Saturday, April 26, 2008

Lumin Beings & Loony Moonbats

New policy: Saturdays will feature an edited post from two years previous. No post on Sundays. Policy may change at any time without my noticing.

*****

In certain ways, it's very simple: you become like that to which you look up. This is one of the bases of normal human development. As children, we require models to imitate, identify with, and internalize. My son, who is three years-old, already mimics and/or mocks everything I do. Yesterday I told him to stop playing in the garbage in the kitchen. He looks at me and calmly says, get a grip, Daddy.

This "mimesis" is fundamental to being human, and it doesn't stop in early childhood. It emerges again quite powerfully in adolescence, during which there a deep hunger for models -- which often end up being bad ones by default -- to imitate. You'll likely see it again in your professional life, as you try to define your own approach to your craft or profession. At first the model will seem exterior, but eventually, through an osmotic psychic process that isn't entirely clear, we "become" the model from the inside. We no longer require the external support.

It is just so with the spiritual life. Anonymous Friend writes that one venerates (i.e., loves and respects) "a non-incarnated being -- a departed person, a saint, or a hierarchical being -- in a disinterested manner. Your veneration -- which includes love, respect, gratitude, the desire to conform, etc. -- cannot fail to create an invisible link of sympathy with its object," as like calls out to like.

He continues: "It may be in a subtle and dramatic way, or rather in a slow, gradual and almost imperceptible way -- this does not matter -- the day will come when you will experience the presence... not a fluidic, semi-electrical presence close to you in space -- as in the apparition of a phantom or ghost -- but the breath of radiant serenity, of which you know with certain knowledge that the source from which it emanates is not at all in you. It influences and fills you but it does not take its origin in you; it comes from outside of you.

"Just as you know, in drawing near to a fireplace, that the warmth that you feel does not arise from you but rather from the fireplace, so also do you feel that the breath of serenity in question is due to an objective presence."

Once such a relationship is established, "it is up to you to remain silently concentrated so that the relationship established is subsequently developed, i.e., that it gains in intensity and clarity -- that it becomes a meeting in full consciousness." (My vibrant relationship with Anonymous Friend is a fine example of what he's talking about.)

It is largely because of our postmodern materialism and cynicism that we no longer seem to appreciate a process that is quite natural and must have felt obvious to generations past. In other words, something unnatural and inhuman has to be superimposed over this process in order for us to deny or be unaware of its operation.

Perhaps it is also because the process requires a certain childlike trust and unguarded spontaneity -- the very same way the little boy expectantly looks up to his father. We begin with a “feeling response” that is actually of greater significance than the literal truth or falsehood of the teacher’s claims.

Rather, a sort of “chemistry” or “resonance” must first be established -- which is actually very similar to psychotherapy. It is as if one must first be capable of recognizing someone who speaks “from truth” before we can discuss this or that particular truth. You might say that the true spiritual "medium" is the message. In fact, for many people with a "bhakti" temperament, this devotion is all they require.

If we try to identify with this source before honoring it as greater than ourselves, we will simply build a new addition to our ego. This is the esoteric meaning of "honor your father and mother." The ego can either orient itself around its true parent or pledge its loyalty to the "father of lies."

Throughout this process is the dual mystery of word and incarnation. In every case of identification and eventual internalization, it is as if an external seed is planted in the fertile ground of the soul, eventually taking root there and blossoming on its own. Then it is capable of producing its own seed. Sonflowering seeds. It is a very organic process. But the garden must be regularly watered, weeded, and harvested. Or, topped and smoked.

We are all looking for our fixed "star" to guide us -- that which we may follow without reserve. This star does not necessarily have to take human form, but it can be a big help. The star is your future Self, calling you to join it.

In life, we can become so lost that we seem to lose our orbit, like a planet that is too far away and begins to drift off aimlessly into space. Secular leftism is an entire philosophy that elevates the drifting planet to a virtue. Gaia replaces the sun, which, ironically, makes secularism the most vain and self-centered of all philosophies.

But it is also an infra-human philosophy, for man was made to revolve around the spiritual sun, just as a boy was made to revolve around his terrestrial father, who should be a reflection of the celestial light. Take away the light and warmth of the sun, and we live in a cold, dead universe: a culture of death is its natural consequence and intellectual blandmaiden.

Have you ever seen the sun shining at midnight? Even when all else is dark, in the middle of the night, you can see the light of the sun reflecting off of the moon. Who is the moon? The moon has always been conceptualized in feminine ways -- after all "moon" and "menses" are etymologically related. Wisdom is sophia or Mary, and true wisdom is always reflected from a greater source.

The moon is not the sun, and we are not God. But we can become receptacles or "luminaries," that is, lumin beings who ride the wild soph on waves of divine light. Or we may become glittering moonbats, those dim bulbs who form a circle and flick their Bics to look for the sun.

16 Comments:

Blogger Ricky Raccoon said...

Bob,
I’m glad you mention our unknown friend. I can tell almost immediately something not right about certain expert-level spiritual trolls who show up here from time to time. To tell the truth, they all sound like the same guy to me. I’m not sure they’re not. I never received a repelling vibe from Tomberg…or Schuon or Sri A. Nor a boasting vibe. Exactly the opposite. And feeling them “in the room” describes as well as I can reading MOTT. He gives me all his attention…and is patient. In other words, he is present.

4/26/2008 10:25:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Yes, and it goes without smelling that we can also sniff out a malign spirit with our activated cOOnscent. As if the malodorous trolls could conceal their soul stench from the wise! Veritably, if fills the space they inhabit.

4/26/2008 10:41:00 AM  
Blogger walt said...

Well, they certainly arrive prepared to teach us all some sense!

Along those same lines, but in a more heartfelt vein, you wrote,
"...through an osmotic psychic process that isn't entirely clear, we "become" the model from the inside."

I don't travel much, but I recently took a trip involving many hours behind the wheel. I was kind of startled at how "dominant" my RaccOOn Vision had become! Really, it has become my main filter.

This was living proof that even a very leaky vessel can benefit from One Cosmosis!

4/26/2008 11:49:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Along these lines, this is what I call a real lumin interest story: The Man Who Carried the Dark Lantern.

4/26/2008 12:26:00 PM  
Blogger Smoov said...

Hey Bob,

Being as the other 'coons are all down at the beach and all, let me take the opportunity to ask of you your opinion on Tom Waits...

Fan? Detractor?

4/27/2008 02:15:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I can appreciate him, but it's not the type of thing I would generally listen to more than once. He's a little too mannered for me -- tries too hard to be an "artist." If I'm in that kind of mood, I prefer the immortals such as Howlin' Wolf or Captain Beefheart.

4/27/2008 02:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Hazy Davy said...

Smoov,

A more interesting question for some of us might be, "What did you used to think of Tom Waits?"

4/27/2008 03:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Bulletproof Monk said...

To all brothers and sisters created in the image of God:

Today is Orthodox Pascha! Christ is Risen! Truly He is risen!

To all the faithful everywhere, I wish you a joyous Pascha and beginning of Bright Week. And to all extreme off-road seekers, coons and kits and masked bandits, known and unknown, at whatever stage of the journey you may be, know that Christ has prepared the way for all of us, and with a warm heart and welcoming arms invites all to Come and See, and participate in His glorious victory over death and corruption, as best told by St. John Chrysostom 1500 years ago and every year at this time still...

http://www.orthodoxytoday.org/blog/2007/04/08/christ-is-risen-christos-anesti-christos-voskrese/

Last night (over midnight) and at today's Agape Vespers we sang joyously...

Christ is Risen from the dead
Trampling down death by Death
And upon those in the tombs
Be-stowing Life.

And we chant the Aposticha:

Thy resurrection O Christ Savior
hath illumined the whole universe. Thou hast renewed thy creation. Lord almighty glory to thee.

Today Christ our saving Pascha hath been revealed unto us a noble Pascha the Pascha new and Holy and mystical Pascha the Pascha all august the blameless Pascha the great Pascha the Pascha of the faithful the Pascha which openeth unto us the gates of paradise the Pascha which sanctifieth all the faithful.

O Come from the vision ye women heralds of good tidings and say ye unto Zion: Receive from us the glad tidings of the joy of the Resurrection of Christ. Rejoice O Jerusalem and leap for joy in that thou beholdest Christ the King like a bridegroom come forth from the grave.

When the ointment-bearing women stood very early in the morning before the tomb of the life-giver, they found an angel sitting upon the stone, and he cried out unto them saying: Why seek ye the living among the dead? Why mourn ye the incorruptible amidst corruption? Go proclaim the glad tidings to his Disciples.

The joyful Pascha the Pascha of the Lord the Pascha all majestic hath shone upon us the Pascha on which we embrace one another with joy O what a Pascha delivering from sorrow for today from the tomb as from a chamber Christ shone and hath filled the women with joy saying proclaim the glad tidings to the Apostles.

Today is the day of Resurrection. Let us shine with the feast. Let us embrace one another. Let us say: Bretheren! And because of the Resurrection let us forgive all things to those who hate us and in this wise exclaim saying:

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Glory to thee, O Christ our God and our Hope, glory to thee.

Christos Anesti!
Christos Anesti!
Christ is Risen!

4/27/2008 03:27:00 PM  
Blogger Smoov said...

Hazy Davy...

If you're goig to be clever here you'll need to do better than that. We've really had as many pathetic middlebrows as we can process for one season.

4/27/2008 03:35:00 PM  
Blogger Smoov said...

New troll Davy reiterates a troll talking point:

OC is a cult; we all hang on Bob's every utterance.

Sorry to disappoint, Lazy Davy, but 't ain't so. Why, right now I'm gettin' into Kanye's Late Registration - a work which would surely drive Bob to distraction.

We come here for the same reason people go to Mathematics 101 - most of what is said is simply True. Doesn't mean we follow the prof home and offer to build an alter in his front yard. Nor does it mean our artisitc tastes are dictated, as you so clumsily imply.

However if you are interested in joining a cult-like organization, try here.

4/27/2008 03:50:00 PM  
Blogger Smoov said...

Now I've done it. I've engaged a troll. Probably some species of leftist. I really feel like I need a good 10 mile run to shake that, um, feeling of attached residue.

I've been pretty good at avoiding leftists online. I forgot how tainted one feels afterward.

Time to run.

4/27/2008 03:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Smoov:

Report to re-education camp at once for current truth and happy correct opinion.

4/27/2008 04:13:00 PM  
Anonymous killer joe said...

Ouch! Insults and straw man constructionism from a fella who's consulting the Idiot's Guide to Hearing Music. Keep em coming, smoov groov. It's raining here at Greasy Lake and we're out of dry leaves.

We'll take your democratic primary-styled non-answer as a "Won't expose a weakness with an opinion just yet as this unknown could be a hostile, so let me default to safe mode and attack." response. It's easier than an opinion anytime, even if no one learns anything new. At least you won't look foolish in the mirror this time.

Wha'd you do, discover him yesterday googling the babys?

4/27/2008 04:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Killer Joe = Jackass = Old Yeller = blah, blah, blah.

4/27/2008 09:39:00 PM  
Anonymous kjjaoy said...

Gagdad Bob, David Dukes, Hoarhey, Malcolm X, blah blah blah

4/28/2008 12:06:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Smoov said " Doesn't mean we follow the prof home and offer to build an alter in his front yard."

Yeah, as if! The neighbors, the traffic, Nagging flea bitten 'coon dogs barking at the fence... just wouldn't work. That's why I've been offering to build one in the back yard.

4/28/2008 05:43:00 AM  

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