Tuesday, February 9, 2010
7:15 AM. I woke up and realized that it was only a dream — only, it didn’t seem like a dream. It was like the whole thing, dream and reality, is mixed up and shaken together. I thought I’d moved elsewhere and started a business that failed. I had to work myself backward to remember that I hadn’t. One of my friends is wondering about changed reality streams. He keeps seeing obits of people that he knew were already dead, or even that they are still alive and he remembered them dead. I don’t do that; I remember lines in novels or movies very distinctly, and when I reread or re-view them, the line isn’t there at all. “And you don’t know nothing about it,” big Dave says in the movie “The Man Who Wasn’t There.” I can see it and hear it. But isn’t in the movie, at least, not in what I looked at yesterday.
What’s going on, guys?
You know the theory. Growing to experience it is something different than thinking about it or even believing it.
It’s like everything else I have been experiencing for 15 years – 17 years, whatever. Is it true? Am I making it up? And it’s always circular, because I can prove it only in its own terms – like talking to you.
That’s true. But you can’t prove the version of reality you were fed from infancy, either.
No, but that one has a lot of evidence around it, supporting it.
As does this one, evidence that continues to gather.
Or that I continue to gather around myself.
Well? Isn’t that what you would expect?
Again, circular. Either way. The fact that I have
No, you’re right. The experiences outer and inner support this view. It isn’t just subjective feelings on my part.
So – your question is, or ought to be, what’s happening, why, and what does it mean to me?
Consider the questions asked.
Speed. That’s one factor. You’re fast and you’re used to being fast. Speed doesn’t scare you and doesn’t particularly disorient you.
That’s one. Your comfort with uncertainty is another. Hyper-communicating is a third. Love and a strong need to receive and convey affection, another. Or two, if you care to count that way.
All these things make you who you are. Energy. Strength. Without all of them, your total mixture is different. You couldn’t do the job.
The job Kelly saw, years ago? Remembering the process of growing up?
Not of growing up, of waking up. And yes. Remembering it and communicating the states along the way while you are remembering. That’s the value of Muddy Tracks and will be the value of other memoirs including the snatches on the blog.
And I’m experiencing another growth spurt?
You are moving with the times, put it that way. Where is your political ambition? Your desire for enough money for a big place? Where is your active burning desire to be somebody, to have done something? To be famous and successful?
Yes, and that is to the good, is it not?
It seemed peculiar, reading the two John D. McDonald science-fiction novels, as though for a reason.
Sci-fi always made you think with your imagination.
I tend to think in terms of writing stories or, usually, books.
Yes, think in terms of doing so – but how often do you actually do it, and how far do you get when you begin?
Meaning – it isn’t my real intent.
Isn’t your real objective. It’s just the stereotype you hold within you. Anything you know, it’s going to be expressed in writing. But that’s just an idea in your mind.
So if not writing, what? Dealing with people one-on-one is rewarding.
But relies on another person being available, right, and what do you do when you’re alone?
Well think, here. What do you really want to accomplish?
For a voice in my head, you ask good questions. That one stopped me dead.
Stopped you alive. Tried to wake you up, it’s time.
What do I want to accomplish? What do I really want?
It isn’t knowledge and it isn’t power. Both of those are nice but they are like fringe benefits. They come along with what I really want, which is – Well, what is it? Can you tell me, or do I have to figure it out in order to have it?
Maybe it’s more the other way around: You need to have it in order to figure it out. Once you have been told that you are missing things around you, you start not missing them, and as your perceptions change, your world changes, your ideas change, and your understanding of meaning changes.
I get the feeling that the Internet course, more books, teaching in any form, interaction with others, introspection without content, are all dead ends or anyway distractions, as though I were trying to climb a hierarchy.
But that means that by definition I don’t know what to do or how to do it. If I knew, I’d already be doing it – or, come to think of it, I might be doing it but not noticing it, which I think is what you just said. So – what do I do? I read, I ponder, I daydream, I play Free Cell and ponder and daydream, I shovel snow. I talk to Nancy on the phone, once in a great while I pick up a paintbrush – what is all that?
Awakening. Dropping out of the dream, to the largest extent yet. Quitting television helped, dropping newspapers helped, giving up your job (and consequent interactions) helped. Leaving your wife helped. Slow down. Just, slow down. Don’t go running toward more activity. Slow down, and slow down more. You can’t know your destination before you get there, if it is truly new to you.
What do I ultimately want depends on what part of me were talking about, doesn’t it? Which self-definition.
You’re getting there. Keep going
There is a mini-version of myself that has one level of perceptions and therefore motivations, and it wants what it wants, either much or little or even nothing. There is another level that perceives other ways, thinks other ways, and therefore values in other ways, and so it wants different things than the first, but again, much or little or nothing.
The more-connected self wants connection, direct knowledge, straight flow-through. Little or none of that can be translated, but the less connected self is heavily into translation, and values communication as its function in the world. A less connected level than that, valued place, reputation, prestige, whatever.
Now. You know what you want. On one level, communication of direct experience. On another, the experience for its own sake – or rather, the living at a level that has such experience as a side effect. These are not contradictory nor mutually exclusive. There is not only nothing wrong with your having two levels of being, it is right and necessary, for you are mammal and mind, or body and soul if you wish to use or conventional terms. All parts of you have their rights and privileges, and all parts are to be honored, respected and exercised. That’s the formula for happiness and correct function.
I’ll share this with Nancy, of course.
Which fulfills both purposes. The communication assists further growth, for each.
I see it.