today's snippets are maybe a bit morose, but no reflection on the present.
yesterday was a feel good day, spring is knocking at the door, although we still have more snow on the way yet. change and rebirth arrive inevitably.
send out the singers -- let the room be still;
they have not eased my pain nor brought me sleep.
close out the sun, for i would have it dark
that i may feel how black the grave will be.
the sun is setting, for the light is red,
and you are outlined in a golden fire,
like ursula upon an altar-screen.
come, leave the light and sit beside my bed,
for i have had enough of saints and prayers.
strange broken thoughts are beating in my brain,
they come and vanish and again they come.
i cannot stop this trip
i forgot to pack the brakes
crashed straight into a concrete wall of my mistakes
ended up in a cemetery of a thousand wasted days
but that's alright with me
'cause that's where most of my memory lays
"hermione," i said, "we are old enough friends by this time, so we can deal frankly with one another. tell me on the square . . . did you get it?"
"mr. harton, i am going to ask you some questions, and i hope you will answer them. i feel that i am entitled to some knowledge, because i and my family are just now in a most ambiguous position."
g: can i have no friend?
m: revenge shall be thy friend; thou need'st no other.
perhaps the greatest difficulty or stumbling-block to the general acceptance of the belief in a third (or 'golden-age') phase of human evolution is the obstinate and obdurate pre-judgment that the passing of humanity out of the second stage can only mean the entire abandonment of self-consciousness; and this people say--and quite rightly --is both impossible and undesirable. throughout the preceding chapters i have striven, wherever feasible, to counter this misunderstanding--but i have little hope of success. the determination of the world to misunderstand or misinterpret anything a little new or unfamiliar is a thing which perhaps only an author can duly appreciate. but while it is clear that self-consciousness originally came into being through a process of alienation and exile and fear which marked it with the cain-like brand of loneliness and apartness, it is equally clear that to think of that apartness as an absolute and permanent separation is an illusion, since no being can really continue to live divorced from the source of its life. for a period in evolution the self took on this illusive form in consciousness, as of an ignis fatuus--the form of a being sundered from all other beings, atomic, lonely, without refuge, surrounded by dangers and struggling, for itself alone and for its own salvation in the midst of a hostile environment. perhaps some such terrible imagination was necessary at first, as it were to start humanity on its new path. but it had its compensation, for the sufferings and tortures, mental and bodily, the privations, persecutions, accusations, hatreds, the wars and conflicts--so endured by millions of individuals and whole races--have at length stamped upon the human mind a sense of individual responsibility which otherwise perhaps would never have emerged, and whose mark can now be effaced; ultimately, too, these things have searched our inner nature to its very depths and exposed its bed-rock foundation. they have convinced us that this idea of ultimate separation is an illusion, and that in truth we are all indefeasible and indestructible parts of one great unity in which "we live and move and have our being." that being so, it is clear that there remains in the end a self-consciousness which need by no means be abandoned, which indeed only comes to its true fruition and understanding when it recognizes its affiliation with the whole, and glories in an individuality which is an expression both of itself and of the whole. the human child at its mother's knee probably comes first to know it has a 'self' on some fateful day when having wandered afar it goes lost among alien houses and streets or in the trackless fields. that appalling experience--the sense of danger, of fear, of loneliness--is never forgotten; it stamps some new sense of being upon the childish mind, but that sense, instead of being destroyed, becomes all the prouder and more radiant in the hour of return to the mother's arms. the return, the salvation, for which humanity looks, is the return of the little individual self to harmony and union with the great self of the universe, but by no means its extinction or abandonment--rather the finding of its own true nature as never before.
there is another thing which may be said here: namely, that the disentanglement, as above, of three main stages of psychological evolution as great formative influences in the history of mankind, does not by any means preclude the establishment of lesser stages within the boundaries of these. in all probability subdivisions of all the three will come in time to be recognized and allowed for. to take the second stage only, it may appear that self-consciousness in its first development is characterized by an accentuation of timidity; in its second development by a more deliberate pursuit of sensual pleasure (lust, food, drink, &c.); in its third by the pursuit of mental gratifications (vanities, ambitions, enslavement of others); in its fourth by the pursuit of property, as a means of attaining these objects; in its fifth by the access of enmities, jealousies, wars and so forth, consequent on all these things; and so on. i have no intention at present of following out this line of thought, but only wish to suggest its feasibility and the degree to which it may throw light on the social evolutions of the past.
as a kind of rude general philosophy we may say that there are only two main factors in life, namely, love and ignorance. and of these we may also say that the two are not in the same plane: one is positive and substantial, the other is negative and merely illusory. it may be thought at first that fear and hatred and cruelty, and the like, are very positive things, but in the end we see that they are due merely to absence of perception, to dulness of understanding. or we may put the statement in a rather less crude form, and say that there are only two factors in life: (1) the sense of unity with others (and with nature) --which covers love, faith, courage, truth, and so forth, and (2) non-perception of the same--which covers enmity, fear, hatred, self-pity, cruelty, jealousy, meanness and an endless similar list. the present world which we see around us, with its idiotic wars, its senseless jealousies of nations and classes, its fears and greeds and vanities and its futile endeavors--as of people struggling in a swamp-- to find one's own salvation by treading others underfoot, is a negative phenomenon. ignorance, non-perception, are at the root of it. but it is the blessed virtue of ignorance and of non-perception that they inevitably-if only slowly and painfully--destroy themselves. all experience serves to dissipate them. the world, as it is, carries' the doom of its own transformation in its bosom; and in proportion as that which is negative disappears the positive element must establish itself more and more.
so we come back to that with which we began, to fear bred by ignorance. from that source has sprung the long catalogue of follies, cruelties and sufferings which mark the records of the human race since the dawn of history; and to the overcoming of this fear we perforce must look for our future deliverance, and for the discovery, even in the midst of this world, of our true home. the time is coming when the positive constructive element must dominate. it is inevitable that man must ever build a state of society around him after the pattern and image of his own interior state. the whole futile and idiotic structure of commerce and industry in which we are now imprisoned springs from that falsehood of individualistic self-seeking which marks the second stage of human evolution. that stage is already tottering to its fall, destroyed by the very flood of egotistic passions and interests, of vanities, greeds, and cruelties, all warring with each other, which are the sure outcome and culmination of its operation. with the restoration of the sentiment of the common life, and the gradual growth of a mental attitude corresponding, there will emerge from the flood something like a solid earth--something on which it will be possible to build with good hope for the future. schemes of reconstruction are well enough in their way, but if there is no ground of real human solidarity beneath, of what avail are they?
get a little grace and
so we scream at
why can't it
why does there
gotta be a sac-sac-sacrifice?
gotta be a sacri-sacrifice?
gotta be a sac-sac-sacrifice?