ผมได้รับเมล์นี้จาก Freddy หรือหมอภูมิปกรณ์ของเรา เกี่ยวกับการทำ “ผ่า” (vivisection) ตัวเอง ปกติ vivisection จะทำในแล็บวิชาชีววิทยา เพื่อศึกษาอวัยวะภายในของสัตว์ เช่น ผ่ากบเพื่อดูว่าหัวใจเป็นอย่างไร ทำงานอย่างไร ฯลฯ แต่น่าสนใจว่า Freddy กำลังผ่าตัวเอง…
Dear teachers, former classmates and friends,
It’s been over a year since I left the philosophy course. I find myself still caught by “philosophy” like a cold that never really leaves.
It was social at first. I went to school again. I could meet new people. Might also be recognised. If finally I got a degree, I would be “rebranded”. So I took the course.
Later I found (what I always suspected) that attaining a degree in my recent (or present) condition was almost impossible.
Pure motivation was not enough.
The funny thing is I was no longer an item for the market, harder to melt and pour myself into the forge. The motivation level was understandably too low. (Sticky?)
So I rationalised.
It occurred to me quite a few times I was no longer in the game of study. Getting myself to read what was assigned was not easy.
I did not choose to put on a show. It was not nice to use tricks. Everybody would see it. This was the philosophy department, no less!
So truth unfolds itself, bit by bit, in front of me. I saw the game, and myself, more clearly.
Luckily, life got in the way, a sister of Fate swang the rope. I left, seemingly by necessity. I was whirled into another corner of academia, to gain a direct experience of what I had always feared.
Horrible, horrible things were going on there. Balloons were blown to scary dimensions. The tacit aim was not really to educate. The game was “survival of the glibbest”.
What I am saying is not sugar coating the spoon, but I had seen a reverse trend at Chula, in Philosophy.
The Philosophy Department made the attempt, to target at academic excellence, and to keep the volume of the survival song at the minimum, for as long as possible. Meanwhile, change was looming in the air, as happens everywhere.
Those were words of appreciation. Now what was this guy really doing?
The course of philosophy at Chula was aimed to train good jewelers, to inspect, examine and announce with reasonable available evidence the objectiveness, subjectiveness, and the probability of a work of thought being of value. If properly trained one would look at a stone and warily declare it a gem or rubbish, or untestable.
But I was there, a boy with pockets full of marbles. Still emotionally attached to his toys, he held his glass marbles, clay marbles, and marble marbles to the light and say, “wow, this is good”, “hey, this one is bad”. He never really listened to how we should examine gems, or marbles.
So he came, tested some of his stones, saw some specimens briefly, had some fun, and left. He had a lot to say, if he would say, about tester training. The teachers were doing their best, and so many things he saw were much better than what he had expected. He knew the teachers knew about the flaws, and whatever was possible was being done. At least attempts were made.
What I saw was the best possible outcome.
Well, now I am home, in front of the boxes and crates of marbles, gravels, Granitto (sorry, that is the name of a professor), among others in the clutter confronting me.
When I close my eyes, I don’t see the clutter.
I wish I could put all the stuff in a sack, throw some away, and tie the sack up to make it corset-like.
In the momentary darkness, sometimes I still see and feel and play with the things in my mind’s eyes.
Some say the rope, which I think was my life path, does not exist. Some say it is discontinuous, some say each thread is continuous but the large rope is otherwise.
My rope has been twisted and straightened, partly thick and knotty, partly thin and tenuous.
It was still, then shaky. It used to bear some weight, now it carries different loads.
I do not know when Atropos will do her job. When she does it, will the truth (or untruth) change? Will it still matter what I know, or what I know not?
What kind of knowing, if at all, matters? What about opinions?
Will what I have done, and what I have not, have influence on what happens next?
For a moment, a thread on the rope flashes.
I see myself wondering.
The cold never really goes away.
In the choice between changing one’s mind and proving there’s no need to do so, most people get busy on the proof.
– John Kenneth Galbraith