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August 12, 2004
About three strange pieces of overheard conversation in three very different locations coming from very different directions and probably meaning something very similar? This one I had heard before. And it was in many contexts. It must have been a few weeks ago, at an Indian restaurant. A man with a whispering voice was seducing a woman by detaching her spirit from her body. He explained to her how much he cared for her spirit and how unimportant her bodily attributes were. He seemed especially concerned with her breasts. She apparently was using them in some unspeakable way. He explained to her how little he cared for them. Or their size. Or... I could not see either one of them. They were behind me I mean the man or the woman. I could hear him a bit better than her, as he was facing me. She tried to somehow make a case for her breasts. He then switched the topic to food and how it is our bodies. It was very interesting to see how he was managing to explain the woman away. She was right there in front of him (and behind me), breasts and brains included. He had the courage (as I do not want to use that other term), to remove parts of her slowly, to put them on the table and then to explain that each one of them did not really exist, making it easy for him to later somehow devour her, or the idea of her, I guess. He was spinning a web made out of clever little escape ladders. It was incredibly unpleasant to witness. Yes, evil requires the sanction of the victim. But here was this man turning a woman into pieces that were obviously lacking the ability to protect themselves. I wanted to just get up and spill some curry on that sneaky little guy. One of the things he said was the piece of knowledge which actually is as profound as simple. He stated that we are, in fact, what we eat. Yes, this is not a new thing to say by any means... he was just very serious and direct about it. It is an American thing to see food as a fuel for that machine we call body. What he explained to her though was that this machine that we fuel with food is actually also made out of the food digested by the very machine. It does make sense somehow. Where else is that matter supposed to come from. It is not like we can lean against a wall and then make parts of it our body. The food we eat is indeed our future body. The water we drink will, at least partially, be turned not only into a carrier of nutrient. Parts of it will actually become us. We are, as systems, much more open than we dare to realize. Somebody told me a few years ago that our body structure and the body structure of pigs is so similar, that certain pieces of information contained in the pork meat digested are reused in similar places as where they used to be on the animal. Interesting to know when eating that prosciutto. (Though I really have no idea how much truth could be in this one... though I know that we are indeed similar enough to pigs that they are called horizontal humans by some and are definitely "good enough" for some military medical exercises.) Okay... so it does make sense that we are made of all those pieces of nutrient that we push into our bodies. And it might be a good thing to remember that led can not be turned into gold. Just in general. Hmm... It was interesting to sit at a Japanese restaurant today ("Sir, you make the order more japanese than a Japanese person.") and to listen to the conversation next to me. It seemed as if two men were having a life altering talk. One of the men was older, and yet he looked as if he just stepped out of a Morgan Stanley commercial. The other man was younger, maybe less experienced, at least in life. Here it was all business. They spoke about money, (lots of it,) and about the stock market and about certain meta levels of thinking and how some people think in terms if short term thought and how some are portfolio building investors. I really do not really know what they were talking about exactly... It was fun to discover that they had a pad in front of them that actually was from Morgan Stanley. (It was also funny because of This little piece of info. We were basically in the Lehman Brothers Building which used to be Morgan Stanley and ... oh well... ) I first thought that the younger guy was the adviser, but in the course of the conversation the flow of information somehow switched. And things really became good when the older man said something that reminded me of the conversation mentioned above, and yet on a somehow different level of course. He said something like: As one goes through life, one has more and more of these important conversations. With each conversation a part of information is passed onto one. So as one goes and talks to the right people, ones mind becomes filled with this collected wisdom, or pieces of it at least. If one chooses to talk to the wrong people, ones mind becomes filled with the wrong kind information leading to further bad conversations induced by the wrong decisions and conclusions. Each conversation is important. Hmm... food for thought? Or as Nietzsche put a rather scary angle on it... "Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you." So would this also work in a positive way? When we manage to find access to the best people and to feed ourselves with the finest of thoughts and ideas... there is a better chance to somehow become helpful to others?... In the long run, as all of us can become carriers of some actually useful wisdom. I think the greater thought here might also have been that no matter what happens, it is a state of transition. Learning should never ever stop. On the way back to the office, I stepped into the St. Malachy's Church on 49th street as it appeared to be the only place where I could just sit down and think slower about the strange connections I was just noticing... no drinks needed, no service provided... just calm. I grabbed one of the worn out red books in the corner, stacked on a bench. I opened it somewhere in the back and the page seriously opened on this: I Corinthians 13:1-13 (I just googled it now and there it was.)... and it was a bit spooky... But in a good way... I have no idea what this all means... if it actually does mean anything. Because somehow "meaning" feels like a pretty silly thought to have right now. After all this...