Author Topic: It was a dark and stormy night…  (Read 123 times)

Offline Deb

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‘It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents — except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness.

-Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Paul Clifford, 1830

Almost 200 years later, and it's a dark and stormy day here. I went out to run some errands, listing to a 1980s music radio station while driving, and they were playing Prince's "Purple Rain." My mind went to his other songs, then to him playing Purple Rain in 2007 at the Super Bowl in Miami during a torrential downpour, risking electrocution. Then my thoughts turned a little dark and stormy. I remembered he died from a drug over dose, like so many successful performers. Not only musicians, but celebrities in general. An inordinate amount of them, I think, end up addicted to substances and dying young. I wondered about what Seth would say about this phenomenon.

While accidental drug overdoses are considered to be unintentional, according to Seth there are no accidents and with pre-planned death, technically every death would be considered a suicide. Seth did talk a lot about suicide, but I don't recall him tackling accidental drug overdoses. Keith Richards, on the other hand, is a miracle.

It's hard to generalize because everyone has their own beliefs, actions and reasons for them, but celebrities do have some things in common, such as fame, fortune, supposedly a career doing something they enjoy, and most often a showy lifestyle. Is it the pressure? Do they want to go out with a bang? Drugs do cloud judgment, but then that would make them victims of their own habits or lack of self-control. So then does the concept that "there are no victims" apply to the self, or only outside circumstances? No accidental deaths, instead death opportunities that can then be chosen?

The closest I could find for an explanation is:

 "However, suicides and would-be suicides often have such a great literal lust for life that they constantly put it into jeopardy, so that they can experience what it is in heightened form."

—UR2 Section 6: Session 735 February 3, 1975

Any thoughts?

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Offline usmaak

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I always thought about how much pressure people like these must be under.  They're adored by millions.  Their every move is watched, scrutinized, and criticized.  People treat them like bulletproof gods, when in reality, they are just people like the rest of us.  Everything said about celebs is out on the internet for the world to see.  People are just mean.  They treat others like they don't have feelings.  They act like because it's something that they're saying online, it's funny or ok.  They say things that they wouldn't dare say face-to-face, because they know that there's a better than average chance that they'd be swallowing a mouth full of teeth.

That's a lot of pressure for anyone, especially when it's unrelenting.

Drugs can numb that, take it away.  It's no wonder that so many of them seem to fall down that hole.

I feel like it's a combination of accidental death (setting aside the whole "no accidents" thing) and deciding on either a conscious or unconscious level that enough is enough.

I think that many of us have had fantasies at one time or another about being famous.  Given what's involved, I can't think of anything that I would rather have less.
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Online LarryH

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Quote from: usmaak
I think that many of us have had fantasies at one time or another about being famous.  Given what's involved, I can't think of anything that I would rather have less.
Jim Carrey said something to the effect that he wished that everyone could have the experience of being rich and famous so they'd see it wasn't the answer to anything.
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Offline usmaak

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Quote from: LarryH
Quote from: usmaak
I think that many of us have had fantasies at one time or another about being famous.  Given what's involved, I can't think of anything that I would rather have less.
Jim Carrey said something to the effect that he wished that everyone could have the experience of being rich and famous so they'd see it wasn't the answer to anything.
I wouldn't mind being rich and unknown.  I would buy a nice place on a lot of land in the mountains, keep what I needed to live comfortably the rest of my life, and then give the rest of it away.  I'd spend my days hiking, reading, and relaxing.
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Offline Deb

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Quote from: usmaak
I wouldn't mind being rich and unknown.  I would buy a nice place on a lot of land in the mountains, keep what I needed to live comfortably the rest of my life, and then give the rest of it away.  I'd spend my days hiking, reading, and relaxing.

I’m with you, that sounds heavenly. Although I’d probably invest the money, continue to grow it and share. :)

I had a idea this morning that a lot of these celebrities that die young may not want to grow old, and then I found the quote below. Many of these idols are very attractive, are worshipped for their looks besides whatever talents they have, and that is very important to them. Look at Michael Jackson and all his plastic surgery, he didn’t like what the man in the mirror looked like and redid his entire face, all of it. When he was making “This Is It” ( a documentary worth seeing), he was 51 but looked half that age. He was as thin as a rail, wore makeup of course, and I heard he had to wear a wig after that Pepsi commercial fire disaster in 1984. I don’t think the title “This Is It” was a coincidence.

"This is aside from the impact of the entertainment industry, which reflects that same glorification of youth, and that fear of growing old."
—WTH Chapter 10: June 7, 1984
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Online LarryH

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Quote from: Deb (quoting Seth)
"This is aside from the impact of the entertainment industry, which reflects that same glorification of youth, and that fear of growing old."
That reminds me of the Who's line in My Generation: "Hope I die before I get old!"
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Offline KylePierce

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Quote from: Deb
The closest I could find for an explanation is:

 "However, suicides and would-be suicides often have such a great literal lust for life that they constantly put it into jeopardy, so that they can experience what it is in heightened form."

—UR2 Section 6: Session 735 February 3, 1975
This helps me to understand mountaineers and race car drivers even though I don't have that kind of temperament. We all seem to need some form of intense stimulation, I guess. This doesn't solve the problem of "no victims" or of overdoses. I don't think I could see the opioid epidemic as a no-victims situation, but I imagine many people find a way to accept their death. Perhaps those who died suddenly had already come to accept the idea of death, but I doubt there are more than a few of those people in our culture, given our common aversion to thoughts of death. (if I can even speak of "our culture") :)

Well, that brings up another question; can we say that high-risk professions or dangerous sports bring with them the necessity to accept that you might die in the course of that risky behavior? And is it possible to stay with that acceptance over the course of a life? Does this prepare you for death before it kills you? I don't have any direct experience like that, or an NDE, to refer to, and yet I know there is something to the idea of "making friends with your death." Tibetan lamas have a lot to say about this. One of my ways of getting more comfortable with death is to find kindred spirits from other times, that thing I learned about a few years ago (and haven't been the same since). :)

Offline usmaak

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Quote from: KylePierce
Well, that brings up another question; can we say that high-risk professions or dangerous sports bring with them the necessity to accept that you might die in the course of that risky behavior? And is it possible to stay with that acceptance over the course of a life? Does this prepare you for death before it kills you?
I've wondered about this.  I am a low risk individual.  I don't play loose with my life.  I don't take chances.  So yes, I've wondered about this.  Someone participating in high risk behavior has to be aware at some level that they could die as a result of what they're doing.  But I think their realization must be on a level of awareness that isn't constantly front and center.  After all, most people seem to have strong survival instincts and I have to imagine that if "OMG I'M GOING TO DIE!!" is going through their heads as they perform some risky activity, it's going to get in the way of doing it well.  If I was scaling the side of a cliff and the strongest thought going through my head was how close to death I was, I'd probably just fall off.

Offline Deb

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Quote from: LarryH
That reminds me of the Who's line in My Generation: "Hope I die before I get old!"

Good one, I forgot about that song. Thank heavens Roger Daltry didn't really mean it, he's still with us at 77.

Quote from: KylePierce
Well, that brings up another question; can we say that high-risk professions or dangerous sports bring with them the necessity to accept that you might die in the course of that risky behavior?

I'm sure one would have to, maybe that's part of the attraction. The thrill of danger.

Quote from: KylePierce
Well, that brings up another question; can we say that high-risk professions or dangerous sports bring with them the necessity to accept that you might die in the course of that risky behavior? And is it possible to stay with that acceptance over the course of a life? Does this prepare you for death before it kills you?

Good questions. I'm no dare devil, so this will seem weird, but for some reason I feel like at the moment of certain death, I will accept it as inevitable and go with the flow, regardless of how I feel now. It's a commitment, and I think once we accept it's going to happen the focus switches. I think two things in my life made me feel that way. One was getting thrown off a horse in rocky woods. Once I realized I would not be able to avoid it, I switched gears from trying to avoid getting tossed to hoping for a safe landing. It was not soft and did knock me out for a few seconds, but accepting the inevitable was a weird feeling. Another was a dream I had, where I was in a plane that was going to crash. I realized my only choice was to ride it out and my fear turned to curiosity. I died in my dream, but I'm still here.

Quote from: usmaak
If I was scaling the side of a cliff and the strongest thought going through my head was how close to death I was, I'd probably just fall off.

Me too. I know that if I'm crossing a stream (log or slippery rocks) and keep telling myself "don't fall, don't fall," I usually lose my footing... or come close. It's like what they tell you when you're raising a child, do NOT say "don't step in the puddle" because their brain only processes "step in the puddle". Better just say, "walk around the puddle." So sometimes I talk to myself like a child.  ;D

« Last Edit: May 31, 2021, 07:54:59 PM by Deb »
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