Wednesday, July 04, 2007


Those who remember my old series THE INTOWN TOURIST (before my hometown, financially, kicked me out), may remember a pretentious fellow I knew, Waldman the Wizard, who would hand me his latest pronouncement. Well, on this "heavenly" or "good luck" day -- 07-07-07 -- here is his latest, headed,


As scientists continue to search for one grand theory that may unify all the disparate strands of knowledge with one beautifully simple model, I cannot help but think there is something like that we could apply to political life on earth. Surely, others see the same clues in such things as the way every country is divided by its citizens into a North and a South, and how the North is generally equated with the cool and rational, while the South is characterized as emotional and erotic. What can this be but a projection of the axis of the human body, head in the North, genitals in the South, and in the middle, “the heart of the country”? This simple matter is not simple in that it reveals that individual humans collectively project the image of our self-dividing individual self on an entire landscape, and designates that in one region or another, the humans there have been trained over time to identify with one part of the human body. Why? Because individual humans see one part of their bodies as being at war with other parts. This is certainly not an image of wholeness and unity.

["Avocado Qui Tollis Peccata Mundi"]

Similarly, as indicated in Shakespeare’s great tragedy KING LEAR, national governments are projections of the dynamics in that country’s family structures, sometimes tolerant, more often dysfunctional. Now it is generally thought that Hitler was possible because the German family in the early 20th century was usually under the control of a dictatorial father. (We might look at U.S. Presidents in that light – Are most of us “the children of alcoholics” and look for an alcoholic, reformed alcoholic, or another “child of alcoholics” to lead us? What is bound to follow?)

My thesis is that, rather than be entangled so completely in the cross purposes of most political conflicts, we might always check behind that war to consider what fogs over those matters – the individual psyche and the nature of the family in a nation or on the earth in a particular period. In a world society where many, in materially prosperous nations as well as in nations with desperately poor and disenfranchised humans, are not aware that we are not “human”: Extensive education and exposure to humane influences are required, especially a final lesson that questioning and searching is the final permanent state of sanity and good citizenship – rather than influences that tell us to abandon our minds to some person or cause.
[The maze at California Pacific Medical Center]

In every country, civil war is latent or apparent. Again, this is so universal, like the North/South dichotomy, that it should be apparent that individual humans are projecting an internal civil war onto the world, millions suffering and dying because so many individual humans have never faced their own internal civil war, and prefer to deny its existence and project it on the world. Civil war becomes visible when it breaks out between two parties, but, in truth, it goes on continuously, the global "melting pot" becoming so partitioned, general, and dispersed that we fail to recognize that we are blocked and tripped up by our not recognizing that we are in a constant, subliminal state of civil war.

I know this sounds like an absurd project for ending conflict around the earth and in our own streets and homes, but just because it may take a thousand years doesn’t mean that it is not the only way to go – individual enlightenment: Some say it comes in a flash, but I suspect that, instead, it is cumulative, gaining some weight or confidence in itself as it grows: The flash of enlightenment may be on a dimmer switch that gradually grows to the state said to be enjoyed by “the Happy Few.” How many have taken even a first step in that direction without falling away into some dead end cul-de-sac of the mind?

Confucius leads the way in his famous sorites: “If you want the state to be good, you must establish order in your own family. If you want to establish order in your family, you must rectify your own heart. To rectify your own heart, you must clarify your inarticulate thoughts through self-knowledge. Once you have struggled and arrived at sincere and precise definitions in your own mind, you can stabilize your own heart. With this self-mastery accomplished, you may help your own family to set itself in order. Bringing your own house into order can bring good government to the state. And when your state is well governed, human society on planet earth is brought into balance.”

I think these are not just single steps around a circle. For it to work (and why not demand that thinking be muscular and quick in the process of humanization), every question you want to blurt out should pass through all of the chambers of the sorites, to be examined in the light of each chamber, before any expression of the question or the next step to take.

Sweetness and joy to all who attempt to become not the perfect human, but one who is reasonably well-balanced. While the project is the individual human, when our better self is glimpsed it is probably, for the most part, in our relationship to other humans.

[I cannot believe I was ever obsessive enough to create the mandallas on this entry. Below is my "quilted Irene Harmon" -- a paper collage with the young Irene and the older Irene on the beach at Drake's Bay on some 4th of July "of yesteryear":

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