There's something inherently interesting about outliers, about people who deviate from the norm in an extreme way.
I have a friend of mine who's slept with a couple hundred girls - essentially, to the level of someone having been in some kind of famous band or something like that. I don't know anyone else like that, and I'm admittedly fascinated by how completely differently he sees the world and the people in it. It helps that I try never to judge the lifestyles of others, and to understand where people are coming from (there are always causes for our behaviours).
In my experience, the vast majority of men are cognitively inclined to attach very strongly to young, beautiful women, and yet his life was an example of the utter opposite - with a handful of exceptions, for the past several years, he hasn't even slept with the same person twice. I told him I thought this was interesting. I told him this was paradoxically zen, in a sense, this level of detachment (perhaps sociopathic too, but that was not a subject of our discussion).
"It's true," he told me. "But then you get attached to not becoming attached. You get attached to having a new girl every couple days or so."
I remember, years ago, when I was still religious, the pastor used to tell the congregation that we would always be slaves. Slaves to money, to lust, to power, so we may as well become slaves to the Lord. As I get older, I increasingly appreciate the emotional sophistry behind Christianity and act of speaking to a church full of people every Friday. It's a form of persuasion, the weaponization of guilt in such a carefully designed way (the fact that it is sincerely done, or done unconsciously, does not change what it is).
Attachment is fundamental to living, it is simply the basis of desire, and our desires cut through all levels of our lives, sexual and otherwise. What is too little detachment, and what is too much? Can you have something only when you no longer desire it? Or can you only have it if you desire it on one level but not on another one?
As I've gotten older, I'd like to think that my attachments have been carefully pruned, leaving only those that matter. But perhaps I've merely traded one thing for another, one set of pathologies for another, parallel set.
Who the fuck knows.
people I admire
Bret Easton Ellis