Not a Cry for Help

Life in the Gladhouse is never dull, humdrum days still flying out the window.

– Modern English, Life in the Gladhouse.

 

In my darker moments, i’ve found myself thinking about how i’d like to die… if i was making the decisions.

Since learning to dive, and discovering the joys of nitrogen narcosis, the rapture of the deep, my favoured means has been stealing a couple of 14l tanks, and making for the abyss! I figure, breathing air, by the time i got down to 100m, or so, i’d be completely beyond caring and could expire in a delirious daze. Variations on this theme involve a rebreather, and more extreme depths…

One of the downsides of reading all this H.P. Lovecraft is that i’m starting to worry that i might have ruined my sanctuary! He is waiting down there… what if i heard him calling?!

The imagination is fertile ground for the seeds we wantonly gather and scatter. Has Lovecraft saved me from a watery grave? I’m sure he’d be very disappointed…

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6 thoughts on “Not a Cry for Help

  1. Tsunetomo Yamamoto, in the Hagakure, writes, “The Way of the Samurai is found in death.”

    This is to say that one must be fully prepared and given to the thing that he does in such a way that to not achieve his goal, only death would be preferable.

    In Ch. 11 he goes on to say, “Meditation on inevitable death should be performed daily. Every day when one’s body and mind are at peace, one should meditate upon being ripped apart by arrows, rifles, spears and swords, being carried away by surging waves, being thrown into the midst of a great fire, being struck by lightning, being shaken to death by a great earthquake, falling from thousand-foot cliffs, dying of disease or committing seppuku at the death of one’s master. And every day without fail one should consider himself as dead.”

    Dive, Jon, dive!

  2. Now that’s a book i haven’t thought about for a good ten / fifteen years. Somewhere in england i have the version that Yukio Mishima had published… or something like that, don’t remember the connection now.

  3. Mishima’s take on how hagakure might apply in modern society was a one-track jeremiad that suggested that he’d already begun to lose touch with reality and descend into the narcissism that would lead to his death. Still, the link to Mishima is pretty apposite, if you’re looking to exemplify the futility and selfishness of suicide, however appealing it might be in fantasy or actuality. If you’re looking for something to ruminate on, and to set you firmly within the world you live in, maybe its more constructive to consider the numerous ways in which extinguishment can be achieved via some method wholly outside of your control…

  4. ha! i don’t think mishima had very far to descend when it came to narcissism… his death was as inevitable as the eventual fall of the japanese imperial empire, and the english one before that.

    personally i refuse to dwell on the numerous accidently circumstances under which i might shuffle. however, i see no reason to rule out a timely exit of my own choosing.

    clinging on to life for it’s own sake? all a little unseemly if you ask me. when it’s time, it’s time!

Wise words...

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