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Friday, January 09, 2009

Happiness is in the Absence

"What is it that you fantasize about?

World Peace?
International Fame?
Winning a Pulitzer Prize, Nobel Peace Prize?
An MTV Music Award?
Meeting some genius hunk ostensibly bad but secretly simmering with noble passion and willing to sleep on the wet spot?

Lacan's point> Fantasies Have to be unrealistic, because the second that you get what you seek, you don't-- you can't want it anymore.

In order to continue to exist...desire must have its objects perpetually absent.

It's not the "it" that you want.
It's the fantasy of "it".

So, desire supports crazy fantasies.

This is what Pascal means when he says that we are only truly happy...when Daydreaming about future happiness.

Or why we say...

the hunt is sweeter than the kill.

Or be careful what you wish for,
not because you'll get it...
but because you're doomed not to want it once you do.

So the lesson of Lacan is, living by your wants will never make you happy.

What it means to be fully human is to strive to live by ideas and ideals...
and not to measure your life by what you've attained in terms of your desires...

but those small moments of integrity, compassion,
rationality, even self-sacrifice.

Because in the end, the only way that we can measure the significance of our own lives...

is by valuing the lives of others."

-from "The Life of David Gale"

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