Wednesday, September 4, 2019
3:45 a.m. “For a voice in my head, you ask good questions”! From today’s blog entry, from 2010.
Re-reading the conversation from 2010 that I posted on my blog today, I see that it was truer than I knew at the time. Then, I took it more or less on faith. Today, I can take it as the seed of what I did in fact experience. Everything is a split decision. Or, as the English say or used to say, What you gain on the swings, you lose on the roundabouts. If there is such a thing as an absolute good or an absolute evil, it may not translate in our 3D lives. Always there is a compensating opposite. But what we do get is about as much as we can handle.
Now, I wonder (a) what that graf meant, and (b) who was saying it? I thought I was thinking it, but by the end, I didn’t even quite know what it meant, let alone whether I believed it.
As you said, split decision. Part of you said it, part of you agreed with it, part of you quarreled with it, part of you didn’t quite get the gist of it. This is not the result of lack of attention, nor of split personality (whatever that would be), nor of divided feelings. It may be seen, rather, as increased awareness of a complexity that is always there but not always seen, or felt.
You care to say more? I get that you mean that we, who are communities of selves experiencing ourselves as individuals, sometimes experience our “community-ness,” to coin a word.
That’s correct, and it is like Jung on Joyce and Joyce’s daughter.
Jung told someone that the difference between James Joyce, the author, and Joyce’s daughter, who was under Jung’s care as a schizophrenic, was that they were both in the sea of the unconscious, only Joyce was swimming and Lucia was drowning.
[Not quite, though close. Wikipedia says “Lucia was analyzed by Carl Jung at the time, who after reading Ulysses is said to have concluded that her father had schizophrenia. Jung said that she and her father were two people heading to the bottom of a river, except that Joyce was diving and Lucia was sinking.”]
Similarly, as you experience your community nature, you may find it invigorating and liberating, or scary and in fact terrifying.
Thus the value of our little public strip-tease? [That is, as encouraging example for others, that they are not alone.]
Of course, and, of course, not only yours but that of many others at the same time, unknown to you as you are unknown to them. It is a matter of giving people a sense of the order of things, that they not be disoriented and lost.
The same friend I found referenced in the post today, written 2-9-2010, swims vigorously. I would gladly name him, were it not for the fact that one never knows the unexpected blowback that may come from the most innocent of disclosures. For myself, I am not particularly discreet; for my friends, I am.
Care is always appropriate.
So let’s spell it out once more, for the benefit of those who came in halfway through the movie. That is, for the poor unfortunates who have not had the benefit of a dozen books spelling it out as fast as you have given me the idea.
Still trying to sell books, we see. Well, no harm in it, but it isn’t necessary. As you have been told, the very expressing of an understanding is an achievement not to be lost, regardless if that expression then mounts to a higher level of achievement, of acceptance, of “success.”
At any rate –
As we spelled out at some length, the key to everything is “As above, so below,” for reality is made up of repeating fractal patterns, most particularly the 3D part of it. “Man is the measure of all things” meant, not “Mankind is the only thing that’s important,” but, “Everything at every level may be understood in relation to the human scale, hence in understanding who and what you are, you can understand the shape and pattern and dynamics of all things, by extrapolation and analogy,” – only the longer sentence is not a very snappy slogan, while the shorter one is easily remembered.
Thus, humans are communities, seen one way, and individual constituent parts of communities, seen the other. Like everything else in reality, it is a matter of scale.
Put it this way: Atoms form molecules, molecules form elements, elements form compounds, compounds form larger shapes and units. Or, structures are composed of parts, each of which is composed of units, of elements, of molecules, of atoms, ultimately of bound energy. Look one way, and it is an ever more intricate chain of being, look the other way, and it is an ever more intricate chain of being, but the thing you see depends upon the glass you see it through.
A human personality, far from being a simple thing, far from being a unit, is a community of units functioning as one. As an analogy, the cells in your body may be considered as communities of cells or as constituent parts of whatever unit they belong to. They are what they are, but what that is depends upon how you define it at the moment. You can’t say that a cell in your liber is “only” a cell rather than part of your liver; you can’t say that it is “only” part of the liver and not a cell. It is both, and cannot be only either. So with personalities, or call them individuals. You are communities of other lives; you are individual elements in other lives. Both, not one or the other. Reality has no absolute divisions.
Looking at this from a slight psychological distance, I see how strange and incomprehensible it will seem to any who have not gone through our long run-up to a different understanding. Can it possibly be made clear or even plausible?
Fortunately, that isn’t up to you, nor to anyone. Each person’s inner self will guide them to what they need.
I sure hope so! I don’t see how we could bridge the gap otherwise.
Remember, we bridged the gap. No one needs to (nor could) follow your particular path to understanding. Everybody gets their own, makes their own. Serving as nudge, as reminder, as encouragement, is quite enough.
To return to our starting-point today, my somewhat perplexed experience of writing and then wondering about it –
We never left the subject. Your understanding, like your experience, like your assumed self-definition, is going to wander. So what? Nothing lost and potentially something gained, for anything that gives you a more accurate experience of what you really are is potentially something that can be useful to you.
I read recently that Ram Dass is preparing to die, and is quoted as saying that he looks forward to it, but his body fears it. (I think that’s a fairly accurate paraphrase.)
And you wonder about your own manner of dying.
Of course. I envision dying like Thoreau, or Washington, calmly and without self-division, but of course how it will actually be is one thing I can never know until after the fact, which –
Hmm. I was about to say, “doesn’t do me any good now,” but then I thought, “Well, I could ask.”
Indeed you can. But if we say it “will be” this way or that way, what good does that do you?
Given that all possibilities exist and will play out. All right. Well, it is only a background wonderment anyway.
As to the question of who you are, bear in mind, there is always more to be learned, and how much you learn depends partly upon “circumstances,” that is, upon the “externals” that represent your hidden springs and condition, but partly too upon your interest and industry. Ask, and you shall receive. Knock, and it shall be opened.”
Thanks for all this.