To be a self, one must also be nothing. To know oneself, one must be able to know nothing. The asomnics know the world continuously and immediately, with no empty time, no room for selfhood. Having no dreams, they tell no stories and so have no use for language. Without language, they have no lies. Thus they have no future. They live here, now, perfectly in touch. They live in pure fact. But they can’t live in truth, because the way to truth, says the philosophers, is through lies and dreams.
Ursula K. LeGuin, “Wake Island”, Changing Planes, New York: Harcourt, 2003, pp. 164-165
Illustration inspired by an Inuit drawing