1925/2022 /Is sucide a Solution /Surrealist Inquiry
We live, we die. What is the will’s part in all this? It seems we kill ourselves in the same way we dream. It is not a moral question that we pose:
Is suicide a solution?
J. Karl Bogartte
Verónica Cabanillas Samaniego
Dawn J. Collins
Edited By /Mohsen Elbelasy
Collages / Ghadah Kamal
The following text is meant as an answer to one among the first of surrealist enquiries :
Is suicide a solution ?
Perhaps would suicide be a solution, but, as Marcel Duchamp rightly observed, “there is no solution because there is no problem”. We may also consider things from the angle proposed by Paul Valéry: “Nature takes place, no one will add to it”.
Is suicide a solution ?
The fact that the world is by no means absurd is obvious. A little attention shows that it is rather intelligently organized. The point where the “intelligent design” is definitely wrong, is certainly not intelligence, but design … Design implies a separation between the elaboration of a plan on the one hand, and the concrete work required for the achievement of such a priorly established plan on the other hand. When transposed into the social world, this separation translates in terms of “thinkers” and “workers”, in other words in this traditional and elegant – albeit transparent – sex cover of the ancient distinction between “ master ” and“ slave ”. Actually, the world is not organized – by whatever external actor – but is a permanently organizing process, which is very different. And the universe does everything it does without any prior design and without outside help.
This is for sure an absolute scandal for a slave owner! The fact that anything – the universe in this case – may concretely and intelligently organize itself, without any design, that is, without any master, here is the most abominable of abominations for a slaver’s mind … This is the reason why, in an intellectual world that essentially remains built on the thought of slavers, the world must have a meaning, in other terms, a master. And those who seek a meaning in it, are therefore searching for a master.
Worse ! Having hence unveiled the surreptitious shadow of the master, which we see haunting the backworld of almost all philosophies under the rags of the concept, let’s take the opportunity to undress the priest and ridicule his little dick … The world is not hiding nor showing anything. The world is not esoteric. It is more deeply naked than man or woman may ever be. It is not organizing itself in secret, as any common religion would, but on the contrary, shamelessly and without the slightest bashfulness, it is permanently and stubbornly organizing itself in public, in full view of all and at all times. Let that be stated and repeated! The world is not a mystery, it is marvelous. Esotericists and initiates, you blind initiators of all human blindness, have I not designated here what you have in front of you? Have I not unveiled, Tartuffes that you are, “this breast that you do not dare see” ? “Nature takes place, and no one will add to it” wrote Valéry. There is nothing beyond the world and all that is claimed to add to it has never meant anything else than to charge entrance fees
Deeper ! Let’s get to the roots ! As soon as one leaves the human realm, the question of the meaning almost immediately appears as rather insane. What is the meaning of the mountains? What is the meaning of the plains, of the blue sky? What is the meaning of rivers, seas and lakes? What is the meaning of giraffes? And that of ocelots or lions or chestnut trees or beeches? What is the meaning of the quantum vacuum? What is the meaning of the 5th planet, not even habitable of Zeta Centaurus? Or of the 7th planet of the 120,000th sun at the bottom right 150 light years after the 13,635th black hole?
The question of the meaning of the universe and of Life is absurd because such a question about meaning only makes sense in the narrow context of the human world. What is meant by “to have a meaning” is to have a meaning which originates outside of oneself, in other words, to exist or have any kind of worth only based on a goal other than oneself. “To have a meaning” always surreptitiously refers to a rationality external to oneself, that is to say it refers to heteronomy. But the universe and nature obey nothing. They just take place, they just flow, following their own course, that is, they are essentially autonomous. It will not occur to anyone to state that the deep meaning of the universe is nothing else than the universe itself, nor will anyone say that the ultimate meaning of Life is Life itself. This is yet another meaning of Valéry’s phrase “Nature takes place, no one will add to it” : it is impossible to add any kind of law to the way Nature takes place. Nature follows no law. What we call the “laws of nature” are in fact just the laws of Physics.
But since the universe and Life only offer us examples of autonomy, where may the notion of heteronomy come from ? The only plausible answer is that heteronomy originates in this difference by which the human world massively exceeds the natural world, in other words, heteronomy is rooted in technology. Technology essentially consists in constructing objects that have no other raison d’être except a human one. That is, objects the purpose of which is external to these objects themselves. What characterizes a technical object is that it is built with a view to one dedicated type of use. And In fact, people only perceived technical objects according to their intended use. When you build, buy, or use an automobile, you do not perceive the climate change to which it contributes, just as much as it allows you to move around. To consider a technical object only from the point of view of usefulness is to voluntarily blind yourself to everything that this technical object also happens to be – beyond the use for which it was intended.. Thus the slave is man reduced to the status of a thing, that is to say, reduced to a technical object, whereas his human nature is denied, voluntarily forgotten. The slave is truly the invisible man. Thus the slave is man reduced to the status of a thing, that is to say, reduced to a technical object, whereas his human nature is denied, voluntarily forgotten. The slave is truly the invisible man. The employee, the worker and the servant are also reduced to the status of technical objects, and this, even more deeply and fundamentally than the slave, since the employer or the master does not even have to worry about what happens to them after he is done using them.
All of the technical objects around us – and even language is one – mean something to us, but they don’t mean anything to themselves. They are supposed “serve some purpose”, that is, to serve something other than themselves. Hence when we are searching for a meaning to our lives, we do nothing other than ask ourselves what purpose our life serves … And since the only things of which we may tell what purpose they serve are technical objects, when we raise the question of the meaning of our lives, that then means that we think of ourselves as technical objects, in other words, as “useful” things. Yet we are not useful things, but living beings. Completely useless living beings, just as free wild animals are..
Is it any surprise that human beings come to think of themselves as things? Actually, no. The opposite would be surprising. Since at least the Neolithic period we have been living surrounded by technical objects that we use every second, to eat (dishes and spoons), to prepare our meals (pots, knives), to dress (clothes) to sleep (beds), to live (houses), to get around (bikes, motorbikes, cars, planes, trains) to speak (languages) and of course to work… In such conditions how could we not be haunted – unconsciously – by what we most often are in touch with? We are apes and we ape everything, endlessly, without even realizing it. People in hunter-gatherer societies were close to animals and hence were haunted by animals. We are closer to our things and hence haunted by our tools. Men do what men have always done, they ape things, but their environment has changed. Just watch the children play… They play at being Dad or Mum, but yet much more often, they play at being machines, planes, cars, and now even computers. While children externalize it, we do it as well although mentally, silently. It must be understood that each time we want to use a thing or a tool, we must anticipate the result of our actions. The only way to do this is to mentally mimic what that thing or that tool is going to do. That is to say, embody it, put ourselves in its place mentally. This all relies on the activity of our mirror neurons. The same mirror neurons that enable us to anticipate what other people will do, hence providing us with the basic abilities that enable us to live in societies. The same mirror neurons, too, allow us to anticipate what other animals will do and therefore to avoid their attacks as well as to hunt them successfully. However, as the use of technology grew more and more, we had to permanently mimic the behavior of our things, so that we happened, to some extent, to think of ourselves as things, as technical objects, and this all came to the point that this is unconsciously haunting us . Over centuries, it has been haunting us so strongly and deeply that it led us to invent the slave, that is to say the man who is only a thing. We even invented a god in our image, a technician god, a do-it-yourself god, to create us as things, a god who is our master so that we may obey and serve him. A god that finally ended up ruling our lives entirely.
Every day people die of discovering the pointlessness of their lives, the pointlessness of Life and the universe. These people, without being aware of it, carry within them the desire to be things, this wound once caused by slavery, and today due to the sly habit of being exploited. They no longer perceive the beauty, freedom and nobility of being useless. As useless as tigers, elephants, trees, insects and bacteria, and as everything in the world that owes nothing to human activity , to human imagination.
That said, evolution invented pain, for our good, for our survival. But we also have the right to find that on this point, nature sometimes is lacking measure. And there is no shame nor indignity in remedying it when needed.
But as to the sense of the absurdity of our lives, of Life itself and of the entire universe, I hope I have pointed out the true origin of it. What is absurd for a human being is to think of himself as a thing and to ask questions that only have any meaning in relation to things. It is even more absurd to die of it. In many cases, the desire to end our lives is just the symptom of a huge lack of sleep.
So let’s sleep quietly, as long as needed, and recover … our marvelous uselessness.
Pierre Petiot, 2021-03-13
Even though I understand Crevel
Hitler committed suicide
For him there was a “final solution”
With André Breton, I choose “Rather life” !
Suicide should be sold as a commodity at variable prices on amazon. Once in your cart and ordered, at the designated time an all-smiles well-trained, well-dressed and well-groomed euthanasia team will arrive at your door step to help you exit your own life in any way your prefer. Of course, not all departures are priced the same way. For instance, last minute sexual favors are priced according to a carefully crafted menu of erotic options. A suggested add-on feature to your Amazon purchase, for instance, can also involve an Ivy-league professor of creative writing helping you to draft a dazzlingly moving suicide note. Rest assured: your loved-ones (if you have any) will cry after reading. For a $5 extra, Amazon will guarantee the publication of your last words at Amazon’s world-renowned journal of poetry from the hereafter.
In order to pass through the door of suicide interior judgements must be rendered. First, a callous view into one’s present circumstance, then its dialectic engorged as it is by a kind of religious terror that continues to inform the mystery that remains the unknown. Thus one does not seek some religious form of ballast that converts itself into a private form of heresy. The act itself is beyond the won’t of priestly instruction or condemning one’s body according to instruction according to transactional pressures welling up from pointless circumstantial calamity. Let me say I am not provoking a scale invaded by prior circumstance provoked in the prior century. One cannot remain condoned by prior fatigue, or by the self- erasure of formally relevant bodies. Let me say that the mind burns and is capable by that burning of rising to another plane that blazes by transparency incapable of prior solutions. The circumstance that informed the mental vanguard circa 1925 cannot existentially inform according to the tenets of prior rebellion. I cannot engage the living dialogue that informed Andre Masson or Pierre Reverdy. Let me say that human alchemy remains an angst of question Marks. And these very question Mark’s provide in themselves an alchemical corridor through which one passes through. It being the mind that passes through leprous resin not as simply as a form of revolt as it persisted under the circumstance that obliged the mind a 100 years ago. I am speaking of anguish as a corridor of transparency, to poetically gather and advance riddles so that an unknown emergence transpires and gathers on a plane sans prior quotidian properties. Not solution or erasure, but psychic kindling of the poetic. It seems one must unfold all prior considerations as to unfold an epic of being. A non-clinical registration that all prior effort has foreshortened. Let us advance a new unruly wavering, not as circumspect literary dazzling but self-bickering as advancement so that unknown realizations begin to organically transpire not as prior ritual or doctrine but partaking of the ether that advanced being prior to combustion of our Sun. Of course such a path teems with riddles and suffering. And because these riddles and sufferings transpire I am not speaking of consciousness via rational advance but of poetic groaning that cannot be advanced via parable as answer. Faced with sea level rise and a teeming number of prescient exo-planets the old notions of infinity have now evolved. The riddle that becomes poetic riddle as explosion and patience presently engulfs us and poetically staggers us with evolutionary misnomer.
Is suicide a solution?
If you are reading this questionnaire while sitting on the social chicken chairs, take a pen and paper now and try to write your own perception of so-called madness and mental disorders.
Write this visualization away from any contaminants you may have heard before.
Write down how you feel about your concept of madness, then look in the mirror and then laugh out loud. Your sound waves may shatter this false mirror.
Almost a hundred years after the same question was asked in the second issue of Surrealist Revolution magazine /1925
We pour the same words into the iron ear of our dead era :
“We live, we die. What is the role of the will in all of this? It seems we are killing ourselves the same way we dream.
It is not a moral question to ask:
Is suicide a solution?
I disagree with the opening sentence of the first inquiry in 1925
We do not kill ourselves in the way we dream, but we commit suicide because we are unable to liberate our inner dreams and give birth to ourselves anew every moment, even if this procreation is, mystical or imaginary..
One hundred years, during which the form of human alienation completely changed and passed through various and different stages.
Suicide is an epistemological defect and a metaphysical, religious act of slavery, even if it is covered with a nihilistic skin that resembles in its reaction the ugliness of the religious mind itself.
Suicide is a cognitive impairment at a time when we are approaching the cognitive commons.
Suicide is an ideological distortion, an unjustified lack of understanding of our desires, our hopes, our dreams, our inner world, and everything that forms the basis of our practices and actions.
It is the silent, helpless and malicious surrender to the power of social evil and the narrow-mindedness of everyday stupidity in societies that suppress all their desires for their inability to suppress the desire of masochistic metaphysical submission to all that represents the superego and its psychological powers.
But I don’t ignore the deadly economic and social conditions that a human being is exposed to , but on the same line It is disgusting that all thoughts that promote the idea of suicide are enveloped in phrases of nobility and human purity.
Underneath it hides pus of hostility towards the fertility of the mind, the human imagination, and its infinite power
Life is taken away by those who understand it and deserve it, away from the illusions of idealistic and nihilistic philosophies and metaphysical dust, whether nihilistic or religious.
Psychiatries in this social swamps infested and leprous with metaphysics is systematic terrorism and a trap polluted by religious and nihilistic rabies in the end written on its door here is the ideal environment for your domestication.
Depression is inherently philosophical confusion. This does not negate the advanced stages of depression to the stage of a chemical-biological imbalance, but the origin is basically a philosophical defect and a defect in consciousness.
The psychiatric mafia and the psychiatric drug trade today are the hidden sponsors of torture and collective psychiatric detention.
Is suicide a solution ?
The psychiatric mafia says yes.
In order to expand its investment in the back garden of the mass prison for merchants, inhabitants of this planet were kidnapped from its merchants.
What is your definition, doctor “shit” , of depressive disorder, and how do you implement this definition?
What are the causes and how do you solve these causes?
You will respond and say: Because these symptoms correspond to the medically approved criteria for diagnosing depression.
Most of these criteria are exposed to various people daily, whether instantaneously or long-term, according to different material and living causes.
The funny thing is that the definition of psychiatry
Mental disorder/illness includes any deviation from the predetermined daily social line in thinking, feeling, and behaving.
But what is the definition of psychiatry for this hidden path that should not be deviated from?
What is the chemical and biological evidence of a psychiatrist?
Only guesses used by fortune tellers and charlatans with the same technique and tools (unconventional ideas appearing on body language)
After that, the commercial process begins and ends with a mechanism of psychological and physical torture that is similar to suicide in its ugliness.
On the whole, the Psychiatric Market uses a lot of definitions and theories to assign a pseudo-biological character to problems that are not biological in nature.
These diagnoses are mere propaganda banners where it is biologically and chemically impossible to prove these diseases conclusively and definitively, all that causing a state of mass psychological genocide.
Yes I agree there is a schizophrenic reaction, a depressive reaction
But who is behind all this?
Merchants of psychiatry suffer from the inferiority of thievery in front of the various other biological sciences because they know very well that the problems they claim to treat are not often diseases caused by bodily defects, most of them of course, I am far from my goal from a generalization but I am talking about the vast majority in this industry ( Psychiatric industry)
They are well aware that most of the therapeutic activities they practice
It does not actually have a medical nature.
They know that well, but submitting to market mechanisms is what works in the end.
You will always be safe if you randomly knock on the nails of critical paranoia in your head, let the hammer of critical paranoia create endlessly ramified neural, social and imaginative networks, turn the outside world into an obedient servant of your subconscious mind, which only embraces you in the moments before sleep absorbs you,
every night You can carve new caverns for the shocks of recognitions in your daily behavior, inside the box that no one sees but the eye hanging behind your eye, which staring inside the bony box that you carry on your shoulders, reality is imperfect, And it will only be complete by desecrating the hidden shadows that look at you with inferiority of mice infected with dogmatic stool glut.
You are the supernatural and the creator of the uranium recycling concept.
towards you,. Towards the tusks of melatonin stuck in your silver eyelashes.
Millions of sub-indexes without weight,
It rusts in a sequence no less miserable than this daily reality.
MOHSEN EL BELASY
Suicide is a calendar.
Is suicide a solution? It could be a heroic solution if deemed necessary, if all else fails. If life is unbearable without respite, then certainly. It would be a moral triumph to throw yourself off of a great height, rather than to submit to any delusionary supreme being for help. If your disease were incurable with death a certainty, then of course, suicide is a great solution. But, in any event, the choice of leaving a long and beautiful obscure letter behind, or not, is up to you.
J. Karl Bogartte
AN ANTISUICIDAL MANIFESTO
Mosquito prayers, a manifesto (Dali 2, 19910– prepublished in A Phala, 2014, p. 120/121)
Give us tomorrow the indigestable bread of yesterday
Statistic registration of the number of flutterings of each citizen by the year
Let us make:
Let my every otherday face be my passport
Let my heart not be a lonely lunch for Jehovah
The Art of Hiding
Time as Turkish Delight
Let us reclaim the colours from the politicians
With a good poem the poet is engineering the fields of force in the world or is calming down them. He is a magician
A very creative power is hiding in a shock
We poets are also transformers of tendencies. How do we discern a tendency? By perception free of charge of the fields around us which are results of the systematic powers of governance, economics and technology
1) a tournament field
2) an energy source
3) a balance beam
4) frozen music
5) a state of incompletion
6) high-pressure area or low-pressure area (depending on
times of boom or times of recession)
7) an open or hidden logic
8) echos of prehistoric whispers in our virtual future worlds
1) the fear for paganism
2) the isolation of the artist
3) the threats against sensitivity (art), against the sensitive
(artists), against the sensitive stratum (subconscious)
4) the debilization of people by the mass media and the
dulling of the senses or the fixation upon one single sense
5) the hatred of art, books and reading
1) avoiding of bureaucracy
2) stimulation of subrealististic art
3) living, thus ephemeral performances of poetry
4) revival of attention for the individual
5) cosmopolitan coïre of the arts to discover new forms of
6) the revival of the poetic seer
7) the assertion that humanity exists out of blindfolded
poetic seers, and that the consciousness of this must be
[ps. Of Wijnand Steemers]
materialistic future] of Arthur Rimbaud. ‘This will be the language of the soul for the soul’. Since July 2009 he is full-time travelling around as a ‘vagant’, reading his poetry and exhibiting his paintings.
depends on a positive answer to a different question, namely: Can we finally speak of humanity universally in the first person? If, in 1925, the unnamed problem and the concrete solution to it posed themselves solely on the level of the individual, today this is no longer the case. The problem of living on now presents itself to humankind in a body.
Twenty-fucking-twenty ebbed and flowed with tides of desperation.
TwentyTwentyOne is cut from the same brown corduroy.
Rational thoughts turn to angry, dessicated wasps trapped in the killing jars of our hollow skulls.
Death is in the air we breathe, the hands we fear, the bodies we recoil from. Hands, face, space, arsenic and old lace.
Should we embrace it, go with the flow?
If only it were that simple!
I for one am afflicted with a strange condition or phobia- an absolute fear of the sight of blood. Or to be more precise, my own blood. Other people’s blood, your blood, does not bother me in the slightest. You could cut off your head in my living room and I would mourn for my ruined carpet but the slightest paper-cut to my own finger would have me Catherine-wheeling on the floor. So, nasty points and sharp edges are a no-no for me.
The only pills I have to hand are ibuprofen and a single half chewed viagra. Insufficient for the purpose, I think.
And it has been said many times that hanging is far too good for me.
So, I am really not sure what to do for the best.
I’ll brew myself a nice cup of hemlock tea and mull it over…
The question is incomplete. It is not “is suicide a solution,” a question without limit, but “is suicide a solution for me?” In this light and only this light, I can respond. And my response is this: Why would I even think of committing suicide when I will die soon enough at the end of my life? The act of suicide, however it attracts and compels others, holds no attraction for me. I am attracted to, I am compelled by life, by living. Death, however, is the counterpoint. It is death, the nullification of life, that gives to living vivacity and hunger for more life. And yes, I have known two suicides: a close friend and my sister-in-law. Both committed suicide as a final expression of agency, of power against advancing disease and the social ostracism they endured because of their disease: AIDS and Schizophrenia. They had their reasons. Their suicide ended their suffering. It also ended them. I am alive, and living is my life.
LE SUICIDE EST-IL UNE SOLUTION?
Pour Sonia Araquistain
qui a giflé le smog de Londres
dans l’arc-en-ciel de sa chute
pour Jacques Rigaut
qui franchissait les miroirs
sa révolte à la boutonnière
pour Caroline de Gunderode
qui épousa le Rhin un soir d’été
pour Paul et Laura Lafargue
qui ont étendu à l’infini leur droit à la paresse
pour Alejandra Pizarnik
qui a ciselé la pierre philosophale de la folie
pour Jean-Pierre Duprey
défiera toujours la Tombe-Tempête
pour Ghérasim Luca
qui a regardé le fleuve
et l’a trouvé plus accueillant que la ville
pour Guy Debord
dont les mains n’ont jamais tremblé
même dans l’alcoolisme
pour eux tous
comme pour tant d’autres
n’a pas mis un terme à la vie
mais à l’impossibilité de vivre
Et il sera toujours
quand l’horizon se retire
(9 février 2021)
IS SUICIDE A SOLUTION?
The Surrealist Group on Paris addressed this question in 1925 in Surrealist Revolution #2 and, nearly one hundred years later, we consider this question once again after the deaths of so many from our ranks – Jacques Vaché (overdose, 1919), Jacques Rigaut (shot, 1929), René Crevel (gassing, 1935), Arshile Gorky (hanging, 1948), Oscar Dominguez (slit wrists, 1957), Wolfgang Paalen (shot, 1959), Kay Sage (shot, 1963) and Pierre Molinier (hung, 1976) to name but a few…and, of course, from elsewhere we think of others such as Walter Benjamin (1940) and Guy Debord (1994) who, with a shot through the heart, perhaps creating the ultimate situation, suggests that suicide is the purest critique of the Spectacle…
One is also reminded of the suicide note of Left Oppositionist, Adolf Abramovich Joffe, which he left 16 November 1927 for Leon Trotsky, before firing a gun to his head and ending his life. A note which exudes humanity and reflects on ‘the meaning of life’ and, in the face of Stalinist repression, contains these tragic sentences, ‘I think that I have the right to say that not a day of my life has been meaningless. But now, it seems, comes the time when my live loses its meaning, and in consequence I feel obliged to abandon it, to bring it to an end’.
In turn, Joffe brings to mind Trotsky’s additional note to his famous Testament written on 27 February 1940. The additional note was penned a few days later on 3 March. Here, the Old Man (but he was only 60!!) reflects on his health and states, ‘If…I should be threatened with a long drawn out invalidism, then I reserve the right to determine for myself the time of my death. The ‘suicide’ (if such a term is appropriate in this connection) will not in any respect be an expression of an outburst of despair or hopelessness. Natasha and I have said more than once that one may arrive at such a physical condition that it would be better to cut short one’s own life or, more correctly, the too slow process of dying. ….But what ever the circumstances of my death I shall die with an unshaken faith in the communist future.’.
I subscribe to the positions on this question of Joffe and Trotsky. It seems to me that we must have ‘the right’ to decide how and when to end our lives and it is surely the case that a life without meaning, purpose – and health will inevitably be a key factor in determining this – poses this question point blank!
10 February 2021
” Suicide: Is It A Solution?”
“It is most probably the most correct and most ultimate solution”
John Welson. “Hoar Frost. The Ultimate Solution”
(For Rene Crevel).
Oil on paper. 24x18cms 2012.
“Rene Crevel – The Ultimate Solution”
The night echo
Thin line crossed.
the gas symphony
Thin line crossed.
No breeze to Summer
Thin line crossed.
Thin line crossed.
night blacked day
Thin line crossed.
Thin line crossed.
John Welson (February 2021).
S’il m’est quelquefois arrivé de rêver de ma mort – dans des rêves assez inquiétants où, condamné à la peine capitale, j’étais soit fusillé, soit décapité – je ne crois pas avoir jamais rêvé que je me suicidais. Or, tenant que le rêve est en général l’expression d’un désir refoulé, et ne me sachant pas tenaillé non plus lorsque je suis éveillé, par le désir d’abréger volontairement mes jours, qu’ai-je à répondre à la terrible question que se posent depuis 1925 les surréalistes ? Quelle solution offrirait non pas la mort (dès que cesse la vie, il n’y a rien d’autre que le néant, absolu absolument impensable), mais ce fait de se donner volontairement la mort ? Partir, rompre, se dégager de toutes attaches ? Sans doute. Mes premiers contacts avec le milieu surréaliste parisien, en 1978, furent avec Jimmy Gladiator, qui venait de publier avec son groupe d’amis le dernier numéro de la revue Le Melog, où étaient donnés les résultats d’une enquête également dérangeante : « Qu’est-ce qui vous attache à la vie ? » J’y entendais alors, et j’y entends toujours : quelle solution avez-vous trouvée (ou qu’au moins vous cherchez?) pour ne pas vous suicider ?
Au jour le jour la reconduction obstinée de mes plus vifs désirs : de liberté, d’émerveillement, d’amour. Tout ou rien ? L’ensemble n’est jamais donné que très fragile, et reste toujours à l’horizon, vers là où se croisent les méandres du cœur, de l’esprit et les rencontres espérées. Mais les promesses de cet horizon seraient-elles un jour, un jour de trop, ressenties comme définitivement hors de portée : alors en effet, le suicide me serait, par une dialectique négative, la négation de ce qui aurait achevé de nier le mouvement de mes désirs vers leur réalisation.
Quant à tenter de déterminer, ainsi que veut l’y inciter le libellé de votre enquête, s’il est loisible ou non de penser que le suicide comme solution (définitive) soit encore plus objet de questionnement aujourd’hui qu’il y a presque un siècle, que puis-je en savoir ? Je ne vivais pas en 1925, de même que je n’ai aucune idée de qui fut le premier homme à s’être volontairement donné la mort : en quelle contrée, à quelle époque, pour quelles raisons que j’imagine ni plus ni moins obscures selon quelque critère psychologique que l’on voudra, que celles qui convainquirent René Crevel, Jean-Pierre Duprey, Wolfgang Paalen, parmi d’autres surréalistes, de commettre ce geste qui aux yeux des crétins est encore et toujours un scandale. Je ne saurais donc décider si le monde actuel, dans son horreur capitaliste et malgré le fait que ce matin j’ai croisé dans la rue une jeune femme portant déjà la courte jupe du printemps, est pire qu’il ne le fut hier ou jadis. Il y a comme il y a eu, comme il y aura toujours, des raisons de se révolter non seulement contre d’inacceptables conditions sociales, contre toutes les fictions de quelque contrat social que ce soit – puisque l’anarchie, comme la civilisation surréaliste, ne cessera jamais d’être en devenir – mais il y aura toujours l’imprévisible désir de se vouloir autre, tant que ne sera pas résolue, par exemple, la question ontologique telle qu’elle fut posée par Tchouang Tseu : ne suis-je pas quelque papillon qui rêve que je suis celui qui écrit ces lignes ? Bien sûr, on me rétorquera que dans un monde où, sous l’effet des désastres écologiques, disparaissent les papillons…
22 février 2021
22 février 2021
We live, we die. What is the will’s part in all this? It seems we kill ourselves in the same way we dream. It is not a moral question that we pose:
Is suicide a solution?
This remains a difficult and unsettling question, one that perhaps cannot be approached in the same way today as it was when posed in 1924; not since, a mere twenty-one years later, in 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and we have from that moment held the human race’s suicide before us as a real possibility.
For me, this is a question to be addressed in the first instance without glancing over one’s shoulder to the past. There will be enough empty echoes, particularly from those who might be looking for a quintessentially ‘surrealist’ answer, seeking guidance and approval from illustrious forbears. How we respond to the responses published in 1925 is a very different matter, and an important one that I personally am only too happy to leave to Surrealism’s more perspicacious historians. So, in order to avoid that temptation, I have not re-read the responses (having not read them for very many years) and have endeavoured to take the question on its own terms, for my own time.
I regard the act itself as one that is beyond approval or disapproval. How can we claim a right to life if we do not at the same time claim a right to death, to be able to decide for ourselves, should we choose to do so, when that grand moment arrives; if we deny a right to death, then we cannot claim a right to life. Setting aside one particular solution, clearly considered and planned, that of being an end to physical suffering – whether immediate or impending, assisted or not – for some who take their own lives, if not the majority, there is little choice involved and the decision is not a ‘rationally’ considered one, thus is not properly speaking a matter of ‘will’. A few might even act as judge and jury, the condemned and the executioner, carrying out the sentence of an unbearable guilt, another form of suffering upon which a verdict has been delivered. Nor is this a question of those accidents of emotionally charged desperation, whether born of self-loathing or self-pity, often intertwined, attempting to put an end to mental suffering or drawing attention to it. For others, the act is one of necessity, whether from the directive of an inner voice or voices, in which ‘will’ has fatally taken its leave.
With the question posed in the first issue of La Révolution surréaliste, we are, however, considering suicide as an act of absolute refusal and detachment, the great negation. Here, we are confronting that unsurpassable determination to ‘put an end to it all’, not of suffering, but to existence in its totality; to settle an account with the very idea of the self, the ‘solution’ being to dissolve into eternity, and even perhaps to do so through the auspices of chance. Is there a sense that, in so confronting the inevitable, we are attempting to convince ourselves of a preternatural ability to in some way cheat fate, jumping the shadow of the scythe? There is no ‘I’ who disappears yet remains in an elsewhere, having pulled off such a trick, like the ‘transported man’; the ‘elsewhere’ is an ineffable absence, a nothingness into which the ‘I’ has been dissolved. There are obvious parallels here with initiation and alchemical processes, in which death is the embodiment of transformation.
Over and above these considerations, the question of whether suicide is a solution contains and provokes another, that of how to live in a world that makes the human condition unacceptable and, if one comes down on the side of life, of what meaning we conceive for it. One into the other, death is contained within life and vice versa. A question that confronts us with death is in itself principally a question about life and how it is to be lived.
No, il suicidio non è una “soluzione”, se non nel senso meramente etimologico di “scioglimento”. Però nella luce nera della nostra vera coscienza l’idea del suicidio è molto di più, può essere un vero TALISMANO, da conservare segretamente. E’ lui che consente al desiderio di accarezzare la disperazione e fare l’amore con lei e di affrontare il possibile dei giorni – e tutte le sue sorprese, esaltanti o terribili – con la certezza di una libertà definitiva.
Non, le suicide n’est pas une « solution », si ce n’est dans le sens purement étymologique de la « dissolution ». Mais à la lumière noire de notre vraie conscience, l’idée du suicide est beaucoup plus, elle peut être un vrai TALISMAN, à garder secrètement. C’est bien ce qui permet au DÉSIR de caresser le DÉSESPOIR et de lui faire l’amour et d’affronter le possible des jours – et toutes ses surprises, exaltantes ou terribles – avec la certitude d’une LIBERTE’ définitive.
No, suicide is not a “solution” other than in the purely etymological sense of “dissolution.” But in the black light of our true consciousness, the idea of suicide is much more, it can be a real TALISMAN, to keep secretly. This is what allows the DESIRE to caress DESPAIR and make love to it and to face the possible of the days – and all its surprises, exhilarating or terrible – with the certainty of a definitive FREEDOM.
1 marzo 2021
Cammino a ritroso in un bosco fitto, inciampo più volte.
Il mio passo è ostacolato da rami secchi che intralciano il cammino.
Ascolto trasognata il fruscio sotto i miei piedi.
Non so dove possa condurmi il sentiero appena tracciato fra le foglie secche. Senza temere il pericolo, potrei cadere nel vuoto.
Il pensiero della morte rapida e inattesa mi aiuta a proseguire. L’idea del salto nel buio non mi angoscia, anzi è consolante nella sua fattibilità.
Sono come sospesa nel tempo, non intravedo futuro, mi affido all’indiscreta necessità del mio corpo che mi chiede di esistere.
Avrei bisogno di un buon interlocutore che non è Dio;
non amo confidargli i miei segreti, li ha traditi più volte e l’ho trovato assente nei momenti del bisogno.
Un androide che mi assomigli potrebbe essere un compagno ideale. Libero dalla tirannia del corpo, potrebbe raccogliere innumerevoli indizi sulla mia vita senza esserne troppo coinvolto e liberarmi dalla sofferenza se lo desidero. L’androide non si porrebbe problemi morali circa l’argomento del fine vita.
Il mondo virtuale che mi aspetta è governato da un’insolita condizione. Come un intrigante gioco solitario simula una vita che non c’è.
Mi allontana dall’empatia umana generando un malessere collettivo che chiamano “suicidio di massa”.
Gli animali ai quali abbiamo negato di possedere una vita interiore, scelgono frequentemente e volontariamente di estinguersi.
Posso solo supporre le ragioni che li inducono a farlo, ma sono certa che non sono molto dissimili dalle mie. Diversamente dagli esseri umani, gli animali e gli insetti sanno governare magistralmente il loro corpi. Sono in grado, consapevolmente, di immolarsi lasciandosi mangiare vivi dalla loro prole, perpetuando la specie.
Sempre camminando all’indietro, mi imbatto in un frammento di roccia. Il passaggio diventa stretto e segna il transito in un’altra dimensione.
Riconosco la silenziosa foresta di Aokigahara, che mi accoglie come una madre e riceve il mio ultimo respiro. Prima di intraprendere il viaggio ho accuratamente contato le mie rughe, le ho accarezzate pazientemente, pensando che il mistero inquietante della metamorfosi fosse vicino. Ora, vorrei essere una farfalla, inconsapevole della breve durata della propria vita e pronta in ogni momento alla trasformazione.
Nella mia fantasia il piacere interiore si consolida come in un sogno. Alimento come un piccolo fuoco il desiderio che accompagna la bellezza imperfetta della mia vita.
Mi accompagna l’immagine di una falena che in Madagascar si alimenta delle lacrime di uccelli addormentati.
23 febbraio 2021 Antonella Gandini
I walk backwards in the deep woods, I trip again and again. My steps are impeded by dry branches which hinder my way.
I listen dreamy the rustling beneath my feet. I don’t know where the path, that I just traced in the dry leaves, will lead me. Without fearing the danger, I could fall into the void. The thought of the fast and sudden death helps me carry on. The idea of a leap in the dark doesn’t distress me, it’s actually comforting in its feasibility. It’s like I’m frozen in time, I don’t see any future, I rely on the indiscreet necessity of my body, which asks me to exist.
I would need a good interlocutor which is not God; I don’t like telling him my secrets, he repeatedly betrayed them and I found him absent in moments of need.
An android that resembles me could be the ideal companion. Free from the tyranny of body, it could collect countless clues on my life without being too involved and free me from the suffering if I desire to. The android would not consider the moral problems concerning the end of life.
The virtual world waiting for me is ruled by an unusual condition. Like an intriguing lonely game simulating a life that doesn’t exist. It pushes me away from the human empathy, generating a collective discomfort which they call mass suicide.
The animals which we denied having an interior life, frequently and voluntarily choose to extinguish themselves.
I can only suppose the reasons that persuade them to do this, but I am sure those are not different from mine. Unlike humans, animals and insects know how to masterfully govern their own body.
They are consciously able to sacrifice themselves, letting their children eat them alive to perpetuate the species.
Still walking backwards, I bump into a fragment of rock. The passage becomes narrow and marks the transition to another dimension.
I recognize the silent forest of Aokigahara, which greets me like a mother and receives my last breath. Before starting the journey, I carefully counted my wrinkles, I patiently stroked them, thinking that the disquieting mystery of metamorphosis was near.
Now, I would like to be a butterfly, unaware of the short lifespan and ready for the transformation any moment. In my fantasy the inner pleasure strengthen itself like in a dream.
I stroke, like a little fire, the desire which accompanies the imperfect beauty of my life.
Following me is the image of a moth which in Madagascar eats the tears of asleep birds.
¿Es el suicidio una solución?
Decidí no tener padre, es decir, algo, alguien, en quien sostener mi pensamiento, un bastón que me sostenga en ese abismo que la lucidez de la conciencia, cada vez más, esa sed de conocimiento indomable que siempre me ha constituido, te conduce. Ese vértigo de las alturas. Ni un dios, ni una carta de salvación que limite la inmensidad en que el pensamiento fluye y podría fluir, así como los parajes en que se desemboca; la pintura es el testimonio. Simplemente nunca hubiese sido lúcida, de haber tenido el dedo que desde lo alto coordine, dirija mis actos que son también mis pensamientos y mis sentimientos, mi vida en general. Entonces decidir luchar por aquella libertad. Cuando pienso en el suicidio como posibilidad, pienso en la derrota absoluta de este mundo que otorga esa posibilidad por lo invivible que es. Recuerdo entonces, hace casi dos décadas atrás, en el baño del sicoanalista al que asistía, donde hubo una vez en que me debatí entre la vida y la muerte, habiendo mi alma descubierto el infinito y profundo dolor en que una cae arrojada por esta insensible vida que se nos otorga, esa gran ola quemante en que se nos arroja, y donde terminamos varados de la otra orilla, algo así como asistiendo al nacimiento de nuestra conciencia y al dolor que ello conlleva, no sé si como prueba de algo o no, pero sí, y en ese preciso momento en que decidiría el fin o no de este cuerpo lo supe; concebir lo que me ocurría como regalo divino de haber ascendido hacia la conciencia y a su fluir maravilloso; torrente y bohemio viaje de unos pocos, lo que me detuvo. Ahí supe, que a pesar, del gran dolor, del peso descomunal de esta máquina enorme y horrorosa, máquina opresora de la libertad, esta violenta máquina que oprime a todos los seres humanos, debía ser destruida, atacada, y que emplearía toda mi fuerza y lucidez para construir y destruir lo que se deba para vivir otra vida, la verdadera vida de Octavio paz, la otra vida de Rimbaud. Los surrealistas para entonces, eran mis únicos amigos, sus libros, sus poemas, sus historias, sus relatos, sus libros que llevaba conmigo, los surrealistas me salvaron, y ahora, los surrealistas me siguen salvando. La guerrilla interior me había llevado a ser presa de esa guerra que desaté en mí, ahora me atrevía a ver claro, pude ver claro. La inhumanidad bajo los vestidores de la falsedad, se me aproximó, descarnada y horrorosa. Llena de pavor interior, pude y fui capaz de ver, como la cosa es en sí misma, la esencia del terror de cada uno, esa mutilación esencial de la que todos estamos conformados, la vida está mutilada y es escalofriante porque el ser humano lo es, porque este tiempo lo es. Ahí el suicidio me tentó como la última esperanza de mi desesperación y de acabar con la herida virulenta echada al aire y a su suerte, que la vida me había infringido.
Dos décadas después, cuando mi cabeza se asoma al vacío, tengo el recuerdo de lo recorrido como sostén, porque creo que he hecho las cosas casi lo mejor que pude, y si mal, los tiempos no han cambiado para mejor, sino están peores, tengo el sello que atraviesa mi espíritu de haber vivido la pintura y la creación, de haberla conocido, lo siento así en lo más hondo, y de haber gozado del acto de la libertad. El oasis empezó a crecer en mi cabeza como un árbol hacia el cielo y las raíces se hunden en maravillosos seres humanos y en momentos maravillosos que voy descubriendo. El suicidio no es una solución de nada, el suicidio es el acto de la derrota de la sociedad en uno mismo, evidencia lo putrefacto que es esta sociedad, devela el gran dolor humano, es la última opción que tomaría, si me viera acorralada ante más sufrimiento. La solución a mi dolor, pero no la solución a los problemas que lo producen. Entonces, y por esa razón, decidí continuar en este infierno que muchas veces es la vida. Luchar y luchar en contra mío, en mí, en el mundo, en la vida y en la sociedad para construir la utopía un poco más.
Cada lucha personal por la libertad es la lucha de la sociedad total. Ese deseo poderoso de libertad es el deseo y la pulsión natural del ser humano por su emancipación, ahora fracturada, pero que, a pesar, nos constituye como parte indisoluble. La enfermedad de nuestros tiempos se debe en parte a no poder reafirmar, construir, finalmente vivir la libertad.
Encontré al padre en mí, la libertad consiste en encontrar a su padre en uno mismo, reafirmarse en su propia búsqueda y hallazgo, la libertad consiste en re-apropiarse. Unirse a su esencia desatando los hilos que nos mueven a semejanza de un canon, que imposibilita todas las otras formas de poder ser, existir, crear. Desatada de lo que te liga al deber social, podrás ver la luz infinita, las tinieblas son el tiempo en la balsa perdida, cuando vas guiada por las estrellas hacia tu propio nacimiento, amanecer, atardecer, anochecer, ser el mismo sol, el mismo padre de uno mismo.
Honestamente, esto es lo único podría decir en relación a si el suicidio es una solución o no, para algunos pueda que sí, para otros no, en lo personal, esta es mi historia, mi testimonio y mi hallazgo. Abrazo la vida y la abrazaré hasta que me sea arrebatada por el destino que todos estamos condenados; la muerte que llegará irremediablemente. La vida que alcanzaré a vivir hasta que la muerte sea solo un paso más, el último episodio de este libro abierto. Una vida llena, una vida repleta de ella misma, donde la muerte sea un broche de oro para cerrar una gran historia, la vida entera como el gran acto, y la muerte como una disyuntiva sin opción a través de la cual se seguirá, en cuerpo o sin él, en alma o espíritu, o sin ellas, eso lo desconocemos. Finalmente, la muerte, como una divergencia de nuestra condición.
Verónica Cabanillas Samaniego
Modern neuroscience truly has moved perceptual mountains about this question. So long as we are learning as a collective, Thinkers of the past will miss information that arises later. And still there is no need to think of our growth as linear and this I’d suggest is an impairment, for we hold memory and history in stories, in tales in our minds – it hath no matter. If there held, what is not held there?
Let us consider ourselves as the dreamer and all that we create of ourselves. In suicide we do not end the dream but like in a dream awake to a mere set change or perhaps character change. Perhaps consciousness is relieved by large distraction or phase shifts. We continue to be the dreamer so any essential challenge in the working of our minds regardless remains.
Thanks to neuroscience in recent times we know our brains have neuroplasticity. What a thrill that we can alter consciousness residing there. Neuroplasticity is the budding truth of our time showing us one that there is no dysfunction at all and that all is in fact our design once again. And that what was once thought permanent damage or chronic illness was a falsehood. As things are chageable suicide becomes a lack of time perhaps or the perception of it. We are far more vast than we imagine. Imaginations save lives.
The answer that this research does show, speaks to our social nature as animals of the human species. This nature is part of how our brains work. Collaboration is essential. Thus suffering is a result of disconnection from our collective or a delusion (as many wise ones have said before me) of separateness. Learning and practicing to reconnect or be in the experience of interconnectedness, that is the truth of both metaphysics and all realms of hard science. (Closed systems are a lot of work, no wonder you’re suffering). All lies emerge from dividing; Truth is connecting. And there you have your answer.
Ps. Live forever. Toujours va toujours un s, car il n’y a aucun fin, c’est infini. C’est infini comme moi.
Dawn J. Collins