Søren Kierkegaard, the Danish brainbox, reckoned it was a good metaphor for addiction to materialism and sex: “It is comic that a mentally disordered man picks up any piece of granite and carries it around because he thinks it is money, and in the same way it is comic that Don Juan has 1,003 mistresses, for the number simply indicates that they have no value. Therefore, one should stay within one’s means in the use of the word ‘love.'”
This analysis is resonant: this book, to a point, is about my own disillusionment with the material offerings of fame and fortune, which include money and sexual opportunity. My mate Matt once said he heard me, from his place on the couch, skylarking and jesting with some female companions in my room and assumed I was in hedonistic glory.
He then reported that I left the room, deadpan and hollow-eyed, somberly walked past him, fetched some lubricant—either mental or anatomical—from the kitchen, and glumly trotted back to the bacchanalia. When the door closed, he said, the trumpeting of decadent splendor continued as before. Whilst I don’t recall that particular incident, I do recollect that what began as the pursuit of pleasure or at least an escape from pain became a joyless trudge through flesh, at the summit of each coital march no certainty other than that the process must begin again.
Russell Brand 2014
Cribb Comment: An essential element to persistent madness, anxiety, and perpetual suffering of any sort is “the cycle” or “a cycle“. This is more than evident in all of human behavior. Individual cycles may vary in their specifics, but many elements remain consistent throughout all cycles. A period of “reset” initiates a supposed new found bliss of intense joy, happiness, and peace. This period often occurs after resolving present strife or conflict of some sort and the associated delusional perception of achieving resolution (union) concerning “the issue.” Make up sex following some ramped up highly volatile fighting is a common succinct example of this. Sometimes, birthing a baby (a favorite of family and friends to push upon a couple suffering from unhealthy strife) or purchasing a new car/home/etc. or remaking your identity with a new job/change in physical appearance/change in life direction is the initiating factor allowing the cycle to reboot. Revolving sexual partners is also another technique that can produce the same pseudo-enlightenment. The obvious correlation of the rebooting of this cycle and its association with addiction to sex and materialism, as mentioned by Brand above, should be more than apparent. The value and role of “money” or “love/sex” in this cyclical curse is not one of respect or integrity or health or nurturing or stability or peace, but simply a catalyst or tool (and they are always replaced since they will ultimately be turned into the EXCUSE for the eventual meltdown that will occur at the end of this new cycle), serving to support the illusion of actual change and enlightened spiritual growth within the person.
The addictions and the excuses of every sort, both often hidden in great masked numbers, must be acknowledged and eliminated, before the cycle can truly be broken. Most people never actually achieve this feat and instead chose to jump from one cycle to the next, over and over, throughout their lifetime. I would argue that love cannot be understood or appreciated or shared by anyone caught in the cycle.