-- Не так надо думать о смерти, не так!
А я думал, что это не обо мне.
Bad Theories, Wrong Subjects
SummaryToo late to talk about my death, read it in SELF. This is about OUR death, as humans.
Notes"Death Page" in script.vtheatre.net/themes and in filmplus.org/600. "Reckless" and Death2 -- sister-pages.
О смерти я пишу во многих местах.
Раньше страх был острый, а теперь -- тупой, почти равнодушие.
К жизни интерес потерял -- и только теперь понял, как чувствуют смерть те, кто скучает в жизни. И правда, а что делать-то?
Развлекаться, "убивать время"!
Death Book: Theology of Technology
Ох, как это было давно...
Тогда я думал, что напишу книгу. И не одну.BRIMSTONE & FIREThis is the last chapter, the end of the Big Book. Something happened in the Fall of the 1995, my fifteen anniversary of the discovery of America. In fact, I just returned from Africa, and I knew -- something has changed. What? What was it? Like a detector I went after the evidence. I opened my writings of the 1995 -- nothing, the usual stuff. It took many days to crack this case. The murder....
From my diaries, 11.5.97:
Could I consider my physical travels to be over, since I'll have no time for anything but writing? Maybe I better see 1995 as the end of my mortal life. What does stop me from "sentencing myself to death"? An animal and a human in me ask for an extension, they can't accept it, but I know that I have to die to write the Book. Taking literally, this thought is new to me. It's not less dramatic than my decision to leave Russia, I remember many years I lived with that thought (I still do). If this a fact (my death), I have a better view of my own life. Also, I need all the time I can have to complete the writing. Actually, I should see the date as the Fall of 1995, when I came back from Ethiopia. Two years ago. What do I do since then? I write. I should know even the week when it took place -- Aleosha was in the hospital with meningitis. He lived through death and I know that then I knew -- our travels are over. I was forty six, an old age by the last century standards. Enough years to live and learn about living. I should stop my narrative right there.
Well, my begining has no sharp borders either. I don't remember my birth, my childhood memories are vague, not till I was four or five. Even the forty years are enough, a lot of space and time. What were the ten years of my Russian writer existence which had not produce anything to read? There was too much living, even between 1975 and 1980 -- the writing for myself, which made me leave Russia. I must take a second look at the seven ages of man (Shakespeare). Why did it take so long? (I asked many times in my diaries). Because nobody told me who I am? Because I didn't believe them? Because I had to educate myself? To discover myself? Because it's the fate for the ones after me. Single. Equal. Alone. That's why our life span had to be prolonged.
The new maturity is the self-discovery, self-establishment, self-realization.... self-esteem, as they put it. Maturity is the time to do -- to take on yourself as a business. Why is it so important? Didn't we hear about the end of man? A man in me must die before I can be born. But why is it needed? Well, that's what Resurrection is supposed to be -- the return of a soul.
How typical is my life? Every time I hear that my life-story is unique I want to tell that my life is only an exaggeration of Everyman's life. I was born a Soviet and ended up living as an American -- what about being a boy and becoming a man? Isn't this transition even more dramatic? I would like to tell about the normal behind the exotics of my biography (That's why I don't consider it as a biography). Being Dead should help me to go beyond my "personal" story without losing myself.
The topical (philosophical writing) and the personal have not meet yet. That's a matter of re-writes. (I tried this genre in my Russian writing -- what was missing? The personal? The close, super-close observations when the macro and micro are the same.)
So, 1955 -- 1995?
The "--" is the Book.
I don't know the day or the hour of my death. I wish I could describe it in full details as writers do. You know, the weather and the thoughts before the end. I am embarrassed to say that I didn't notice it, my death. As you see from the diary I discovered that I am dead later, two years after my death. I understand why such an event had no significant reaction. You see, usually we know what takes place because of the others. They arrange the funeral, not the deceased. Since nobody knew that I died, I myself paid no attention to my death. I don't blame them -- how would they know? -- my heart didn't stop. I kept moving, even driving. According to the logic of the corporeal, I was fine. No wonder that they are surprised when somebody dies. They see that he stopped moving -- ah, he must be dead!WHEN I have fears that I may cease to be Before my pen has glean'd my teeming brain, Before high piled books, in charact'ry, Hold like rich garners the full-ripen'd grain; When I behold, upon the night's starr'd face, Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance, And think that I may never live to trace Their shadows, with the magic hand of chance; And when I feel, fair creature of an hour! That I shall never look upon thee more, Never have relish in the faery power Of unreflecting love!--then on the shore Of the wide world I stand alone, and think Till Love and Fame to nothingness do sink.1I envy them, the mortals. They were poets. They were young. They would live ten, twenty years of a mature life, would write a few great books and -- farewell! Their mortal maturity was full and definite as their deaths. They need short lives to express their appreciation for being. I remember myself at the age of twenty five, I knew that I don't need a long life. But I haven't write a single great book, so I had to go with living. And the reason why I didn't write anything great, because I didn't know the difference between them and myself. I had to live longer, to experience and to learn.
The poetry is dead. There are some who write poetry. I did it myself too. It's our private business. But the Poetry is no more. I knew that the poets have died. I lived next to Pasternak. I had many friends who wrote poetry, but they weren't poets. I was a member of the Writers Guild and they, thousands, thought that they are writers. But a dead can't write. They, the dead, have to die first before they can even think about being writers. Of course, nobody thought that they are dead and they went on writing as if they were alive. They still pretend that they are humans. If they were poets, they would know the truth.
11.14. After the death. The invisible man. Feelings of Christ. Not the world but me presence in this world is puzzling. Even as a teen I had to remind myself that I am a part of it; people see me, talk to me.... I would accept the world easily if I wouldn't be there. Invisible? Am I needed? How easy I can be excluded. The life will roll on.... that much for the death of God. That's the reason to feel the extreme sense of significance and even the mission. Why the existential self-construct isn't enough? What are the limits of the self-invention? Humanism. Like others, very democratic. But about the difference? How different? And what did them mean by the "differance"? Being unique is a complete unlikeness to the others. I am not one of them. "In image and likeness" now applies to the social engineering. Being self is becoming invisible. The child is alone, it take time to discover it. Is this a foundation (in image and likeness) for godhood? Alone. One and only. And I, mortal and physical, I am a prophet of myself. There is a difference between Jesus and Christ. It took that long for Adam to understand the taste of the fruit from the tree of life and death. Is it time now to eat from the second tree -- the tree of knowledge? Only after we fully experienced the mortality of life. To die is not enough; it's only a fact. "To be or not to be" must be re-written as "To be and not to be"! Hamlet was young, he needed another four centuries to understand neither/nor. He was born again in Denmark under a different name. The very question our prince asked is rooted in the phrase "To be is not to be" -- the paradox of the postmodern, when the whole world fell for the complete humanization (in our image and likeness). The full circle -- the great return, back to the Creator. Almost six billions (is it Nietzsche's return?).
Each death is a murder case. "Natural causes"? Not anymore. In our world it's always a mistake or a crime. We think that I am the cause of my own death. If I take care of myself, I can live longer. Longer than Tolstoy, the lucky one. But in our case this business of living becomes the goal. Of course, I have no time for anything else. I slave to support myself and the slaves do not write great books. In actuality, I am dead and keep myself from physical dying. That's all what I do through my entire so-called "life."
I am glad that I have died. I wish I would do it earlier, but when you are dead it's not easy to die...
Next -- HyperDrama: in Russian -- 2002
Introduction to Death
ARCHITECTURE OF DEATHHe shall return no more to his house, neither shall his place know him any more. (JOB 7:10)I live in this machine, which we call a house. Only when something goes wrong, I realize how complex the machine is. I have to call a specialist, because I can't fix a garage opener. I am a user and hardly can keep the pace of learning how to maintain constantly arriving new technology. I understand how to see this invasion, I know what is ahead. It's not just a home, but a space ship, where everything is produced and controlled. Heat and air, light and water. Everything is conditioned. I am the least advanced element of this machine. And the cat, who never been outside of our capsule. I get in the car in the module and drive out, closing the gates with a remote. I see our cat watching me through the glass on the second floor. I guess, Mica thinks that it could the last time we see each other. I drive away into a dangerous world of the big space. With windows closed.
Why do I call it an "architecture of death"? Because all the arrangements we make are based on a single assumption that everything is deadly. Not just the walls and the roof but we have to build another layer of protection. We need security against everything -- weather, microbes, ants, cockroaches and people. Even against ourselves. The smoke alarms are just a first step. This cocoon is deadly by itself, charged with energy and danger. What are those medieval castles next to my condo! Did their walls save them from the Black Plague?
There must be an explanation how all this became possible, our recent technological break-through, this unbelievable advance in living. The only answer I had that the long rebellion of the prince of darkness is over. Devil gave up his jealousy and became a servant of God and his creatures. Perhaps, Nietzsche misunderstood what took place during his life -- not God, but Satan had died. I am agree with the simplistic logic of atheists; if there is no Devil, why should we believe in God? If their quarrel is over, the bad and the good are in our hands.
What was missing for me is the picture. I wanted to see it, the day and the hour when the great war came to an end. I wanted to hear Lucifer speak. I needed to understand him. But angels and devils write no memoirs. We have to do it for them. That's why I write this book.
In the summer of 1997 Anatoly wrote "The Story of David Z" -- a play in five acts, but it didn't help. How the dead could write anything, I said to him. you only think that you write. I was searching for "the king word" -- one single word.
Yes, I have to talk about myself again (R-book), because I AM THE METHOD. I AM MY THEORY. Anatolism is different from tomism or marxism in principle. Could Anatology be a school of thought? Hegel and Kant believed in universal. Such anti-artistic attitude! I don't deny the existance of common. I have a lot in common with myself. We over-produced the commonality. I want the different, not the same. My great grandfather from the Russian underground was revoltiung against the multiplication tables, and every time I get in front my computer, I have this feeling -- how could it be? It's the same as before as I went to bed. Nothing happened to it. "Sleep" -- said the screen, but it has no dreams. Let the machine has it, and let me be different every moment..... It's difficult to accept your own death. The fear of death is so deep. It's not a thought, not a feeling anymore. They say -- terror. Yes, it is. Why should I lie? I cna't lie, I am too old now...The problem: DEATH DICTIONARY. I don't have it. I need to learn how to speak the language of death. Speak visions....
GRAMMAR OF VISION. That's how we talk after death and that's why we can't hear the dead. Visions are silent. That's why could hear him, I had to see the birth of sun.
(Film, again? What about thought or memory? Isn't it anti-life? What we call "human" is a negation of life, the ability to reflect is the crossing the line.).... "a permanent cessation of all vital functions : the end of life" (Webster). No, this is not what I feel. Taking a shower is a homosexual experience. I wasn't ready to lose sex. You have to do it when you die. You can't -- it becomes something else, Freud -- after death we all are artists! That's why angels are so creative, they were the instruments of creation -- they are deprived of flesh.
DEATH DICTIONARY (WHITE PAGES)
Your fathers, where are they? and the prophets, do they live for ever? (ZEC 1:5)
I lied. I'm not dead yet and that is the problem. I will never be dead -- I have no choice but to exist. I came to this conclusion thinking about suicide. I fear those powers of live. I don't know the world inside -- perhaps I want to create new things because I will never know what I have. I die because of this fear, because I don't know myself.
To live is a shock. (Only after death we learn how to live. That's why we die.... of a neglect of life. Now I have time to think, I don't live anymore. Eternity is un-eventual, it has to be think about each moment of living. (...)
I died in my sleep. We all do. No, I did in my dream..... They say that everything alive fears death. But do they know, animala or children? You have to live enough, have children... Oh, the big lie! Never we accept it, never we have any peace with the very thought of it. The older we get, the more painfull the sense of death becomes....
Did I see them, the women? Who do you think they were, the ones who loved you? Why do you think we are falling in love? Oh, you still don't understand what "flesh" means.
They are beautiful. Morta, the Roman goddess of death (one of the Parcas). Parka, a Greek goddess of birth (part, create). They take your life away and it's a pleasure. We call it sex. We are easy with words.
Tria Fata (three goddesses of fate). They saw them, they made them visible. I miss this freedom of "naming" -- what "book" is for if not for that purpose. Adam giving names to creature -- they were created without names! Is it possible?
All are females! But the medieval "black" messenger is a man? What is YOURS?
How careful the Greeks were in noticing and NAMING the world in its complexity! And how simple! Fate? But the three! Without "naming" you waste your time -- then film it, if you have to describe it for so long! Does the angelic cosmos has its own dictionary?
I have to treat death as a scientific subject. Our technology of pomo living provides everything I need to know about the mechanics of death. Our ability to record won't be possible without death working for us. Computer memory -- what is that? ... Cat, dog -- they fathers placed the spirits in the living, we -- in our machines. I feel as if I live in the world with nothing named, where the given names are to cover the secrets. The microwave in my kitchen is a mystery. Do I understand how it's possible without a fire to make things hot? Yes and no. But I know how to use it. I'm a barbarian in the world invented for my comfort.
By dying we kill..... I began this book, hoping overcome my fear of death. No, I began to write, hoping that I can learn how to desire it... [ deathwish ]
Beyond the postmodern. It's easy. All you have to do is to die. What do you have now? Only your soul..... I don't see it. I tried many times. I don't the time of the place... I don't even know where is my grave...
Man is too flexible to stay superior? Or not flexible enough? Superman is a computer..... Maybe one has to be so much in pain, so helpless that death is a savior. No, not even then...
Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven. (GEN 19:24) That's the name for our technology -- brimstone and fire. But under control. Our control.
"And if thou deal thus with me, kill me, I pray thee, out of hand, if I have found favour in thy sight; and let me not see my wretchedness." (NUM 11:15) I didn't know that I prayed before I die.
Nothing of the living applies to me, neither morals no fast.
.... After I came to America I wanter to write this play about Job. I never did.A land of darkness, as darkness itself; and of the shadow of death, without any order, and where the light is as darkness.
Order .... without any order?
We are here, in the country of forgiveness and the land of forgetfulness. We are soft on ourselves and gentle with our killers.
For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.
.... Yes, I do not understand, how we can accept it, how we can live knowing it. So many, for so long! No, we have to make God, we have to have a chance for resurrection. Even if it's not me....Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.
What if it's not perished even if it should to free the world for the next?
Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.
Giving life to the existence of the dead doesn't validate life and the living. On the contrary.
The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. (ISA 40:7)
I wouldn't mind God to be a woman, so I can really love her. Who do you think women you loved were? How humiliating is this "humanism"! Real science never hated poetry.
"I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work." (JOHN 9:4) I work day and night. My house never sleeps. Like my body. My home is place to work....
ViewPoints: Language of Light
Exile: Russian Page: Being Ex-Soviet
Year 2000: Web Addition to African Book "H.I.M"
Theatre with Anatoly: Go to the page Beyond Theatre
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