This I Believe

Tim - Hendersonville, North Carolina
Entered on March 26, 2007
Age Group: 50 - 65
Themes: death


You won’t like hearing this. Articulating what I am about to write is forbidden. Many people will find it disturbing. It is almost always pushed away. It is rejected categorically.

Life is horrific and hopeless. There is not a single thing that is positive about being alive. I walk around life with this set-in-cement belief but I am smart enough to know that there is an extraordinarily high price to pay if one puts these sentiments into words.

Words like the ones I am about to use.

This won’t make it to the radio. That’s okay. I am writing it for me as much as I am writing it for you. I find it illuminating to explore the shadows here. To see if there is any light whatsoever; I can find none. I know the darkness for exactly what it is.

This past year, I was exposed along with a couple of other writers caught up in what was termed “literary fraud” in the publishing scandals of 2006. I was not who I said I was although in many ways you cannot know, I was what I said I was.

I was a father who lost a child. Just like the father in my book did. Only mine was not lost to death but he may as well have been. Mine was lost to institutionalization and the psychiatric rabbit hole he disappeared down into.

I am the one who would welcome death. It would be a huge relief.

Who comes out slugging in a literary scandal. Not me. I tried telling you about losing a son. You scream at me you want the truth.

You do not want the truth. Reality dictates that you gag the truth. You edit it severely.

You don’t want to hear it. You don’t want to see it. You don’t want to know how badly that animal can smell. The truth has to be sugar-coated for you to accept it. I am told this daily, day in and day out, by other writers, editors, agents, publishers, film producers, and publicists. I am dragged through volcanic ash for not telling you ALL the truth. Everyone knows you don’t want the truth. But we pretend we tell it. For you. Even while we know that, too, is the bigger lie. That we want and tell the truth and that much of life is a search for truth.

Life is the rabbit hole and there is only a suffocating darkness to it. That is all life is.

I was pretending to be someone who was filled with hope. Although he had been beaten up by life, my pseudonym, Nasdijj, was a positive guy. Until the end.

My real life has been far more horrific than anything Nasdijj had to deal with or anything I could ever write or film. It has been a lifetime of devastating poverty, disease, pain, and loss. Being here — alive on this planet — was not my choice.

We are not asked if we want to be born. We are simply born and born into. Born into families, cultures, and society. It was never a family I wanted to be a part of. It has never been a culture I could in any way idealize. It is not a society or a country I want to know let alone be a member of. Emulate what and why. Being here has always been a haunted thing for me. I am glad death is there — waiting for this enduring nightmare to be over with — to finally escape and put an end to it. Death is the only goodness I know that would come as a result of having been alive.

I never talk about this stuff. I would be put away and tied down and medicated. I do not want that to happen so this is the first time I have ever written anything about what I really believe. I believe that life itself is an obscenity and that there is no hope for the planet or for man. There is evidence to suggest that Homo-erectus was here four million years ago. It took the animal three-and-a-half million years to discover fire. The demise of the human being is inevitable. What I believe is not allowed. The group would edit that out of the rhetoric it claims is language. It scares you. You claim it’s not the truth and that hope exists.

I suppose it does. For some. But not for everyone. Not for those of us who find the concept of hope to be disconnected from evidence that suggests hope is an illusion, disingenuous, and contrived. I simply keep my mouth shut about what I believe. There are entire ideologies that insist and contend that hope is what imbues the human being with humanity: teachers who teach you to fit in, culture police, high priests, psychiatrists, and the people whose job is to get you to participate in the culture as best you can with the fundamental admonition that you do not run around the village spreading the heresy that there is no hope. For you. For me. For anyone.

What are we about. What we have always been about. War. Power. Hierarchy. It is not complex and our values do not lend themselves to change.

Death is the only hope an individual human being has. It is the only light at the end of a very long and horrific journey. There is no god. There is you. There is me. There is any connection we might make. Or not. There is indifference. If the planet ceased to exist tomorrow, it would not put a single, solitary ripple in the universe.

Death is my light. The hope for it is what I live for. The reality of death means that this place I endure — being here — is ephemeral.

I can hardly wait to not have to be among you.