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We may have mistaken beliefs about our capacities, obligations, or circumstances, or we may find that some of our individual possibilities are emotionally unacceptable, or incompatible with our moral, aesthetic, political, or religious views. The possibilities we believe we have, therefore, are typically narrower than our individual possibilities, and what makes them so are our beliefs and emotions, which may or may not be reasonable. I will call the individual possibilities we regard as possibilities for ourselves our recognized possibilities.

What requires explanation is the absence of some emotional reaction to how our life is going. Great adversity, traumatic experiences, mental illness, brutalization, living close to the subsistence level, and other similar debilitating conditions make it understandable why we might focus our attention elsewhere. But if our life is not seriously beset, we will have emotions about how it is going. Koestler was full of emotions of indignation, hatred, and relief when he managed to live in such as way as to achieve some control over them.

What an abyss of uncertainty, whenever the mind feels overtaken by itself; when it, the seeker, is at the same time the dark region through which it must go seeking and where all its equipment will avail nothing. Seek? More than that: create. ¹⁴ The attitude to which those famous petite madeleines led is inwardness that creates, not merely beholds, the object toward which it is directed. The third description is by an author who succeeded in writing a spoof of a best-seller that became a best-seller and in combining a tongue-in-cheek Zen of assassination with the sensitive depiction of an ideal of life.

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Chris Crawford and Computer Game Aesthetics by david myers


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