indefinable being

 

 

The last remnants of this bitterly afraid body, this ambiguous mind, this capsule in which the entire universe seems to exist – and outside, beyond the surface of this inexplicable skin, a blank void, a dark emptiness, a vicious silence. What in the end is the point of this unending preoccupation to make sense of what is finally unspeakable, to exist in a vast and profound space with miraculous shapes and forms, to breathe and beat a heart relentlessly while the plot of an unwritten play unravels — before these eyes full of wonder? However vainly the hours may pass, oblivious of the impending death of my surroundings, the death that will also come to this entity that strangely calls itself “I”; vain attempts to forget the inevitable, to resist the irrevocable. Had this self been able to escape permanently from the entanglements of disaster, had this ego renounced a borrowed language and survived brutally naked without philosophy, without history, without tales, without spoken love. Somewhere within the entrails of this phantasmagorical reality lies a reflection, a foundation upon which all things past, present and future are sustained, nurtured and consumed; it is a realm powerfully un-human, destitute of qualities and because of its effortless existence it remains sovereign above all things that strive. And maybe it is a joke, to conceive or imagine some sort of reality that will remain after all of us are gone, some sort of metaphysical ground by which our passing away seems less painful, less tragic. There might not be any foundation for the fear, the awe and the effort; every act, every thought, every failure is essentially groundless, and we are and will always be an unnamable race, an indefinable being.

 

 

Beyond Language

The beauty of traffic

 

 

I had to give up the futile attempt of telling the story of alienation; of describing an uncharted state of confusion – newly born since today is new and has never before been lived.  Only recently I had begun to understand the system into which I was born, spontaneously thrown into a configuration which is perceived as bizarre shortly after one is capable of analysis. And I am baffled to discover that the very faculty that has allowed me to unveil the absurdity of these circumstances is the cause of the environment I find myself in. The sharp razor of analysis, calculation, planning, prediction… the distinctiveness of our species, the pride of our ancestors: Reason itself, master and artist of modern civilization, creator and ruler of this world of laws and symbols. So powerful, yet so deadly. I had thrust myself into the arms of such deceitful guru, only to become prisoner of a disease… caged in thought, lost in chatter. With the torch of reasoning I explored the corridors of the modern world, I studied the interior of today’s machinery, and I probed the shallowness of our desires. Horrified by what I found, I stood still…. a sun slithered down the gilded sky, cars followed a steady line… waves of intangible information flowed by.

The world is changing. It is evolving before our very own eyes. We are carrying out a plan that we inherited – a plan that has no foreseen outcome but is continued only because of an illusion, perhaps the hope of progress, or some euphoric moment of fulfillment awaiting us in some distant corner of the future. Or is it comfort and laziness, fear of challenging what was given to us? Inertia compels us to accept the system, a system that is clearly cruel, indifferent and disheartening but at least it gives us survival, a chance to carry on with our lives without suffering too much. Nonetheless, this system is expanding beyond our control, we cannot see an end to our technological societies, feeding endlessly from our endless desires.  We submit to a system we don’t understand but is presented as trustworthy, worthy of the highest respect… the ultimate goal of collective existence: civilization. And why? Why should I accept this intricate system of highways transporting money-seeking creatures, why should organization be preferred over chaos and spontaneity?

I’ve learned that any set of beliefs is relative to tradition, an environment endowed with the authority of time (or feigned timelessness), a community of believers that reinforce the belief with repetition, indoctrination, in short, education… and based on what, the authority of their opinions, their convictions based on the solemnity of their forefathers’ expressions, and so on, until the very necessity of proof is vanished because tradition has been instituted and a full circle has been completed. Tradition contains the “truth” and that truth was begotten by the unchallenged belief of generations which granted tradition the authority of timeless revelation. I’m not only thinking of religion which is of minor concern nowadays. Tradition in the form of greed, individuality, progress, happiness; any principle by which we can govern our lives. Doesn’t it make sense that our calculating minds, striving for one fulfillment after another, have adopted this behavior after years upon years of learning the same old ways of our immediate forefathers? And can we continue using the moral imperative of “ought to”, we ought to be happy, we ought to be successful, we ought to be reasonable; in modern terms, we ought to be well off. How can we again insinuate some sort of collective ethics, when every purposeful ideal is always biased, wrought by individual preference and thus, completely inadequate for generalization?

In universal terms, in the metaphysical urgency triggered by poetic insight, in silent contemplation that destroys the metanarrative of cosmic history painted by science and rationalism, when the grand picture of the universe is captured in one unified indescribable awareness… in that state which is short-lived but long-lasting… and to view a queue of cars, the sidewalk wet by rain, the sun tainted by clouds, the air still, all these and yet none of these. When nothing seems like a necessity, anything can be challenged, overturned, changed — beauty that has no structure, no rationale

…. a sun slithered down the gilded sky, cars followed a steady line… waves of intangible information flowed by.

Beyond Language BLOG 

An undesirable confession

An undesirable confession

                (or lack of conformity)

 

 

There are no guidelines. Understand this sentence, remember it daily – it is essential to the journey of life. There have never been any guidelines. If ever a semblance of direction has been portrayed by some ideology or religion, it is only an attempt at a guideline. It is not certain, not even provable. Every faith in a transcendental code by which we can live our lives is today being un-made, perhaps only because it was originally man-made. We are lost, forsaken in the remote chaos of a lonely planet, with no guiding hand that would lead us to any certainty – to any firm truth.

I set these words forth not in the spirit to challenge those that are able to find comfort in this oppressive world; on the contrary, I report only the widespread experience of constriction and confusion that is rooted in the mind of 21st century Homo sapiens. I am wholly willing to commit to the idea and passion of a benevolent god or cosmic purpose, something which will deliver the long-sought peace that most of us have been searching for. Yet, the more intense the search, the horizon of faith turns darker and frailer. How can I believe in something I don’t feel? – this is the question that exiles us into metaphysical orphanage. No matter how fervently we search for that ultimate reality, the journey is always daunting, constantly haunted by self-doubt, fear and irrational panic of that impenetrable unknown which is the substratum of our everyday lives. So the desire of guidance, the search for something greater than one’s self, is suspended and there remains only a perception of enclosure – a trap in which we all belong.

So, once the awareness of the impossibility of escape is made clear, should we assume our defeat? Should we not analyze the environment of our perplexity and express the conditions of our despair?

What exactly is our trap, what constrains us to impotence? I am only one more man lost in the maze, able only to postulate wild theories of decay. But here are my thoughts:

Insecurity shapes our early life. We depend extensively on the care of our parents until we become sufficiently independent to take care of ourselves. From the very start we look for something beyond ourselves to help us deal with our hostile environment and to give us the comfort of control; control over the unpredictability of the world. By the time we reach the age of reason we are accustomed to depend on other sources, whether it’s our parents, god or social institutions. Naturally these fall short from achieving this and we return to our capsule of solitude. Even the most passionate advocates of religion shudder in fear – didn’t Jesus himself before his death utter words of irrevocable loneliness? (My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?)

Now, what I’m about to expose may seem far-fetched, perhaps there are a few arguments I have skipped to reach the end. The emptiness felt from this lost of trust in the original sources of comfort (parents, religion, social/political establishments) needs to be fulfilled. That’s when a new monument is erected; an indestructible idol substitutes our previous dependence and consolidates itself as the last resort. What is this new idol?

Very simply: a rôle. We fashion a rôle for our lives, an identity of what we should be that is safely kept within and no longer outside. A phantom so powerful it literally controls the direction of our lives. But how did we substitute external comfort for internal obligation? Weren’t we already terrified of our loneliness that we begged for a new sense of communal belonging? We coil within ourselves because we feel disappointed about the outside world, finding it untrustworthy. We need to believe in something and the only thing that came to fill this part was our artificial identity. We created a set of standards, goals and principles by which we guide our lives, something that could not be shaken up very easily and could stand the erosion of change.

Our subconscious harbors this identity which is so elusive we suddenly lose track of its agenda – our original choices are forgotten but they mark the remaining course of our lives. We become slaves to our rôle which was initially fashioned to give us comfort but now only oppresses us with the urgency of its fulfillment. It is a double-bind, we are trapped by our desire to feel valuable, significant or united to something greater than us but we have not found this in our modern lives. We then submit shamelessly to the commands of a career which mortifies us with achieving more and more; exhausted by the end of the night our lives feel empty, confused, lost in innumerable desires.

This sense of urgency comes about from the competition we experience every day. Competition for a better role, a more reputable identity. Deep down we are all celebrities to our own egos and because of this we yearn to become as celebrities to others. Frankly, however, we wish others to see us as we want to be, but not as we truly are. We compete blindly with each other to create the “better” person, whatever this is. There are no universal standards by which we can judge who is a better person, it is relative to the values of each human being. 


This competitiveness is best seen in large cities. Cities are breeders of competition, urging its inhabitants to outrun each other. The conveniences that a city provides to its dwellers are irrelevant compared to the pressures and hostilities it creates. A decisive change of perspective is urgently needed: that of de-urbanization. How long can human beings last in a state of high tension, when large concentrations of men and women fight daily, physically and psychologically, to be on top? The greatest concern is, do they even know why they are bustling about?

What if this is true? We regard ourselves too highly during the day but then return unsatisfied to bed; panicky with the feeling that we have no control and even our goals in life are to be doubted. The idol of the ego must inevitably fall too, leaving us naked in despair, gagging with the question: who am I?

The necessity of madness

 

That the world is coming to a dramatic end, there is no doubt. The senseless habits that occupy our days and the recurrent suffering that strikes our hearts are nothing less than signs of an exhausted species, a moribund creature. We are hanging from a crystal thread that will snap as soon as we begin trembling too much; and it is bound to happen for panic and fear are the approaching certainties in our uncertain world. The feigned order we see in this world is accomplished only by the most ailing methods. The structure of our societies, politics and ideals are childish mirages that are sickening our marrow; from the hopeless effort to create a functioning world will sprout the most disastrous consequences. As long as we quietly consent to the monotony of capitalism, the guardian role of politicians and the greed of our material dreams, the monster inside will grow more impatient, more violent, more desperate and will soon rise to devastate the utopia of a frightened race.

The problem begins by avoidance. We have avoided very skillfully the mysterious circumstance of being flesh and blood machines wandering through a colossal void in uncharted space. We have avoided awareness in order to just act out a scheme that is blind and absurd. We are doubly cursed for being an animal that thinks. Animals are innocent of our sin because they have no prolonged awareness of their circumstances, they can only act and remain in their true state. Our role would have been the same if the spark of damned consciousness would not have arisen in us, making us slaves not only to action but also to unnecessary thinking. The problem as it stands nowadays is that we cannot escape our second function, and the need to think is something we cannot avoid but must bear it as a sickly appendage. As soon as we start thinking the world becomes complicated and conflictive. It is too late for us to return to the blissful ignorance of animals and plants; we must bear the seal of our punishment and fulfill it to the end.

The tension begins when we have to conjure up all the rational bits that create a human moment and its interpretation. Memory explains the present by that which we learned and saw in the past. Both in normal life and in intellectual activities the memory functions as the glue that unites pieces of the fluctuating flux, trying to create a rational and understandable structure. Memory is a kind of discourse, a narrative we must have at hand to make rational sense of the world. The frontiers of our mind and its ability to shape and transform the external world are limitless. The 21st century has inherited a vast wealth of experience and knowledge that has enabled any one member of our species to access any kind of information within seconds. What seemed like an advantage in the natural world has now become an omnipotent weapon, able to pierce history to the beginning of time and reach the slumbering interiors of molecules and atoms. That capacity is out there as we live our day to day and ignoring our potential will only feed the anarchy that is to be born. Yet this potential is unattainable and misleading because our tools are inadequate. We cannot grasp an irrational universe through the rational thought of a human being. This assertion is not meaningless; it is as accurate as saying that you cannot contain water inside a strainer. The world is water and our intellect is a punctured container. Some things are not meant to be. The paradox is clear: we act as blind uncaring weaklings but carry the rage of a powerful intellect inside. Our power overwhelms us, we succumb to its ferocity. It tells us that things are not right but we wish not listen to that prophetic voice.

We are speaking here of the dream of a coming apocalypse. Such a view should not be taken literally. Humans will live much longer but blood and despair will taint future’s sky. Look at the hysteria of our age. We have reached the utmost tension of this struggle. The mind has rebelled against the Herculean responsibility that was appointed to it: to maintain order in a disorderly world. At this very point, when centuries of illusion are challenged and we cannot no longer continue as hypocrites of a corrupt world; exactly when we give up on our young hopes and reveal the frailty of our fragile world, then we will cross the threshold of madness. That is to say, we will enter a perceptual world in which reasons and rules break down and only the spontaneity of the moment reigns. A deliberate jump into chaos— a word that will one day signify liberation, release, realization. To have renounced the artificial laws and codes, the shackles of money and possessions, the sterility of reason; a day in which freedom will be here but will reveal how atrocious and belligerent we really are. Strife and conflict will prevail in direct proportion to our greed and neurosis. Only when we have erased the inherited layers of insanity may we return to a harmonious relationship with nature. The approaching sorrows will serve as our Purgatory – a redemption that will only be possible, alas, as we journey through madnes

Return to Beyond Language

WIDER HORIZONS – An essay on experiential limits to truth

“The intellect [as] a local effect of evolution, a flame, perhaps accidental,

which lights up the coming and going of living beings in the narrow

passage open to their action; an lo! forgetting what it has just told us,

it makes of this lantern glimmering in a tunnel a Sun which can

illuminate the world.” Henri Bergson

 

Revolutionary insights are bound to occur every few centuries. Evidence for this is clear since we stopped regarding earth as the center of the universe nor our solar system as the only existent planetary system; the “island universes” discovered in the early 20th century later became proof that we float inside a great vacuum filled with galaxies and our position is not in any way advantageous: we are merely an anthill in a vastly greater desert. Revelations of this sort change the root of all our understanding of the human being and his position in this strange universe. The above discoveries lead to a re-conceptualization of Man on the material plane. There are other revelations that force us to reevaluate our previous conceptions at a cognitive or intellectual level. Kant believed to have transformed philosophy with the same impact that Copernicus’ theory revolutionized astronomy. However, his philosophy as influential as it is, couldn’t produce the radical transformation its author had anticipated. In more recent times Heisenberg dramatically redefined the future of physics with his Uncertainty Principle, setting a perennial barrier to the accuracy of information we can obtain at the subatomic level. It will be safe to speculate that world-changing insights will continue to appear throughout history.

We are so immersed in our own opinions plus the unswerving faith in our convictions makes it hard for us to accept, much less digest, what new ideas are pointing at. The evolution of human knowledge is constantly pushing for wider horizons, breaking free from assumptions that were once crowned as truths but are in reality only provisionary scaffolds that permit the growth of more profound insights. Such may be that case with our idolatry to matter; ever since science usurped almost every field of knowledge proclaiming that epistemological certainty is only possible through objective (that is, physically oriented) evidence.  Steadily ever since Einstein tried to unify electromagnetism and gravity there has been an increasing wave of believers in a unified theory of reality; which in closer analysis is a pretension to explain the entire universe, or all that is, by physical mechanisms. It rests on an unproven assumption that can be summarized like this: because we are able to perceive the physical universe with our five senses and technical apparatuses, everything we perceive can be explained from that which we perceive. In simpler terms we are convinced that there exists nothing more than what we are able to perceive or deduct from our perception, and although this sounds like the plainest commonsense, we should carefully rephrase that assertion to: we can only discuss what we perceive. But we should not discard beforehand the possibility that this world, every phenomenon at the experiential level, may be simply a fragment of a vaster and greater reality. This does not imply that that greater universe which we cannot perceive should be a concern to science and philosophy but it simply comes as a warning to our proud advancement of knowledge. My case can be summed up in the following way:

If our awareness and intelligence arose out of earlier biological experiments, its persistence on this planet must only be explained by the advantages it has given to our species. Its function has been to assist the survival of our kind and not as we now presume, to solve the riddles of existence. Intelligence did not arise to survey all the scope of whatever exists but only to aid the organism in its survival with its immediate environment. This may be a total and insurmountable obstacle for the arrogance of science and philosophy; merely because there may be dimensions of reality we are not designed to perceive, causes that may influence the physical universe which are not strictly perceivable nor deducible from physical phenomena. This condition could set an experiential limitation to our knowledge –not unlike the uncertainty principle – forever and ever concealing absolute truth from our grasp and revealing us not as possessors of facts but merely as gatherers of illusions.

Return to Beyond Language

The world’s a machine

 

^ A by ytuquike
http://ytuquike.deviantart.com/art/A-32785575

 

Let me tell you something. It may be a hard pill to swallow. No, on second thought, maybe my criticism is hollow and attempts to belittle a world too powerful to be challenged. Besides, most people are already aware of what I’m about to say. We all are. But it doesn’t matter. I must get it out; otherwise I’ll wallow in my own disgust and perpetuate a system too cruel in its indifference. 

I‘ve been sitting here for seven hours. Patiently chatting with customers over the internet, satisfying their demands, answering their recurrent questions. Yeah, it’s as simple as it sounds.  A few minutes here with a Dan from South Africa, a few seconds there with a Marysia from Bulgaria. I’m connected to the world but between me and the rest of the globe there’s a box that displays organized patches of light and allows me to interact with people I will probably never encounter, physically or virtually, again. It’s just that – organization – that bothers me. Here I am at the threshold of a global society and my enthusiasm is imprisoned under a thick layer of discomfort.


It doesn’t make sense to me. How we got here and all that. I was involuntarily born into a world that had organized itself in this way without my consent. Here I am functioning according to it, adding fuel to its monstrous engine by my insignificant but necessary participation in its affairs. I am a mere appendage to this colossal machine, a machine that keeps rolling on and on without any constraints – makes me wonder if we could stop it should we desire to?
 


That fact is that it is here, an organization a priori to my existence, and I must operate according to its rules; my life with its sufferings and joys must fit the frame of modernity; my dreams are shortened by 40 hours a week which are mandatory for my basic survival. I’m no utopian, I don’t trust in any universal remedy for happiness and prosperity, yet even with my mistrust in progress I’ve perceived the approach of a conviction that promises a better world, a saner reality.


Hadn’t fear regulated most of our expectations, or if habit wouldn’t paralyze our imagination, would we still be living for minimal wages and restricting life to those scarce hours of leisure that work “allows” us? While trapped in those routines of cement and asphalt, how often do we get to experience the beauty of nature which, according to poets and sages, delivers endless moments of delight and communion with the divine?


I don’t know, I don’t care. I will continue to intoxicate myself with the monotony of uneventful hours… who cares what a screw thinks when the machine can operate without it. New screws will be born to furnish The Machine with the elixir of eternal life, namely:
  

Our conformity.

 

 

Return to Beyond Language

 

Awe and confusion swirled together

Pain by Hands of Crimson (deviantart)

 

 

We fling ourselves out into the depths of this tumultuous motion (there is always an implicit decision to stay alive) – we are agonizing in the effusion of forms, attitudes and energies of this world, we succumb to the simultaneity of all events, approaching a boiling point which will end in a devastating orgasm. This life that with relentless power can lift you to regions of unshakable astonishment will drop you with equal force into the pits of boredom and suicidal retreat. It becomes an experience so intense that all those wonderful insights attained by your constant awareness to the profundity of existing forms can be, and will be, torn apart by the abysmal fissure that comes in between reality and our conceptions. Our epoch has demystified the themes of history, art, philosophy, science – any study that pierces Being and divests it from the shallowness of routine – themes we are engaged in by our simple breathing and acting  in a world that is constantly being measured, recorded, discussed and because of these, it is being doubted more than ever.
 
 

 

Out of the circumstance of standing on the axis of what is to come and while repeating beyond illusion the experience, over and over again, of existing as part and parcel of this monstrous universe – out of all these circumstances there arises a sentiment which remains for the most part unspoken yet when united to the urgency of our desires it wishes to break through as a divine voice, a repercussion that will echo through the immensity of space and time, an outpouring of this vital disbelief that defines our existence; in short, an eternal statement understood and recognized by everyone:
 
 

 

 

Can all this be real?
 
 

 

 

Exactly because the world’s diversity can only be matched by its incomprehensibility the human being, passenger in life, is unable to remain in the state of absolute veneration (the all-too-common fear of the unknown) and must distract himself with whatever nuisance is thrown in his way. Fortunately, there is excitement in monotony; there is pleasure in painful depressions.

 

We are obeying something vastly superior, something that always exceeds our two modern poisons: reason and technology. We aspired to imitate nature with those silly contrivances. We, subjects to our bodies, to history and the course of the planet, we return to bed every night insulted simply because we cannot deceive ourselves much longer: the world we have come out of has created itself and us without the tool of reason; and in that inexplicable unreasonableness it has fashioned machines infinitely superior to our latest technologies – we see it all around us, the biological world, a miraculous product abandoned by the silent God of Purposelessness.

 

After we finish with this continuous enigma, we open our eyes to challenge again the naked world, to tease it with our actions and desires….
“oh what a world” we say,
 

 

and reenter the game once again.

 

 

 

Go back to Beyond Language