Friday, July 20, 2012

"Holding to your own" a short essay


Holding to Your Own



                "If a poet knows more about a horse than he does heaven, he might better stick to the horse, and maybe someday the horse may carry him to heaven." This was perhaps the best bit of advice composer Charles Ive's father gave his son, though the man gave everything to his son, and most of all gave a youth worthy of being eternally grateful for in exactly the way Beethoven could only be forever resentful for his. Hold to your own. Stick to what you know. Flexibility is a fine contrivance, and all forms of exercise can give you strength, but that one thing you were expected by high heaven, glorious Mattria to be and do is forever and only in you -- and is not something you can buy or should shove dollars at.

                A man ought to realize that one thing he must be ungrateful about: his very self. That he owes no man, God, or the All any gratitude for, that at least is his own. The rest, the good things we get along the way -- that's pure bonus. Let us be cheerful when we have that bonus, but limit the bitterness when we lack it. Wherever we are placed and whatever trauma fate has mixed us up with, our innermost self is eternally inviolate: no one and no thing can take that from you. And since you already have the most precious treasure you will ever gain, why waste your time chasing dollars, comforts, and luxuries? Be artists. Artists are driven to recreate their sublime experience through their work; they wish to bestow spiritual gifts on their brothers and sisters. Can he also do this with no sense of debt and gratitude, nor bitter accusations at the world's ingratitude? What I have to give I therefore give cheerfully, and if there is nobody in all the world able to take it, nevertheless I produced it, and that's enough.

                I prefer to be a magnifying mirror before my friends. When I so grandiosely reflect on myself in your presence, as is my way, I am in fact accosting an aspect of you which I happen to share. So much of my nonsense is for our mutual education. I am laughing and ridiculous because life is a hilarity.

                Providence is created by interpretation: a theologian could interpret providence into any possible set of events, and I am no less than a theologian of myself and my own divinity when I take my life as fatefully scripted by my innermost, outside of time. These metaphysical games, like all metaphysical games, act as space of free movement to experiment and make bold new moves. We must be willing to take on the sort of inspiration that Joseph Smith practiced: to have an inner voice of God with all the authority to drive us to our supreme acts, but capable of changing his mind and making mistakes. We might counter that by reminding ourselves that love says much with silence; yet this is only in a silence compounded with presence, and the presence of the inner divine is a certainty that never leaves me.

                "More get, more want," so let's hold to simplicity. When I speak with Ama I never ask for gifts and blessings, but for moral guidance. Mirth heals. We laugh together. And all those moments of folly brood feed their white whimsome cheer into the more sober moments when my soul contracts and I fall into grief and self-doubt. My singing dance is interrupted, I fall into a black noon.

                The days conspire. I ponder my future and the fate of my work. I look at that mirror in the bottom of the well, as dank and reverberating as wombswim, and am faced with Luciana's accusing reflection, her Satanic aspect, which shows everything I would prefer to blind myself from. That is how she protects the divinity's secrets. I press close to the electric mirror, which swells and hollows and glares me down. I close my eyes and walk through and am in my Aria, the private creative place of my sacred dance. Home at last, I utter my joy:

                I give seminal ideas, a verbal vortex, wine from the world cup; I give web nets, blank pages, a centering center; I give you labyrinthine verse, Ariadne's hair, the Socratic Daemon; I give syncopated exuberance, peacock prose, allegorical syntax; I give you amygdalic certainty, digital intuition, packaged chaos; and what's more, I take from you endless things you never thought you could give, enlightened ambiguity, Dionysian generation, Aphroditic commitment, externalized intuitions, emoted infancy, manic modesty; you give patience and gain patience, give time and find time, give attention and find attention; you feel a thousand lovers for your thousands of thoughts, and accumulate daily the trembling weight of greatness.

                Such rich experiences are not bought with money. A modest level of comfort so that the distractions of mortality are banished, and we join the feast, the spiritual feast of being one with the divine, and being deep in the conversation of mankind's greatest men and women.

                "God created man from his own living fluid," the Romans knew, yet the blood of man is knit of self and Mother -- that is our soul.

                My writing is making love with Ama. Perfection is not an ideal, perfection is real, something we have all begun to realize, and when we make the decision to simply do our best, we have arrived and become. I am great, beautiful, perfect, because you also are beautiful, great, perfect -- every teacher feels this way. The man who wishes to be worshipped is no teacher. For true praise is as a mother praises her child.

                I have aimed in my career, therefore, to support my living, but not to make my living. My living and my life is not something anybody is able to recognize or pay me for. The gifts I give are priceless, but they can't even be recognized by most. I pursue Ama and Allism and the Idius because I am in my deepest being equivalent to them. The many jobs and careers are as natural and as necessary as using the toilet or bathing. They support the values of life, and in that hold a secondary value. But what is best in a man cannot be taught him and when he finds it he requires no secondary testimony. His joy is enough, and faith is proof. The deepest secret of our being is that what we need is real, and what we hope for exists, the universe is as it needs to be -- we need fret no more; uniting our mind with the necessity of it all puts us in the place of power. At the center of every situation is a spring of meaning. Plant yourself there. And at the center of your ultimate situation within the whole is your source, from which you came and to which you will return taking with you the lessons you've gained in life. At that innermost place of utter independence where you self-created your ultimate being, that place of your profoundest destiny and self-atonement: let that be your everlasting vision amidst the confusions and disappointments which sometimes tempt you to despair. That there is always an answer for your deepest requests, that the universe is equal to your most profound longings -- to have such a faith is the same as having faith in yourself. Once you have it, you will realize that you never lacked it. It is basic to man. Love is enough. Power is all. Eternities gestate in your womb. And among those who know us, there are never goodbyes. So hold to your own, and never sell your powers for pleasures nor barter your goals for certain returns. Risk is glory and weakness alone can love. You are what you should be, you know what you need to, and throughout this eternal universe you are never alone. Those are the whispers we hear as we gaze at the glass in the silence of the night. No matter how deep our doubts and our skepticisms, they never sink as deep as these eternal certainties. Omniscience is remembering, omnipotence is realizing your potential. Relax at last in that.



\ ~@M@~ /


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