Prof. Dr. Kemal Arıkan

Everything that is Faraway and Near!

Uzak ve Yakın Her Şey!

“Yes,” said Muhsin, “Opposites are in unison! But what about the power that almost glues them together?” Facing an unexpected question, Cemil was literally petrified.

The union of the opposites was one of the fundamental laws of the dialectic, which he met all the way back in his high school years.

Those were the days! How exciting they were! How about those big breasts of Zeliha? She would wear a miniskirt, almost throwing down the gauntlet! The fundamental rules of socialism and Zeliha were almost intertwined. Just like the soul and brain, like the feelings and mind, all sorts of inseparable duos…

Zeliha was performing folk dances. And she was a heartbreaker, too… She would orchestrate the amateurish gazes of Muhsin and Cemil to her heart’s content.

As if they had promised each other, both men would simultaneously dream of Zeliha when they went back to those days.

Because they both laughed when they were simultaneously saying “Zeliha…” Behind that dirty smile were the warm, common memories of many years ago.

Cemil was still thinking about that question. What was the power that actually held the opposites together?

That being said, Muhsin was not a man to be underestimated at all. Such witty ideas were always his products. Although he was a carpenter, Muhsin was actually a designer, so to speak. Both were engaged in hewing wood, yet one was doing it in his mind, and the other in his hands… They were always good friends even though they would come into conflict from time to time…

For instance, at one stage, Muhsin was sick and tired of being a socialist and decided to be a nationalist. Just to piss Cemil off. He wanted to piss him off all because Cemil was a chatterbox and all the girls were interested in him in the senior year in high school. The nationalist front was in power in those years: the trio of Demirel, Türkeş and Erbakan. History books emphasized how grandiose the Ottoman Empire was. Cemil would stand up during class and heavily oppose it, saying it was racism. He was courageous. He expertly used the words. He mastered the way to the human soul. The girls in the class — there were just six or seven boys in the class, the rest was all girls – would admire him. “History does not content itself with providing just objective information,” said Muhsin during one of those classes and “it also has a mission to create enthusiasm and reliance due to its attribute that keeps the society in unison, making it a “nation” in turn,” he added. He seriously gained the approval of the history teacher. Not a single girl could understand what that outburst was about, but Cemil was already pissed off…

Cemil confessed something to Muhsin while speaking of this memory. “You know, I thought you had my father beaten! I wanted to kill you.”

“There you go,” said Muhsin, “You see how love and hatred come together… Now I ask the question once again… What holds them together?”

By the way, both men were doctors in their fifties. Both were quite curious about human psychology. They were well-acquainted with the concepts of id, ego, superego, consciousness, unconscious, preconscious. In the last seconds of a lengthy conversation that included these concepts as well, Cemil suddenly cut in. As if he discovered something important…

“Libido,” he said. “It’s nothing but libido that holds the opposites together!”

A satisfied smile appeared on Muhsin’s face. It was a sunny, spring weather. But when the night would come, the weather would get cold… And the opposites would continue to be together…

This was going to continue this way as long as they would have the longing and love they carried for one another… Just like the faraway and near, like black and white, like clear and obscure… That’s how it is…

“Do you know?” asked Cemil in his final words, “…. I think libido is not peculiar to just humans! What do you say, my friend, am I wrong?”

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