|Une Histoire simple|
I finished reading Plato’s ‘The Last Days of Socrates’ a couple of days ago. The dialogues consists of Euthyphro, The Apology, Crito, and Phaedo, with Phaedo being the last documented discussion of Socrates before he died by drinking hemlock. Euthyphro is probably my favourite of the four dialogues. I found his ideas on piety and the nature of morality to be enlightening. Certainly, I can see why he rubbed the state and the Athenian people the wrong way – he critiqued aspects of the Greek Gods at a time when it was sorely frowned upon to do so. When Socrates embraces his death and drinks poison, I felt a lingering sense of despair. His followers were invariably unable to convince him to go into exile, and this is perhaps made all the more tragic by the sense of doubt Socrates had about his soul living on after death. Even he conceded that he was not able to prove in absolute terms that the soul transcends the material world. There is always uncertainty when it comes to death.
I’ve been feeling intensely tired these past few days. I know that job is laborious in the sense that I am stood on my feet all day, but these past three days that I have had off from work, I just seem to be drawn to my bed. I have no motivation to face the world. I have no confidence. Whenever I go out for a walk, all I seem to feel is tiredness which is exacerbated by the hot humid weather. I think my overwhelming sense of lethargy is caused by me not feeling satisfied with my life. I yearn to do something that will make me happy but I’m not sure what.
I got into a conversation with a street charity fundraiser. I found her company to be rather pleasant. We spoke a bit about Samuel Huntington’s ‘The Clash of Civilisations’ because she had mentioned that she was studying International Relations, and the book in question - which I have read fragments of - is a key text on the course. When the conversation ended I got the impression that she felt sad about me leaving. I suspected, though, that if I were to ask her out to coffee, she would have exploded with embarrassment. In the end I cut my losses and headed on my way.
At the café today, I realised that I agreed to be part of something to which I don’t really want to be a part of. A friend of mine in the states is a writer, and has in the past badgered me to illustrate his comic book scripts. One of my nights last week, I contacted him and said that I would do some drawings for him. However, I don’t think I can bring myself to draw for other people. How does he expect me to draw on command for other people without being paid? I can’t bring myself to do it. Perhaps I will do five pages for him. That will keep him happy.
I feel tired of my job, of my flat, of my life… I want to be back home with my mum and dad, and my gran. But even then the family unit isn’t as strong as it use to be. I haven’t seen my little brother for half a year, and my gran is dying of cancer. I want to turn back the clock and be living at home once again, with my gran still healthy – to see her doing the gardening, watching her favourite TV programmes, and cooking traditional meals. Why is growing older so painful?