Dark humour or true mind of a child?

Use this forum to discuss the August 2021 Philosophy Book of the Month, Defining Moments of a Free Man from a Black Stream by Dr Frank L Douglas
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Sushan
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Dark humour or true mind of a child?

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This topic is about the August 2021 Philosophy Book of the Month, Defining Moments of a Free Man from a Black Stream by Dr Frank L Douglas

I asked myself, ‘Should I climb off the wall and onto these boulders to get to the deep water?’ I shuddered at the thought of losing my footing and banging my head on one of these large, slimy rocks. ‘What if I slipped and got caught between two boulders and died there without ever making it to the sea? Would I be attacked by the crows and experience a painful, slow death?’ I began to feel an increasing sense of panic and sought a different approach. ‘What if I waded into the water from a different part of the wall and walked towards the jetty?’ I asked myself.... ‘How long does it take to drown?’ I asked myself. I remembered hearing someone describe drowning as having a lot of water in one’s lungs and being strangled slowly. I thought of my lungs filling up with salty, fishy smelling water....And suddenly I became incredibly frightened as I pictured being suffocated from the inhalation of muddy, refuse filled water. I started walking away from the shore, climbed back onto the seawall and lowered myself onto the street. I concluded that there had to be a different solution to my dilemma and my desire not to return to my insufferable life and home.
(Location 400 of Kindle version)

Above quote shows how the author's mind worked when he thought to commit suicide following a harsh punishment of his mother for something that he didn't do. Luckily he saw other options to face the situation.

Upon reading this did you feel these thoughts as actual thoughts of a kid? Or did you feel like the author has attempted to provide some dark humour? As per the topic of this book, could this have been a strong defining moment of the author's life?
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

– William James
Spinix
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Re: Dark humour or true mind of a child?

Post by Spinix »

I did not read this book but I can answer your first question- Kids like to explore, in their world around them and especially in the world of their own mind. Exploring all the different real possibilities that could happen is something every kid does. The end of this exploration is usually at death(as thoughts beyond this would be a spiritual manner). I think the more a kid explores in their thoughts about physical possibilities, the more they will reach to the thought of death. As for the author, when he was punished (like most kids after being disciplined) he started to think deep. Because of that he reached to the thought of death, or in his case, the choice of death. I would say this is an example of a true mind of a child.
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Sushan
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Re: Dark humour or true mind of a child?

Post by Sushan »

Spinix wrote: August 6th, 2021, 3:10 pm I did not read this book but I can answer your first question- Kids like to explore, in their world around them and especially in the world of their own mind. Exploring all the different real possibilities that could happen is something every kid does. The end of this exploration is usually at death(as thoughts beyond this would be a spiritual manner). I think the more a kid explores in their thoughts about physical possibilities, the more they will reach to the thought of death. As for the author, when he was punished (like most kids after being disciplined) he started to think deep. Because of that he reached to the thought of death, or in his case, the choice of death. I would say this is an example of a true mind of a child.
I agree that this child explored each and every possibility. But I do no think that he thought deep. This decision of committing suicide seems as an impulsive decision. If he thought deep (which we cannot expect from a very young child), he would have possibly realized that there are many other options to face life other than death. Seemingly this shows a shallow, yet inquisitive mind of a child.
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

– William James
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