[thoughts from ~burning woman~ ]
“When I was nineteen,” she said, “I thought about committing suicide.
Everything seemed cut and dried. Art and music were fine, but could they
explain anything? Could they tell me why I was alive or what the world was
all about? I didn’t think so. And ever since, I’ve lived a compromise: I
wouldn’t try to kill myself, because there was always a chance something
would happen to explain everything.” (Songs of Earth and Power – Greg Bear)
It is the end of another year, my seventy-second year, which isn’t bad considering I’d set my “best before” termination year at fifty. It seemed reasonable at the time, what could I possibly accomplish of anything worthwhile past fifty in a society that worships (fake) youth and gobbles its world as if it is a melting chocolate ice cream?
“When I was nineteen,” she said, “I thought about committing suicide.” So did I, definitely, but my reasoning was much more pathetic: my lover dumped me. It wasn’t the first time and it certainly wouldn’t be the last, but each one brought its own degree of particular inescapable hurt. It would be many years later, having survived (dig the maudlin self pity!) the many losses, that I realized these experiences in an otherwise sated and bloated consumerist society was how I manipulated reality to grow a bigger heart.
I began to sense that my personal pain was but one of endless extensions of this world’s pain. I began to look at ways I could use that sorrowful “me” to become a part of the rest; to make sorrow my bed partner. I learned to cry in the night and though the tears were mine, gradually they were no longer for me.
Unlike Greg Bear’s heroine in “Songs of Earth and Power” however, I did not hang around for the chance that something would happen to explain everything. I used my awareness as a key to that explanation. Since I am my awareness, my own mind, I would be the key that would open the door and allow the “something that would explain everything” to come into my life and claim me as its lover. Once more, I fell in love, this time with a very dangerous character, an actual terrorist, someone for whom there would be no secrets, the ultimate WikiLeaks.
If I desired to know, all I needed was ask and he took me upon secret paths, through mined fields, under electrified fences of razor wire, into secure, severely guarded places where explanations were taking place. He made me listen in and I discovered that official secrets were constantly being made up with all seriousness.
The first time I saw this, I wanted to laugh out loud. Only my dangerous lover’s hand over my mouth saved me. We would leave those places, return to city traffic, lights, pedestrians, noises, smells and facades of endless body accomodations, find our own and talk through nights that became ever shorter.
“There is nothing new under the sun” he’d quote from Eclesiastes.
“But I still don’t understand” I protested. “How can there be secrets, then? How do we not know everything?”
“I will not lie to you. The truth is, there are no secrets. You’re a victim of gross mis-direction, all of the time. That is the System, how it controls you, makes you fear; makes you hope. Then it dashes your hopes, deliberately, and starts the whole thing all over again. Each time you are left drained, like losing a lover, and while you are in this heart-mind weakened state you are taken by something else, on the rebound. You don’t want to let go of that last thread of hope and the next lie weaves itself into your dying hope and pulls more out of you. This goes on until you die. Nothing is ever explained because there is nothing to explain – that’s the realization that made you want to laugh when in the vault of secrets: there are no secrets, just manufactured lies.”
“So, if I choose knowledge, what should I do?”
“Use your key. Use you. You are your own source of all the knowledge that exists; all you need do is free your mind. Trust your imagination and go along for the ride.”
“How will I know where I am going?”
“You won’t; you can’t. If you did, that would be another false path, another lie. Where is the freedom in following an already existing path? Obviously it wouldn’t be yours and if you can see it, someone designed it as a trap for you, to seduce you once again upon a way that isn’t yours and will prove disempowering and end in loss, again.”
“Why do the great teachers ask us to follow them? Their teachings?”
“Because they are lovers, not great teachers and their teachings are powerless to change anything. Because they want you for themselves and have no intention of ever giving you anything of themselves. Because they are liars.”
“So, no great teachers, and I know everything?”
“Yes, potentially. You need to trust yourself; believe in yourself. You need to realize you were meant to walk this path alone. In fact, there is no path, just endless choices, the best ones seemingly impossible but remember this: nothing is impossible.”
“What happens now?”
“Now I will leave you because you no longer need me. You are equipped to live your life as a self-empowered being. You not only possess the key to all knowledge, you are that key. Much of that knowledge does not pertain to this, your reality, so you must learn to choose wisely, what you keep in your pockets, in your pack, and what you leave behind for the time being.”
“I am scared to be so alone!”
“Fear is the mind killer. I will not fear, I will face my fear… do you remember that? You learned it because you already knew you would need it. Now is the time. You walk alone, you never look back, you never doubt yourself. Goodbye, lover.”