Further notes on pain

Listen!

It is indeed strange that when ancient philosophers enumerated the five senses they forgot pleasure and pain. Unless pleasure and pain are second order “derivatives” based on sense. But this doesn’t make sense for the sight of something cannot cause pain unless it is a blinding light (or a very ugly polyester jacket ha ha). Pain is a pressure on the nerves distinct from sensation.

We can create simulacrum of sensation but how do you communicate pain save in crude relative levels? And does a person, whose life has been for the most part very pleasant and who has run from pain, get extra points for extra suffering for to him the pain is worse because he’s not endured anything like it?

Pain clearly is to teach us the Way. The message of my health problems is twofold:

(1) To teach me in the most brutal and behavioristic way what I then must do. Oh, you don’t want to sit up straight? Pow, sciatica. Oh, you want to eat what you want when you want? Yippee, the big C, malignancy.

(2) To then pose the question as to why I want to continue to exist, for what reason. It can’t possibly be to travel first class. I have already. The people are nicer but it’s the same ride in a toothpaste tube. It would have meaning only if it were for another.

I SEE SPACE AND IT LOOKS LIKE NOTHING AND I WANT IT AROUND ME – Jenny Holzer

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