Monday, January 03, 2005

Living in the Best of All Possible Worlds.

History is filled with extraordinary things; the creation of the King James Bible, the story behind the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary, the triumphs of individuals against systems, the works of grand art demonstrating the evidence of something finer in human nature when united with a higher inspirational source. Science is constantly turning over new rocks. We do marvels with electricity; but does anyone actually understand the thing itself?

We find that there is a direction in which Science and the molding of social order move. It appears that they seek to move in two directions. One direction is for the benefit of comfort, profit and the profit of select groups. The other direction is for the benefit of all. A study of the doings of the Royal Academy over the years reveals some interesting goings on. One might ask Galileo and Copernicus if Science was a good career move.

Hassan I Sabbah AKA The Old Man of the Mountains said, “Nothing is real, everything is permitted.” Hashish would support the first view and History gives evidence of the latter. So what of Justice? Do things balance out over the long run? All the little murders and assorted crimes that go by the way, are they resolved down to the last jot and tittle?

Are certain things wrong? Are certain things always right? Is there a definitive system of absolute measurement? Am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a man; soon to awaken and find that the reverse is true, or vice versa?

Look at some of the monumental tragedies of our world. It could be said that some have profited mightily in the aftermath of crimes against them and crimes committed by them. Sometimes it is difficult to locate the real perpetrators of the crimes. Is the cell-phone a positive invention? Is the convenience of ready made food a boon to the human race? Is being fat a plus, given fats insulating ability?

Did anything actually come from the place they said it did? Henry Ford said that “History is bunk.” I’m inclined to agree with him. You can easily see how the recording of events is designed to favor those who are making the records. Someone said that “History is written by the victors.” So there is an argument that nothing we are told is correct. How can you expect to be in touch with the truth when you are surrounded by lies? And if you are in touch with the truth; doesn’t that make you a liability to everything that surrounds you? There’s a motivation for keeping your mouth shut. Of course these days one doesn’t need to be murdered to achieve silence. There’s a very effective machine in place to discredit anyone with the temerity to speak up.

A capacity for laughter, a natural inclination for laughter will resolve every vile absurdity into motes of sunlight. Children dance there.

Is there a point to seeking Justice? Is there a point to getting involved in the affairs of the world with the intention of balancing the scales? Is there? Sometimes it does seem that the only benefit is for your own growth and that growth might well lead to the revelation that you’ve achieved nothing, that it was all done through you, or that everything you did made things worse. How can we know what’s right when we don’t know what’s right?

When a child makes a mess trying to eat, usually you don’t send the kid to reform school. The same can be said of elementary pottery students, violin students or novices of all sorts. If a child grabs a tablecloth while trying to walk and pulls a dish to the floor, what then? That’s the human race in all its parts. The demands for appreciation of bad constructions release armies of critics; fine demonstrations of inspired work beyond understanding release armies of critics.

It could be that everything we did was okay and that everything everyone did to us was okay. Maybe everything is okay no matter what it is. Possibly there was no alternative under the circumstances. Maybe everyone did the only thing they could have done given the level of their understanding at the time. “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.” There is a distinct possibility that everything is exactly what it is supposed to be.

Our minds are filled with badly recollected memories of the past, vague hopes for the future and blurred comprehensions of the present. We’re a bag of guilts and resentments; we regret what we have done and we seethe over what was done to us. But everything that happened has led us to where we are. I submit that it was all worth it. Some of my big mistakes were directly responsible for major awakenings and profitable circumstance. So, were they mistakes? Certain individuals, without any real justification, tried to destroy my life. Some of these were individuals that I helped out. Now where’s the sense in that?

Some individuals have an inordinate aversion to me that has no logical basis on the surface. I don’t care for modern art, music, or a host of individual presenters, based on my tastes, but I’m not on a jihad about it. I see the signpost telling me the bridge is slippery when wet. Isn’t it interesting how people will try to stop you from going somewhere when it has no real relationship to them at all?

It has all been worth it, every single bit. My father was a tyrant of immense proportion. He beat me into the ground. It seemed for a time that everything beat me into the ground. I had an adult ulcer at the age of 12. The doctors were astounded. I was constantly accused of things I didn’t do. I lived in a state of continuous humiliation that approaches the comedic in its absurdity. Candide and I were walking hand in hand. Even when I managed to get away finally, I wound up in prisons and mental institutions and the grief just kept on coming; Shakespearean betrayals, my own intransigence and refusal to knuckle; still, rapture and well-springs of joy bubbled amidst the wreckage. The entire envelope of my life was destroyed over and over again; sometimes in reverse serendipity and sometimes for no explicable reason. It was all worth it. Everything had a hand in the mix.

Every creative act over which I labored was distorted, aborted, delayed, badly packaged and ill received and yet I was unable to stop in the face of it. It has all been worth it. There is no blame and no one did anything wrong. No man is my enemy; they are all doing the best they can, given what they think they know. I imagine that I took the shortest route to the goal so that the suffering was maximized and compressed. Justice has been done at every turn. I just never understood what Justice was.

Everybody is off the hook as far as I am concerned, including me. I’m not in the punishment by proxy role for myself anymore and I wouldn’t know where to start with anyone else. It doesn’t matter what is in the minds of others. Whatever prisons of thought people have woven for themselves does not affect the efficacy of my skeleton key. They’ll find their way. I don’t need forgiveness and I don’t need to forgive. I need to understand. Understanding is the key. There’s no reason to feel sorry about dishes you broke in your attempts to walk. We got more dishes. Pain has ever been the ox-goad that pushed the life to its fulfillment. The lash has become a caress. It was all a matter of degree. Once you know the manner of approach a simple touch on the shoulder indicates the way. The way is how you go and that is where you go. Heaven begins where your feet touch the ground.



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The3rdElf
The 3rd Elf