Friday, October 24, 2014

Mid-term Exam

I’m not entirely sure if I’m supposed to relate the film to the particular philosopher it’s attached to or all the philosophers in the larger groupings.  It reads, “Connect the movie to the philosophers…” but then it seems like we’re supposed to attach it simply to the philosopher in the same line as the film and to the larger heading.  I did say in a past edition of this essay that I would focus on the philosopher listed, but things didn’t exactly turn out that way.
What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (?) is a film that clearly reflects the notion that the world and the people in it are fundamentally absurd.  Gilbert Grape lives in a family where the youngest son, Arnie, is mentally challenged and was expected to die years before the story takes place.  Why is Arnie mentally challenged?  And why hasn’t he died or was fated to likely die?  Obviously there is a scientific answer but often when people ask these questions they are not looking for a scientific answer (although science and implementation of said knowledge is how we actually solve the problems of the world conjoined with ethics, which is implied in implementation) but merely asking, “Why do bad things happen?”  Neither Arnie, nor anyone else did anything to warrant being born handicapped and dense, or mentally nimble and overall virtuous (in the Aristotelian sense of the word) either.  We simply are born who we are, with what we have genetically, with the family we have, in the country we have, in the short time we endure a self (or the illusion of a self if you ask some) to perceive the world as humans do.  This film expresses this notion quite well.  It’s simply a few days in the life of someone who doesn’t seem to have anything substantial in common with his family save a moral obligation and arguably a general sense of belonging or community – which I’ll get to later.
One easy to notice trait in Gilbert Grape is he isn’t much of anything.  Like Ferris Bueller (Bueller?  Bueller?), he doesn’t seem to be interested in or passionate about much save perhaps his youngest brother.  But this would be better described as affection and a sense of obligation and sympathy rather than an interest in particular subject matter.  This is made clear when Becky asks Gilbert Grape what he really wants.  Many viewers of the film I would assume presume that Gilbert has sex on his mind but as to not offend Becky mentions something about Arnie and his family to sound noble.  But perhaps he really is so detached and uninterested in anything relating to his own happiness that sex with Becky really didn’t cross his mind.  This could be seen as Gilbert’s unique form of absurdity, self-denial, or it could be argued that he is unique in being free from the absurdity of pursuing one meaningless pleasure after another that others are prone to.
The broad meaning of Existentialism is commonly perceived as a search for meaning in a seemingly meaningless Universe, but Gilbert never once seems to reflect on any type of greater meaning in his life.  One then might question even if he really reflects Camus or his thought, but Camus’ writings focused more on the human animal’s conscious but subconscious aspects as well – largely in-regard to our innate search for meaning and the absurdity of it in a absurd universe.  As Camus himself states, “You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of.  You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.”  As arguably a representation of this Gilbert instead defines himself by his relations to others (which is in a way very Existential) and instead of being self-absorbed in quandaries of existence he focuses on others while very few are concerned for or care for him in the same way.  This is seen in Gilbert being definitively non-intellectual rather than stupid or anti-intellectual which is a stereotype of culture in the south.  He possesses reason, but uses it only to the extent that is useful to his family, sacrificing his potential to maintain his relationship with them.  His eldest sister clearly helps to keep the family together, his youngest sister is a cliché disgruntled teen and his mother has completely shut down (save from when he needs to get Arnie out of jail) and seems to only be emotionally attached in any meaningful or noticeable sense to Arnie and her husband who hung himself years ago. 
This brings the mind to allusions of both Kafka and Dostoevsky. In Metamorphosis, Gregor is wholly responsible for the financial well-being of his family, and though they may seem to be thankful, there is a noticeable lack of warmth in the family that is often attributed to their financial dependence on Gregor, and therefore seeing him more as a tool (or buffoon) for their survival than a family member who they have strong feelings of affection for.  This raises the notion (or at-least the question) if one can love someone purely and without attachments if one exists in a material world full of attachments both economically, socially and egotistically (psychologically).  Or rather, Kant points out (as the Anarchists do) that is immoral to see and use a human being solely as a means and not as an end in his or her-self.  But does using an individual (with their consent) for one’s own benefit invariably alter the relationship or even prevent the individual from seeing those around them as ends-in-themselves that are loved as humans rather than appreciated as tools?  I’m not entirely certain.  I personally find that it is not immoral to recognize that we always see those in our lives as both Means and Ends, but this does not change the fact that the relationship will inevitably be decided partially on the degree and form of how this dichotomy takes place.  Once could view this as a form of absurdity, that not only our actions but our very feelings towards others is merely a social obligation done out of expectation and a certain compensation for what others do for us.  In this view, no one is truly and utterly a friend to anyone in the Aristotelian view, for Aristotle defined friendship as a bond we have for those who we care for their welfare and happiness for their own sake, and not how it influences or lives and wishes.
Dostoevsky comes to mind because he claims (or his narrator does, to the extent his character reflects his views is debatable – though the novel’s beginning is full of such dry and repetitive ramblings divorced from any telling of any actual story that I’m led to believe that such yammering could ever be conceived from a mind that is genuinely spouting the product of one’s thoughts rather than creating a character that is doing so divorced from one’s actual views) that only the fool becomes anything and the man of intelligence suffers from what he calls intellectual inertia.  That is he will collapse upon himself and be totally unconvinced of any path he should take.  In a way this describes Gilbert’s inability to find any real passion or attachment towards anything save Arnie and Becky.  His attachment to Arnie could be seen as the intellectual component of the human brain finding meaningful attachment to a fluid and impermanent world to the extent that it attaches itself to non-intellectual components.  Whether this be emotional, fondness for nostalgia, sensual enjoyment the intellect of the human brain finds purpose in day-to-day activities to the extent that it is connect to something non-intellectual – to reiterate.  His fondness towards Becky (which rarely manifests in the most obvious forms portrayed in Hollywood which I may get to later) could be seen as the intellect being overwhelmed by beauty or a sense of romanticism.  Once again, Becky and Gilbert seem to have very-little if anything in common in-terms of interests or desires, yet they develop a friendship and romantic coupling based arguably almost solely on lust being portrayed as affection of the more “noble” romantic sort – similar to how many songs sing about “love” in a way that is essentially nothing more than a masquerade done out of the inability to speak of fucking; or a by-product (if such sentiments are sincere as they often are) of such desire to copulate at the very-most.
The film could also be argued as an argument for Kierkegaard’s perspective (or an element of his perspective) in some ways.  For Kierkegaard argues that meaning cannot be found in reason and in a nuanced way I both agree and disagree.  What we intrinsically find meaning in is fundamentally non-rational (that is though it is not always irrational, it is not dictated by reason) but using reason, we can cultivate individuals to find meaning in more rational endeavors and pursue those endeavors in a meaningful and productive way.  This can be seen in Gilbert Grape’s failure to  run off with Becky (or at-least it’s never mentioned though I questioned why he didn’t do so the first possible moment he potentially could) and instead finds meaning instead in his family though they give him more suffering and less joy – at-least on the surface.  It could be that his family gives him a certain form of psychological and existential security (defining himself through his good relations with his family and their dependence on him) that it would be hard to indefinitely verify due-to the lack of Gilbert ever being meaningfully detached or separate from his family.  The best example we have is after he hit Arnie and he clearly is distraught and feels ashamed.  It therefore would seem rational to assume that he likely feels he has broken his good relations with Arnie (and therefore with his family which is largely defined by Arnie) and a significant factor in how he defines himself has been temporarily undone.
Defining himself through others has obvious Sartrean aspects.  I’ve already mentioned them in-relation to Kafka, Camus and Existentialism in-general, so I’ll be brisk here; but ultimately it seems that his relationship to Arnie could be seen as a power-play in some regards that both Sartre and Nietzsche believe is at the heart of (or at-least a defining and inevitable aspect of) every relationship.  The Master and the Slave.  The Submissive and the Dominant.  This can be seen clearly in Arnie jumping on Gilbert’s back and riding him though he is days away from being the legal age of an adult, and clearly doesn’t require Gilbert for transportation.  And yet both of them seem in their own ways to enjoy this activity.  Gilbert could be argued performs this act somewhat begrudgingly and out of social expectation and desire for ease (Arnie will be upset and his family will likely scold him for not allowing Arnie piggy-back rides) but also largely out of a desire to be submissive to Arnie’s desires because Arnie’s happiness brings Gilbert joy and a sense of purpose he seems to be unable to find in other relations.  This can also be seen in Becky kissing Gilbert only when she states she wishes to see his mother and he refuses.  The obviousness of the power-play is slightly humorous and it’s a brief moment of manipulation that seems uncharacteristic of a person who otherwise seems ethical in the most basic and conventional sense of the word.
Some argue that marriage is a wholly “patriarchal” or “misogynistic” institution (and would be if it was done largely as an exchange of property as it was predominantly done for in centuries past and in parts of the world today) but clearly this is deemed absurd if even we accept the Sartrean and Nietzschean point that relationships have “Masters” and “Slaves” that some people have a yearning to be in varying degrees submissive and play a certain role out of a sense of purpose and joy it gives them.  This is largely why women choose to be mothers.  It certainly isn’t a picnic.  So unless one is to accept that it is entirely (or largely) done out of a need to conform to social dictates, it seems rational to assume that a large aspect in desired parenthood (ignoring unwanted pregnancies) is the biological desire  to procreate (not only to have sex though that is a major factor in many if not most of the population of humanity) which is experienced as a desire to create life that one cultivates, is responsible for, and spends a sizable amount of efforts and passions tending to the nurturing of.  Submissive aspects in our society are only a problem only if they are unwelcomed or based on illegitimate coercion (e.g. the Government violating the Non-Aggression Principle and forcing humans to live by a code that is exterior to their own.  Capitalists creating unjust social relations of employer and employee.  Religions indoctrinating people with the unhealthy view of complete abnegation of self to any God, though clearly this instinct of worship is latent in many – or at the very-least the material for it is latent in many and then takes the form it does given religious influence.  Etc, etc, etc) or if they are welcome but take an unhealthy role or degree that is of great detriment to the individual.  The son who is so submissive to the father that he never truly knows who he is or learns to act on his own authority for example.
Another quick example of absurdity is the relationship ‘tween Gilbert and Becky.  Though they clearly have romantic inclinations towards each other, we see them kiss only when Becky wants to meet Gilbert’s mother and we assume copulate only the night before Becky is about to leave.  This can be seen as a type of absurdity, or the counter-example of the conventional story in Hollywood could be seen as absurd. –
How the movie could be seen as analogous to a form of epistemology we discussed in class is harder to discern.  I suppose argued that the reality of Gilbert Grape’s is not one of facts detached from himself but facts that have significance only in their relation to him and how his relation to his family his affected. The knowledge itself is arbitrary, save its relation to Gilbert despite him seeing dispassionate.  This could then be seen as the basis for incorporation of knowledge into the psyche and the attention it is paid by the conscious mind rather than a theory of how knowledge is attained or verified.  Unless one would like to make an argument for a type of “moral sentimentalism.”  Namely that (though we didn’t discuss this in class) an action is correct to the extent that it conforms to the largest degree of proper (though defining proper moral sentiment and discriminating the vast varieties of sentiment to various situations becomes a problem) moral feeling or sentiment.  Therefore, though Gilbert likely reflected that he would be happier with Becky, he knows that it is morally right to stay with his family because despite what reason my tell him the mere feeling of moral obligation means that to stay with his family is the morally correct thing.  This could be related to art due-to many artists feeling strongly compelled to create art, and feel justified in putting their efforts towards art, despite potential reasoning that feeding the homeless or protesting corruption would be a more just and rational use of one’s time and energies.  In this and other regards previously mentioned, I suppose it could be argued that this movie then is a (roughly) Humean take on Existentialism.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

On Philosophy, the Health of the Mind and Soul and the Self as the Absolute Sovereign and End-point

Too much reality is not good for the soul; the mind included.  The most over-rated of themes (or clichéd messages, whatever you want to call it) in cinema and in contemporary culture is that experience is of great benefit to one’s self.  Life couldn’t be further from the truth.  Experience often makes the spirits dower and the soul corrupted with the weaknesses and vices of others.  Reflection and autonomy are the greatest virtues – not social experience and herd think, as the goons of all societies will tell you whether Liberal, Conservative, Marxist or Fascist.  For without any type of introspection (analysis of one’s self and one’s proper and ideal relation to the world and others) and the psychological traits of an independent mind (without which any meaningful introspection is either impossible or becomes tainted with the whims and interests of others) all virtue is mere happenstance or a product of convention rather than a product of the rational mind and virtuous soul acting upon what is right for its own sake, rather than to conform to the dictates of others.
Those who have been exposed to too much reality are those who do all they can to have their minds not rationally process it but rather be overwhelmed by it or evade it – often this can be the same thing.  Religion for example is a case of reality evasion – in the detrimental or mental sense, the proper escape from reality I speak of is simply physically but always attempting to process it and better understand it mentally – and for the individual to feel incompetent to make any significant or authentic decision in deciding what is right and fair.  Instead the religious (even those who worship at the altar of State or commerce) wish to evade making a choice of morality or their own value and instead have a systematic approach, or rather a “herd” approach to value.  One has value because God grants one value.  One has value based on the dictates of the free-market and one’s ability to pursue hedonistic pursuits within it.  One has value because one’s Government grants one’s rights and one is deemed good as long as one is a law-abiding citizen who follows the rules and does as he is told.  All of these standards deal with acceptance and compliance, rather than questioning and creativity which are the true marks of greatness in humanity.  The Anarchist realizes that one may not evade reality mentally, and must immerse one’s self intimately both mentally and physically to know the source of the world’s faults and to change them.  However, Fatalism is somewhat contradictory of Anarchism (to the extent that Anarchism pre-supposes protest and other forms of social non-violent resistance) in surrendering this material world to those who create such standards and expectations of drudgery and mental slavery – but without others assistance Fatalism is not a glib man surrendering the world out of weakness or despair but a sober individual who realizes that social resistance without others is either a complete impossibility, effectively meaningless (at-least in the sense of being different than intellectual and individual resistance) and even dangerous to the individual in much of the world.
An example of those who wish to escape mentally from life would be those I witnessed at a Black Flag concert several months back.  I’ve been meaning to write an essay on this, but I wasn’t entirely sure how to link it with anything meaningful or poignant.  First allow me to describe the experience.  A rough half-hour of enjoyable conversation with roughly like-minded individuals (at-least when politics and general social attitudes are concerned), following a few hours of ear-deafening, mind-blending noise that was so loud and sharp that any musical or aesthetic appreciation was impossible.  Moshing was enjoyable for all of ten minutes, and that was with inventing new dances or putting old-style dances into the mosh-pit both to be ironic and as a source of amusement from all the repetitive shoving and being shoved that appears to be the height of entertainment at such venues.  I’ve been to basement punk shows where there is some moshing, but the music can still be heard as music rather than as piercing incomprehensible noise.  There must be indeed something behind Schopenhauer’s allegation that the dumber and duller one is the more one can tolerate loud noise.
Though I haven’t stated it explicitly yet, I would be surprised if you haven’t yet pieced together that I found such an attraction an ideal expression of those who wish to escape from all modes of thought rather than delve into the world and worlds of one’s own creation through mental activity.  And these are people who largely identify as Anarchist or Socialist (and understand what these words actually mean), understand that religions are corrupt and fictitious and are intelligent enough to know that the virtues of “success” created by society are not one’s worth idealizing – at-least from the roughly dozen people I talked to before the warfare on hearing began.  If people who at-least on paper are Anarchists can enjoy such mind-killing rot than there is little hope for an effective movement of passionate and like-minded individuals ever acting to influence meaningful change in this world – that is conscious and rigorous (and therefore effective) Civil Disobedience.  We saw Occupy Wall St. yes.  But those where individuals who did not think of broadening their movement into a political action of revolt that could become both a political party and a form of organized resistance to the lords of the current parties, to Representative Democracy as a whole and to the living of vicarious existence (that is religions and Capitalists organizing to corrupt one’s soul and then say that they “represent” the will and goodness of the people and express what they truly feel and crave after they’ve raped their minds to lust for the rape of their bodies) that is done through the profiteers, users of force (Government men) and holy men who organize to the world and create the individual to have the individual exist only as a medium and tool of their wills and material vessel of their ideology which could not exist without zombies who have drunk the Kool-aid.
What Occupy Wall St. needed was protest in living and action rather than simply protest in the conventional sense of the word.  To organize with the Green Party (as a blanket for all Left-wing causes and sentiments until a Socialist Party had a chance in Hell of winning) and refuse to comply with the ends and means of State-Capitalist society via general strike.  Particularly in fields where the supply of laborers able to perform the desired tasks to make a profit for the Capitalist would be ideal, though the main sources of revenue for most of the Capitalists are in fairly routine jobs that don’t require much education or specialization at-all.  Also to make noise and not rely on the corporate news propaganda machine which is getting less and less attention daily.  Of course Anarchists and Socialists do not rely on such news avenues, but they seem to have done a less-than satisfactory job of marketing their websites and periodicals of pulp to purchase.  How they can improve outside the obvious answer of more of a presence in quantity (or perhaps somehow getting more attention in social media) I’m generally ignorant of.
It is true that something will always remain impossible as-long as people claim it is so.  But that does not change human nature, and the fact that much of human corruption, ignorance, apathy and self-interest seem to be constants to varying extents the world over.  I will not say progress is impossible – this would be a folly because in some ways material and intellectual progress has proven to be close to inevitable.  I couldn’t be writing this if it weren’t for a general increase in intellect and cultural aspects (e.g. tolerance, secularism, questioning of authority, etc) in our time and in decades prior ignoring the radical progress humans have made over the millennia.  The truth is however that human beings remain largely the same in remaining both tainted by authority and poor material and psychological conditions and being incredibly easy and almost seemingly willing and eager to be tainted and made to varying extents the fool or apathetic.  Human beings have changed drastically – but not enough.  They have learned the most amazing and quintessential traits of our Universe – and yet fail to act on the most basic and personally relevant of facts.  And they have managed to alter their everyday actions and scope of sight radically using imagination, intelligence and its fruits – and yet, though they’ve altered their reality immensely, reality fundamentally will always be as it was, and to the extent that people experience and connect themselves with the outside world (both the “natural world” and that of society) they will continue to be perverted and suffer. 
The Cynics were right in viewing all socially constructed morality as erroneous, but were in error themselves to say that Virtue is Nature.  Virtue is not Nature, instead, Virtue is Self.  For the Self (as Anarchists understand it) is not merely the unit-of-measurement of a being capable of and entitled to free-action; but is instead a entity of thought that has the innate tendency to pursue justice as a good-in-itself (for one of the most basic characters of a conscious mind is a understanding of fairness) and as a self-promotional and expanding tool.  All things which are destructive to the Self (including aspects of one’s own psychology) are fundamentally traits of weakness and lead to obliteration of the Self and immorality (as well as pain).  And all that is strengthening of the Self (particularly reflection, creativity and random acts of charity based on the Golden Rule) is that which harnesses life which in turn (having an eternal reciprocal reaction of material reality and potential) aids the free and productive mind (which is the Self itself) which is the highest end of existence.  Therefore Stoicism in retreat from the external world psychologically is fundamental for not only psychological stability and health (as the Buddhists focus on) but for the basic grounding of an intellectual constitution (that is to say a meaningful existence) and its growth.

Friday, October 17, 2014

On Schopenhauer and a Lack of Understanding in Cause and Effect

This will be a rather short essay, but one that I currently feel the need to churn out nonetheless.  It is more of a brief clarification than an essay actually.  For a few days ago I took a lengthy piece from Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life and despite its brilliance I feel I must give a soft critique of it for it reflects one of the more general flaws in Schopenhauer’s thinking in-general.  In the book, he divides human happiness and overall qualities of our existence into three categories; what a man is (labeled personality), what a man has (property and wealth) and what a man is in relation to others (or rank as he calls it if I recall).  Schopenhauer is quite right in saying that it is what Man is that is his primary source of joy, and a true understanding of this is of great value and benefit in our consumer and Statist age, where people judge their success and merits by what they own and who they are in relation to others according to social norms, rather than who and what they are in their own person.  But this is a piece of wisdom so ancient and perennial (and yet ignored and some extent forgotten around the entire world) that it is found in the Cynics, Stoics, Epicureans and Buddhists all in their own ways.  However, he is largely ignorant that our environment, that is what we had, have and who we are in relation to others (or how who we are is deemed and operates in social relations) is a large and crucial factor in deciding who we shall become and how much and what forms of happiness we shall have in this life.
The numerous effects of poverty on a developing mind are now seemingly self-evident.  Strange that while poverty was pervasive and daunting in our society people were so burdened and mentally numbed by it that they blamed crime on sin (lack of devotion to God) rather than material reasons and the psychological reasons that are largely (depending on the particular illness) due to bad environment – though like human nature in general there is a genetic factor as well to state the obvious.  The oppression of the poor by the rich is a great source of harm and unhappiness in the life of almost all in this world, both in moment-to-moment lacking and strife and the lack of more noble fruition of self that is non-existent largely in-part of the lack of credible education and proper social environment which is the case largely in-part due-to Capitalism.
The relations of Man-to-Man (and Man-to-Woman) in all its various forms also have various forms of typically negative (at-least when one examines relations in their more systematic sense – that is relations propped up by a hierarchal and artificial system of force and coercion) impact on the character and development of the individual.  The two most obvious being a lack of development in critical faculties and a lack of sincerity in relations to others.  I am particularly mentioning the roles of Government, religion, commerce, family and even friends and non-related loved ones to some degree.  One can never wholly detach what one serves in relation to the other from any real affection or bond that would form in a more naturalistic arrangement of community and fraternity.  One is always suspect of phonies and users just as one is always used as a tool or using others as a tool in the world of commerce.  Whether it is what a man has materially or what a man is in relation to his fellow men (and who he is expected to be and laws and customs he is expected to obey), there is both a corruption in proper development (telos) and in day-to-day flourishing and happiness – which is both a result of the lack of said telos and the nature of such injustices in and of themselves.  Schopenhauer’s brilliance is self-evident to any who have any critical-self to examine philosophy, but it is his detachment from basic cause-and-effect and Anarchism that is his most glaring errors save from his mystical views on art and the Will.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

On the Evils of the Automobile

The average car resembles in its relation to human beings some of the worst qualities of the average human being.  Namely that it causes humans to be sedentary throughout their lives, and yet always in a hurry.  This joined with religion and systems of management based on force and profit are the height of stupidity in human civilization.  To always be in a hurry, always hustling and scurrying towards nothing, and doing nothing of any real consequence to the world or to one’s self while trying to attain this deeply sought after nothing.  More products in the stores, a new customer on the pay roll and human civilization is both none-the-wiser and, well, not any wiser or better off in any meaningful or substantive way.  The contemporary Man is like a slug, who is constantly moving with all his strength, though he moves or achieves very-little, to produce the salt of his own material and existential (and psychological if you like) destruction. 
This is the embodiment of what it means to be a slave.  To be enslaved not only physically but mentally.  For slavery cannot exist, even in its more contemporary Liberal forms under Capitalism and a supposedly more tolerant Government without the death of the mind.  To the extent that the mind exists, human freedom exists – this, and not material conditions, is the barometer for our lot in life.  For something that Marxists may forget is how many rich men in their own way are slaves.  And their slavery of the mind propagates various forms of slavery just as much as the slavery of the peasantry.  For an enlightened soul commits no evil and instead is far-more likely to seek out isolation and seclusion; if the ruling class was enlightened they would collapse upon itself and cease to exist, so they too must be fundamentally ignorant.  This was made quite clear in 1984, where the Inner-Party, the ruling group, was the most zealous and insane in their dedication to Ing Soc.
The automobile is the very essence of the evils of Capitalism.  Destroying human life not only in its individual form of potential, but the very possibility of human life existing in the future.  For not only is there the health and spirit synthesis of being sedentary yet always in a hurry, there is the consumption of resources and pollution of Earth’s environments and of the atmosphere that all environments (even I would assume the lakes and oceans to a lesser degree) share.  If we are speaking specifically of environmental ethics, which has a surprising correlation to immoral deeds in relation to fellow human beings or the self (e.g. Capitalists striving for profits pollute the world and produce inequity and injustice; being slothful and taking the easy route not only damns one’s self in potential being and creativity but the world in waste of resources), then it is indeed the greatest sin the average individual can make (rather than supporting Capitalism, State or religion which allow these great catastrophes of the everyday to take place, either directly or through the propagation of ignorance and Groupthink) and should be looked upon with the same disgust as the smoker.  For they both possess in themselves a certain kind of psychological Nihilism, not striving towards the good but striving towards the path of least resistance (different than Hedonism being the most pleasurable route) and towards assured self-destruction though it is not self-evident to the driver the same way that it is for the smoker, nor does It affect his health as directly or fundamentally. 
So perhaps while the psyche of smoker should be equated to Nihilism totally, the driver’s state-of-mind is only Nihilistic when it comes to the conclusion that in the near-future many will suffer (either through great pain or loss of the life that would otherwise be) and many do suffer today due-to the actions one takes.  And yet he astonishingly with ease commits the greatest sin on Earth save from force or consciously deluding the minds of the susceptible; namely to ignore cause-and-effect and be totally apathetic of the consequences his everyday actions will take.  It is belief in the goodness of humanity and one’s pursuits today, yet surrendering the world to the evils one’s knows and acknowledges is wrong tomorrow.  It is dooming the Earth to intellectual and material poverty through the pursuit of leisure and surrender to the ideals and norms of contemporary society – which the wisdom of the Cynics acknowledges is almost always wrong based on the nature of the Herd Mentality and the systems in place that both indoctrinated them and conformed to their innate modes of Groupthink.  Contained in the everyday, thoughtless and seemingly irrelevant (but relevant to many and relevant towards moving to a irrelevant existence cosmologically – if no other sentient life exists) actions of the average man and woman contains the future both in spirit and in material of our reality – it is one not of hope but of acceptance; not of prosperity but of drudgery; and not of autonomy and sustainability but of slavery and inevitable collective death.