Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Koan of the Blonde Boy

A parable is a vignette with a moral. A fable is the same in terms of personified animals. A riddle is a verbal question whose solution requires ingenuity. A koan is a sort of riddling parable. Some koans require decades of zazen, or seated meditation and full-focused concentration. My own little koan, here, is not such a hard nut to crack:




The Blonde Boy



A boy encountered a blond youth in the park, and called:

“Hey, hey! You cannot play here: this is my park.”

The blond smiled. So the boy shoved the youth down, but the youth smiled from the ground.

“Well you have to beat me in a game to stay here,” said the boy.

The blond stood.

“I can shout louder than you,” he shouted into the wind.

“There is a rock you know,” said the blond.

“Fool,” said the boy, “It is a basketball. See? I can beat you.”

He pushed it up into the hoop again and again. The blond raised his hand and blocked the ball occasionally. The boy felt proud to beat him.

“Do you see how many points I am making? Do you know what that means? It means I am winning.”

“It means,” said the youth, “that you think the game is basketball.”

“What’s that supposed to mean? What do you think the game is?”

“There is a rock you know,” said the blond.

“That’s not a rock, you dope, that’s a tombstone from the cemetary, I bet you if we kick at it, I can knock it over first.”

And he did kick at it, and the blond youth kicked too, but not so hard, and when the boy blunted his toe he cried, “well you would cry too if you were even trying. Its not a game if you don’t try.”

“Trying is not the game.”

“Then what? Is pretending I don’t know the game your game? Or making up games? I can make up better games than you.”

“It never gets dark here,” said the blond.

“It is my park and I say that the sun is always up.”

“That is a rock you know.”

“That’s not a rock. That’s the sun. It's made out of fire.” The boy looked at it intently, but it hurt his eyes. Yet when he looked at the blond, the blond seemed to stare at the sun with ease.

“So that’s your game. Well I can stare longer and not look away, but you will.”

He stared and stared at the sun till the tears ran down his cheeks. And he said, “Yes, it is a rock, isn’t it? I can see how you could call it a rock—but why are you leaving?”

“You lost.”



\ ~@M@~ /



Friday, March 16, 2012

Cables of Pain

Daniel Christopher June to the students of Life:




So I've finished the first workable draft to an allay in which I attempt to spiritualize and eternalize anxiety into a principle of good. Allism excludes nothing, but puts everything to work. Everything in its place with good, Anything out of its place is bad.


This work explores some of my persist anxieties and exposes, I hope, their logic to me.


Take care, Caretakers!




Cables of Pain




My radio head is buzzing

From a dozen fighting stations

From the static sunset trauma

Of anxious expectations

The horrorscope forewarned us

"Cut interlove relations

They knife your heart they knife your heart

In literal interpretation

Are you gonna leave me?

Is bossman gonna fire me?

It's happened before!

It's happened before!

The sunglair of the snow,

The sunglair in my eyes

Tightened tighter tight like screws

Stripped rivets can't unscrew

Is that disapproval in your glance?

Does disgust hide in your smile?

Is my imagination is my paranoia making that come true?

I think too much I can't conclude

Overly polite and smiling thoughts rude thoughts

Persecuted, They disapprove! They disapprove!

Can't wake up -- caffenation -- clashing nations --fight for leaders

Watch them brawl, take your pick,

They're throwing filth and chatter political

Ditties Yammer on, on my ears all night long

-- barbwire nerves, prison fence dementia

The anxious anxious anxious eyes

distorted buzz guitar, finds its ego rhythm and then...


Lulls, liltingly lulls, with the flowing ease of rhythm

And my heart storm concludes in a mode at tonal cadence

And that worldwide ease -- that love release

I'm pleased, I embrace all of you

The summer rules with thunderbliss

The peaceful evening loves my kiss

The cool melt moon is pregnant proud

And by my love she is allowed.

The final sigh of deep night sky rests upon my triumph brow

Humming Goddess Ama bright, cloaked in darkness and the night

Friend of the heart of my heart, I adore you, dove!


                The inner Self of the Needs of our Being, the core of our organism, spontaneously and reactively creates all the energy that fuels our life. Why do we read? Because we need to. Lacking that expression, we would have to find another. The energies that pour from the inner necessity are experienced by our organism, before the mind is even aware, as pains and pleasures. The primordial energy of our being, before it is differentiated, is pure crea, creative flux, expansion into the world. It is the Id-yes, the positive, the affirmative, the self-increasing logos. The mind of I, however, is the principle of negation; the focus of mind unfocuses all objects but one: by focusing on one object, we force it into being, through our body or our imagination.

                This brings us to literary angst. The undifferentiated wholeness of our feelings fall into channels of thought. Mind is symbol. Symbols act to coordinate energies, emotional energies, to define them. Thought makes them even tighter as spoken language, and language becomes concrete in actions. Thus, as we intend an experience into a meaning and into a language, we also extend it into an action.

                The focus of I, which is experienced primarily as a visual field with an invisible mental field overlaid, the other senses falling a little less from the center, is focused on the will, like a glass ball in the center of our vision which filters what ideas and objects we focus on or don't focus on.

                Those ideas in themselves move autonomous. Thoughts think in our heads, whether we will them or not. As an experience of primary memory is assumed into a concept of information, once that assumption is made into a habit of thought, it becomes an idea, information laden with desire.

                The primary experiences, however, are the pleasures and pains of our needs, which give energy spontaneously or in response to experiences.

                My language here is a bit difficult, but I necessarily bring it into the realm of abstraction to gain control over it. My focus is on one idea: anxiety. Yet anxiety is the opposite of controlled focus. Anxiety is an energy that dominates our focus, and forces us to think in rigid ways. We experience our thought as free -- we can think whatever we want -- but we receive hidden signals from the brain that there are experiences going on we know not what, memories we have forgotten. Psychoanalysis began with the Jewish prejudice that the marginal is the most important, as characterized by the slogan "The stone that the builders rejected became the corner stone," which is architecturally false. It is that incredible anxiety of the Jewish -- a guilty people -- that made psychoanalysis focus on old memories, the marginalized, the repressed, the disowned. As allists, we do not exclude either the Jews or their unique gifts, but we are focused also on the obvious, the blatant, the self-evident, the apparent. We are not aiming to ferret out hidden meanings and crown them as the most important. We have our own mode of narcissism. We insist on ourselves. This is where our search begins: on self-reflection, self-love, masturbation, suicide, self-aggrandizement, on all the relationships of a man to himself.

                Those who live in the margins of society don't take cultural truths as seriously. They can mock at them, because they are not part of them. The "saint" who cut down the sacred trees of the druids was not bold before gods, he was merely replacing the superstitions of others with superstitions of his own. In the same way, missionaries have always propagated their message through technological magic; indeed, elaborate schools tap millennia of experience to be able to spiritually overwhelm innocent tribesmen. It is easy to be an iconoclast when you think others are worshipping mere icons, rather than through icons. An iconoclast still believes in idols to think them a threat. Instead, with the condemnation of idolatry, we merely have a sort of chauvinism on how the divine may be accessed: verbal images are okay to access God, but sculptural images are bad. Yet only the Tao is truly beyond images when it speaks of the Tao, or ultimate reality, as unnamable, and its path impassable.

                We will see in all this that a man's ultimate experiences, which seem so divorced from everyday life, work deep under that life, and form the moral coordinates by which he moves his being. The ground is stabilized by stabilizing cables. The anxieties of a nation as well as the anxieties of the individual overlap as the outer limit of possibility.

                Culture balances the individual. It provokes him and limits him, and he opens it and adopts it. All cultures are basically the same: they want to control your sex and your death. They rule you through your children and your mortality. Our justice system, after all, and in the same way as all justice systems, is ultimately backed by violence. Resist the cops, they shoot you dead. Do we think such things when a cop passes us on the highway? On some level, yes.

                Ultimate figures structure our world, and certain people and objects are more representational of those figures. It is part of every psychic make-up, according to the needs of every human being, to choose the object of Importance. Whatever is most important, be it one thing or many, organizes the rest. The Importance is God or Reason or Science or Mankind. Within our mental makeup there lay also the placeholders for the unbearable and the unthinkable. What is taboo is at least thinkable. When a thing is held as taboo, we dread it, we hate it, or, if we transgress it, we feel either guilty or greatly free. Some of the surprising ideas of history come out of mystery cults and the erotic cults, from pedophiles, magicians, drunkards, addicts, or whatever else, or at least those so tempted. It doesn't matter so much what the taboo object is -- they are all arbitrary -- but that the transgressor takes them as taboo. A missionary who names the deceased, which is strictly taboo in a particular tribe, is not made "manna" or untouchable, he is scolded as an outsider who doesn't know better. He doesn't gain the stigma and the power. But if he defies his own culture's coordinates, he will gain that experience.

                The taboo is at least thinkable. We aim our hate upon transgressors. Our newspapers, with their mug-shots and descriptions of lurid facts act as a public shaming of criminals, and also a public celebration of celebrities. The criminal enacts what we secretly wish, though we don't know it, and we fight our own urge by hating him.

                Murder, after all, isn't murder. Why does literature abound with murder of every sort? Hamlet ending with a bloodbath, Moby Dick ending with a blood bath? Murder is not absolute and it does not symbolize the murder of one's father -- which would make no evolutionary sense. Murder of something physical symbolizes the murder of a principle or idea. All mental life, all feeling, thinking, saying, and doing, is ultimately propped upon a philosophy of assumptions. To write our own programs is difficult. By participating in the death of another, through literature or, in that other mode of entertainment, the daily news, we are able to introject a personal philosophy by reflecting it in two directions -- inwards and outwards. The voice always speaks in two directions.

                Nevertheless, whatever takes the place of the unthinkable will never occur to you. It is not that when you hear it said by another you freak out. It is that you are utterly bored with it, and pass it on without notice. Your mind can't focus on it for long. You seem to be distracted by something more interesting, but that distraction is made interesting on purpose, to shield you from the unthinkable. The unthinkable, after all, is a live wire, it influences what ideas fall into the focus of our I by moving ideas from below. The unthinkable cloaks itself in the unbearable.

                We all know what is unbearable. An itch can be unbearable. This minor, every day disturbance can cause an unbearable urge to scratch. Such an effect is easy to instigate. Simply sit where you are, think of mosquitoes biting you, and refuse yourself to scratch an itch. Our reflexes, and those behaviors that are nearly reflexive, are difficult to willfully deny, like holding your hand in the flame.

                But with external things, we can at least see them, and thus think them. An image that causes us unbearable discomfort -- the dismemberment of a loved one, or something like this -- can actually become desensitized. You can clear the image of its emotional valance, numb yourself to it, not care anymore. In a way, you blind yourself to its full meaning, and no longer see it. But when the unbearable surrounds an invisible idea, it is much more difficult to get at that idea. It is slippery as a salmon, and able to shift shapes.

                What is unbearable reveals our lack of control, our lack of power. Think of it: a strong man conquered by an itch! Perhaps the Olympiad can run a marathon, yet can't stop biting his nails. The mind wants to always be in power or to entrust itself to a reliable power. Thus, the mind quickly learns how to substitute unbearable pains for bearable pains. One pain kills another. I recall getting a poison ivy rash, from head to toe, as a kid. I was sternly instructed not to itch, or it would make things worse. But in the bathtub, using the medicinal soap, itching was permitted. What pure bliss to itch to my heart's content, until the poison ivy itches were replaced with welts! And never were welts more welcome: ache is better than itch.

                In the same way, our feelings, emotions, and desires structure themselves so as to move from unbearable pains to bearable pains, to put our experiences in a language we can control. The child has difficulty suppressing an emotion, but learns he can filter it through his muscles, and thus he builds an emotional circuit board through his body's muscles. The incredible anxiety of being in pain and not knowing why is alleviated by assuming guilt. Guilt is more bearable than uncertainty. Many patients would rather believe that God is punishing them than to wonder why God would allow them to suffer. In this way, ambiguous anxieties localize themselves into muscle tensions, as guilts, hysterics, and punishments. The economy of pain controls itself be channeling wild energy into thinner compact forms. When an anxiety is wrapped into a cable of pain, then it can do work for us. Our phobias, anxieties, and fears, once concentrated into solid live wires, are converted from obstacles into tools.

                All the emotions, after all, are mere flavors of frustration. We are prevented from putting our desires into motion, so they fall back on themselves, and collect more and more energy, till the mind can use them to overcome its obstacles. Some of the most persistent obstacles are fears and anxieties. Yet the pain has meaning.

                That cable of pain is a pure experience. The curious nature of trauma is that it often is painless when it happens. A kid hit by a car, for instance, may simply blank out. With intense experiences it seems as if the angels sang, and then our experience reaches infinity. There are, after all, two modes of consciousness: infinite constriction, or death, and infinite dilation, or bliss. Such moments happen in time, on the X axis. On the Y axis, the axis of eternity the infinitely smallest moment of time, reach infinity, as when a curve approaches its asymptote.

                The two directions of these asymptotes, of the unbearable and the unthinkable, are the black raven of never-more, and the white whale of forevermore, or never to be. They are necessary negations. The mind, after all, wills a thing be negating all but it. Negations tie the knots. By saying "not," the knot is tied. When translated into our muscles, these unthinkable unbearable ideas are experienced as muscle spasms; when our muscles spasm for any reason, we are reminded of such ideas.

                In this, we see that all diseases are psychosomatic, even if they are 100% organically caused. A man with a cold thinks differently than a man with a fever. Its as if all diseases could be cured with words and thought. The mind thinks through all the nerves and muscles of the body: every state of the body is a state of mind, and some thoughts are unthinkable to a person or people because their body has not experienced them. When they hear those ideas, they interpret the words to in fact refer to other ideas. Language carries no meaning, has no meanings, is merely a code for us to construct our own meanings. A meaning is a defined experience, made of the sculpting of basic memories and experiences. There is such a thing as an ontological definition of an idea, and that is when the idea is correctly felt -- when its meaning is exactly felt. The more we think of an idea, the more definitely we can feel it, though we do feel it on some level upon our first hearing, assuming that it was communicated by one with a similar background. Most people have a working familiarity with their ideas.

                Work cures worries. Moving the body eases the mind. Ideas, which are moved by energy, are felt through the movement of the body. The mind, which focus by power, might run out of that power, in a state of depression; lacking power, large stores of energy are spent, to substitute for will. Or the energies, if they are dangerous, are frozen in muscles and images, in a state of anxiety. You can't kill an idea. But you can kill the person who represents the idea. Murder puts valance over an idea. By having killed the idea's representative, or at least fantasized so, you change in your mind the valence of that idea.

                We experience a thing as pain and pleasure together. The logic of a pain/pleasure makes it into a desire. Any given desire is at its base a mélange of such pain and pleasure. The pain leads to a feeling of emptiness, which leads to sadness, which leads to fear, which leads to anger, which leads to anxiety, which leads to apathy. All those are experienced simultaneously once, but the conscious I emphasizes only one layer of it at a time. In the same way, pleasure leads to a feeling of fullness, which leads to a feeling of warmth, which leads to a feeling of love, which leads to a feeling of lust, which leads to a sense of frustration, which leads to a sense of coldness. The apathy and coldness hold hands. They are the intellectualized extremes of the inner pain and pleasure. With apathy and coldness, which characterize the doctor and physician, one can control what would otherwise be too much.
















                This is the loop of experience, and the weight that is put on each level characterizes the tonal valence of an idea.

                The unthinkable, the unbearable, these lack a symbol, and so we never consciously experience them. In moments of horror and panic, which seems to focus on something external, these internal ideas are at last coincidentally revealed. Horror films allow us to symbolize our own inner horrors. That we have such horrors is a good thing, as everything human is good; the system exists for a reason, it has a logic and purpose. As we mature, we do not condemn, we learn to accept and to integrate.

                In the same way, anxious ideas can be first thought only through enemies and villains. Horror movies and adventure films educate us through villains sooner than heroes -- villains usually have the minds, and heroes the hearts. The villain says his truth, and then dies. But the body of the villain existed only to deliver that truth, and he has succeeded through his fake defeat.

                Those ultimate moments of unconscious enlightenment do not discover something that existed before that moment: they define the cables of touch. A negative energy of pain persists, but is insulated like a live wire, in indifference, if not pleasure. Fear is a sense of powerlessness; like a planet held together by a black hole core, so does powerlessness become power.

                The human will, which of its own has no energy, only power--meaning it can focus or blur but lacks the energy of selection--is often overwhelmed by agencies of great energy. Since man has so many instincts, his will is able to control them. Imagine a fantastic hero who must travel through a land cut in two by a stream. On the left of the river lives a giant, to the right lives a dragon: they are both fierce and would devour him without a qualm, but they fear each other. The logical progression would be to attract their attention and deliberately walk down the middle of the stream.

                We need our distances as much as we need our intimacy. Merely to touch a body is to receive its energy, interpreting its meaning, feeling it. Contact transfers creative energy into fear and love, desire and aversion. By the touch of the world, our creative energy differentiates. The self says yes, and the I qualifies.

                All anxiety comes from negation. And all control is mastered fear; when the anxieties have been mastered, obstacles become auxiliaries. We should take pains to avoid pains. We master our pains, thus making them into pleasures. For control is always a pleasure. Just as suffering loves to brag, pleasure loves to hide. We always act in terms of the greatest pleasure. But as so much of life is ambiguous, the freewill may create a pleasure to balance the system. Hamlet, in his famous soliloquy regarding suicide -- "to be or not to be" -- is too anxious regarding the unknown of the other side to suicide, and thus he arranges a more indirect and clever death for himself, in which he will not be blameworthy.

                All societies make a taboo of suicide. It is not unthinkable, but it comes with great angst. Socrates, the literary embodiment of philosophy, made, near his death, a famous "life is shit" speech. The natural response to such sick thoughts is, "Why not just kill yourself, Socrates?" But then Socrates says that God owns us, and so to kill ourselves would be to hurt God's property, and thus offend him. Evidently he would then punish us, and we are back with Hamlet, preferring a known danger to an unknown danger.

                We can, after all, will our own suffering. "Man would rather will nothingness than have nothing to will," said Nietzsche. He preferred we speak the Id "yes," to be the yes-saying spirit, to put no faith even in truth, but to be perfidious, having faith in nothing at all but holding, hold reverence for ourselves. Self-overcoming is to submit to your own law. Tolkien, in a typically Christian fashion, has no faith in his heroes. The hobbit Bilbo fails in the end, just as his travelling companion, Gollum, fails to redeem himself. The "triumph" of the epic is not that good wins out in the end, but that evil suicides, and thus good wins by default. The evil ring, by corrupting the Gollum, brought its own end.

                But the ring legend comes from the story of when the Norse Gods stole gold from a dwarf. He begged only that they not take his magic ring, which had the power of making more gold. They take it anyway, so the dwarf places a curse on the ring. The story progresses as the ring kills off a chain of its owners. In this, the ring itself was not evil. If anything, taking away a man's livelihood is evil, and that puts a curse on the world.

                The moral coordinates of each of us impose work and family upon our daily lives. Just as one set of vertices was nevermore, to forevermore, so the other vertices are sex and murder, life and death, and, when expressed towards the self, masturbation and suicide, which both have acquired an opprobrium. Rightly understood, having control over one's pleasure and mode of death are great powers.

                When death is dead, he is borne as life, winter sinks as seeds of spring. We constantly project a world, we interpret all in terms of it. Art, after all, is the perfecting of nature, just as man is the crown of creation. Those allists who can affirm all and subordinate all, who leave nothing in the margins to plot against them, but find a place and use for everything, such ones know that rank is in the eyes, and power in the voice. Intelligence the eyes, will the voice. We are more sincere in what we say than we suspect. Such ones as the allists know how to inject ceremony, celebration, speech, and symbol into important moments of life. The Allist is a living religion, is God of it; what he says is forever said, what he does is forever done. For he is at home in the world. Home is where one is comfortable. He knows how to speak the language of all he meets he knows how to anticipate. He knows that bliss is the highest form of conversation, and the world exists for conversation. Every religion is a moment of rhetoric. "God" means "implore."

                Our religions and philosophies are worlds, to subdue chaos and angst. Those anxieties we faced are built into our bodies. Our traumas harden into tools. Every lasting anxiety becomes a permanent character trait. And to not the knot, to take apart those pleasures and pains that are so thickly bound, to commit taboo, to break the law, that is to split the atom, to release a blast.

                Marriage is a bond, a series of bonds, the bond of a vow, given on one's honor -- a man is as good as his word -- to which he pledges a lifelong relationship. To break this is to break one's nobility. And the languages of devotion, pleasure, duty, compromise, resentment, jealousy, anger, are so many cables of joy and cables of pain. When the bonds of marriage are cut, incredible energy is released.

                Your body is your world. Just as Dante crawled up his own hell to get finally to the heaven of his brow, so we all embody our world in ourselves. The heart literally expands in pleasure, literally constricts in pain, just as focus expands in pleasure, and constricts in pain. A mind in pain cannot focus on much. Pain dominates the center, and freezes the sphere of focus from expanding to gain more energy. An anxiety, by pinching a motive, drains the energy from the system, and renders us depressed.

                And so depression seeks pain, a fresh pain, to shock its system. Electroshock therapy works well in curing depression, and so do its equivalents, when a depressed mind sends out hidden signs to invite catastrophe, to flirt with death, to break down his spirit so he will let himself accept Jesus in his heart, Muhammad as the prophet, his Duty to his family, or whatever else a man superstitiously symbolizes as self-atoning. Anxiety seeks trauma, to burst. We fear orgasm, we fear losing control. So we fantasize about dreadful things, the way women fantasize about rape, to gain the sexual experience without willing it or deserving blame. I think it must be a gray savoir to free us from such games. Only the elderly have lost touch with the senses, as they approach their home-built heavens.

                Our fantasies, as expressed in the movies, in books, in gossip, in the news, in the internal experience of our own memories, which may yet be unthinkable, balance our daily strains. Everything balances, everything compensates. Only the self-increasing Self is beyond such a system. Murder symbolizes change, philosophy flows deeper. Thus, we have our rituals of transformation, as in the poems we call rites and traditions, in the literature we call scripture.

                Poetry is purified literature, the epitome of literature. The poet is not only the man who scripts, but is also the man who lives beauty. The body is an extension of the mind, just as our tools are extensions of the body. When we play life as a game, when we create the world as art, we convert all tensions into interest. We build tension, and call that excitement; we resolve tensions, and call that release. What is the basic plot of all plots but hero desires, hero struggles, desire resolves? The words we say stand for the ideas in our head, and those ideas epitomize meanings, and give meaning identity. Words have valance, meanings create tensions. The law of non-contradiction is made to terrorize us all. Yet meanings can't contradict, only negations can contradict. All meaning are positive.

                Writing is hardened language, is crystallized speech. We create worlds, we enter worlds, through reading and writing and the imaginative mind. The author's literal spirit survives in his works. In nation, nature, and religion we find ourselves situated, but writing shows another place, a different realm. The tensions of our life are put on hold. Resolving tensions is plot. Yet we can resolve our own tensions by entertaining ourselves with fake tensions, and fictional plot.

                Superstition is the poetry of life. We put meanings on all things ambiguous. The scientific think this is foolishness, just like the iconoclasts thought it immoral when we put our meanings in absurd things, just as words are used as hooks to hang ideas. It is like the grammar dork who thinks that by presenting the etymology of a word he has refuted the meaning a thinker wants to attribute to it. But meanings are irrefutable -- they are self-evident. There will always be the literalists, whether fundamentalist believers or fundamentalist disbelievers, who are fated never to get it. The mystics too, when they interpret a trope as meaning one thing, and only are things which only they could discover, are just as stupid.

                A slim set of aphorisms is the best of educations, and a teacher who could reach partway toward their infinite centers, and who could teach his students to do the same, would be better than sophisticated, he would be simple, just as the sophist is better than the philosopher, but the sage better than the sophist. Poetry is trope, from head to toe. So is a man who makes his life a poem. The innermost name of the Self, his need and necessity, emanates the meanings which are the poem of his life. Reality never catches up with the imagination, but what is imagination, after all, but preparation? Small bait, big fish. We indeed follow our bliss by living the myths, and like the Gods we let our words serve as our perfume. Lucifer was the star of Bethlehem, Odin hanged in angst gains the deepest runes.

                So we accept our suffering, if only we can use it. The tightly taut string dreams of blades. Weapons are crystallized anxiety. And even a dull wit can still bruise. When we reach, we are tantalized. We live our myths under the Maya mask of our daily doings. Daily events obliquely symbolize hidden ideas. The inner logic of philosophical programming is the creation of a tight personal grammar, for the invention of an idiolect is why we came here in the first place. Wide events move the smallest laws. If the I does yes by saying no, the self does no by saying yes--that is its independence. Experience is knowledge. But an event isn't experience until the needs have judged it. Sometimes a whole quest is evoked only to expose the hidden depth of a truism -- "be true to yourself," for instance. The treasures of the ages are simple and small.

                A serene face can mask chaos. The emotions of meaning becomes the thoughts of ideas through the metaphor mind, which is the skin between heart and mind. When we master erratic energies, they become our weapons against those who haven't. Self-reliance is the American religion, self-reliance verses group-reliance. Those who are animated by the borrowed energy of a group or church are doomed to lose their necessity, and to have their I plucked off; when they merge with some God in his heaven. They sell their soul to get into heaven. But we reflect back on each our own necessity. We master the erratic energy, we master the rhythmic energy: pain and pleasure we both subsume. We approach anxiety, we live dangerously, and so gain its energies. We know where the lines are drawn, and we know what is gained and lost as we approach them.

                The 20th century could not think without also thinking "Nazi." All the thinkers of that time are stained with Nazi anxiety. September 11 brought us to our senses, and opened up a new millennium, when mankind would become one Man, one Globe, one World.

                We must be willing to break the taboos, as needed, just as, being allists, we can transgress into any heaven or hell, and are not thereby comprehended. The unbearable is worse than death. Thus people fight wars and commit suicide. Most of us insulate those live wires of original contact. They are like spiralgrams, those drawings which have a little image in the center, with a line spiraling outwards that exaggerates the features of the inner image, more with each loop, until the outer layer seems to be something else. We want to know what a man is at bottom.

                Intensions build tensions that seek extension. Do we torture ourselves? Not unnecessarily. We live for bliss. What is torture but the art of prolonging the unbearable? We discipline ourselves. We say "self-help or no help at all." "Take on my sufferings," says the complainer, but we will not. The degree of the soul, its greatness, is in the tone of its voice. Vocal tone and body tone hold all tension and anxiety. If the anxiety is overcome and controlled, then we gain power, and our casual gestures indicate power at rest. For the hysterical, a little provocation leads to miserable outbursts.

                The Pentecostal holy rollers, who make hysteria sacred, exactly mirror the demonically possessed, while yet being filled with their own supernatural "Spirit." Thus their religion serves a function for the whole Christian world -- all denominations transfer energies through the Body of the Church -- and gives all Christians a vicarious emotional release. So thinks the schizophrenic body of the Bride.

                Marriage systemizes pleasure. Marriage is not the negation of bliss, but its careful articulation. The more intimate a couple becomes, the more careful they must be. Just as institutions are the buildings that hold them, so is a marriage the home of the family, and the home is the body of the mother. Houses think, they think through us, we are the souls of the home. Emotions are spaces, and so we map our minds and bodies upon geography. A city really can be "the heart of the nation," and another, "the mind of the people." And wars do more than settle boundaries.

                Killing is identification, to kill is to assume. A country kills through wars, and through its televised trials. To hear a story is to participate. We share national symbols, which are forced into everybody. We can react against them, but we have to react. We structure our energies by internalizing symbols. A symbol is a network of channels for our energies, which, though differentiated, are given a satisfaction amongst equivalencies. Symbols translate our desires into realistic achievements, run our channels to flow and work.

                The inner channels are the human instincts, which build more than nature needs, and so require artificial articulations. In the dark, ropes look like snakes. We also have an instinctive dread of dismemberment, just as children fear being devoured, and so are fascinated by stories of the big bad wolf or little red riding hood. The instinctual is fascinating, and the magicians of language and stories know how to use these universal energies to fashion their symbols.

                Eventually our ideas get overladen with affect -- as one idea stands for another -- and because of this, subversive "poetry" can short-circuit the work. All subversion is possible because a language is cut off from the experience that created it. All we have of the writings of Democritus are atoms, yes, but even the ever-so studied scriptures mean something for us that it could never have meant for its writers. A meaning can be translated, but a beauty cannot. Beauty is expression, articulation is art. You cannot translate a poem. But meaning survives being formulated in thought, and language, so one meaning can create a wide range of arts, and many permutations of philosophies. In this, I am the Meaning.

                Writers become representative. Gass stands for bitterness, Zizek for resentment; Emerson is optimism, Nietzsche empowerment. They stand for moods and tones, they think for us. We may not see how much they inform our spontaneous thoughts. Worn shoes don't pinch. Those writers who were demonized by their contemporaries we take as being wonderful, if a bit quaint. Only if you permit yourself to be wrong can you finally be right. Such gods as the philosophers and artists gave us room to stretch our limbs, space to make mistakes wrong. Imagination makes painful choices preferable, it makes the harder thing to do the more pleasurable, so that we can be heroes through thinking ourselves so. Worrying pays no debts, but yesterday's trials are today's pride. We sing, "the more love, the more drama; the more money, the more worries," but a man must finally take root and live. If anger ends in shame, bear your burden on your own, follow your bliss, for a beauty seen is a beauty known. What we know we may become. Wolf the belly, hawk the eyes, god the mind, angelic thighs.

                Every sect is a quiltation of relevant scriptures. We too use national proverbs, we are not ashamed to take from any source. All world literature begs us to quote. Fools throw insults like boomerangs, but when we quote a thing we give infinite blessing upon it, an honor to the author of that idea. Choose wise minds to serve as auxiliaries. Make your friends into fingers and hands to do what you can't. We each have a sense of our rights and worthiness, and we maneuver ourselves neither higher nor lower than we feel we deserve, even though we pretend our actual station in life is beneath our desserts. Most people are lazy in either mind or body, but seldom are they both. When teaching a people, bank on their laziness. They don't want to read twice. We, however, write things that must be read continually for a lifetime to be fully understood. Is that cruel? But kindness can be cowardly, and more often so than brave. There is no fool like an educated fool, but greatness transcends envy.

                How easy to forgive a wrong that never touched you. Yet we drop all those games. We are not like the woman who first loved her man, and then, disillusioned, loved only love. We are not Platonic enough for that. We persist in loving our own, face to face. A coward would sooner die than defend himself, but we insist on our rights, and snarl at those who would impose or demand we be polite. We make no excuses -- we insist on ourselves.

                The fear of expansion, orgasm anxiety, avoids heaven on purpose, for God would snatch your mind from your necessity. We submit only on exacting terms. We love only upon commitment. We know that a man can intellectualize his moods without experiencing them, but we are the vital touch that is unafraid to grasp the fire. Rhythms are moods, we dance to our music as the tones of soul move through our blood. We dare to try, we will not be intimidated. We knot nots and we not knots. We say the Id yes and the I no. For I do know how to set the coordinates to my own life, I know how to play the game. Man is the symbolic animal. I become that child thing.

                Marriage is a noble form, but it is only a symbol. We must pour our own energies into it, and where we think we got "lucky" in choice of partners, the scales will balance; and if we ever wish to cheat or stray or lie, the truth is expressed somehow, even if it is never made known. The scales always balance, the universe compensates. Fidelity and sincerity are the speech of marriage. All relationships are conversations. Marriage is the conversation of intimacy, the creative intercourse by which families are borne. Marriage is an artform. And whether a man commits himself to a family, or a project, he would best do both, to have his job, his life-project, and his work, the creative trinity, and let each feed the others, and balance and check each other.

                Habits are cobwebs that grow into cables. The cables of pain, of infinite anxiety, are obstacles which anchor us if we don't comprehend them, but which support our towers if we do. Just as a bird cannot fly lacking gravity pulling it down, so all obstacles are auxiliaries when rightly understood.

                Instincts manifest as fantasies. We do good to consider them. The most fantastic fantasies seem merely to amuse us while yet communicating the hidden truth they represent. I used to in moments of anxiety imagine thrusting a railroad spike into my forehead. I was uncertain what such an image meant, but it was spontaneous, I didn't choose it. It represented the fantasy of self-impregnation and suicide at once, when we bring death and sex home to the self and unite the strange equation of knowledge and death. The ego negates, the self asserts. Those knots of love and fear make the dynamos of creativity, the triangular womb.

                A suicidal image eases an anxiety by putting a cap on a panic. Just as a person, embarrassed, exclaims, "I could just shoot myself!" the gesture is rhetorical. Nietzsche said on bad nights suicidal fantasies helped him sleep.

                The self is divine, it emanates Gods and Heavens. Auto-eroticism is our natural sacrament, Reflective Meditation before a Mirror our natural practice. The sun of the innermost self and the I of the mind above it, the freedom and necessity of our being, we celebrate every day, not by cutting the Gordian knot of our fate, but by tying the whole world in its logic.

                We set the cables of pain, with their infinite anxiety, we insulate them, we know how to use them. We deny no emotion or personal reality, we love the ego, we love the self, we integrate it all. We take ourselves allistically, and deny nothing, not even denial. This is the Door of Apotheosis, and when we Negate the I through ultimate independence, we Eternalize the Logic of our being, carrying the metaphor of our divinity into the great watchful Goddess, our marriage to the All.



\ ~@M@~ /



Tuesday, March 13, 2012

America's Most Powerful Essay!

Now free as an audiobook, read by Daniel Christopher June


This is the second essay out of Emerson's book, the Conduct of Life, which, after his first two series of lectures, is his most powerful work. This essay, just as the one before it, shows an Emerson who is not disillusioned of his optimism, but made stronger as that optimism has been challenged by the harsh realities of life. It is Emerson at his best, the inspiration of a nation.





\ ~@M@~ /



Thursday, March 8, 2012

"The Creative Womb" an allay

The Creative Womb


            The wisdom of our century is knowing that a world is made by interpretation. Some stubborn facts have an inevitable weight, but overall they style of our world is self-created. The Universe, who is all things and nothing, holds infinite worlds, and each person expresses herself into a series of worlds. Each world is a game, with its own rules, its own emphasis. We each choose the world that furthers our purpose.

            Poe did more than write macabre literature, but he lived a macabre life: the use of drugs and the projection of a gothic atmosphere made the reality he was comfortable in, the world he epitomized into his art. Art, after all, is the epitome of a world, the emphasis of the aspects of our world which we give to the public so we may share a world.

            The work of a work of art is in our apprehension and appreciation. The art works on us. When the art perfectly symbolizes the values of the creator, that art becomes itself artist, and fashions those who engage it in aesthetic contemplation. The symphony makes our lives a symphony, the dance makes our days a dance. As we see, so we are. Art holds the special ability to communicate worlds, to give us those stubborn experiences that we can't explain away. Art is formative.

            Our actions are submerged in language, our language is submerged in thought, our thought is submerged in meaning. From felt and definite meanings we set a logic, from layers of conflicting logics we make a language, from the desires and intents of language we make a living in the actions of our daily existence. Tone unifies. A book is one if it holds one tone, or a range of tones that unify into one overtone.

            The deepest of our memories is a sort of archetypical life-myth which we use to build our agenda. Our memories fall into an order of emphasis, a story, based on the river bed of that original myth. The personal myth is part inborn, part learned, and part chosen. We gain access to worlds, to mystics, philosophers, poets, and heroes, to the gods who subsume them, through art appreciation, including that special kind of art called religion, which is art framed as utter importance.

            Appreciation is an accumulation of interactions with the elements of a genre till they become prominent. We maybe have to hear a song a dozen times to know all the lyrics. The first time, only part of the chorus stood out. This same process characterizes falling in love. First, we see the beauty of the beloved. Next we learn of her goodness, of which the beauty is a symbol, then we learn of the reasoning by which she structures her virtues, and finally we learn about her meaning, her sense of life, her inner heart. Art cultivates grace. When we have studied a work of art, we have also mirrored a study of our inner being.

            Art is the culture which balances individuals with and against the all. Art is compensatory. Art balances. Ugly art is a balancing of an ugly situation, maybe giving the lie to saccharine idealists. Art expresses frustrated desires, let them flow and have free play. What is a desire, after all, but an obstructed action? We build with surplus energy, become restless, and look for creative expression. We lead mild lives and are oppressed by the ordinary. The tedium of our daily duties becomes intolerable. Eventually, we start to fantasize, to escape into literature, to dream of some adventure or some misadventure. Those fantasies are part of the creative womb of our daily life: they are part of the scene, objects in our world. We care about them because we mind them.

            The rites and ceremonies of religion and justice express the power of art: religions are modes of participatory art. Just as the Christian congregation sings hymns together as one on Sunday morning, so does the church body continue the dance of the community during their dispersion throughout the week. All religions are this way.

            The creator who chooses to create new forms, rather then creatively filling old forms, is always a danger to society. His floating emotions merge with his floating ideas in his unconscious, he begins to believe in himself, to insist on himself. His inner divine is able to make violence in the logosphere and mythosphere of our shared world, perhaps to fill a spiritual hole in the collective experience. He offers escape to the oppressed, for escape his freedom. He builds a new discipline, a new way of life. Common experience may be the subject of all great art, and also of those forms of art called religions, but each genre makes a difference, offers something only it can offer.

            Criticism is judgment, and sympathy is necessary to make that judgment. Only what we love can we know, for knowledge is love, just as truth is understanding. The knowledge of having experienced something transfers into the understanding of a criticism. We may, after all, hate a thing merely because our style clashes against it. Art is a stylized experience. All art is a consummated rhythm, a building of excitement and a release of resolve.

            Cities have rhythm which counterbalance the rhythm of states, nations, and the world. We all conspire together, we all breath the same air. Ama I call the Oversoul of America, but names never mattered as much as meaning. Art is part of our environment. Art sets the tone, music sets the rhythm. What are our internal emotions, after all, but themselves music? Art speaks a language of convention, a set of expectations, but so does all of life. All cultures have patterns and codes. We would not hate a tribesman if he in ignorance walked the streets unclad, but if an leering man did so, we would arrest him on charges of indecency.

            Science also gives us an environment. Science is the picking apart, the intellectual, and art is the putting together, the passionate. Art gives us our moral environment -- not the rules but the reality of our morality -- and science gives us the tools to criticize and challenge those rules. We inevitably absorb and identify with our surroundings: the man in the desert grows stark and callous, the northern folk are prepared for terror; religions are born in creative wombs, in literal environments, in climates and times. A religion universalizes and eternalizes when it is able to transcend its immediate environment, to apply to all men and not merely to a tribe.

            Art is the measure of a culture; morality is poetry stacked; art is a wind vein showing us what the future holds. History gestures to the past; science, philosophy, and religion gesture to the eternal; art gestures to the future. Worlds create art, make certain ideas and expressions seem inevitable to us, even unique and spontaneous, as if we hadn't absorbed a million ideas subliminally. Yet each man from his innermost self, that unique and divine name he is, sheds a positive addition to the universe, gives himself as a gift, and is able to create something that has never been created before, could never created again, and can only be created by you yourself. We emanate our being in all we do, and publish ourselves for all time into the universe.

            Art uniquely combines love and truth, beauty and power; art unifies work and play into a playwork, the work of art. Art is beautiful, so in the province of love, yet art inspires, shows us possibilities, gives us the desire to realize those possibilities in ourselves, shows us the ways to gain them. Art shows the world that a philosophy can make. A table of values, a way of loving, evokes certain modes of thinking, certain ways of creating our world.

            Our inner name resonates across the universe. Certain memories from our childhood resonate with it, stand out, and become our life story. The difference between a happy childhood and a bad one is mostly interpretation. And just as certain memories are selected to put the access and emphasis on our lives, so does our voice pick up invitingly when somebody comes near us who is after our own, who resonates with us, soul to soul. In this way, that central energy and power evokes our full fate, chooses the music that will move us, chooses the friends who will love and empower us, chooses the books we will read, puts the objects in our hands that belong in our hands. We come to this life to create, to create something of the world and of ourselves, to grow into divine beings. Once we know our purpose, all things fall into place like tumblers in a lock.

            The rock stars who indulge in sex, drugs, and rock and roll are not being extravagant. They need that world and those tools to foster a state of mind that can create and express that genre of music. Even if this particular band or that is able to get by on just the rock, that is only possible because the world of rock and roll has been set up by those who indulge.

            In the same way, we all set up oscillators which energize our world, which echo back our energy and intensify it, pressing us to seek the extreme of our own logic.

            We choose our forms and stay loyal to them. We marry ourselves to our forms, the ones we have commingled, individuality with community, self to world. We are inspired yes, but we also emanate: we emanate our own being with the breath of the muse who speaks to us. It is inspiration versus articulation, Dionysus versus Apollo. The inspiration has ambiguous form, the articulated, definite form.

            And so let us ornament our lives with intimate and evocative objects. A poster of our hero, paintings of our ideal scene, colors to go with our creative project, these are the environment of our creative womb. The diet we eat fuels that special thing we are each to do. You are what you eat. The very flavors and styles feed into your work and your play. The friends you choose balance you out, tempt you to go farther, warn you to mind your weaknesses. The books you read, the poems you love, though these are all chosen in reference to what you by nature love, once you become conscious of what your project is, you can more deliberately filter out distractions and impediments. Look long into your mirror, in that form of meditation called reflection. Repeat your name to yourself. Have a daily orientation where you consider your life goal and the goal of this decade. Reinforce all your work, push yourself to higher triumphs. Never let yourself be comfortable, but prod yourself to greatness.

            In this way we may create the creative womb by which we build the art of our lives, our very lives which are forms of art. In this way, we build our literal heaven, and we prepare our ethereal body. The very build of our muscles, the shapes of our face and nerves, reinforce that heaven, which in turn changes the mind, the I, our necessity. By giving our life theme music, a set of songs that reinforce our goals, diversify our purposes, and express every emotion of our heart, we gain momentum. All those resonators feed into each other and intensify each other. What we say to others and how we treat them changes them; they will mirror us, echo us, show us ourselves, become more like us, and we like them. Your full body is in your body of possessions, your full spirit is in the friends you hold, your full soul is in your sphere of influence, which reaches to the edge of the Universal All. There are worlds within worlds, and you are god of your world. Your words are magic, and create reality. Everything you do creates more you. The reward of virtue is more self. Good deeds do not get you into heaven; they show you are already there.

            In this way, those things that speak to us also resonate with us; what we love also loves us; we can only see the beauty that we already are; and because we are able to sincerely hope for a thing proves that we should hope for it, and in the stretches of eternity, the heart will always be answered.




\ ~@M@~ /



Tuesday, March 6, 2012

some notes toward an essay on "the distance of genius"


"The Distance of Genius"



                The central needs of mankind, with the core of material needs that necessitate themselves first, make every people's primitive years approximate the others. We would expect the same if high culture to be somehow wiped out (a favorite fantasy of Hollywood and the pious). However, a group is a group; all groups resemble each other. We all answer the same needs in similar ways. The genius is the one who can accomplish two things: expand his portion of culture a sphere above, and also link it back to the vital core. On his wings, high culture flies a little higher, but having grabbed that star from its sphere, he finds his way back in the fall of innocence, when freedom returns to necessity. With the genius a deeper necessity meets a higher freedom.

                Living in our modern cities, where we think we need cars, and the politically interesting distribution of their necessary oil, we have an abstracted society. I can work a 30 minute drive from my house, and drive back and forth each day. Of course this would be impossible a few centuries ago. Technology does what it always has done: distanced us from nature. As eating cooked foods led us to evolve an inability to eat raw food; as medical marvels allowed our weaknesses and deformities to thrive, so that most people must wear artificial lenses to see at all; so is every man more and more alienated from nature -- surely the best age to live in under the auspices of our dawn. With distance is freedom. Freedom is power, and power is the opposite of love. How then to regain the intimate touch, with all this distance? The psychoanalytic alienist who would analyze us further and farther apart is no help: they merely packaged their private fantasies as universal science. Religion is often helpful, but the pious are a mockery in all the Universities (which stand for man's relation to the Universe). We need a wisdom free from such sneering assault.

                Occasionally the criminals, the insane, and the criminally insane instigate immediate contact by direct violence. By violating the distance and shattering open an intimacy they give us something to look at, worry about, care about. As we judge them, we share in their experience. There is such bloodlust in justice. The reality television shows about cops and court cases and biographies of killers will put the lie to anybody who disagrees. We are voyeurs to the criminals; they are the darker celebrities, but they put on no less of a show than the angelic idiots who star in movies.

                The man of genius must be innocent of all that. That is, he must experience it, understand it, immerse, and then transcend. This is the worst of the world, the dirt we wash off in our daily showers.

                We make our whole lives a symbol for our truth; our life is the beautiful representation of the meaning we are and give. Genius is always the breaker of the limits of the heavens, that plucks a higher sphere from the celestial order, and brings back a new spiritual technology for his fellow gods, and later, for the people en masse. It is necessary for genius to build a higher heaven, grab its spermatic light, and fall into innocence, impregnating the purity of the inner hell with a new divine. When the circumference and the center kiss, worlds and orders are made anew.

                The universe was not created by the word, but by the music, the singing and humming of the Mother as she knit her being into the full glorious All. Intimacy emphasizes resonance, distance emphasizes cacophony. To get distance, a man may fixate on one small problem. Friendships end over a stupidity. But that is pretext. The real reasons are spiritual and final. Perhaps in that moment of stupidity I put a bit of my soul in your innermost. It is necessary we now fall away.

                The genius is ever distant from the common mind. The common mind is necessary, is even beautiful for what it is. But wisdoms taste ignores the call for humility, that ugly arrogance and patronizing pretense. The trope of those self-righteous imps mouths "I'm better than you, so when I act humbler than you, you should be truly humiliated." Those who bow deserve to bow. Those who stand will forever stand.

                The genius is in his flesh an eternal gift to the world. He does not bless the world, he is the blessing to the world, to heaven, to heaven's heaven, to God, to the gods, and to Ama, who is all of them. The shining one gives the logic, the language, and the story. The world gets the story simple enough, but doesn't pay attention to the language, the students get the language but don't get the logic. The philosophers get the logic, but don't get the meaning. The mystic gets the meaning, for he already knows it intuitively. The meaning, the logic, the language, and the story. We only see what we are ready to see. Who blinds us? Our own ignorance. Why does our ignorance do this? Because he is wise. Our omniscience clouds us in ignorance, because our soul is not prepared for the full light. We must in our being equal the greatest light. If we opened our eyes too soon, we would be followers of some other life, be followers and worshippers only, and lose the truth and possibility of shining higher than God and Being in our own growing self. The meaning of the mystic, the logic of the philosopher, the language of the poet, and the story of the hero: when we embody them, we will coincidentally see them in the world. For the one who claims he has, don't believe him. Perfection is no boaster. What God would want to impress a mortal? Beauty needs no praise, and Ama needs neither men, women, children, or plants to worship her: she is self-sufficient. She worships us. She leads us to join her in her exultation. Her kiss is the gift of exuberance.

                See that shining one? His eyes are a shield of judgment. We pull back and hide our shame when he passes. Those silly angels I am always falling in love with: their whole transcendence is in the lilt of their neck: by flitting their head afloat their neck, as if bobbing on thought, as if their mind were not part of their body, they too float through the world, and nothing ugly can reach them. When pain and ugliness does touch them, it is not their angel it touches. They are on that level always tranquil and focused. I cast eyes at the angels, and they follow me in entourage across the rainbow bridge.

                Understanding is acceptance. My brow is always the square of structuration. Do they laugh when we say such things as this? This wouldn't be true if they failed to laugh. They huddle in the shell of their own religion. Religion is, after all, organized importance. What is important? Whatever one patterns his life on, the basis of his life, that is his importance, no matter what he mouths in other directions. Mouthing pretenses is also important to him--what a man does exposes what he believes; his words only seem to confuse matters, unless one knows how to hear. Our will to power is in incorporating what the enemy has left out, of seeing what the others have blinded themselves to.

                The genius is an outcast, but that is merely the story of those who think they have cast us out. We walk in and out, we cross heavens and dimensions, and no world can bar our path; they say of our whimsical jaunts: we guide it, we cast them out, we pay them, we support them, we allow them. They are like the kid who commanded the setting sun to disappear, and then boasted throughout the twilight that the sun had obeyed.

                The world belongs to the ones who own themselves. The brave inherit the world. The Gods create new worlds.