Re: Unhappiness (Was Extropian ...)

Spike Jones (
Mon, 12 Oct 1998 20:42:52 -0700

> >spike wrote: there are a lot of different mental conditions that are grouped
> together
> >under the name clinical depression. seems to me it can be either
> >positive or negative. i decided, during a case of clinical depression
> >at age 20, to deeply investigate my fundamentalist christian belief...
> Scott Badger wrote: More severe levels of depression have been shown to
> actually disrupt
> and distort normal cognitive processes, sapping mental energy. I'm
> surprised Spike had the energy to deeply investigate...

scott, i certainly agree that an episode of depression saps ones mental energy. during my investigation, that was the *only* thing i could do. i was in a physics seminar, watching a video tape of carl sagan's excellent "cosmos" series. i was enjoying the show, life was good, etc, then suddenly: that short blurb about evolution. it may serve as a sad commentary on the condition of the u.s. education system that i managed to go thru 14 years of it, including 2 biology classes, and had *never* heard, there or elsewhere, a decent explanation of the theory of evolution. sagans five minute presentation hit me like a bolt of lightning on a clear day.

ignoring my engineering studies, i immersed myself in the task of investigating

the idea. i made a poor showing on the finals two weeks later, but the real problem started the next quarter. i was so focussed on that issue, i found myself unable to study, unable to maintain normal human relations, unable do *one damn thing* other than investigate evolution and it implications.
(i blush to admit this, but i have gone on at length about openness, so...) i failed *all* my classes, every one. i nearly had to drop out of school. that
quarter, i dont think i ever opened an engineering book, and im almost certain i failed to turn in a single homework assignment. my friends thought i was on drugs, my significant other thought i must be seeing someone else, strangers thought i must be dissipating violently in masturbation and daytime tv,
(innocent on all counts), teachers noticed my mind was waaay elsewhere (guilty).

but, i solved it. life on earth evolved. humans evolved. religion evolved. the only other idea that hit me with anything like as much impact is... nanotechnology. but thats another story. i wonder if drexler realizes he is being mentioned in the same sentence with charles darwin. {8^D spike