Taking one lemon out from the fridge, one beaker from the cupboard and one slicer from the drawer of the buffet, I started to cut the lemon into moiety. The bisection was so well done that it almost looked like symmetry, it would certainly be a dislikable job to pinch either.
I laid the slicer on the top of the beaker horizontally, reluctantly squeezed it with both of my hands. It was the juice I needed to favour the drink, excuse me, I had no other way. While I thought of how many lemons I had squeezed in my life, I pressed harder and harder.
It was out of the blue, unexpectedly the bisecting lemon slipped out from my hand and, defiantly and deliberately it flapped up to air, I tried to stretch out my left hand to grasp but failed. When it fell springing on the slicer, whether intentionally or not was still a mystery, and so caused it to bounce, on the spur of the moment, unpredictably or unluckily it chopped the inner part of my left forearm, of course fate itself would never sustain a chance to spare, as I felt the blade drew me a finer edge. Phew!
The lip was as long as a mediocre mouth slightly split into two fleshy folds. It was bleeding. I bent my left arm in order to block the vein, at the mean time, I thought, I must find something to cover it.
I really could not stop myself to loathe such incident would happen on me while all I wanted was only but a drink to fulfill my body, or more precisely, my physicality. And I also could not hold back my voice to murmur: I must be out of my mind! 😦
Sitting myself down, I began to ponder what should I do next.
By seeing this ontologically existed wound, I could not pretend that I had no body as Descartes taught us in his Discourse on Method. And because I could not deny I had an existed body, I could not doubt the truth of the wound, it followed very evidently that both existed.
But how half a lemon could slip out from my hand? It seemed my body and my mind were so seemingly doing this careful action of squeezing with compatibility. I would certainly doubt if Nicolas De Malebranche (hereinafter referred as NDM), an occasionalist, asserted that it was caused by God, because it would only follow that God is omnipresence but not omnipotence. I might have a chance to free from an ordeal if the Almighty would change the course of the bouncing lemon, or at least wheeled it to abide the law of gravity, that meant making it falling directly onto the ground. Even if NDM argued that God would use this environmental happening to create appropriate experience to a humble me, but nonetheless God should remember that I’d been summoned through similar experiences for many times before in my life, unless God prepared to favour me with a bigger lesson this time in a harder way. If this was the case, would I bleed or affect in whatever form and then die?
As D.M. Armstrong (hereinafter referred as DMA) mentioned that body is constituted of a substance called matter, so when this matter of mine was facing mortality, could I hold back the distress which haunted on my mind? Although DMA further pointed out that body and mind are composed by two ontologically distinct substances, but for most of the substance dualists, based on interactionism, posit mind and body are capable of causally affecting each other, thus the distress on my mind seemed somehow like a parallelist who asserted that physical events appeared to cause mental events and vice versa.
If a decision to fulfill a desire for a cup of cold drink was considered as a mental event, then a wound on my forearm should not be denied as a physical event, especially when I felt pain! But, is pain a brain state? In one paper named The Nature of Mental States written by Hilary Putnam, he argued that pain is not a brain state, in the sense of a physical-chemical state of the brain (or even the whole nervous system), but another kind of state entirely.
I propose the hypothesis that pain, or the state of being in pain, is a functional of a whole organism.
Before my cognitive capability applied in understanding dualism seemed turning into cul de sac, the path of Locke and Hume skepticism might be able to provide a possible answer by the development of nowadays scientific method.
The pain in a physical is temporal, but in mind would surely be forever, (I truly hope Sisyphus would not disagree with this), especially when one is longing for love as Mr. Russell has once said. If love is what he is longing for, I would doubt that if he could deny as to what a dualist believes.
Before this philosophical riddles remain unsolved and due to my speculations to this matter are in fact quite narrow, may I humbly propose the following poem written by Keats as the epilogue to finish such dilemmatic contemplation temporarily until further discussion.
“Of the wide world I stand alone and think
Till love and fame to nothingness do sink¨