Friday, June 20, 2008

Freedom and Determinism; sharing my insanity

My friend Craig and I had a lengthy discussion about freedom vs. determinism last night.

Then today, we discussed the difference between freedom and determinism in class. Psychological egoists say that people act in their own self-interest. Ba da bing, ba da bang.

Ethical egoists say that people OUGHT to act in their own self-interest. The ought implies that we have a choice.

I am overwhelmed with the timeliness of this whole line of thought. Throughout this week, I have felt overwhelmed and overrun by circumstances outside of my control. And even in those circumstances, I've felt myself make right and wrong choices. I haven't felt like I was being guided towards certain choices. I felt myself freely choose to eat the cookie dough. I freely chose to sleep in until noon and I freely chose to leave a nasty voicemessage.

The idea that God somehow knew that I was going to self-destruct does not comfort me in the least bit. I like the idea that God knows that I will overcome my weaknesses, but the idea that God knows that I'm going to implode is horribly depressing. There's something more to all of this though. Something I'm missing. I think God is trying to teach me something, but I'm too selfish and destructive to get at the point.

But He's sure trying. I don't think it's a coincidence that during this week of hell and misery, I had a conversation about freedom and determinism with Craig last night--AND I had to teach about it today. Someone up there wants me to recognize an eternal truth. I'm just not getting it.

I feel a little more in control today. I truly have accomplished a long list of things this week, despite my own personal misery. I went to the gym last night, swam laps this morning, managed to throw together a program for the show we're doing on Monday, and bought a present and a card for my roommate for her birthday. The house isn't a complete disaster, and I've managed to keep my car relatively clean. Also, I haven't bounced a check this week. Truly, it's the little things.

I talked to Spencer today on the phone. Apparently he doesn't hate me. He's just been busy. Truly I am a neurotic person. I hate that I have these horrible abandonment issues. But I do. This has been predetermined by my previous experiences. I am preconditioned to runaway from every good thing in my life before they eventually run away from me.

I am one of the most independent people in the world, and I resent with every fiber of my being that I need people. I love people. I love being needed. But I am wracked with fear whenever I find myself needing someone else. Because eventually, they will leave and I will need them. And they won't be there. And that will hurt. And as an intelligent human being, I seek to avoid pain.

So here's my rambling confessions. This is perhaps too much for a blog. But hey--maybe someone else who appears to be functioning and sane in public will get something out of my confessions and perhaps not feel quite so alone in their own insanity.

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