate and die to keep your body together. Then your whole body plays a role in keeping an even larger body together. And you will compete, cooperate, and die in turn.
Anything healthy and functional is appropriating one thing and expelling another. Every little body at each and every level of scale is made of smaller bodies dying. They are co opted, assimilated, incorporated as a function of a larger body. Every whole gets swallowed up by a bigger whole. But the small bodies get their revenge; they also colonize and break down the bigger bodies.
There’s no safe scale, no manner or mode of organization that can’t be either assimilated or torn down to serve something else. Try to imagine all of this at once. In one moment grasp the extent of everything using everything else as a tool for a temporary existence.
When looked at from the inside, everything wants to be itself forever. Its essence is a desire to persist without end. But nothing persists forever because something else always breaks it down.
Death is in the relations between things. It’s not in the things themselves.
This is why we can’t imagine death. We can’t accept it or confront it because it’s not within us. We look inside and see only life, desire for life, eternal presence.
Death comes from the outside. It visits us. Takes us away from our bodies, ends the desire for the everlasting.
Why this dizzying infinity of little pieces of matter, of atoms, molecules, gasses, rock, wood, water, cells, and flesh. Billiard balls knocking into each other. We can’t imagine death and we can’t imagine life without a purpose. All this stuff has to be for something. We have to be for something.
Reading Spinoza and remembering that we’re part of nature, and nature is synonymous with god. Nothing is accidental or arbitrary. God acts out of the necessity that follows from his nature. So nothing exists for the sake of something else but rather because it was caused by something else, which was also caused by something else before it, with everything being caused by god out of absolute necessity.
Everything that is, has been, and will be must necessarily be as it is because God acts out of necessity. This is supposed to make you feel good. Not elated, not effervescent, but calm, content. There’s no sense in wishing for things to be different. Believing things could be different is foolish. You become passive, a slave to passion.
We comprehend causes inadequately through our senses and imagination. Our feelings and fantasies fail to grasp both our own nature as well as the greater nature of which we are only a part. But reason grasps god in thinking of necessity.
There is nothing to hope for or fear, nothing to regret. Our passions are products of ignorance, of failing to understand the true causes that determine us. Man uses hope and fear to control man, promising and threatening his way to power. It’s unwise to cling to finite things, to love what you lose.
But there is a higher state of love. We can love God. Not for personal gain, not for the sake of something else. For no other reason than that God is infinite power.
We will, as the specific composite of smaller bodies we are, experience fear, pain, hate, envy and sadness. But we can find contentment in the contemplation of the necessary causes through which we come to be and suffer.
I was hoping this would be enough to counteract my caffeine poisoning. This bad combination of chemicals. I wanted to read Spinoza and follow his propositions to a beatific condition. My organs are decaying and my skin is disintegrating. This is how it has to be. Why don’t I feel better about it.