so the story of mitchell heisman and his 2000-page philosophical suicide note (he shot himself on harvard yard in front of...a tour group?) is just unbelievable. got me rethinking my ideas about the meaning of life. unfortunately i'm giving a talk on the subject next month!
the boston globe report goes above and beyond; maybe the reporter was a philosophy major or something.
With chapter titles such as “Philosophy, Cosmology, Singularity, New Jersey’’ and “How to Breed a God,’’ and citing more than a hundred authors from futurist Ray Kurzweil to the biologist E.O. Wilson, Heisman explains how his views took shape.
“The death of my father marked the beginning, or perhaps the acceleration, of a kind of moral collapse, because the total materialization of the world from matter to humans to literal subjective experience went hand in hand with a nihilistic inability to believe in the worth of any goal,’’ he wrote.
He saw his emotions as nothing more than a product of biology, as soulless as the workings of a machine, making them in essence an illusion.
“If life is truly meaningless and there is no rational basis for choosing among fundamental alternatives, then all choices are equal and there is no fundamental ground for choosing life over death,’’ he concluded.
the closest parallel might be the unabomber's manifesto. i'm not necessarily pledging to read heisman's thing, believe me. thanks stephen.