Sunday, July 10, 2016

How to not give a fuck

To learn how to not give a fuck about anything, you must realize that suicide is always an option if things get too rough to handle. No use enduring something that ain't worth it.

Once you get rid of the idea that life is something to be enjoyed and replace it with the idea that life is boring, tedious, painful and scary, it's much easier to not give a fuck about anything. In fact, suicide is probably the most rational action that many people could make.

So basically if you really don't want to give a fuck, you'll learn to not take your life so seriously and live in the moment, knowing that at any moment you could be thrown into a 180 and start taking seriously the idea of killing yourself. Live on the edge, take risks, don't wear your seatbelt, give most of your money to charities cause you don't need it, expect the worst and prepare for it, always keep the possibility of suicide in the back of your mind to ground your decisions, etc. Soon you'll learn to enjoy what you do have and not worry about losing it, since if you do lose it all you can always kill yourself. You'll also realize that death is not something to worry about or fear, since once you're dead you won't know what you're missing and you might even be avoiding a lot of really shitty experiences. Pretty simple, really.


  1. Damn.

    Guess my brain is just too preoccupied with the impersonal to make sense of this advice. If things worsen on a personal level to the point where bailing makes more sense, all else would remain unresolved. Whether I'm in the world or not, the worst off will be. If I stick around and do the EA thing, there'll be fewer of them.

    Also, I find that there's just too much interesting intellectual and aesthetic content to read/view/listen to, from lit to music to fiction. As long as the West remains stable and civil, the tradeoff seems reasonable.

    Here's to this week being kinder to you than the last one.

    1. Thanks for the kind words, ABM. Better than most of what I've gotten elsewhere these past few days. FT's intolerance was only icing on the cake.

      The impersonal is, as I see it, simply a heuristic meant for analyzing action, not a state of affairs. A state of affairs has no value in itself. It's only valuable when we have to make a decision based on a variety of options. Thus impersonal value is inherently tied to motivational action.

      Persons (and the personal) takes priority over the impersonal - the impersonal is merely the third-person perspective of another person's personal. The collection of personals leads to an overall impersonal value - therefore impersonal values are not only subsequent to personal values but ontologically dependent on personal values.

      Hence why committing suicide does not put you in a "better state", it just removes you from a bad state. The action of removing suffering is good, but not because the consequence is good in itself. What is bad deserves to be eliminated, even if the result is not symmetrically good.

      I'm beginning to re-wire my thought process, but I am starting to believe that all value must be immanent - there cannot be transcendental value. All value rests and resides in what is the case, therefore it's no use talking about the value of non-existence. I think I'll make a post on this some time in the future.

      So in regards to the EA thing - if someone sticks around to help other people despite suffering greatly, this person has gone above and beyond and should be thought of as a hero. But this is by no means an expectation. Those who decide to die and leave everyone else behind aren't doing a bad thing, unless of course their suicide could have been done cleaner (which is why I'm opposed to public suicides - don't make everyone else clean up you after you're gone, and especially don't traumatize other people like train drivers or park rangers).

    2. Didn't mean to imply that there's such a thing as 'impersonal value' or 'transcendental value' (doubly so). I tend to use 'the impersonal' to relay 'the dispassionate' or 'the analytical' (over emotional) and generally understanding that I'm not the center of anything other than my own outlook. It helps with keeping moral priorities in check. For instance, FirstWorldProblems is somewhat of a played-out joke these days, but it's so applicable when you see the world through the shades of EA on an ongoing basis.

      "The collection of personals leads to an overall impersonal value - therefore impersonal values are not only subsequent to personal values but ontologically dependent on personal values"

      Just be careful not to end up with ethical egoism based on some of this. What you're saying can charitably be interpreted as nothing more than "The whole is not greater than the sum of its parts" which I'm 100% in agreement with. But the semantics of it all prompt many to the alluring convenience of "for me and mine". So cockroachy.

      Just to confirm; when you say you're against public suicide, you're taking about "spectacle suicides" and certainly not assisted suicides, correct?

      Agreed on all the points about the non-goodness of a universe/multiverse without sentient life. Odd how so many Benatarians fail to grasp the most bizarre implication of the goodness-as-absence view; that this universe really is the best of all possible universes, save for one planet. They must make themselves believe that it's been the best of all possible worlds ever since the big bang all the way to abiogenesis. And comparatively speaking, the ouch period following abiogenesis is a mere blip compared to all the 'bliss' that preceded it. This is clearly wrong. It's a woeful world. First there was billions of years of neutrality, then about 500 million years of badness.

      I need to reread Jeff McMahan's approach to procreative asymmetries. From what I recall, his conclusions are friendly to AN and avoid Benatarian black holes.

  2. "Just to confirm; when you say you're against public suicide, you're taking about "spectacle suicides" and certainly not assisted suicides, correct?"

    If by spectacle suicides, you mean suicides that occur in public and traumatize those who witness the suicide, then yes, I am against them. Assisted suicides should be allowed so long as the person goes through a few meetings beforehand to make sure they actually want to go through with it and to clean up their finances and whatnot.

    I believe that part of the appeal to the Benatarian argument is that non-existence is similar to sleep - peaceful, restful, worry-free, etc. Of course, if you're asleep or non-existent you can't appreciate the peacefulness or anything. But it does have a bit of an aesthetic ring to it - especially to those experiencing Weltschmerz. But it fails as an argument entirely, especially when you try to quantify value-as-absence.

    And thanks for the recommendation for McMahan, I love that guy's work.

  3. Besides the economy and our bleak future...the world around us is just not such a nice place. At the local level, our infrastructure is falling apart, people are always on edge, at each others' throats, and it is constant stress all day, every day. At the wider scale, it is the constant punctuation of atrocity after atrocity. Try living here with the constant fear of terrorism, the actual attempts. Snipers, anthrax, planes flying into buildings. Snowmaggedon. Derecho. Our country is torn in two politically and shows no sign of healing. We are destroying or running out of natural resources. The world is full of crazy people with bombs who hate us. The world is full of people who exploit other people, who build buildings that fall down and kill people. The world is full of horrible people who rape four-year old girls.

    And then the baby boomers - having to work and take care of aging parents who are probably running out of resources because modern medicine keeps them "alive." Every day is a struggle just to get through the day, and seeing how they are "living" is beyond depressing, especially because unless you are super diligent about every morsel of food that goes into your mouth and exercise every day (because of course you've got nothing but time on your hands, right?), then you will end up "living" the same way.

    A better question would be why is the U.S. suicide rate not higher?

    Honestly, it is pretty much a surprise that more of us aren't jumping off bridges.