I last posted a blog in November, partly because it seems that no one really cares what anyone else has to say, unless it is political-either strongly agreeing or strongly disagreeing, otherwise forget it; but mainly because it seems so pointless, shit just seems to happen anyway. Just one example might be that a good number of Americans voted, but most of us, I believe, do not feel that our vote counted. Yet, the vote was certified, and we have a different president. However, I really don't want to get into that. Rather I would like to comment on our growing sense that this life that we pretend to live, really has no significance as it stands.
Consider the fate of a human child. We are born to parents not of our choosing, entirely dependent upon them to meet each of our needs for about 18 years so that we develop optimally. We are born into an extended family, into a society. We are clearly a part of a greater whole. Yet, those parents choose for us, randomly, a name, choose and reject, randomly, characteristics that we come to embody. And they will say things like: "That's just not like you," when they do not like our behavior; or: "Be yourself," as if suddenly we are capable of separating ourselves from that greater whole. I should note that I am paraphrasing Alan Watts at this point, his point being that we do not, nor do our parents, recognize the double bind that this places us in. You cannot be separate from the greater whole, and the lifelong attempt to do so leads to frustration in the least, and mental illness at the worst.
I am not suggesting that I have a better alternative for raising children, simply that we recognize this double bind (damned if you do, and damned if you don't).
Think about how this separation has manifested in your life. You have this body, this identity established by the age of about seven. It's boundary is your skin. What is within is you. What is without is other or nature. You are not the same, in fact you quickly are at war. You are taught that you must control other (others) and nature. You are run through the education system, thinking that if you can graduate from high school, from college, get the right job, the right promotion, become the president of your company, make a lot of money, and then, ahh, retirement. But then where are you? Tired, sick, weak heart, and truthfully disillusioned and disappointed. Clearly something is wrong. This war with nature (in reality the greater whole of which you are a part, in fact the closest thing that you have to a true identity} is not going well.
We live in a time where everything seems to be at odds with everything else. Just consider for a moment America and it's political system. I cannot remember a time of such chaos that threatens to implode the entire planet. Seriously could you just a year ago imagine: a pandemic that lacks the bodies lying everywhere on the streets, schools and jobs closed, the masks, an election that was scandalous to say the least, and a populace brought to the brink of destruction. It does, indeed, seem as though this existence does have no purpose, much like the matrix.
Consider further how we might end this war, between "I" (that within my skin), and "me" (without my skin, as I cannot be less that the greater whole}. This is difficult to imagine, and even more difficult to do, but it begins by "looking" at that which we have considered other, as if it was you, or at you. Consider that this other person has the same hopes, dreams and most of all the same fears as you, and perhaps ask yourself if you would rather embrace this other, yourself, or push the button of destruction.