Even more than my other pages, this one is continually being added to and modified. Don't be surprised if a paragraph ends very abruptly, or if a sentence ends in the middle of a word.

Table of Contents

On People, Gods and Goddesses


I like people.

Just like that. I like people. People of all kinds and sizes, races and creeds. I may disagree with them, be angry at them, in a very few cases (three individuals) I may even hate them. But still, they are people, and therefore valuable. They are all unique, they are all gods (not goddesses, they're something else entirely). In their heads are universes, each and every one of them. Endless realms of thoughts, feelings and desires. I often wish I could share them.

All people are not humans. If you've ever had a cat living in your home, you know that. Some cats are more human than many humans. I'm not very fond of dogs, but I'll bet they're people too. A friend of mine has told me a lot about wolves, and they sure seem to be people. They're not much like dogs, though. She's very clear on that point. Even such small and silly critters as guinea pigs can be people.

And I like them all. Humans, cats, dogs, wolves, guinea pigs, all of them. They're all part of the Goddess.


Some people are gods. They're the ones who are able to change their own realitites. Most gods I know of are humans, but I suspect that quite a lot of cats are gods as well.


I have three goddesses. They're fairly arbitrarily chosen, really. Unlike gods, they're not quite people. They're more like personalized expressions of principles.


The first of them and the most abstract is Gaia. She is, in a way, the biosphere in which we live. We are parts of her. As long as we exist, so will she, and she will most likely remain after we're gone.


The goddess of chaos and confusion. Some think that chaos and confusion are bad things, but they are wrong. We need them as well as order and understanding. We need balance between them. The extreme of order is stasis, the extreme of chaos is static. The two extremes meet in the heat death of the Universe.

In everything of value there is both order and chaos. Perfect beauty becomes cold and uninteresting, add some flaws and unorderly things and it becomes unpredictable, wonderful. In order to feel awed, overwhelmed, we need to be surprised, and in order to be surprised we must both recognize what we see and find something new in it.

Our current western society is overbalanced towards order. Therefore we must add chaos, to make it a better place for us to live in. Many discordians like to spread chaos, but not all. You can't really say anything meaningful about all discordians. It's a highly heterogenous religion, discordianism...


KaTe Bush is a goddess of music. That she has chosen to incarnate in this time and place is something for which we should be very, very grateful.

Incidentally, Her current incarnation was born the same year discordianism was founded. Her music is consistently unlike anything else. Her more than lovely appearance is of that off-perfect kind that marks true beauty. Quite often I think that She is an incarnation of Eris.

The Future

No matter what, we're all going to spend the rest of our lives in the future. Considering this, it's strange that we don't spend more time trying to make it a pleasant place to live.

Every day we can hear of new disasters. Oil in the seas, poison in the air, venom in the earth. Every part of nature is polluted, every part of mother nature diseased and dying. We are slowly killing Her, and most of us don't even seem to realize that that is what's happening.

The only comforts, as far as I can see, are that it is not yet too late (although the day of no return seems to be approaching rapidly) and that almost no matter what we do, She will survive us. Even if we burn the entire surface of the planet with nuclear fire, parts of Her in the deep sea and far below ground will survive, and new forms of life evolve from them. Her face will change, probably forever, but in some form or other, She will survive.

That doesn't help us, though. If we incinerate the Earth, we will die, even if Gaia survives. So I guess we'd better not do that. If we want to keep living, we'll need to keep the ecosystem in more or less the same shape it was when we evolved. Breathing methane would be rather tricky...


There is pain.

As long as we are human, there will be pain.

That is not altogether bad.

Biologically speaking, pain has a rather clear function. It's a signal to the control system that something is wrong, sent in the hope that said control system will do something about it.

Psychological pain has precisely the same function, although we don't always realize that since in that case it is the control system itself that is broken. Also, since the control system is trying to send signals to itself, it may not be able to correctly receive the signals, and if it does receive correctly, it is frequently unable to do anything about it. Thus, the most common way for people to handle psychological pain is "ignore it and hope it goes away". Often this works.

Sometimes it does not work.

That's when we get mental illnesses.

Most people never experience this, for which they ought to be happy. I had a brush with psychosis once upon a time, and it is by far the most unpleasant experience I've ever had or ever plan to have (I keep the alt.suicide.holiday Methods File alive, to have handy if I ever find myself walking down that dark road again). I'm not enough of a poet to describe how it felt, so I have to try to use feeble analogies. Imagine, if you can, being afraid of absolutely everything. Absolutely everything. Including things you normally never think about, such as breathing, and things that are mutually exclusive, such as having people near and being alone. Imagine, if you can, a state in which you are unable to feel anything but fear.

After having been through that, not much is truly terrible. Even things that could feel like the end of the world before, like unanswered love, is no longer totally bad. Because even when I'm consumed by longing for her, when it feels like the world will end if I don't see her, there is something inside that reminds me of the time when I could not feel longing. Something small, whispering, reminding me that I can hope, that I can dream, that I can see the beauty in things. That I can feel something other than pain and fear. And for that, I am grateful.

Most who become psychotic never recover. That I did is, I believe, because I wasn't very far gone when I got help. If I hadn't gotten outside help I wouldn't have gotten better, of that I am sure. My control system, the essential me, was in a sort of negative-feedback loop, where it would send signals of distress to itself and those very signals would become part of the problem it was trying to report. After a while, I became unable to do anything except the same things I had done the day before and was rapidly approaching a point where I would be unable to do anything, period. Fortunately, my mother saw that something was wrong and forced me to see a psychiatrist. With her help I managed to break the negative feedback loop, and started getting better.

Nowadays I'm much more familiar with the way my mind works than I were before my illness. I have developed tools to handle despair. I know, for certain, that it could be worse (and I still remember exactly how much worse it could be).

All in all, I am now, five years later, when most of the wounds are healed, a more content human than I was before. All in all, the pain gave more than it took.

I believe, based on my own experiences, that some good can come from suffering. It will not always happen that way, but it is at least possible.

I feel that it would be a grave error to abolish pain. I don't know if it would be possible to do so, but no matter if it is possible or not, it is not desirable. As unpleasant as it is, we need pain.


Leaves are sprouting on the jasmine bushes under my balcony at home. Pretty soon, they should start to bloom and fill my apartment with their very lovely smell. Already various smells drift in from the bushes across the street.

I like spring.


Last week Roger Zelazny died. Since then, there has been a lot of more or less (mostly less) coherent shouting about the worth of obituaries and such on the Net. There has also been a smaller, easy to miss, discussion on attitudes towards death. Many things have been said that felt strange to me, a lot of them by Charles Platt. Mr Platt is, by his own admission, very afraid of dying. He has invested money in cryonics research, and has arranged to have himself (or at least his head) frozen after he dies.

To me, that sounds like he's trying to condemn himself to a fair approximation of the christian Hell. As far as I can understand, he wishes to remain as he is now for all eternity. He must wish to stop changing, to become static, for if one changes enough one ceases to be the person one once were, and that is to me the same as dying. The original person exists no more. There may be a person, a mind, inhabiting a body which look s lot like the body that original person, mind, inhabited, but that means little. It is not the same mind, thus not the same person.

Someone said that a human may be described as a waveform moving through time. She refered to the fact that the atoms in our bodies are replaced as time goes by, but the pattern that is us remains. There is nothing physical that stays with us all our lives, but still we think that we are always the same. That which does stay the same is rather like a wave on water, which moves through water, consists of water, but is not the same water all through its existance. That way we can see ourselves, as waves moving through the sea of matter. As patterns, rather than distinct physical entities.

But these patterns must change. We experience things, we live, we remember. If nothing else, the pattern that is us must change to incorporate new memories. Change, always change. If the change stops, we stop recieving new input. All that remains is the memories, that which has already passed by. What can you call that, but death? But if the change keeps going on, the pattern will be ever more unlike what it was at the beginning (or at any given earlier time). In time, it will be so changed that no resemblance to the original pattern can be seen. What reason is it then to say that it is the same pattern? The earlier pattern is lost, is no more. Is dead.

And so we die no matter what, in one way or the other. Mr Platt's quest to avoid dying is either futile, or will condemn him to a state where he can do nothing, experience nothing (for experience causes change, and change causes death) but still lives. To me, that last sounds horrible.

But then, I rather look forward to dying the ordinary way some day. I've always wondered if there's and afterlife, and what other way is there to find out for sure?

Apology for a Common Life

On September 20 1945 an uncle of mine was born, in Dalarna, Sweden. A few years later, he and his family moved to Värmland, also in Sweden.
Last updated: Setting Orange, the 57 day of Discord in the YOLD 3162, 23:45:40.