Friday, November 21, 2008

JC responds. . .

After I spent a day thinking about literal aliens--and it really challenged me--I laid in the tub and read Joseph Campbell.  He is kinda my saviour or my Obi-Wan.  He rescued me from crazy town the last time, and I was in deep!  If one is able to demystify the mysterious, it is difficult for "it" to be sinister.  Does one automatically fear that which they don't understand?  Are the symbols really sinister?  What really is casting the shadow that we are perceiving as a monster?  A mouse? A devil? A God?

I'll quote a bit from the book that helped me to get over my fear of the unknown, the mysterious, the sinister looking conspiracy shit that is everywhere:

In other words, it then occurred to me [JC witnessing Apollo 11 moon landing] that outer space is within us inasmuch as the laws of space are within us; outer and inner space are the same. We know, furthermore that we have actually been born from space, since it was out of primordial space that the galaxy took form, of which our life-giving sun is a member. And this earth, of whose material we are made, is a flying satellite of that sun. We are, in fact, productions of this earth. We are, as it were, its organs. Our eyes are the eyes of this earth; our knowledge is the earth's knowledge. And the earth, as we now know, is a production of space (28).

Obviously, if anything of value is to be made of them at all (and I submit that the elementary original idea must have been something of this kind), where those bodies went [Jesus, Mary and Elijah's physical ascensions to heaven] was not into outer space, but into inner space. That is to say, what is connoted by such metaphorical voyages is the possibility of a return of the mind in spirit, while still incarnate, to full knowledge of that transcendent source out of which the mystery of a given life arises into this field of time and back into which it in time dissolves. It is an old, old story in mythology: of the Alpha and Omega that is the ground of all being, to be realized as the beginning and end of this life. The imagery is necessarily physical and thus apparently of outer space. The inherent connotation is always, however, psychological and metaphysical, which is to say, of inner space (31).

There is an important little volume by the Nebraskan poet John Neihardt, Black Elk Speaks, in which the prophetic boyhood vision is recounted of an old Sioux medicine man, Keeper of the Sacred Pipe of his people, who at one point declared that in imagination he had seen himself standing on the central mountain of the world, which in his view, of course, was nowhere near Jerusalem, but Harney Peak, in the Black Hills of South Dakota.  And while there, "I was seeing in a sacred manner," he said, "the shapes of all things in the spirit, and the shape of all things as they must live together, like one being.  And I saw that the sacred hoop of my people was one of many hoops that made one circle, wide as daylight and as starlight, and in the the center grew one mighty flowering tree to shelter all the children of one mother and one father (33)."

Thus from the humanity of an awakened inner eye and consciousness, a vision released from the limitations of its local, tribal horizon might open to the world and even to transcendence. For, as Black Elk remarked to Neihardt when telling of this vision beheld from Hareny Peak, South Dakota, as center of the world: "But anywhere is the center of the world  (34)."

Some notion of the whole, profoundly conceived, macro-micro-cosmic import of such courtly mimes my be gained from a consideration of the mathematics of the mythological and actual cycles of the calendars to which such rites were attached. For example, in the Hindu sacred epics and puranas (popular tellings of ancient lore), the number of years reckoned to the present cycle of time, the so-called Kali Yuga, is 432,000; the number reckoned to the "great cycle" (mahayuga) within which this yuga falls being 4,320,000. But then reading one day in the Icelandic Eddas, I discovered that in Othin's (Wotan's) warrior hall, Valhaoll, there were 540 doors, through each of which on the "Day of the Wolf" (that is to say, at the end of the present cycle of time), there would pass 800 divine warriors to engage the anit-gods in a battle of mutual annihilation. 800 x 540 = 432,000. And so I asked myself how it might ever have come to pass that in tenth-to-thirteenth century Iceland the same number of years were reckoned to the present cycle of time as in India (35).

The "Day of the Wolf"!  Wow.  Mutual annihilation. 432.  And to whom do you think JC equates that number?

The mystery of the night sky, those enigmatic passages of slowly by steadily moving lights among the fixed stars, had delivered the revelation, when charted mathematically, of a cosmic order, and in response, from the depths of the human imagination, a reciprocal recognition had been evoked. A vast concept took form of the universe as a living being in the likeness of a great mother, within whose womb all the worlds, both of life and of death, had their existence. And the human body is in miniature a duplicate of that macrocosmic form. So that throughout the whole an occult harmony prevails, which it is the function of a mythology and relevant rites to make known. . . And so, indeed, in our modern Western world, when a doctor takes a patient's pulse, if the the beat is sixty a minute (432,000 in twelve hours), it is the pulse of a conditioned athlete in accord at once with his own nature and with the rhythm of the universe: the function of medicine, like that of mythology and ritual, being to keep mankind in accord with the natural order (38-39).

Meanwhile, certain spiritually significant changes have occurred in the psychophysical environment of our species. The first, of course, followed the publication, AD 1543, of Copernicus' "Six Books On the Revolutions of the Celestial Orbs" (De revolutionibus orbium coelestium libri VI), when the sun displace the earth at the center of God's universe; so that, wheras our eyes see the sun rise daily in the east, hang high in the heavens at noon, and go down in glory in the west, what our brains now know is nothing of the kind.  With that fateful publication, the recognized idea of the earth in relation to outer space became forever separated from the daily experience of the same. An intellectual concept had refuted and displaced the nevertheless persistent sensory precept. The heliocenteric universe has never been translated into a mythology.  Science and religion have therewith gone apart. And that is the case to the present hour, with the problem even compounded by our present recognition of the inconceivable magnitude of this galaxy of stars, of which our life-giving sun is a peripheral member, circling with its satellites in this single galaxy among millions within a space of incredible distances, having no fixed form or end (43).

"For all the animate and inanimate objects in this world, O Indra, are transitory, like dream. The gods on high, the mute trees and stones, are but apparitions in the fantasy. Good and evil attaching to a person are as perishable as bubbles. In the cycles of time they alternate. The wise are attached to neither (50)."

--the good guise and the bad guise? Interesting!
All the quotes from Joseph Campbell came from the chapter "Cosmology and the Mythic Imagination" from his work: 

What I do is probably illegal as hell, but I think you should get this book.  There is a great bit in it demystifying the symbols on the dollar bill.  That little bit was enough to get me down off the conspiracy ledge a year ago.  Maybe sometime I'll copy that here.  If you are interested, find this book at you local library.  Maybe the symbols on the dollar bill aren't evil.  Maybe we just don't understand the transcendent idea that is pictured there.  What I'm talking about is on page 126 of my version,

Who are the Others?  And must they inherently be evil?  Does Lost completely describe our predicament here on our island?  I think if we were go through the mirror we would find that the others are really our shadow self that we must face, but they are so alien. . . 


Anonymous said...

"Maybe the symbols on the dollar bill aren't evil"

Nothing is evil at all. Point of view that based on one side distorts events, philosophy or symbols into its needs.

Say, you need to kill me, when you achieve it, you'll progress in your agenda or better, you'll save your own life or perfect, your "precious" genetic line, you'll create a better world for your children, if you find a way to live longer, you'll be in the creating process of better environment for yourself. But... You need to destroy me. Now that's a problem for me.

In this imaginery example, the good for you is the evil for me and vice versa.

Eunus Noe said...

I didn't see your comment until just now. Sorry.

We are living in a largely unconscious world, and a lot of those choices are unconscious choices. People choosing to intentionally "kill you" , I have to believe, (and want to believe) are rare.

I know where you are going with this. I've lost my faith in large secret societies. Groups can be and are more unconscious than individuals so if the secret ruling class is out there, I'm sure they are making unconscious choices which would yield ill effects.

What I was saying is that the dollar bill contains symbols that most people don't understand. Perhaps JC was in on it, or maybe his interpretation was misguided, naive, and wrong. Maybe.

Reality is not as real for me lately. The world becomes more and more dream-like every passing month.