“At some point you gotta consider the eternal. There’s heaven and then there’s hell, and if you don’t believe in heaven, then what are you gonna believe? More importantly, where are you gonna go? There’s hell. Nothingness. You need a standard.”

“hm…” I paused, “I’m not sure that those thoughts cross my mind anymore. I know at one time they did, but not anymore. I mean, I don’t contemplate heaven, or hell. It’s as if someone asked if I was going to Hereyesum. What the heck it that? I have no idea what this place is. Should I consider it, or be afraid of it? Even if someone introduced me to the idea and predicated all the wonderful or horrible things it contained, why would I believe it? On what immediate evidence? It’s a purely stipulated construct. The idea would serve me no utility.”

“I don’t believe that you don’t believe in anything, or no eternal afterlife.” She paused, looking intensely in my eyes. I was stolidly reserved.

“No, I actually don’t. I mean, I believe in things because they are useful to believe in, not because they contain any truth, or I believe them to be anything more than useful. I believe beliefs placate our anxieties, and these anxieties can be real or perceived. That’s about it.”

“So when you die, you believe that’s it. Like, you’re caput, lights out?”

“Yea. That’s right”

She continued staring, eyes fixated, as if she was staring within herself, probing herself with these questions.

A sudden emptiness drifted and settled onto the conversation, a hollowness, an over exposure that revealed a hint of vulnerability. I could see that she wanted to steer the conversation elsewhere. It made her uncomfortable. I was fine with moving our thoughts along to other things; I don’t want to drag anyone into a void they’re not comfortable with.

I drank a bottle of wine and ate cheese all night. I conversed, about life, death, growing up, choices, superficial and meaningful things: the whole spectrum of conventional values.

I don’t want to be an animal: but wildness is freedom. Or is it? All is a delusive illusion.

Is it alright to be comfortable? Is anxiety a disease? Can you ever shake it? Would you ever want to shake it? I am tired. I have much to say. night.

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