From the heights above

From the heights above

region of utter (but momentary) silence

one spasm of current, one flick of expectation: 
 

 

Thundering fingers of light 
 

 

you yearn to reach high

succumb to every celestial impulse

explore paths in those veins of pain

fury and euphoric in blindness

closing in at last to fulfillment

near-annihilation by  its sheer force

forsaken in its brilliance

              as the chariot of doom

                     heralds the advent of change
 
 

 

Then, laugh, laugh in Olympic stride

and close your eyes to the Void inside

 

 

 

 

Go back to Beyond Language

The day the universe was reborn

    
Why keep writing in linear and logical fashion?
Writing is the outgrowth of thinking.
It should reflect the features of the human mind, with its desultory and fluctuating discourse.

When the scope of the possible has been exhausted you may turn left where a gigantic mountain separates the desert from the snow. Haven’t you felt all along that lurking behind every monotonous experience an explosive energy awaits to come forth? It is as if a powerful surge of lightning remains dormant in a recondite quarter of our consciousness; behind every yawn of boredom a rapacious thunder of delight seeks an entrance into our deaf lives.
    
Follow the rain into the heart of the storm. Then you will be ready for the revival of the new, the rediscovery of surprise.  As long as there is room for the unknown, as long as red-headed ants surprise you with wonder and interrupt the tyrannical flow of thoughts — there is hope.
    
I had begun walking in search of meaning and not far down the road I stumbled across an insurmountable obstacle: mortality. All labors are in vain if they seek permanence. This did not stop me, if I should live in a world where impermanence governs every particle of matter then my actions had to resign any sort of structure, my words had to abandon order. I had to accept the chaos of uncertainty and resume the search. No longer looking for a perennial philosophy but merely for temporary wisdom. For the most profound questions I never looked in books; I was lucky to experience them in other more fundamental objects: in direct contact with the phantasmagorical landscapes of nature or the silent dark of outer space.
Sinking in rocky jaws
Patagonian mountains
Lakes as seas
near heaven’s azure
the universe reborn
million lights at night
transform every thing
     Living in constant disbelief I could but interpret life as total dream, the whole of existence appeared equally inconstant as the contents of any bizarre dream. Yet I am sure that defining the cosmos by the anthropocentric analogy of dream doesn’t come close to what is really happening — reality is much wilder and exuberant than our speculations. Here and there I found evidence to believe that the hardest task is change: inner transformation. We are never the Archimedean unmovable point around which all things change and evolve — we are similarly watery being flowing from one state to another. Allowing things to change within you, permitting things to grow and decay inside was surely difficult. Getting used to this internal impermanence requires great courage. The reward is priceless: the art of transformation had become the real art of living.
     At night things settle down. The pure transparency of water is swallowed by the black of night and slowly above a blurry streak of light convinces us of the utter strangeness of our condition. The Milky Way, our home galaxy, becomes the symbol of our astonishment.  In those prolonged moments of silence things are perceived differently, we are free to just be as rocks are silently existing at the bottom of a blue lake.
Is it so necessary to formulate our wonder and our wishes?
Immobile (time)
Serene (space)
a rock for ages
deep below
in abysmal Zen
Sometimes I refuse to endure the recurrent agony of dreaming my death. In times like those:
Deserts become too desolate
Mountains intimidating monsters
Cities caging of beasts
Oceans too restless
Home insipid
My grave a terrifying
       inferno
I can only live and die
within my despair
My daemon: despair. My savior: wonder. My meditation: inking a few random words. My sleep: sweet forgetfulness as the rock that rests unperturbed.
I have to ask, is The Search a consequence of despair, or despair a consequence of The Search?

Scavenger of the Rare

 

Be careful, o’ solitary wanderer
Of what the night might do to you
-Forgotten proverb

 

(a short fictional narrative)

Under the asphalt of the night when the city streets have become a monotonous geometry of angles and straight lines, where a few strangers roam free in silence and private thought, it was then when the Scavenger of the Rare was struck by an indisputably bitter truth, a truth so bizarre and easily forgotten that none seem to notice it. As all mortal days have it, today was simply a cascade of neglected events (meaning that little or no attention had been paid to the events of another perishing day), the Weight of Time had unstoppably dissolved every single phenomenon of the decaying present into an ambiguous mist of past: the world is burning, slipping away and nobody cares! But to return to this already desultory narrative, the Scavenger of the Rare having spent the whole day seeking among the Fragments of the Impermanent for signs and symbols of a meaningful and trustworthy existence, but had by some unfortunate circumstance stumbled upon quite the opposite evidence. The truth he discovered, perhaps re-discovered for it is easily forgotten, was that…

A brief parenthesis is here peremptorily required. The “truth” that will soon be expounded is by no means easily understood. Millennia of ineffective thinking have putrefied the meaning of the word truth and therefore some elucidation on this matter is necessary. Even though in this day and age faith in the possibility of truth has nearly disappeared, there still remains the concept of truth as a statement made in language that accurately reflects the state of affairs it refers to. A more ambiguous definition is virtually impossible, but a general sense can be rescued from that definition. In other words, Truth is equated to words rightfully employed. But my long conversations with the Scavenger of the Rare and our long (frightfully long) speculations into the nature of truth have convinced me that mankind has been deceived for far too long in this matter and a serious revision is needed in the world of epistemology. However, the Scavenger of the Rare nor myself are at all interested in clarifying human existence, instead I believe we prefer to obscure it. But for the purpose of this short narrative I’ll have to explain the background of the words here employed so as to convey a wider context of meaning.

Words. They are close to being the most elusive phenomena of human existence. Words don’t have a meaning in themselves, I recall the Scavenger once saying. We impart meaning on them by constantly associating them with our perceptions. After long years of repeating words after the same objects of perception we arrive at a stable vocabulary. But when we have a novelty in our perceptions, a never-before experienced feeling or intuition, we are unable to communicate this new experience in terms of an old (and therefore inadequate) language. The truth of the experience precedes the statement of the truth. This is how Scavenger’s experience should be read, we’re reading into his state of mind rather than a statement of his mind.

So to continue… He discovered in himself a truth that made him shudder and nearly vomit in that dismal revelation. The street light was red and he waited rather impatiently for it to change its color so he could cross the street and examine an abandoned shoe on the other side (he had a peculiar pleasure in spending time with the most trivial of human objects). Two cars glided in front of him as he remained magnetized with the sight of that footwear, pondering perhaps the history of its wretched condition. But as the time came closer when the red light would fade out and in its stead a green caricature of a man would magically appear, an uncomfortable sensation sprung at the kernel of his being. In the complexity of an instant: red-light, impatient-waiting, shoe-on-the-other-side, cars-passing-by, breeze-on-the-face, twinkling-bright-stars, quiet-thinking-strangers, parallel-streets, right-angled-corners; in that jumble of sensations that occupy the minutest millisecond, a volcanic revelation took place that challenged his sturdiest notions of human reality. Oh! I wish I would have the ability to fully recall my friend’s eloquent recounting of this episode. Here I can only rescue a few scraps from the tenebrous archives of my memory.

The Scavenger of the Rare approximately said, “It was as if the entire planet had split into two and I was suspended between the two halves, lingering in a dumbfounded state, relentlessly asking myself if I were not dreaming or altogether dead! I conceived it clearly, nay, FELT it lucidly how mistaken we all are. Slowly I recovered my senses to find myself still standing at the edge of the sidewalk. The city, if city I could call it, had transformed itself into an enormous chessboard and every individual walking in their quiet monologue I saw as hollow puppets following invisible commands that the authority of routine had imparted upon them. I understood to the very marrow of my bones how gullible we all are, how we’ve demolished all potential in the human realm by reducing our lives to this civil existence, believing too firmly that we ought to live for this type of civilization, as if human life could only strive in the conditions we now find it. The question of why we find most of us walking on sidewalks, going to work every Monday and talking to ourselves endlessly is most naturally answered by our submission to the authority of tradition, an authority whose power comes from our believing in it. If we didn’t believe in it, it would cease to have control over us.”

The Scavenger uttered such words in terrific excitement. I remember his wild eyes soaring from one end of the room to the other as he practically relived the earlier portion of that significant evening. Before his sudden departure, he added,

“I had to come here and tell you all this for fear that I might forget it tomorrow and return to the sidewalks and crosswalks. I might wake tomorrow and return to the same systematical squandering of time, through barren alleys and among neglected benches under clouded skies. But since the revelation, I feel these, also, to be utterly meaningless activities even if they remain outside the stock of normality. No matter what activity I choose for my life I will make it a tradition and inevitably become a slave to it. I would care less if a lightning struck me dead right now. Yet in discovering this so-called truth there is one reason that still makes me laugh in despair and it is this: how little is solved with the discovery of our mental slavery.”

In haste he disappeared from my sight and left me in a prolonged state of silent bafflement. It has been a few weeks since I last saw my friend, the Scavenger of the Rare, yet I’ve kept a rigorous watch on the weather conditions of our locality and fortunately there have been no electrical storms since his disappearance.