I am gazing out the window at my cat. He is doing something in the snow. Sniffing, investigating. He sits and stares across the river. I wonder. How does he decide what to do next? How does he choose which scent to indulge, follow, investigate? Can he be said to have will?
I turn to my husband and we both start speaking at once:
“The real tragedy of consciousness…” I begin.
“Do you want me to…” he starts.
“Eggs. Do you want some?”
“Oh. No, thanks.”
“What were you saying?”
“I said, the real tragedy of consciousness is…” He interrupts.
“Have you been reading German philosophers again?!?”
I look down, contrite. “Schopenhauer,” I confess.
“Well, stop it!”
There is a pause. I put forth the subject once more: “Can I at least tell you about the tragedy of consciousness and why I can’t be my cat?”
“Oh, I suppose,” he says. ” But I think you should drink your coffee first.”