From here, we look so small. While those who have made different choices, about truthfulness, and ethics, and valuing, have found the center values of human culture that seem to allow them to be supported in high style, by what we humans apparently find most valuable. They fly about in private and corporate jets, and send their children to camp in those same jets. No more road trips to summer camp. I wonder if these children ask the pilots; “are we there yet?”
Where is the true value of our lives? Is it in hyperbole, of an artificial allegiance to some black and white assessment of the stratified will of some radical group? Such a rigid dichotomy will of itself consume itself. And that is the lie that a militant viewpoint fosters. That purity of ideology says that there is no room for another viewpoint. If we are “fundamental” enough, we will be “safe,” say the control freaks.
Though we may yearn for such an Euclidian “purity” of “form,” its already too late. From the moment of the Big Bang, there was a plurality. Anyone who seeks to deny this plurality, denies vitality itself. If we are pure, we are dead. Not even the stars, especially not the stars, nor the black holes that they will become, are ever “pure.”
I cling to the idea of a kind of power that results from a deep inner alignment to the truths of the cosmos. These are beyond any kind of posturing, or accumulated wealth, or position, or connections that accrue through family, fiat, or corporate whoring. Though it must be said, as it was so long ago, that thieves recognize one another- this idea goes back to a kind of resonance between personalities, but that topic is not what this essay is about.
There are these infinite pathways by which we can come to know the infinite. Each of them tailored to the demands of the moment, and the ways that our complex adaptive systems of conscious iteration happen to attempt to make a personality, or a “self.” I’ve been chastised by more than a few powerful people to be full of care about using such a “slippery” term as “the self.” Yet it is this term that has such fluidity, such flexibility, in its opening to a simultaneous embrace of individuality, collective awareness, and cosmic wholeness.
Maybe those at Harvard or Yale or Berkeley already covered these topics of human questions in their beginning philosophy classes. How is it that we continue to re-enact these discoveries? And truly, how do the Chinese shed light, in perhaps a most patient, compassionate, and humoring fashion, on the human experience?
They struggled with a mistaken nihilism of Buddhism- and yet the Tao continues to be present. Several philosophers, Chuang Tzu, Lao Tzu, and Confucius, to be later revived by Cheng Yi and Zhu Xi, cut to the chase, and were able to track to the deepest core, the iterative complex adaptive systemic qualities of the cosmos. But they couldn’t talk about it like that, because language is always too separating. They could only allude to it. But skillfully they did, with a holistic language that allowed layer upon layer of more exquisite meaning; an understanding of the hologram-
For the language (of ideograms; Mandarin) is the language of poets. It and of itself, it incorporates, for those who are native to it, the subtle beauty of the complete participation of human beings as parts of the vital expression of the cosmos. In English, a couple of our masters were Shakespeare and Yeats. They knew, the deeper we look, the more there is to see. (Marks-Tarlow 2009) The more we accept, the more we become who we are not, we who are more than we are; parts of ourselves, talking to one another.
©2011 Anthony S. Wright, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved.