[Robert's eulogy at his brother, Ebon C. Ingersoll's grave. Even the great orator Robert Ingersoll was choked up with tears at the memory of his beloved brother]The record of a generous life runs like a vine around the memory of our dead and every sweet, unselfish act is now a perfumed flower.Dear Friends: I am going to do that which the dead oft promised he would do for me.The loved and loving brother, husband, father, friend, died where manhood's morning almost touches noon and while the shadows still were falling toward the west.He had not passed on life's highway the stone that marks the highest point; but, being weary for a moment, he lay down by the wayside and, using his burden for a pillow, fell into that dreamless sleep that kisses down his eyelids still. While yet in love with life and raptured with the world, he passed to silence and pathetic dust.Yet, after all, it may be best, just in the happiest, sunniest hour of all the voyage, while eager winds are kissing every sail, to dash against the unseen rock and in an instant hear the billows roar above a sunken ship. For whether in mid sea or 'mong the breakers of the farther shore, a wreck at last must mark the end of each and all. And every life, no matter if its every hour is rich with love and every moment jeweled with a joy, will, at its close, become a tragedy as sad and deep and dark as can be woven of the warp and woof of mystery and death.This brave and tender man in every storm of life was oak and rock; but in the sunshine he was vine and flower. He was the friend of all heroic souls. He climbed the heights and left all superstitions far below, while on his forehead fell the golden dawning, of the grander day.He loved the beautiful and was with color, form and music touched to tears. He sided with the weak, the poor and wronged and lovingly gave alms. With loyal heart and with the purest hands he faithfully discharged all public trusts.He was a worshipper of liberty, a friend of the oppressed. A thousand times I have heard him quote these words: 'For Justice all place a temple and all season, summer!' He believed that happiness was the only good, reason the only torch, justice the only worship, humanity the only religion and love the only priest. He added to the sum of human joy; and were every one to whom he did some loving service to bring a blossom to his grave, he would sleep to-night beneath a wilderness of flowers.Life is a narrow vale between the cold and barren peaks of two eternities. We strive in vain to look beyond the heights. We cry aloud and the only answer is the echo of our wailing cry. From the voiceless lips of the unreplying dead there comes no word; but in the night of death hope sees a star and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing.He who sleeps here, when dying, mistaking the approach of death for the return of health, whispered with his latest breath, 'I am better now.' Let us believe, in spite of doubts and dogmas, of fears and tears, that these dear words are true of all the countless dead.And now, to you, who have been chosen, from among the many men he loved, to do the last sad office for the dead, we give his sacred dust.Speech cannot contain our love. There was, there is, no gentler, stronger, manlier man.
Robert G. Ingersoll
God could no longer see the faces of the men, only red and orange hazes. He heard taunting voices in his mind spurring him on, calling him a pussy and old, hairy hands reaching out to grab him. His gripped tightened on the punk’s neck and he cocked his right arm back ready to do some serious damage.Let him go.God shook his head at the familiar deep voice.I said, let him go now!He felt two strong hands land on his shoulders and heat seeped its way into him from behind.Put him down, God. Right now before you kill him. Listen to my voice. Day was up on his tiptoes speaking into his ear. His breath was hot on his neck and it gave him a tingling in his spine. Cashel, stop, Day whispered.God put his right arm down and released the man from his grip. He didn’t wait to see the man’s body drop. He spun around and looked into his friend’s eyes and was relieved when he didn’t see judgment, sorrow, or pity…all he saw was relief and then concern. Day grabbed him and held on to him tightly. His embrace was strong and confident…exactly what God needed to feel right then.Come on, we gotta get out of here. Day gripped the back of his arm and moved them quickly out of the alley and into a waiting taxi.Wait…my truck.It’s taken care of. Day kept him from getting out of the vehicle.What do you mean?I mean you owe me two hundred dollars because that’s what I just paid the bartender to follow us back to my place in your truck.God spun around and saw his huge truck’s headlights behind them.You have a stranger driving my truck…my fucking guns are in there, Leo.You should’ve thought about that earlier, Cash, Day growled right back.If you’re going to lecture me, Leo…fucking save it. God slid down farther and let his aching head rest on the back of the seat as the cab accelerated onto the highway.You know me better than that, Cash. I’m not going to lecture you. I’m going to kick your ass, Day said matter-of-factly and turned to look out the window. Neither one said anything else the rest of the ride.
A. E. Via
The cases described in this section (The Fear of Being) may seem extreme, but I have become convinced that they are not as uncommon as one would think. Beneath the seemingly rational exterior of our lives is a fear of insanity. We dare not question the values by which we live or rebel against the roles we play for fear of putting our sanity into doubt. We are like the inmates of a mental institution who must accept its inhumanity and insensitivity as caring and knowledgeableness if they hope to be regarded as sane enough to leave. The question who is sane and who is crazy was the theme of the novel One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest. The question, what is sanity? was clearly asked in the play Equus.The idea that much of what we do is insane and that if we want to be sane, we must let ourselves go crazy has been strongly advanced by R.D. Laing. In the preface to the Pelican edition of his book The Divided Self, Laing writes: In the context of our present pervasive madness that we call normality, sanity, freedom, all of our frames of reference are ambiguous and equivocal. And in the same preface: Thus I would wish to emphasize that our 'normal' 'adjusted' state is too often the abdication of ecstasy, the betrayal of our true potentialities; that many of us are only too successful in acquiring a false self to adapt to false realities.Wilhelm Reich had a somewhat similar view of present-day human behavior. Thus Reich says, Homo normalis blocks off entirely the perception of basic orgonotic functioning by means of rigid armoring; in the schizophrenic, on the other hand, the armoring practically breaks down and thus the biosystem is flooded with deep experiences from the biophysical core with which it cannot cope. The deep experiences to which Reich refers are the pleasurable streaming sensations associated with intense excitation that is mainly sexual in nature. The schizophrenic cannot cope with these sensations because his body is too contracted to tolerate the charge. Unable to block the excitation or reduce it as a neurotic can and unable to stand the charge, the schizophrenic is literally driven crazy.But the neurotic does not escape so easily either. He avoids insanity by blocking the excitation, that is, by reducing it to a point where there is no danger of explosion, or bursting. In effect the neurotic undergoes a psychological castration. However, the potential for explosive release is still present in his body, although it is rigidly guarded as if it were a bomb. The neurotic is on guard against himself, terrified to let go of his defenses and allow his feelings free expression. Having become, as Reich calls him, homo normalis, having bartered his freedom and ecstasy for the security of being well adjusted, he sees the alternative as crazy. And in a sense he is right. Without going crazy, without becoming mad, so mad that he could kill, it is impossible to give up the defenses that protect him in the same way that a mental institution protects its inmates from self-destruction and the destruction of others.
Alexander Lowen