View Full Version : Just some (I guess philosophical) non-political thoughts

10-11-2010, 12:32 PM
I like to think a lot, and I tend to be a very sentimental, nostalgic sort. I also love to observe people; I don't mean in a spying sort of way, but I find humanity interesting--Sometimes I wish God had made me a Guardian Angel instead of a living person. But anyway...

I was looking at an old picture. It was taken by my dad when he and I when we went on a bridge, biking across it, in 1995. I was 4. It's a view from a high up bridge, looking down on the shoreline of my city. You can see all little dots, other people biking, cars, people walking--Just little dots hundreds of feet below in a picture. Just to use that photo as an example, I wonder who all those people in the picture far below on the ground were/are, what their story was, did I ever encounter them, will I ever, are all of them still alive? Did they or do they lead happy lives?

I often think of people and wonder--What are their stories? Whether it's people walking on the street, or cars going over a bridge, I wonder where they're coming from, and where they're going; Are they happy or sad? Is the person I walk past now doomed to die tomorrow without I or them knowing it, or live one hundred years? Will I somehow inexplicably without even knowing anything about them do something that effects the whole course of their lives? Will they do something like that that effects mine without me ever knowing it?

Did somebody on the road, say in 1995 or 1996, when I was just a child, decide NOT to have a drink and drive one day, while I was also on the road, thereby perhaps saving me from death without me EVER truly knowing about it? What about now? These questions don't apply just to me, but to anyone--And can go beyond this simple "Drinking and driving" idea. There's all sorts of things people do, and don't do, without might impact our lives without us ever knowing it.

For example I walked home from school on the first day of Kindergarten--Instead of waiting for my parents to pick me up from the school yard. I guess I was kind of rebellious at that age, or maybe just in a hurry to get home; Who knows? In any case, I asked these two teenagers to escort me home--Teenagers I didn't even know, they weren't neighbors or family friends, just two random kids I asked to walk my five year old self home. Now, that was a roll of the dice. I got lucky in that instance. Maybe had I waited another two minutes and asked another older personn to escort me home, I would've been abducted as we know happens to children in so many tragic instances.

Even though I lived down the block and not far from the school, maybe had those teenagers decided NOT to walk me home, I might've been abducted by someone on my way down the block. I'll never know their names, and they probably never knew mine; Our paths crossed but for an instant in time, yet perhaps their act of kindness saved me from harm. Perhaps them taking extra time out of their day to walk me home saved them, without them ever knowing about it, from getting hit by a car later that day. Perhaps their action that day, since it delayed their plans for that day even shortly, affected their lives years later--Maybe the delay caused by picking me up caused one of them to bump into and meet someone they ended up getting married to.

Even as far as that goes--romance--I wonder if the woman I'll marry was someone I might've come across long ago in childhood, without ever knowing it? And she'd never know it either. And again on childhood, I look at photos of childhood friends, mostly from my Kindergarten years; People I've neither seen nor spoken to or heard of in nearly 15 years. I wonder what happened to them--Are they still OK? Did they turn out to be good, happy people, or fucked up and miserable people? Did they have good childhoods and were truly happy when I knew them? Or were their homes abusive, unkind, without me ever knowing it, yet they appear to me simply as smiling children I once shared a common, direct link with in a photograph.

Personally, as hippie-ish as this may sound, regardless of disagreement, I do consider all of humanity my 'family' in a sense, and I love people. I think that ALL of us are connected in such intricate ways, ways we'll probably never recognize, nor ever begin to imagine. I hope I haven't come off overly stupid or pedantic here, I just figured I'd share some of my thoughts.

Wei Wu Wei
10-11-2010, 12:40 PM
It's mind boggling to think about the sort of connections we have with people all around us. Not only is our connectedness humbling, but also our Otherness. there's something abstractly Other about all this and everyone else, no matter how well you know someone there's something that always escapes your grasp, there's something your mind cannot even see or think or conceive inside of everyone.

Yeah it's a trip to think about, you're at a ripe age for reflection too.

10-11-2010, 12:45 PM
We've probably all had thoughts likes these from time-to-time. Everybody is the very center of their own universe and we are all just actors to them in many ways as they are just actors to us if we don't interact with them.

If you were to be killed by a drunk driver 5 years from now, it's a peculiar thought that your killer is today celebrating their child's birthday or raking leaves. ;)

Wei Wu Wei
10-11-2010, 12:49 PM
What's scary is thinking of, even inadvertantly, how every action you choose may (especially with a chain-reaction) cause extreme effects later on that you'd never know about. Choosing to write one more post before you leave the house may end up being the determining factor on whether some stranger is killed in 2 years, because you being in front of them in the road made them hit an extra red-light, and their destiny is changed forever. Every time you buy anything, there's thousands of people connected to that product, in making it and shipping it and selling it.

10-11-2010, 02:23 PM
A few years ago, a democrat from Detroit who was running for Secretary of State (our DMV) was arrested for soliciting a prostitute on Woodward AVE, in the neighborhood I used to live in. He claimed that he stopped to help her with her car, that he gave her a ride and some money, but that no sex was involved.

So, everyone pretty much thought he was full of crap. Except me. When I lived in that neighborhood, I frequently drove crappy cars. I had a couple of breakdowns in that very stretch of Woodward, some even at night when the streetwalkers were out. Men also stopped and helped me with my car, either jump-starting the battery or putting my spare on. Granted, none of them gave me money, but I was always happy for the help.

I also hitched rides a couple of times in Kalamazoo, when I was a student at WMU. My parents warned me to never hitch or pick up a hitchhiker.

In any of these circumstances, the men could have been serial rapists or killers, and I'd be dead. But they weren't, instead in each case, the man was a nice guy trying to help a girl out. I've learned how to use jumper cables since then, plus, if I really had to, I could put the spare on.