Mark Twain said
" We are all ignorant only about different things...."
I've always loved the stripped psychological simplicity of this inversion of knowledgeable worth; though this doesn't disguise my rather passionate disposition with things which may seem blatantly nonsensical and simply foolhardy to any mind endorsed with common sense, as opposed to self-serving egoism. I am rather for the seemingly hapazard abandonment of oneself to the natural fate of things bythe Tao of Pooh...(well my own, more specifically), in context of whether to be or not to be a being overly organised for the events of the unknown... something I find extremely paradoxical considering real life has blundered enough ''fresh hells'' through my door to sew a national quilt and has done so with enough slice and curve ball at that, to let me know, there are many things in life one simply cannot be prepared for, except that, at such moments, all there is to do, is tuck in your head for the free fall ....
and so, onto a few epicurean adventures of my own.
For starters, in all things spiritual my foundation has a basic lack of religious faith. My experience of what Religion can mean and the harm it can do is such that I will never really be able to measure my own being and my own life in such terms. I lived in a nation dragged to hell and back: it was a journey seemingly rooted in a variety of biblical principles: insidious ideological virtues which underscored a particular kind of barbarism paraded as national pride in the name of God and in doing so, shamelessly stripped a nation of its Dignity. Being a product of the golden era of apartheid is one thing, finding it becoming one's own personal nemesis quite another...
Without disrespect I can still however, accept and at some moments in my life have found myself in admiration of certain people's capacity for religious faith and conduct: I think these instances have had everything to do with the calibre of the indivdiual rather than the programmative virtue of the relgious construct itself: One of the dearest people to me is a catholic priest, but in no measure anordinary one and it is the mark of the man he is, rather than his chosen faith that garners my love admiration friendship and lifelong loyalty. I doubt one will often find a priest happily blasting a suburban square - a Swiss one at that, with Tom Jone's "Sex Bomb" through the open window of a car. In equal but different measure, I have the honour to have men of war as very close friends too: mercenaries in effect. These are committed, honourable men to their calling who have no lascivious or superscilious affection for killing for the sake of it. in the context of my own life they have taught me much in respect of my own initial blatant disregard for anything associated to a uniform. Each of these domains: religion and war claim ideologies which, depending on how one wishes to wag the dog, can and do become vehicles for extremisms of all kinds: patriotism being the most reductive and banishing of all.
Looking at the current state of things, From Palestine to Sri Lanka, I find I can’t but admire the irony of how a prominent medieval thought broker (Thomas Acquinas) took the differential of error, rooted in ignorance, to be the departure point for what began as one of the very first epicurean adventures into the concept - of a thing - of anotion of the idea of Essence... of Being....He did so not having a second thought (how could he afterall) for the monumental industry itwould cultivate centuries later underpinned as it is by a universal culture of complaint. Religion andPsychoanalysis...
From OttoRank, to Pinker the list reads like a veritable whose who of the Mental Delft Factory, each crafting their own unique style of crockery to shape the look and feel of a given table, upon which to dine out on the mental landscape of a seriously deviant age.
As for Error: what do we make of it? How easily disposed are we to dispose of it really? Has it not become the bouy to which we cling in shameful misappreciation of our own culpabilities? Take a moment to look around at Ignorance for example: In the realm of Idolatory, doesn't our insatiable apetite for it , just take the cake? Combine the two: who can really claim the atomb bomb is the only destructable fission? Look where our veritable love of lucra has us now? losing homes and virtue.
Add to this, notions of religiosity and Wham... Boom!! Smack Thud Crash and EEEuuuoooowww! and what have we concocted for ouselves in redefining the post post postPost-Modernistic Man? A robotic semblance, in graphic novel shades perhaps, of a former, more deeply and truly ambivalent Essence and Nature of Being, born into an environment rich with Milan Kundera's lawn-grass cultivated by nationalistic totalitarian kitsch compost and shaded by monolithic aspirations of heightened Dopamine levels and virtual kills?
So whatever happened to the notion of ' me myself and I ' ? Of Being and Essence?
We dip ourselves in the fashionable ease of modern culture, the major past time of which is to complain, complain, complain and complain.... makes a mint for the wellness industry and why not? We live in aculture of complaint and fear: the new designer cash cows.Makes me wonder if Spirituality did not succumb to a hostile takeover bid and now finds itself land-marked for visual effect and moral tokenism across cities, false yet delectible to the eye and senses....forever elusive and in effect unreal. Now that could well be the cynic in me.
It is said that by which an epoch can be judged, for the measure of its humanity, is in how it treats it children... do we have to really write up the list? From what I see, Religion can have become an Error Console of our Age: And my question would be - Is Spirituality the instrument by which measure the sound of our own moral failure?
Kabbalahismis Fashionable.... which is weird, considering it is in essence a study of being, of essence, of the process of Faith itself and has for centuries been about male faith. How it can be marketed to everyone yet not be espoused in teaching by a woman is beyond my grasp. Islam isTaboo and comes packaged with the underlying hysteria at "the idea of..." It reminds me of how we were taught to live in fear of black skin when I was little...based on... well Ignorance as far as I remember... need I say erroneously?
Israel and Palestine, personally, measures much in the way of Shame these days ... whatever happened to teachings to live by example? Christianity does not appear to be able to decide its arm from its elbow- has not seem to have figured it out for a while now.... seems leaving it to others to define it, is easier. And Spirituality.... save for drowning itself in the drink of all this confusion, I am surprised it still has not opted for leaving town, if not stopping the planet and demanding to be able to disembark... I know I would given half a chance.
Maybe you can tell me how will we find Spirituality bottled tomorrow.... if lives down a line of association is too much to share? What on earth do we do with it in a world that lives by just 6 simple degrees of separation?
Do we condemn Intimacy to Total Isolation?
Do we shed ourselves of skin Not to Feel?
Do we thrash the living daylights out of Spirituality before its 7th birthday?
Do we lock up Affection in a High Risk Securty Lock Up and simply become the devoid MrsSmith ee cummings warns us about?
Looking at the world these days, I wonder what Thomas and Mark would have made of it?
Causes Renee Sigel Supports
The Grossman Burn Unit