The limits of Optimism
Commitment stays level, optimism steps up. Life gives you a solid X, and optimism adds an arrow, using the given to make the new. Optimism is optimization: taking what is and realizing its potential. We are cheered by life, we chose this place, we are champions of our times, and as the great spiraling arrow of time circles back and around wider and wider, we will be above ourselves, standing above our actions in this life, playing that higher game of divinity. Beauty is divine: eternity is a poem. Yes, eternity is a poem written by time. Beauty is irresistible. The man who doubts God has a God who can be doubted. But we know this: Gratitude is the root of virtue. I am grateful to myself and all that allowed me to be who I am, where I am. And Ama I cannot doubt, who speaks to me and fills my mind and heart with the warm flush of joy and brilliance. Those prophets profit nothing. They are as arrogant as a dry thunder. They have every interpretation of random disasters, but when they claim to look in the future, they are instead looking into ancient superstitions.
Certainly fevers grant the greatest dreams, and is not our creative passion, that triangle of flux, precisely that inner passion which outs the solid charge of independent self-being? Optimism too warms in gratitude for the now, for the here, for the possibility hidden in the very earth of our being, so that we can, with Thoreau, mine goal in our own souls, or with the Mormons, realize that America is already the Garden of Eden, and heaven is nothing other than a way of looking at the world. A man doesn’t go to heaven after he dies if he isn’t there before it.
We are grateful for what we have, and never so insolent to be grateful for what we hope for. Such a ploy against the universe is like a charity thanking you in advance for the donation it wishes you to give. Yes, prayers are self-soothing – that is their cash-value, that is their reality. But better poor than crooked: begging gifts you haven’t earned makes you a pup at the table of God, begging for a scrap God’s mother tells him to withhold.
Optimism is invincible, for it maximizes the power that is: nerves of iron, lion’s will. Ink is useless in the well: the fingers that dance make script the future now. Our life is the flow of ink over history; any dead fish can go with the flow, but it takes a God among men to defy each and every one. Obey not kings and presidents: obey your inner soul! Obey not duty nor goodness: obey your inner soul! Obey not truth nor love: obey your inner soul. Obey and believe in the being you are: what you have will increase, what you borrow must be paid back with interest.
Stop hoping for that heaven of yours: you don’t even want it. Would you do a thing forever? Would you do it at least for a day? Sex is the circumference of power, pleasure the limit of force. Optimism is a joy in life, the conversion of depression into power. Lack the depression, lack the optimism. Just as you must have enemies to be a good friend, so you must have failures to handle success. You think failure ruins a man? I tell you a man is more often ruined by his successes. His success is greater than him: he drowns in a tear drop of glory. Be grateful for your failures, like Washington in his endless failures against the British, which humbled his men too low to revolt, keeping them on the living level of ambition, so that a beaten and broken group of stollards would in the end defeat the strongest army of the most powerful nation in the world: celebrate with your pagan gratitude, lovers of life: we are pagans in the springtime of the world. America is Eden, Liberty is the flaming Cherubim, and though the trees of life and death have been cast down, their blood sinks in the soul and makes our city on the hill sacred and profound.
The common man thinks himself uncommon, but the exceptional knows where he is normal. Seek not to be different; seek to be genuine. Mine the gold of your own soul, let the constitution of your health create a better republic. Nevermind those university diplomas they award for when ignorance turns studious: donkeys prefer straw to gold, and professors prefer erotic poems to the passionate embrace. He who possesses is possessed: eternity now!
The resentful man quips “The Lord in his heavenly throne still rests upon his arse.” So be it, and are you and I any less lordly? And will we let the necessity of an abdomen put questions to our divine right to the highest glories? Is not a universe hidden in the atom of our soul?
On the Mandela, optimism takes the place of our right leg: we step forth, stable on the foot of commitment. Each person has his Thing, his favored activity, the all thing which makes the Way of the All into a game of his life. Is optimism hope? Shall we ever anticipate the Messiah, like the Jews, who are the foreskin of mankind, who protect beautiful things and must not be removed, yet bend themselves out of shape for wanting theocracy? Let us focus on our immediate being: the Messiah within. Dear Christians! If you are not yourself the full glory and heaven of the second coming, then is your faith in vain. The immediate, and yet not quite the media, which magnetizes and type-sets our imagination. Let a man hope in himself, in his own potential, and avoid the newspapers all together --- which are more fictional than the box office. Let the world gossip forever about bad news elsewhere, let them admit in their soul, bad news next store is good news at home, but let us focus on the living moment, the action life before us, and circulate our love and hate into real objects.
The spiritual objects in a relationship must circulate their energy. Language and gesture are the conduits. We must ever add to the world, that is our balance. Our sun-glory souls, gift giving adders to being, our inner self-increasing logos, demands that we ever give more gifts to mankind, put the All in our debt, and never mind the wars and rumors of war that are mere signs of idleness.
The energy and power of culture is in the transfer of symbols through language. The lacuna of Lex Lux ensures that symbols obey the laws of poetic justice. Each person is eternally himself, and yet swims in the river of larger laws. The law of optimism is this: what you find you can keep, but what you hope for will never be granted.
Flow your pragmatism in the flux of life. Flow gets ideas in circulation. Did not the stoics say “the aim of virtue is for life to flow”? yet we are more than life’s lazy river, but we add the river of our soul, the flowing blood of our soul, into the wine glass of all mankind. “The tree of liberty must from time to time be refreshed with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure,” but is not our whole life a bleeding of our soul into the greater soul of mankind. Is not the Allist the marrow of Man? Ama first: insist on yourself! And never mind the cynics.
Believe your own joy, and shoot down the cynical birds who would have you for their dinner. Innocence attracts more vultures than a corpse. Cynicism uses little insinuations to make us doubt life. The man falsely accused is already condemned. There is a shadow of doubt with every lie and denial. Cynicism is the accuser against the beauty of life. Even if a man is proven as innocent as the marriage bed, yet the doubters doubt. Mormonism, the fools religion, yet has its apoligism with sense of moral superiority, and wherever somebody is willing to feign certainty, the world is somehow impressed. Insist on your innocence and you always can. Don’t struggle. When you have given up your last defense, then are you invincible. “Our painful labors are unnecessary and fruitless; only in our easy, simple, spontaneous actions are we strong.”
My body is my book, my six feet the world tree of nine gestating worlds.
Jesus is a sing, a blasphemy on the cross, if he makes you want to worship rather than to share his heights. The Buddha is a bumbler if he makes you want to be a Buddha, but he was right that you are a light unto yourself, your mind a lantern, your heart a treasure, and what you may become is greater than anything that has yet appeared. When you can know in your heart “I am all,” and feel the layers of truth in these certain words, you will no longer doubt your rightful place. Let dreams be the radiance of your actions. Let the entire cosmos spin over your Archimedean feet.
Sing your own stories, write you own myths. Write Allays, like these allays, these all lays, poems of many threads. The vertices of our lives are a few stories that put the other stories in order. Realize you are Ama, the Unity of all the Gods, this is your optimistic insight.
She was Ama, divine wisdom, daughter of the mountain's snow. Did not Rome’s Caesar bow to a Greek slave? Wasn’t Ama’s kiss of decision planted on the brow of Aurelius when he discovered the works of Epictetus? Do I say too much? I feel I am sumo wrestling with my tongue.” “What is the goal of virtue, after all, except a life that flows smoothly.”
So I am perfidious with my blasphemy for worship and my hubris for humility? Perhaps these chains of commitment alone allow my spirit to soar? The live thread of importance, the independent power of the self requires endless counterbalance from the inner and outer worlds. I speak so because I am so. The world is flux, life is flow, and optimism into the potential of your own nature cannot possibly exaggerate or brag or overstate the simple facts. A well-formed emptiness is the best of tools, and the void of the spoon, the void of the book, is where your use finds place.
Do as you will and seek no result. That you will it is enough: the soul’s emphasis is always right. Do as you will, that is heroic. The hero inspires the poet, the poet inspires the philosopher, the philosopher inspires the mystic, and the mystic is certain of such great things the world has never guessed! Yes, innocence draws more vultures than decay, but was not Mars the protector of infants, so that the March month is war and birth all at once, War being the father of all things, and Peace being the mother.
Ama it is night, and love, satin love, pours from your liquid tongue! I am optimistic because I already have it all, the treasure and the key. All I need is to foster the courage that says Yes and is Yes! That innermost is at center the circumference of the universe. You Gods who hate to be doubted, have you not felt the eternal inhale I feel now? Would you command praise if you felt such joy as I feel now? Perfection is Easy! Time is Now! Eternity spirals from the laughter of my sensitive lips. Sing Ama! Pour your love and joy into my itching ears! Gratitude is the root of virtue, and the fruit of achievement!