2016-07-09 - 2:23 p.m.
I live in South Portland Maine, and today it is 57-degrees Fahrenheit. I have the box fan in the window blowing in the cold air. I'm wearing sweat pants, a sweatshirt, and winter socks. It's nice and chilly. It's foggy out and it might rain later. I love this weather.
I was thinking about why I love the cold and dislike hot weather. Then, as they usually do, my thoughts transformed into esoteric connections with the rest of who I am, and I realized that it is because I hate change. Cold represents slow change. Literally. It is not the stoppage of time, but slower movement of time. You still feel things, but you have more time to think about them and the rest of time and the world haven't skipped ten paces while you were digesting some one thing.
The heat reflects fast pace, the fast passage of time, the race toward the end of one's life, and there is no time to savor the present. Heat reminds me of my mortality, and the fact that I won't be here forever. That those whom I love, who are older than me, will be gone someday and I can't share more time with them. I don't want immortality. I want the present to last longer. The chance to fully immerse in the senses presented to me now and the next moment, without the guilt of "wasting" time one it, because it is not a waste, it is what life was meant to be. My senses are my connection to the rest of the world, and I love having them. I love taking advantage of having them. It is my participation in life. The thoughts that come from sensations, are a gift. I just wish I could slow them down and really enjoy them, every single one of them, and to partake in them all.
The cold is slowness and the slowing down of change, the slowing down of the approach of death of me and my loved ones. It is crisp and clear and translucent, but it preserves. The cold helps people have time to reflect. When things are cold, everyone is cold together, and it is a shared difficulty, and it gives people time to commiserate and reflect their own cold upon that felt by others. It brings compassion.
Heat is fast-paced, hurried, and causes thermal distortions in our views, and it decays things, and dries things up. When things are hot, it brings with it fever and anger, and a boiling of the blood.
I understand that both are necessary for life. Heat is a source of life, and is required for the passage of time, and without it life could not exist. Time would stop. But I prefer more cold than heat. It is like preferring early spring or late autumn, when things are slower but not completely frozen. When things are not hot and sticky and humid. When flowers bloom in spring and when the last of the colorful leaves decorate the landscape in autumn. The mixture of life and death at a point where we are reminded that life comes, and that death comes, but that not everything is going to be just life (summer) or just death (winter).
There is a beauty in the melancholy of the cold. There is a color, a taste, a smell that comes with it. It is a gentle brush, a brief tactile sensation of mortality that tells us life is sacred and to be cherished. That what we have is ephemeral. The cold prolongs it, even if that feeling is just in my thoughts. It helps remind me that I only ever have myself in this life. No one else gets to live this life but me. I may be surrounded by friends, family, enemies, co-workers, whatever, but I only ever have me. I have to be okay with that. The cold seeps through my skin and reinforces that truth.
It is almost metaphorical that global warming of the planet is concomitant with the increased anger and terrorism among us humans. The rise in temperature is causing a rise in temperamentality. We all need to cool it.
We haven't evolved beyond the basest animal instincts that helped us develop the civilization we have now. Yes, we have a big brain, but the clash between the newer, reflective and responsible parts with the reptilian, reflex parts will not allow us to survive as a species. Despite our science and our knowledge, we still maintain that our one species is a mixture of "us" and "others". We are still superstitious. We still need an enemy to be able to define ourselves, and to vanquish the enemy to feel better. To establish dominance of our tribe against a different tribe, as though we were apes. The only way we have been able to create order is to channel this confrontational mentality into capitalism, which creates an artificial equity with the use of money. We still have competition, and we can still prove our dominance, but just with the use of an artificial equalizer based on the value of our work and the worth of our work for betterment of society.
If we had a unified, globally shared vision/goal or bettering the planet, preserving our species, and helping the universe define its existence and its self-awareness through our collective consciousness, and to explore our galactic neighborhood, then we would not need capitalism. We would inherently understand the need for self-mediated population control. We would change our system of government, and wouldn't have an "elite" or "politicians" that would be the benefactors of the hard work of the rest of us. They would do their job for the benefit of everyone, and our species as a whole, and for the preservation of the planet and of life.
I think back in the day when we created religion to control ourselves, we still badly needed to get our animal brains under control and a fear of god created that. But that animal instinct continued to corrupt, and the religion became a means of becoming elite, and of controlling others. Part of what we are going through nowadays is the rendering of that power away from those old establishments and allowing the light of knowledge and sensibility and equality to take its place. It generates friction and heat, and hence the loss of lives to pay that cost. As it is in evolution, lives are lost for things to evolve to adapt. I'm worried that this evolution may either kill us all, or change us to a new version of the old, where we don't overcome our reptilian brains and allow for logic and sensibility to guide our minds, and to unite us. That is why I like the cold. It slows things down. Allows us to reflect and commiserate and take the right steps. It removes the distortion of time caused by heated and fervent forward momentum. Yes, progress is good, but when the impetus is competition and status, it comes at a cost of that good evolution, and it feeds the monster of status and inequality that kills humankind. We will never evolve beyond the animal within us this way, and we'll end up destroying ourselves and the rest of our eukaryotic companions that share this planet with us.