Thursday, May 22, 2008

Don't Let the Door Hit You in the Ass on Your way Within

It feels like forever since I’ve been here. Writing “Spiritual Survival” has served to put this site on hold and maybe that’s not a good thing because too much Visible Origami has started to leak into Smoking Mirrors of late. Then again, the whole point was to start with Smoking Mirrors from a wider perspective and then narrow it down over time as the audience grew. This wasn’t something I knew was going to happen. It just happened. Maybe it wasn’t my intent either but I seldom know what my intention is before I experience the results of my reaching around in the darkness of my mind for obstructing furniture on my way to the door.

I suppose that in a number of ways I am as deceived as anyone out there. I am always expecting that the bad guys will get wiped out by some superior race from outer space that finally took pity on us, or die off like the invaders in War of the Worlds. Sometimes I imagine that some critical lever trips and everyone wakes up and the bad guys slink away in shame. Sometimes, waiting for sleep, I travel the world in my saucer and eliminate the bad guys; make their money disappear, make them all purple or lurid green and under two feet tall. I turn all their war planes and munitions into chocolate. Sometimes I just extract them all and resettle them into one of those plastic domes that you buy in souvenir shops. You turn them upside down and then snow falls on New York City or The Eiffel Tower. Then I put this on a shelf where I can go look at it now and then and shake it up and set it back down. I can speak into it and sometimes I do. No one knows what happened to these people and I never tell anyone.

Each day when I wake up they’re still there however. Evidence of their presence can be seen in the events of the preceding day, having passed through the state of the art media filters so that their victims are now officially the bad guys.

Yesterday I saw a series of pictures of some of the babies born since depleted uranium has been spread across Iraq and other locations. I won’t provide a link because you really don’t want to see them.

Today I saw where some of Obama’s chief money sources were Archer, Daniels Midland, several of the big Wall Street firms and a number of munitions manufacturers. I don’t see much ‘hope’ and ‘change’ in that but... how can you become the president without the backing of the people whom real awareness would demand that you shut down?

Given that my nightly journeys in imagination are not altering the landscape, I am left wondering just what anyone can do. It always comes back to seeking the peace within and working to widen the channel through which divine love flows.

Everyone that I admire changed the world through things like love, conviction and wisdom. Thinking about it, I realize that they didn’t actually change the world. They just changed some of the people in the world. If that’s all you can manage then it’s better than working for Archer, Daniels and Midland. I guess that’s what it comes to; something to do with ‘right livelihood’ as the Buddha declared.

I’ve pondered the world through many an hour and putting aside my wishing and hoping it appears... it really appears to be a lot like a watch with many gears working in synchronicity. Some of the gears are larger and some are smaller. They all turn at different rates according to size and placement because of some mysterious power that makes it all work. In the natural world it’s a given that everything is eating everything else. Many times the things eaten wind up eating the things that ate them later on (Once rampaging and ravenous forms are devoured by worms and beetles and turn to plants eaten by grazing deer). Should I be surprised that this carries over into our world? You could say we are not animals and should expect better of ourselves. Sometimes we get that too. It’s unfortunate that it has to come as such a surprise because of the rarity of the occasion but... when you read about the Gods you come across so much of the same things we experience here. The Bhagavad-Gita lays it out clear enough.

I believe there is a place where Krishna says to Arjuna that there is nothing better for a warrior than a righteous war. I know there are people who have found peace here and who have even managed a contagion or two of the higher virtues shared. When I look at their lives I often see that they achieved something within themselves that eventually spilled over into the world.

Given that the physical body is composed of elements at war with one another, things like yoga, meditation and ‘prayer without ceasing’; practicing the presence of God become wonderful dynamics by which something good can be realized from a world of suffering and perpetual loss. That seems to be the answer. Everything that surrounds you and attracts you is hollow and empty; mere specters that form beneath moonlight and then evaporate like mist and dew upon the rising of the sun. All of it is there to drive you within to where the real world resides. Everything that happens to you happens with this intention. We can continue in torment and regret or we can accept the truth that we can never possess anything that lasts except for the things that last.

We’ve heard some version of the phrase, “Change yourself and you can change the world.” We hear this like we hear so many things. We nod our heads, “Yes... that must be so.” ...and then we go right on as if we had never heard it at all. Now there is a real mystery.

Any fool could see that if you aren’t experiencing internal harmony that nothing is going to feel right as you move through the world. No matter how much money or fame or power you have, it will taste like ashes in your mouth. You’ll be worse off than those who have nothing at all or very little because you will know that nothing you acquired or attained meant anything at all. The only thing you will have is the illusion of doing well and the envy of others. For some that seems to be enough. I don’t know if it compensates for the disappointments but... some of us are different that way.

They don’t tell you that when you change yourself that the world you change is your own. Still, somehow it seems that it does change the world around you; just not the whole world but... why should your world be the only world? It looks like there is a world for every virtue and perversion on the planet. It’s like an enormous department store or apartment building with millions of rooms and you can find any condition you can imagine in one or the other of them.

Interestingly, you can do this in your head as well. Very few people are able to exercise their imaginations at anywhere near their potential. Some with no apparent and socially acceptable control over their imaginations are declared mad. It’s a given that the sanest among us, according to what has been revealed over time, were often considered to be dangerously insane. That may be why one of the most important things you can learn is to keep your mouth shut in circumstances where discretion proves to be the better part of valor. I’m guessing that if you are one of those whose job it is to speak that you’ve been blessed with a harder road.

Well... it’s all there if you want it. The same way that everything here is not anything you really want. Maybe things go well for you here and maybe they don’t. Maybe you can do something about that over time and maybe it can transform in an instant. It’s certain that you won’t find lasting joy, beauty, peace or any of those other desirable states and things on the outside for any length of time. It seems as if you have to find them in yourself for them to appear anywhere else so, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on your way within.

Visible sings: God in Country by Les Visible♫ Imaginary Queen ♫
'Imaginary Queen' is track no. 10 of 11 on Visible's 2001 album 'God in Country'
Lyrics (pops up)

God in Country by Les Visible


kikz said...

big smile :D

Ben There said...

Alas, we come to the same conclusion. Makes me think of something Ramana Maharshi said "...external reality is always a reflection of man's inner state." (Or something similar) Most of us can barely manage our own little corner of the universe, much less change the world. We weren't all meant to be Martin Luther King any more than we were all meant to seclude ourselves in a cave to meditate and shut ourselves off from the outside world. Now that I think about it, what would people like MLK, Ghandi, etc be without the bad guys? But then again, nothing justifies the injustice and man-made suffering that surrounds us on all sides, no matter what philosophical position I try to take in an attempt to rationalize it in my own head and reconcile it with my core belief that we live in a friendly and benevolent universe. I'm not the revolutionary or activist that you are but I have given these things serious thought and I always come back to this notion that I can't change the world but I can change myself.

Les - On a personal note, change is on the horizon for me...good change, but still big change for me. Didn't sleep a wink last night. I may seek your counsel on something but then again maybe not because I already know what you'll say.


Anonymous said...

"Given that my nightly journeys in imagination are not altering the landscape, I am left wondering just what anyone can do."

* * * * *

Potential Great Effects By Simplest Means Of Rhetorical Concrete Nuance, Adjustment
(Apollonian, 22 May 08)

I submit u're actually doing quite well--after all, u're still "kicking," so to speak, and u haven't given-in to lies and conspiracy. So just this not giving-in is encouragement by itself to those who know u, never doubt.

Observe u still retain that passionate resentment of conspirators who so cruelly off-ed around 3,000 people on 9-11--this is indubitably additional good sign for health, spirit, and youth.

But note there are often improvements (as for advocacy, etc.) we all can look for and strive after.

As observer (of rhetoric) I note a distinct parallel btwn u and Ron Paul, candidate for US Pres. Both u and Paul have a tendency or "bias," such as it is, to the ABSTRACT, Paul esp. indulging in intellectuality--this abstractness then losing a lot of people, surely, esp. regarding Paul, for crucial issue regarding conspiracy.

Observe then how Paul talks about "inflation," and "printing money," regarding that central, crucial Federal Reserve Bank (Fed) instrument (see for expo/ref. on Fed fraud/conspiracy). And observe then how these things are really so ABSTRACT, again, esp. the word, "inflation."

Where Paul thus is failing, inasmuch as he could be succeeding for rhetoric much more effectively, is in omitting to make his abstractions, esp. regarding thematic "inflation," more CONCRETE for benefit and understanding of huge and significant masses of voters and citizens.

And this concrete rendition I speak of, specifically, has to do with real, thus PERCEPTIBLE, nature of aforementioned "inflation" which actually is COUNTERFEITING.

And the pt. then is so many people/volk would understand thereby the otherwise abstract issue of "inflation" and the Fed much more precisely, hence much more effectively, in more down-to-earth and realistic terms.

And folks would see then most perfectly and precisely the very problem, the essence, as such "inflation" is translated to COUNTERFEIT fraud, the problem with which then becomes most obvious and needs hardly any further explaining, even to adolescents or some older children.

Understood then by means of such use of concrete word, "COUNTERFEITING," inflation and even economics becomes far easier to grasp for the volk/people/citizenry/public, extending, as I say, even well into the more youthful.

For obviously, economics crucially depends upon sanctity-of-contracts among the people, hence then rule-of-law principle.

Thus the strategic political/psychologic and rhetorical battle becomes more understandable, the people against these COUNTERFEIT conspirators--most of the poor people without a serious clue--but which could be much alleviated by simple means of improved rhetoric, by means of use of such CONCRETE term as I submit, "COUNTERFEITING" scam/fraud/conspiracy.

For observe then use of such CONCRETE term as "counterfeiting" so largely and completely takes mystery and vagueness out of the large economic/social issues regarding otherwise abstracted "inflation," Fed, etc.

It becomes then not a matter of conflicting abstracts or political/ethical issues, etc.--but simply a matter of poor, honest people, so many of them struggling to get even the slightest clue for things, AGAINST CRIMINALS, that's all--no mystery, no room for mistake, no pretense to ideals or "principles," except perhaps that basic principle regarding aforementioned rule-of-law utility in general economics.

CONCLUSION: Finally, I'll end by noting I'm sure u understand the basic utility of concretes making abstracts real, useful, and most meaningful. I just wanted to emphasize that specific concrete, "counterfeiting," which gives most and best real meaning to that otherwise vague abstraction, "inflation," this as concerning Ron Paul rhetoric, already so notable, but which could so much stand even further improvement which we were considering and analyzing on ur other blogsite, "Smoking Mirrors." Honest elections and death to the Fed. Apollonian

Visible said...

Duke, or God send, or whomever. As you will note, I do publish your comments when they are reasonably critical of the material. I draw the line when you get into repeatedly sniping at me which is just a blind for your desire to supplant me in all things and push your agenda with nearly the same diatribe every time.

There's more latitude for that sort of thing at Smoking Mirrors. But I'm trying to run an honest tavern here and maintain a more or less friendly environment. I do this because it makes me feel good and because I believe that the majority of readers want the same thing. It's a rare thing to bump a comment but I have to exercise my judgment in this regard.

Hopefully this will make you choose your words more carefully and we can all feel inspired here and no one will be getting so boisterous that the bouncer has to come by your table to ask you to please keep it down. If we featured rock bands and that sort of thing it probably wouldn't matter so much but we've only got the one small stage and nowhere near a full house most nights.

Anonymous said...

The door was very gentle with me.

It has always been open, but these eyes were so clouded that seeing could not happen or only seldom.
With various writings, including yours, I found the way-in within and more beautifully found the way to return there after my outbound journeys.
Still very much in the world, but not so easily attached to the stories and the pain.
I really appreciate what you wrote about today.
I don't believe we can change the world or ourselves.
I think all we can do is to be open enough for change to happen. And we do not need to "do" anything for this to unfold.
For many of us it is happening automatically.

"external reality is always a reflection of man's inner state"
there is also "as within, as without"

Anonymous said...

It is a beautiful work you have done with this. The song is more beautiful still. The irony and double meaning. Do you think people get what you are doing there? I mean generally?

Some day you will be very famous but I think you may not be here when it happens. This is not a reflection on what is popular in this age.

Narada Devi

Unknown said...

Hi Les,

I had a funny thought yesterday. I thought, what if there really was nobody else in the whole world but me, and all the other people I think I see are there but they're more like holograms on some great big holodeck; and I'm supposed to overcome all of the myriad things I use as excuses and figure out how to get up and go save the world. That's my test. To break through the walls I've got that I subdue and limit myself with and just let it all bust loose and start walking East, because I just have to stop this war and the killing and all of the lies. And what if everybody had their own similar private world and the same task?

And then I thought, nah. Because I would just hate that so much. It would be so rude to think there was actually something inside me already that I just had to find and it could change the world that profoundly. It would make me a schlub for not letting it kick in already and get this thing done.

I finally realized that no one changes the world. The biggest job we all have is to get real with ourselves, to face our own being and scrutinize it and find the icky parts and coax them out and with kindness, eradicate them. Taming my inner monkey is an ongoing frustration. It seems the harder I try the more of a rascal it becomes. The fact of the matter is the monkey is at the wheel and I'm in the back seat trying to get it to drive me where I want to go, but it would rather dive into junk food and do things that make it feel sensually happy. I can't use logic on it, I can't try to brow beat it, and as of yet I haven't found what it takes to gain its cooperation on the biggest issues.

What I find so confusing is why we all have to spend so much of our time battling ourselves. Just to gain the inner cooperation we need in order to get our own houses in order is for many of us, an impossible dream. Lots of folks seem to me to just give in to the funny animal driving their life vehicles around, and they even laugh when they run over somebody.
Maybe there's nobody else in the car besides that evil little monkey. In my case I'm perfectly well aware that I'm in here along with Mr. Fuzzy because he drives me up the wall to the point of wearing me out. Why do you do this to me Mr. Monkey? It's every bit as bad for you as it is for me? Have you no common sense at all?

NO. He says. I don't and I don't have to. And he stomps on the accelerator pedal and laughs as I go through my 57th whiplash of the week.

My question to you would be, assuming that made any sense to you at all, what can one say to their inner monkey
to get it's willing, enthusiastic cooperation? Have you discovered any tactics or angles to come at it that have proven effective? It feels like when I was younger it was easier to gain the cooperation of my whole self and when that happens of course, a great deal can be accomplished. But these days all the parts of me are so tired and ineffective that I almost have to wonder if there's something interfering from the outside. It's hardly a complete stretch. But how likely it is, probably not so much.

At any rate, if you might have any insights to share along these lines please do. It's obvious to me that it does require more than my sheer will to solve this problem. Any help would be gratefully appreciated.


Anonymous said...

I can't help in any way.
Loved your writing. I don't think you need any help. Clarity is as clarity does.
Whenever I find myself reaching outwards for anything outside of myself - even world peace and such - there is a contraction.
If I put everything back within myself and just need to reach inside, then there is flow.

Visible said...

Hey Ang;

I just reposted your comment over at Smoking Mirrors so that The Village Idiot could see it and because I just went though something exactly like you were describing.

It's not just you Ang. It's the state of the world at this time. The density and press of the darkness is often overwhelming.

The truth is that there is only so much we can do on a personal level. The truth is also that there is a power within that is eternally greater than anything external to it. It is what must handle these conditions, not us. Think of Arjuna sitting in the chariot with Krishna behind him.

We have to consciously surrender everything that confronts us to the superior power within. This in not going to be comfortable a lot of the time. It has to become an automatic response and that is like shoveling dirt out of a never ending hole.

The key to the capacity to practice this lies in meditation. You have to meditate every day and let the periods increase as you become more comfortable with it. Another key is to empty your mind of whatever tries to enter. The space this creates will trigger you intuition. It's a bit of practical magic.

I'm telling you this but I know it's not easy. It just ran me ragged for several days. So another key is to understand that even if you fail a hundred thousand times you DO NOT quit. He who does not quit cannot fail.

It is important to make the mind understand that you are convinced that the power within you is greater than anything outside and greater than the mind as well.

The mind is truly an unruly monkey. You can trick it. You can gain control of it by watching it at work and realizings it's primary operation is deception. When the mind comes under control then what was your greatest enemy becomes your greatest friend.

Visible said...

Dear Friends;

I will be gone for at least a week. I'll try to have something new when I get back





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