You can live to be a hundred if you give up all the things that make you want to live to be a hundred. As long as your ideas of what’s possible are limited by what’s actual, no other idea has a chance. The Greeks have long associated beauty with love, as evidenced by early myth. “Beauty” is the quality or those qualities in bodies, by which they cause love or some passion similar to it. It’s the desire to be beautiful that leads to wisdom, he says. If this state of infinite longing could be trained on the truth, we would have a path to wisdom. If I had my way we’d sleep every night all wrapped around each other like hibernating rattlesnakes.

Actually, doomsday is a wonderful time. The most wonderful time, even. This is the only time in history where there’s a chance for people to abandon all of their cares and burdens and belong entirely to themselves. It’s stupid to be like him. The most responsible way of life right now is to enjoy ourselves while we can.

Thinkers of the 18th century, many of them oriented toward empiricism — accounted for beauty in terms of pleasure. By the time of Kant’s Third Critique, for perhaps two centuries, the direct connection of beauty to pleasure was taken as a commonplace. According to Kant, people are only projecting their own judgment upon external phenomena that have no aesthetic value at all. The sunset, he insists, is neither beautiful nor ugly. In fact, sunsets don’t even exist as such.