Unnecessary acts

Perhaps 90 percent of human activity is unnecessary, and essentially counter-productive. I have chosen this figure, as I choose most figures, for rhetorical effect; in reality it is probably much higher. A productive, well-organized person is he (sometimes she) who knows what to give up; perhaps, at first, only temporarily. For the unnecessary labours get in the way of things necessary and more worthy of our attention.

It begins every morning, or more realistically, the night before. The mornings are when most people are most awake, but the evenings are useful for organizing. Proper organization consists mostly of asking questions that cannot immediately be answered, which is why one does it in the evening, before one goes to sleep. If one is patient, the answers will all come in the course of the night.

Unfortunately, some people do not get enough sleep, which is why they are constitutionally frazzled.

The religious types, for instance priests, tell us that morning should be a time of prayer; and the Catholic ones suggest Mass attendance. I would not dispute this, only attempt to clear up a misunderstanding. One’s work must be an extension of one’s prayer. They are, in principle, the same thing, unless one’s work has been corrupted.

The current writer is a writer, so to say; his work generally consists of writing. He doesn’t always write, even in the mornings, when technically he can’t; but his not writing is also like writing.

He would be, perhaps, more outwardly productive, except that his cerebellum is bad. This he discerns when he tries to stand or walk, or recall some basic vocabulary. The affliction began with a stroke. But it confers advantages which even his doctors cannot understand.

For one of the reasons we are, generally, so unproductive, is not that we waste our time, on what we might call ruinous trivialities (such as “media” and “entertainment”). It is because we attribute the centre of our action to our brains. We think we might not be smart enough to achieve anything. And this is in a strange sense quite reasonable, because we are seeking our wisdom from the wrong place: from a lump of meat.

The soul is instead at the heart of intellect and moral action; providing the trigger for all intelligent human life. It comes linked to God (“the Trinity”). But when that link is broken, it just spins about, pointlessly.