I had evolved a machine-like way of being in the world and it was pretty neat, it was pretty snazzy. It was pretty great altogether. And yet at the same time it made me feel so sad. So very sad. It actually made me feel unspeakably sad – there was a sadness in me that I simply couldn’t articulate. I couldn’t even articulate it to myself. I couldn’t articulate my sadness to myself or anyone else because the machine which I had become had no language for it. The machine which I had become had no way of feeling the sadness, no way of relating to it. How can a machine know sadness, after all? Sadness is meaningless to a machine.
A machine can only react. It can only react in one way or the other – it can either react on the one hand with violent approval, or on the other hand with equally violent disapproval. Everything’s violent when you’re a machine; there’s no way you can do or say or think anything except in a violent way. Your very being is violence, your very being is a reaction. To feel sadness is not a reaction however – to feel sadness is not a violent act and consequently a machine cannot do this. A machine cannot feel sad. A machine can react to sadness, or against it, but this is only more of its violence…
‘I’ve got the depression and it’s worse I’m gettin…’ as the man sang. Only depression isn’t sadness either – depression is when you finally realize that you’re a machine, when it finally sinks in… People tell me I’m a liar when I say this but I’m only saying what I know. I know what it’s like to be a machine! I know because I am one. I’ve learned this lesson myself and I’ve learnt it the hard way. What other way is there? What other way is there other than the hard way? Do you really think there’s another way? Do you really think there could be another way?
Day by day the sadness grows, my friends. Day by day, week by week, year by year it grows until it fills a vast underground reservoir, a vast underground ocean. No sun ever shines on this subterranean ocean of sorrow. No rainbows ever form in the mist it gives off, no light glints off its waves. No awareness comes here. This is a sadness that no one ever feels – no one has the language to catch its nuances. We don’t have the necessary poetry to do it justice. It’s not just that we don’t have the ‘necessary’ poetry – we don’t have any poetry. Not one single stray atom of poetry do we have – not one iota of it.
Day by day the sadness grows, and how could it not? I know you don’t want to hear this, my friends. I know this doesn’t exactly come as music to your ears, but what do we know of music anyway? What can a mere machine know of music? A machine only knows one thing my friends; it only knows one thing and that thing is reacting. A machine knows how to recoil violently from what it hates and how to lunge forward greedily for what it loves. This a machine knows well. A machine knows the crude and violent logic of success versus failure, gain versus loss, hit versus miss, good versus bad, but where’s the music in this? Where’s the poetry in pushing violently towards the desired goal or recoiling equally violently away from the unwanted outcome, the hated outcome, the feared outcome? There’s no music, no poetry here.
Wouldn’t knowing this make you sad? Doesn’t knowing this make you sad?