Reading Night Train to Lisbon by Pascal Mercier, I found a question, a doubt, a perplexity that was interesting but profoundly reductionist. It's an approach that narrows down experiences and processes, even though it comes in a literary guise with existential overtones and questioning colours. The author, through his character, asked: "If it's true that we can only live a small part of what's inside us, what happens to the rest?"

As I read, I immediately thought: there is nothing inside us, since there is no inside or outside. The belief in this didactic division - the existence of exterior and interior - is a belief that reduces the processes. However, despite this, it is intelligible what the author wants to convey, which is to talk about dreams, memories and desires. In this sense, we would have "within us" memories, desires, and satisfied and unsatisfied dreams. Inside us, too, according to him, we would have emptiness, frustration, and fulfilment. What is the rest of this? What isn't realised? Or can none of it be quantified?

Imagining that there are limits to realising experiences leads to a search for quantification that reduces the human, as well as transforming experiences into quantifiable processes. It's common to ask: how much do you love? How much do you suffer? But qualitative data, if reduced to quantities, becomes labels, indices to mark the supposed labyrinth of fulfilment and satisfaction.

Processes can be quantified, but they can't be reduced to this quantification, otherwise they will be exhausted as a continuity. Heating a body up to 40ºC, for example, is a measurement that, when recorded, does not interrupt the heating process, as it is a record of it. Another measurement of the body's heating, in addition to the one already taken, is another established limit, another instant of measurement. Hunger satisfied by a quantity of food interrupts the hunger process - it satiates, but you can't understand hunger by its satiety. To think that the solution, the result, the fact that it satiates and quenches thirst changes the process is the illusion of the result.

Continuity never ceases, whether it is measured or not. It continues. Social historical processes as well as the stories of each one of us are showing that experiences go beyond dates, limits and milestones. We are still enslaved, even though by law there is no longer slavery, but the processes of enslavement, in all of its different forms, continue.

Processes don't end in records. Relational data exists and structures their continuity. What is quantifiable is only quantifiable when measured. Measurement expresses a moment in the process, but it doesn't tell its story, it doesn't deal with its structuring factors. It's just a label that defines moments.

It's common to talk about interiority, or the inner life, as if there was a psychological place within the human organism (mind, unconscious, subjectivity, etc.) and by extension, subjective is what's inside and objective what's outside. But inside and outside don't exist, what exists is a relationship, it's the man in the world, perceiving, categorising, knowing. Perceiving is relating. Civilisational, historical, economic or individual milestones always label, indicate what has happened without expressing procedural intermittencies.

In this sense, becoming, as well as process and continuity, are impossible to measure - they are immeasurable. Relational data is the determinant that encompasses and defines everything, although it is not always perceived. You have to dwell on the subtle to visualise the compactness of the dense, to experience the present, a process that encompasses everything, without a trace. Leaving no trace is the exhaustion of oneself that characterises the experienced, the integrated. There isn't a part of us that is lived and a rest that is lost, what exists is the total and integrated experience of the present.