This is the latest installation of a 27-part series, featuring my book, Chasing Unicorns. To read the previous installation, CLICK THIS LINK. For the next post in this series, CLICK THIS LINK. To start at the beginning, CLICK THIS LINK. To read the entire book at once, tap the book cover. Thanks for reading!
RECAP: The previous chapter ended with me sticking an otoscope in your ear, to gander at the mental machinery of your mind, and how it produces happiness. Now that I’ve maneuvered past all the wax, let’s see what we’ve discovered:
Zombie Theory, Part 1
Life is change, and life is automatically enjoyed. But not all change is automatically experienced. So the key to finding more enjoyment in life is to discover how to experience more change.
Wait, what did he say?
The first paragraph of this chapter encompasses, in a nutshell, how your mind produces happiness. You might want to read it a couple of times to kind of get a feel for it. I don’t expect you to understand it completely at this point. It’s complicated, you see. So I’m going to break it down in a way that makes it simple to understand. It’s just going to require a few thousand more words than I used in the first paragraph.
So let’s kill a tree and move on . . .
First of all, let’s take on those preposterous sounding first three words: Life is change. Well life is a lot of things. Everyone seems to have their own definition. Some say that life is anything organic and biological (such as cow manure?). Some folks get real scientific and say that life must have the following things: homeostasis, organization, metabolism, growth, adaptation, stimuli response, and reproduction. Whew! You think my first paragraph was complicated?
The Buddha defined it by saying that life is suffering. Christ claimed to be the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6. Really, it’s in there.).
And then there are some philosophers who are so stupid, they say that everything is alive. What a bunch of ignoramuses!
Actually, I follow the philosophers who say everything is alive. That’s because I make a preposterous claim. I say that life is change. And that paints me into a corner, because everything is constantly changing. Therefore I have to admit that if life is change, and if everything is constantly changing, then everything must be alive.
This logic is like a herd of elephants connected trunk-to-tail. One behemoth follows the other, and no one survives who gets in their way. Likewise no argument survives that says there can be lifelessness in an environment where life is defined as change.
Just glance around, and you’ll see nothing but life. And that’s because everything occupying your visual field is constantly changing (unless you need glasses). Whether it be a mountain or a titmouse, it never stays the same for longer than an instant. Mountains are constantly eroding or growing, and a titmouse, well, just what is a titmouse anyway?
No, it’s not a rodent with a big nipple and long tail scampering around your cupboards stealing your cheese and crackers. Actually it’s a bird—a little chickadee. And if it’s not constantly changing by flitting about pecking at seeds and berries, then it’s probably dead. And if it’s dead, then it’s decomposing. And that’s change, too.
Yeah, so that means even the dead body of a bird is alive. Or any dead body for that matter. It’s constantly decomposing, so it’s constantly changing. Since it’s constantly changing, it’s constantly alive.
Which pushes me to an extreme when I discuss this philosophy. Before I teeter off the very edge of this limb I’ve gone out on, I’m going to have to give my philosophy some credence by christening it with a name. It’s well known amongst the academic world of intellectuals that when you label a paradigm of thought with a name, it lends credence and commands respectability.
So I’m going to name my philosophy Zombie Theory. By giving it this name, it allows that even dead bodies must be alive, and it commands that all intellectuals pay respectful homage to such a notion.
And when you think about it, if even a dead body is alive, then maybe there’s some truth to that movie, Night of the Living Dead. I watched it many years ago when I was a child. And it still keeps me awake at night. That’s because some of the people I associate with leave me wondering if the movie is based on fact.
Zombie Theory, in short, states that life is change. Therefore even dead bodies are alive, because they are constantly changing through the process of decomposition.
[Tomorrow I’ll delve more into deciphering the first paragraph of this chapter. And maybe I’ll get some help with my secret, decoder ring.]