Imagine me being here now this very moment just as I am slipping through my own disembodied awareness like a silver dolphin alone in a sea of shadows on the moon on the eyeless side of the mirror. And you. Just as you are. Doing the very same thing because it’s in everybody’s nature to swim through themselves as if they were shoreless, looking for islands in the mindstream among the stars. To be free. To delight in the mystery of exploring themselves like a new medium they discover they have an unknown talent for beathing life into. Beyond reality, beyond delusion, beyond enlightenment and ignorance the knowable human divinity of pure sentience omnipresently at home with itself like the homeless everywhere. Everywhere within yourself even at midnight can’t you see the aura of the gold in the ore that dreams of being dug up? Or how the fireflies are always trying to get your attention like tiny lighthouses off the coast of continents that have already run aground like mountains? Or gone down with Mu and Atlantis? How many lost civilizations are waiting in the overgrown jungles of yourself for you to let the dead use your voice to decipher their ghosts at a seance of whispering hieroglyphs? If the one word the wise never use is complete then you’re a fool to think there’s an end of you in sight. But that shouldn’t discourage you from looking.
And isn’t that what we were born for? To see and be happy. To attain a transformative insight into the tragic innocence of seeing itself that let’s the witness go free to delight in its eyes without accounting for anything? Even if you’re trying to wash your reflection off your face like a deathmask in a mirage in a desert of stars. Even if you’re scooping up the moon to drink from your hands like a lifeboat in the rain. Even if you’ve crawled into one of the wormholes of space like a prophet in the belly of a snake whispering in Eve’s ear things that weren’t meant to be heard by anyone other than yourself. Even if you’re the most fucked-up, twisted, mutated, incontravertible perversion of yourself, a black dwarf that ate its own children after it had starved them to death by keeping its light to itself. Even if you’re dropping breadcrumbs like asteroids everywhere you go or threading the eye in the needle like a spider in a labyrinth to figure a way out of yourself like genetically inherited dice. You’re still not a victim of gravity. Whatever excruciating transformations you must undergo like the sea enduring its own weather. Nothing can get you down. Nothing can bring you up. Because the whole universe in all ten directions is wired to surround-sound listening to itself like an old recording of what it had to say at the beginning of things before it discovered its voice. But it’s not a Big Bang when nothing’s come into existence yet to compare it to. It’s not the sound of one hand clapping or the crash of a tree in a forest when there’s no one there to hear it. And even if you’re holding on to your religion like a superstitious grudge against the world. And it may be hard at first to discover the universe God the Zeitgeist the Cosmic Id whatever you want to call it never had a motive from the very first that wasn’t invasively human. But that’s just you being godlessly unconvinced of your own existence. That’s just you trying to believe in your own inconceivability like an established fact. That’s just you trying to spread your angel wings over the earthly turbulence of learning to fly on your own.
So what if you’re a dead civilization before you’re seventeen? That doesn’t make you any less intriguing than the living ones. It’s the tragic heroes we remember the most not the ghosts of the bookends who lived to the end of their long and boring biographies wholesome as twelve grain bread. So what if you’re gnawing on yourself like a bitter black crust of starwheat? You’re still shining. You’re still breaking yourself into loaves and fishs. Some people are bright and light with stars in their eyes and smiles that can only be measured in lightyears. And some are dark and deep as Solomon’s mines hiding their wealth from the graverobbers in gnostic caves of black matter no one’s thief enough to enter. Here’s a Zen koan I just made up specifically for you. If a thief stole the moon from your window would your window miss it? If you ever find an answer that doesn’t let you in on the know as immediately as your mind. Let it go. It wasn’t meant for you.
You get up every morning and you open your eyes like storefronts and informers and for all that appeared and disappeared in plain view before and through them have you ever heard them complain that anything was ever missing from the seeing? Whatever you’re looking at. Awake or dreaming. Whose light is cast over everything and then withdrawn like day and night? When it’s gone. Stars. When it’s here. Flowers. When you fail at finding happiness you discover peace as a way of consoling yourself. When you fall a god or two shy of perfection you master an earthly excellence that’s out of reach of the angels. Cornerstones and quicksand. Everything here stands solidly on the unsubstantiated reality of everything else. The defeated don’t stand like shadows in the victor’s light. An eclipse isn’t midnight on the sun when the clock strikes Cinderella with a pendulum like an executioner’s ax. You can call it praying if you like but from here it looks like swanning on the block for betraying yourself.
Or is it Chicken Little when the sky’s falling in all around her like Leonid meteor showers? Did you raise a false alarm? Did you let the world down? Have your zeniths caught up to their nadirs like snakes with their tails in their mouths? Zero. Forever. Did it become inconceivably unholy to tempt yourself with the earth’s believable fruits because they fall back on their dark roots like pregnant rain to climb up the waterslide again like clear fountains everyone can drink from like clouds and birds that pass without a trace? Is that blood or lipstick on the mirror? Was your last loveletter a suicide note full of agitated compassion for what you’d done to everyone else by killing them into life with your absence or were you just kidding when you said life was too hard for the living and what’s the point of swimming when the lifeboats are full of the dead?
It’s too late for the Mayan calendar to do the Mayans any good. And Nostradamus’ worst guess on a bad seeing day is just another unenlightened truism at the wrong end of a telescope looking for signs of intelligent life. And maybe we’ll destroy ourselves out of hate and ignorance long before we get any answers that might have prevented the onslaught of doom like a prophetic skull that had spoken. Everything is broken. Fractious. Raptors in rapture they’ve made a comeback at last like Nazis in the Black Forest. Like Dante in a dark wood. Like children all over the planet tonight turning into young men and women who remember war like the scar of a childhood Caesarian that marked them for life like that which has been rent asunder. Like an olive tree by lightning without thunder. Or the Israeli airforce. A flash of insight without wondering what they’ve seen that makes them want to kill themselves in a holy war of mirrors vying for perfection of the reflection of a God that escapes detection like a cosmic Houdini whatever chains straightjackets or suicide vests or religions you want to dress him up in.
So why are you crying like a broken teacup you couldn’t pour the ocean into? Is your mind too big for your skull? Look at how the trees bag all the stars in the sky into the tiniest drop of water and throw a hobo branch over their shoulders like a jolly swagman down under and walk away with the spoils of the victors like a windfall at their feet. You say you’ve lost your purpose for living. But here’s one that’s as purposeful as evolution. Begin. Anywhere. Now. Like a crowning achievement that returns to transcendence by getting over itself.
When misdirection comes to its senses where are you that isn’t always here and now? Because there is no other place to be. If you make goodness the standard of life then you’ll end up practising an occult alchemy looking for a philosopher’s stone to turn maggots into butterflies with the wormy afterlives of people obscenely out of touch with themselves. Knowledge feeds on ignorance and true wisdom doesn’t acknowledge the difference. Great enlightenment doesn’t maintain a teacher. You want to be a star. You want to rise and shine. As well you should. But remember this. The darkness is a star’s best feature. And beauty and meaning and art don’t mean anything to anyone with a heart if they haven’t lived through their own passionate annihilation. You won’t find a phoenix in an urn on a mantle. You want to burn? You’ve got to learn to eat your own ashes sometimes.