1. The Artificial Emotion
by Papillon Philippe, Comte du Cray
There is a permanent fact engraved in the complex web of the homo sapiens’ psycho-physical wealth: emotion is the primary precursor of behavior, the primary decider of action.
Life is a moment to moment process that specializes in producing surprises after surprises. There is no way not to let events affect us. Emotions arise and drive our actions.
Sometimes, the event creates emotion that goes through our psychology prior to accessing our physiology. Sometimes, it works opposite: it hits the flesh before it hits the head.
In any case, we are presented with emotions that mysteriously stimulate us (or not) and that need to be processed by our system of being.
In order to be creative, we do not have a choice but to create a system that gets us to the emotion without going through the event; a system that gets us to a specific kind of emotion without going through a specific kind of event.
Once the “artificial emotion” is created and processed by both our psychology and physiology systems, we can get into gear, into action, into creation…
So, how do we create artificial emotions? First, we start with the thought process in order to create a thought; which could be a memory or something imagined. Then, we let that thought travel all the way to the emotion process, via the nerve, by means of numerous messengers called neurons that go back and forth.
The nerve is the connective route between our psychology and our physiology. It must be kept like a “state of the art” highway system so neurons can freely, fluidly take it and ride it at will.
Neuron transmission is the key to the creative process, because it allows the primary thought (the idea) to transform into an emotion (the reality).
Therefore, the nerve must be protected. So let us look at what is available here in America, as far as legal substances, to help us do that (those options will not include any pharmaceuticals, considering that their side effects are just too incalculable).
There are three compounds: alcohol, tobacco and cannabis.
Let us start with alcohol (we will not include here the wholesome, non synthetically “yeasted” red wine alcohol that stands as an exception when consumed in moderation; later in this essay, we will explore the specifics regarding this only source of natural alcohol the world possesses).
When alcohol enters our system, it helps us reach the specific kind of feeling we expect to experience as we prepare and create the original thought. A sense of calm and creativity starts to envelop us, which easily brings us to that emotion in question. But science has proved that alcohol damages our brain and the neurons in it. Our little messengers must be multiple and kept healthy (instead of being destroyed) so they can ride the nerve route in large numbers. Alcohol protects that same route by helping the neurons transmit their messages successfully (which gets us to the emotion from the thought) but it does it by eliminating those that have not started their trip yet, those that are still in the brain and not yet ready to leave it and venture out into the body via the nervous system.
The price to pay is just too high. Self destruction, even though it has been the mantra of some of the best of our past artists and pioneers, is to be avoided when it comes to learning the creative process. May be for the simple reason that it is year 13, a third millennium, and that our perception of things through science and other disciplines has changed. For instance, the concept of neuro-genesis (the reproduction of neurons, a notion that has only been accepted during the last 25 years), the opposite of the neuron destruction that alcohol is responsible for, has started to take hold within the society of scientists, savants and artists. We now know that our psychology and physiology systems possess receptors, including the nuclear one, that are sensitive to cannabinoids, the active compounds in cannabis. Besides, those same cannabinoids are, as we speak, being studied by scientists as potential precursors of that same neuro-genesis.