Monday, April 1, 2013

Remembering Aaron Swartz

Via Brain Pickings

The following is an excerpt from David Foster Wallace's Kenyon College commencement which was read at the memorial service for open-access activist Aaron Swartz.

If you worship money and things — if they are where you tap real meaning in life — then you will never have enough. Never feel you have enough. It’s the truth. Worship your own body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly, and when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally plant you. On one level, we all know this stuff already — it’s been codified as myths, proverbs, clich├ęs, bromides, epigrams, parables: the skeleton of every great story. The trick is keeping the truth up-front in daily consciousness. Worship power — you will feel weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to keep the fear at bay. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart — you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out. And so on.

I'm posting it cause the actual Brain Pickings post, starts with the end of the quote:

Worship your intellect, being seen as smart - you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out.

This characterizes how I feel on a day-to-day basis. Especially now that I'm not drinking or sexing. Daily I feel this, and daily it terrifies me. And it is why I keep going to AA, in the hope, that in that program I will find some peace.

5 comments:

Robert Heikkila said...

Well the key here is don't worship. Just love yourself and all your insecurities, fears, shortcomings and mistakes. Accepting this will make you whole again, more loving and more loveable.

Tamayn Irraniah said...

I love this post, but I am a bit confused. Is it just in general saying to be calm and reasonable in all things?

Writer said...

Thank you, Robert, but, at least for me, not particularly easy. :)

Writer said...

Tamayn, I don't think you are confused at all. :)

Kyle Leach said...

I'm pretty sure we are all afraid and confused and that we can't control very much beyond ourselves. That's okay. The more I accept that the better I feel.