Friction 01/03/21

The universe moves in patterns of creation and destruction. It abhors stagnation. Movement is important, to always be moving, always be adding, subtracting, experiencing. That’s how one should live, I think. It’s more valuable to push against narratives than to accept them. It’s important to always be fighting, as much as you possibly can. You get nothing out of accepting except stagnation. You get nothing out of pushing away discomfort but more discomfort, and a kind that feels worse.

This is a great interview between two of my faves (who’ve both been on my podcast, by the way!). One of the major takeaways I got from this is Gordon’s distinction between “collecting thoughts” that you use like Yu-Gi-Oh cards and developing tools for thinking itself. I often find myself in conflict with the groups I’m a part of, because I think the most important tool for thinking is the hammer. Smash it all down to pieces and start putting it back together again. End every train of thought, as Phil Ford of Weird Studies puts it, with banishment: “What a bunch of bullshit.”

What do the people I see who spend their whole lives dunking on their Twitter enemies and gassing up their Twitter pals get out of agreeing with the same people over and over again? Where’s the fun in ignoring the obvious plot holes in the story we’re telling ourselves? Where’s the integrity in not taking a deep look at yourself and realizing the hypocrisy and emptiness at the center of your existence? I find a lot of value in doing this. I experience moments of heartbreaking beauty and crushing despair. I try to lean into all of these things, the ugliness and incompleteness of my being, because I’m the most afraid person I know. There’s no other way out for me. I have to take the ice cold shower, to walk through snow in bare feet, to jump out of planes, on and on and on because the only way I can live with the fear and sadness is to lean into it.

It’s friction that lights the world.

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