What if in the distant future, one’s declaration of love will not only render one dead in the sense of a slow process emanating from one’s desire and its extreme consequences but literally will flagrantly kill the lover in a day’s time?
The world of the future will be in its final stage. Thermal disruptions in the earth’s atmosphere will mix up with the material constitution of the body and will then create an anomaly within the organization of the cells, membranes, and adjoining nerves misplacing the track of neural patterns and other physiological systems. Global warming’s effect, a force which will rise up the temperature along with environmental decays in vegetation, ice berg meltdowns, droughts, and desertification, shall beckon the destructive kismet of man and nature: namely, that the subject shall surrender its title of being lord and master of creation the moment it realizes its incapacity (abuse) to do so. The meeting point of environmental degeneration in the rise of geothermal disproportions operates with man as the displacement himself produced by his own doing or undoing in a kith and kin link; they are after all bound together in a single tie of responsible cohabitation.
A last chance nonetheless beams a silver lining in the stark position of this scenery. In the middle of the shaky times that man will be, this instability tames in the face of his agency. Ecology will still assume its final ethical and moral domain. That is to say, that man’s one chance of exercising such agency in a single task is paradoxically one that of non-action: he shall halt any bio-thermal operations that will further disturb his anatomical balance. Humans who are less likely to adapt in an intense rising of temperature are the first victims of heat strokes and the like. Any sort of psychological, emotional, and even intellectual acknowledgment will possibly rework heat turbulences in one’s body and merge its disruption to that of the external drying force of global catastrophe waiting for humanity’s patience to dry out as well. In short, astir temperaments are bad indications for survival.
This is not a case similar to the day the earth stood still but quite the opposite: in the face of a larger threat than he is, man can only stand still. The formula vir sive naturae establishes the basic calculation when the simulacrum of man’s restlessness will configure to that of the destructive force of nature; as if heat missiles will definitely trace any human movement who cannot stand the idea of the world’s end. Being as it were dependent on the surge and upsurge of human emotions – the most likely threat one can envisage – the specific non-action to dispose oneself in thought, action, and feeling altogether will have to be that of melancholia: everyone knows that the world is at an end so its realism of acceptance will have to be a calm gesture of tranquility secretly depressed of what is happening.
The (non-)act of melancholia then is an optimistic guarantee of living. In another mindset of thought other than this act, a flash of euphoria in intellectual pursuits will only fasten the heat imbalance. The first deaths of this ecological mishap then will be the scientists and those who experiment the proper knowledge to reverse the effects of the end times. The great minds will simply melt their brains out and what humanity will be left with are the zombies that will be themselves who won’t have any guts or spark of intelligence left to acknowledge that the scenario is a problem to be solved but a life that exclusively revolves around the themes of survival and everyday decline. In an action outside melancholia on the other hand, one can obviously marvel at the fullness of the dictum ‘you only live once’ since the pleasure principle underlying it is already maximized by the reality principle at hand: carpe diem will serve as the literal gallant death for the actors whose passion lies in the only thing that makes them live – living itself in the vibrancy of its activities and willing. These men able to muster enough courage to die with passion are sufficient to be called heroes of the will – carved in the hedonism that begets their fortitude and martyred by the belief of ‘the now’, vita activa, and agency.
The humanity that will both rely on another train of thought or action or feeling apart from the disposition proposed as the only responsibility left in melancholia will only prove the essential vanity lying in the centerpiece of the new world.
In this world, it can already be surmised that natural law imposes a much minor form of protocol: think of nothing, act nothing, and feel nothing – this is the dystopia that awaits.
This ‘feeling of nothing’ however is not enough since the presence of heatwaves in one’s physical structure will always be there to signal an upcoming death: feeling, no matter how less its heat indication is, determines the span of life left to live. In other words, the less heat, the more chance of survival and being neutral or the feeling of nothing still has a shorter span of living compared to that of melancholia, which has almost a cold reaction to reality and is non-responsive to its stimulus.
To feel nothing is one thing; to embrace nothing and live a life according to the facets of human depression is another way of hibernating oneself for a considerable length of temporal reality. The cities although burning in scorching heat shall house a cold apathetic ethereal humanity devoid of any drive to advance.
For again, the threat that poses a serious problem for the non-realists, those who cannot easily accept the present reality, lies in the heat map of emotions as the riddle for survival. In such body map, heat bases are focused depending on the emotion a human has. The feelings of anger, surprise, shame, pride, envy, anxiety, contempt and disgust concentrate much energy or heat on the upper part of the body – cutting precisely the life of anyone who feels such emotions shorter. Eliminating these would have to mean seeing a fellow human as equally in need of more time to live. Only in this perspective can humanity reteach its original humility since Babel; for there will no longer be a valid reason for one to hate and compare oneself to another.
One feeling however tops the rest in such a way that it reactivates the body in its entirety. Humanity has therefore first to censor above all this emotion – that is, happiness, to castrate it off entirely in one’s system. Therein lies the danger in this riddle: there are two concentrations that respond largely of the whole body and that must be avoided if one ought to survive and one of them is instantly fatal. In this perfectly psychoanalytical sense, eudaimonia is lethal. The other emotional concentration is a closer segment of happiness but only conditions heat of about two-thirds in the body. This feeling, which then will not be instantly deadly but is nonetheless positive of an end, is no other than love.
Love’s fate in the heat map is a sure death, but it still has room for a few hours – a day at most before the worldly heat dynamics rekindle the fatalism engendered in the living beings entitled to love or make love. As it appears, no pregnancies will be possible and any kind of attraction will have to be cut off. To institutionalize this, humans will have to enlist proper divisions to the things that merit their desire. Any man will have to embrace the enduring irony that the goal or dream is not to realize the goal or dream anymore: observance of proper distance for the balance of stimulus response is the name of the game. The praxis that will most likely be of necessity points to the Buddhist way of eliminating desire since what is at stake is no longer suffering but life itself. Platonic love will not even work, since brain functioning linked to the thought of the lover even in its ideal form is another case of emotional movement.
One by one, man will die under this maddening stillness. At the very least, on the question of sustenance, the first batch of humanity – the scientists who rattle primarily on the basic question of survival – will have to come up at least with a pill that will sustain the melancholic disposition: heat suppressants will keep man alive while at the same time give them enough zombie time to consume cold organic liquid food to be stored at best interest by some of the second batch – the actors or passionate heroes of the will – who must swiftly reserve food and beverage into a consumable survival nourishment. When that is all done – when the geniuses and brave souls will have already succeeded in living the life they think they are destined to live – the remaining time is now left for the last batch. Take a suppressant pill in the morning, remain depressed throughout the day, restrict primal urges, and sleep to wake up another fruitless day – this melancholic setup will be the monotonous way of life the final batch of brainless, emotionless, and motionless humans live.
And so everything will again fall back to the question: in this loveless dystopia, what will man do to strategize at the very least one day to express the love that he wants to convey?
One day as the future – how can this be the only realm where lovers can fully await the coming of cosmic conclusion? As bleak as this sounds, perhaps it is enough not as it was before, but as it will be. For if there is a future of a futureless present, it will have to be a well spent vacuum of temporal threads sewn together in a careful symmetry of the lover and the beloved: no longer then must they need a prolonged eternity because they must only weave eternity in the fabric of their fragile beings in a limited fragment of time. Love shall become the final chance to spark what is left of human brilliance and at the same time humanity’s last call to fortitude:
The lovers will have to do this strategically by professing (by letting their emotions give in) at the closing of the day to begin of its closing and end with it as well the day following. Before the lovers know it, it will only be a gallery of romantic clips set in the most ordinary stage of life. Walking along the beach of nevermore, it will be of simple pleasure as getting a free movie ticket but this time for seeing two final sunsets of the apocalypse to signal the beginning and end of love.
Together they shall capture the twilight and dusk moment in their transition, dance in the streams of the heated oceans, marvel at the lost stars shining before midnight, purify what remains of their regrets and hesitations, and sleep in a gentle abode of themselves.
In the morning, they will take their happy pills and eat breakfast together while listening to the lyric of Remembering Sunday where “two eggs don’t last like the feeling of what they need”. Without minding the hours, they will have the luxury of one meaningless conversation made meaningful by the passing of a liberty day. A few laughs, a few tears, a few promises they know won’t last that long, a few glitter of happiness momentarily consigning to oblivion the time running out, a few drunken sessions keeping them ironically sober in consciousness, in cute instinctive kisses, and in playful renditions of their youthful fun.
As love becomes a decent activity of an oncer and oneiric for the ignoble, the make-up of a day’s time is put to work. But when this love will force a final look at the clock, one last checking of a lifetime, they will stand face to face together as though the apocalypse will witness a marriage of two foolish mortals elated by the madness of their love. He will look at her as if he has found an angel lost in cold frozen state while not minding their surrounding of hellish flames. He will hold her cold angelic face, tenderly brush her silky black hair, and adjoin his forehead to hers. He will whisper one final serene speech of mumbling, nervous, and scared words as she perfectly understands in the purity of her teardrops. She will reassure him all the same and will rush to be caught in one final tight embrace. “This is the end; I love you” “I love you” they whisper in simultaneous unison – as the moment fades, as the ultimate sunset of a future begins to fade.