Our mind has its history, just as our body has its history. You might be just as astonished that man has an appendix, for instance. Does he know he ought to have an appendix? He is just born with it....Our unconscious mind, like our body, is a storehouse of relics and memories of the past. A study of the structure of the unconscious collective mind would reveal the same discoveries as you make in comparative anatomy. We do not need to think that there is anything mystical about it.
Indeed, the best books have a use, like sticks and stones, which is above or beside their design, not anticipated in the preface,not concluded in the appendix. Even Virgil's poetry serves a very different use to me today from what it did to his contemporaries. It has often an acquired and accidental value merely, proving that man is still man in the world.
The thinnest I've ever been was after I had my appendix out, during the London run of The Seagull. I went down to 112 pounds and realized my brain doesn't work when I'm that thin, so I can't do my job. That's why, when I came out here, I never had that whole Hollywood pressure thing. I never said I wanted to be a lead actress; I never said I wanted to be a film actress. This need to trump everyone bewilders me. I'm only 25. I'm not better than anyone. I just want to watch other people and learn to be good.
Souls were the same. They, too, had useless baggage that impeded their proper performance, these annoying, holier-than-thou bits dangling like an appendix waiting for infection. Faith and hope and love...prudence, temperance, justice, and fortitude...all this useless clutter just packed too much damn morality into the heart, getting in the way of the soul's innate desire for malignancy.
Religion is like our appendix, a vestigial remnant from a primitive past. Perhaps in a few millennia the god of Abraham will invoke the same curious amusement as rain and sun gods do today. Or perhaps our god will simply be shelved along with Zeus and Jupiter. Some day. But until then, we suffer the consequences of a population that believes in the absence of evidence and, more curiously, rejects an objective reality that conflicts with beliefs easily proven false.
The pace of science forces the pace of technique. Theoretical physics forces atomic energy on us; the successful production of the fission bomb forces upon us the manufacture of the hydrogen bomb. We do not choose our problems, we do not choose our products; we are pushed, we are forced -- by what? By a system which has no purpose and goal transcending it, and which makes man its appendix.
He loves me, he doesn't love my bowels, if they showed him my appendix in a glass he wouldn't recognize it, he's always feeling me, but if they put the glass in his hands he wouldn't touch it, he wouldn't think, "that's hers," you ought to love all of somebody, the esophagus, the liver, the intestines. Maybe we don't love them because we aren't used to them, but if we saw them the way we saw our hands and arms maybe we'd love them; the starfish must love each other better than we do.