[Reminder: Up through February, all my posts were written at the beginning of January in order to compensate for my time away in Ecuador.]
I’ll be nearing the end of another globe trot when this post appears. Yet for all my travels, how far have I actually gone? Where have I been? Where am I going? Who is the “I” of my wanderings?
These are the questions of an existential neophyte. So be it. Is that a sign of wisdom or ignorance, or most likely, nothing at all? Revisiting old questions under new circumstances isn’t amateurish, it’s a testament to the continued relevance of the questions. Or maybe it’s a sign that there’s no point in asking the questions at all. Like Rilke, go live them. No need to ruminate.
Wherever I go, there I am. I can’t escape myself. So why do I go anywhere? If it’s a matter of self-discovery, all I have to do is stop and introspect. *Pause* That was easy.
So that’s it? This is me? Do I travel because I yearn for something more? Did David Foster Wallace write so voluminously because that was his main form of travel, his desperate attempt to transcend cliches and the obnoxiously simple elegance of being? At the end of his journey, he must have seen that there was nowhere to go, so why move at all? What’s the good of this gift of consciousness if everything points us to an infinite jest?
Fine. Then I’ll laugh. I’ll know better. And then I’ll move again. Restless. Belief rebelling against knowledge, hating so-called wisdom. I refuse to understand; I wish to understand. My wish is my refusal. I understand nothing, I grasp at everything. And so it goes…I keep moving. I eat it all.
Jorge Luis Borges concludes “Borges and I,” with a beautiful remark: “I do not know which one of us has written this page.” Knowing what we do now (though artists intuited and anticipated it long before Borges) about our multitudinous being, it might be fairer to say: “I do not know who among us has written this page.”