Okay, I apologize for how not brief this is. I was going to break it up into several parts but I’ve worked a long time on it and want it presented whole. So here goes:
The grand dualism delusion not mentioned in the previous blog is that of life/death. It warrants its own treatment.
The notion of death—death of an eternal being who has permanently shed his or her temporal skin—is absurd. The idea of death is ludicrous, a materialistic fallacy (death of body=elimination of person). And it is a relatively modern phenomenon, one not entertained by all cultures at all times.
But this fallacy does/did exist, and it has had its purpose, mainly to generate intense passion for life. Death, the prospect of death, is meant to generate appreciation for even the most banal of moments, right?
Life=Story and we sign up for and buy into these life on earth stories for their morals at the end. For us, this highly entertaining reality offers unique, brilliantly conceived lessons that serve the ongoing enlightenment experience of our whole Self, the one not found in time and space. And playing this game on this planet, managing the back and forth of the many dualisms mentioned previously, takes place inside the biggest dualism delusion of all: life pointed straight at, hurtling toward apparent death/oblivion of the self.
That purpose still strongly sways much world culture, but it has also been spun very peculiarly, for religious as well as secular ends. And as we will see later, we’ve grown to worship (and profit from) death—and its children: violence and murder—instead of life.
So it is time to slay death, or the death fable, for it has run its course. It is time to set up a new narrative for Being on earth. We are slaying the dragon called Death, to release the magic that is Life.
The way I’ve found to penetrate and vaporize the death concept is to point out that none of us really believe this fallacy, because it is absurd. We do a great job in pretending we do believe it, as we play our stories, but if you look closely, death has no clothes.
To betray the bluff I like to make some logical observations, based on one main observation:
If it all were to really end, for any one of us, or all of us eventually, we would conduct our lives in a radically different fashion than we now behave.
And there is one big logical inconsistency to our behavior in the face of eternal doom, and then a bunch of smaller, but not less important ones.
The Oblivion Paradox
If these moments were all we had, and individual life does end forever we would be faced with a horrible paradox, one that would cause mass anarchy and at the same time cause civilization’s motor to seize up.
On the one hand, we would want to squeeze every drop of living out of life, celebrating every second, hour, day to the fullest, never knowing if it were the last, never wanting to even sleep for we might never come back. If this were our only life, we would never work a boring job or get stuck in any sort of routines that might take away from our only precious life opportunities. We would want to sing, and play. We would love and laugh. We wouldn’t ever want to miss a chance to breathe deep and exhale loudly.
But… at the same time, if this were our only life, we would be paralyzed by an all-encompassing fear that any risk we take, any substance we ingest, any stranger we encounter might end it all forever for us. We wouldn’t ever want our thread to break if it meant ceasing to exist, so we wouldn’t dare do anything that might cast us into that eternal oblivion, such as driving a SMART car. Right? And funny enough, again, we wouldn’t want to sleep because we might never come back.
The Other Inconsistencies
If death were true:
All acts would be completely meaningless to individuals and groups. If it doesn’t matter once the light is switched off then almost any action would be fine, as long as you stayed alive a little longer. Self-preservation would be the only goal. There would be no reason at all for compassion, for even saving a life. Anarchy would meet non-risk-taking in complete uncaring for others, unless they could buy you more time.
If death were true:
War would be the stupidest use of human energy ever invented, and be completely counter intuitive. Nobody would fight for anything or anybody, and no parent would send a child to war if there is no life beyond this planet.
If death were true:
Speaking of children, gaining immortality by having children to go on living through a bloodline would be seen as a complete crock. Having children doesn’t preserve one’s own life or being, it only hands meaninglessness down to them. The worst thing we could do is bring children into the world where death ends it all. Making life would be the cruelest thing we could do to another.
If death were true:
Same thing for art, such as writings or other things meant to immortalize somebody. They don’t. Words or pictures or sculpted rock, they aren’t the person. The person is worm dirt, getting nothing out of being those representations, least of all “immortality.”
One Other Weird One
And then there is the other end of the spectrum where we survive death, but find us dying later, in Heaven, an even worse joke called Samadhi. To disappear into bliss is meaninglessness as well, like drinking the Kool Aid and not caring one is disappearing/dying. Completely dread inducing to consider. There is no point of ever having had a personality if the only “one” who benefits is the One eating its children.
So much of the above may be controversial or offensive to some. So let’s circle around for a second. In all of these groundwork blogs we are (okay, I am) killing sacred cows, like dualism and death, and it isn’t pretty. But somebody has to do it because there is a world of amazing stories beyond these limiting beliefs. So hang on, we will get to the Yes beyond the No.
(An example is what might substitute for the Samadhi vision. Picture your identity as, say, a conscious water molecule. A water molecule in a vast ocean. There is nothing to say that you and each molecule in the ocean can’t enjoy being molecules individual and at the same time enjoy being a part of the vast ocean experience, without completely losing your Self in the vast void. That really is the destination… and when the lid is off this death thinking, there are wild implications for limitless opportunities in the much, much bigger creation/co-creation Ocean of Being story.)
Wrapping Up—The Insidious Death Distortion
One final thing: it seems that the lid has been off this for a while, just without us consciously knowing it. And that has led to neurotic negative distortions, a strange strain of knowing we don’t die filtered through materialism. It’s bred much anxiety and troves of apocalyptic and zombie films as well. Oh yeah, and increasingly savage wars—hate empowered by technology.
The destination we are pointing to combines knowing we don’t die with appreciation of the life of every Being—sacredness inherent if you will.
Instead, what we see today is unconscious knowing we don’t die and a lack of appreciation for life or Being—even with the so-called religious who would damn another to hell, eternal hell, for not believing in their form of God, Prophet, or Messiah.
But mostly it’s on a secular level witnessed by a numbness to violence real or depicted, and to actual killing, whether for patriotism (tribal religion), vendetta, or sport. Life—and death—are being taken for granted, with death being worshipped, and glorified, more than life and being.
What has happened is that we don’t react the way we should when violence and killing color our days so thoroughly through “entertainment,” news, politics, business, and personal interaction.
Taking a life, or hearing about the taking of life has become ordinary, no big deal. The thread to sacredness was cut someplace and we’ve lost the fundamental understanding of and respect for Being—ours and others. It’s been replaced with fear and paranoia, complacency and a lack of nobility. You can throw in dishonesty and a lack of authenticity too. (There isn’t a strong enough word for the character defect, the obscenity, of allowing, ignoring, cheering or directly violating another (and not just human) being.)
(and a little Venting About War)
We know we don’t die, but life still is a gift that we don’t understand yet. And we throw that gift in “The Creator”‘s face when we send our children to war, or allow them to go, or bless them for committing suicide and killing innocents. (And god help those who have to perform the acts we give them the “duty” to perform. They need all the help we can give them when they return, for there is no returning from taking lives, and there are no virgins waiting.)
And if we aren’t directly involved we are standing on the sidelines, allowing it, even cheering it, when this violence and these wars are being staged to protect bias, and fear, and paranoia—ours, not theirs, of course. These battles need to be faced within each of us and not by flesh and blood proxies in deserts or mountains or on city streets. And these battles are not for politicians, generals and defense industries to decide to wage or so-called win.
When we know we don’t die, we have to then ask ourselves:
What do we want to carry into the next life—blood? regrets? I think not. But there are pretty powerful forces who don’t care.
In the end, there will have been a good reason humanity has walked and driven tanks and drones and hijacked planes down this path. Even our distortions have meaning in the long run. But it’s time to learn the lesson and get off the path of hate and violence. There are way more fulfilling paths to tramp other than the worship of death and destruction—and greed and profit.
So here we are. Strip away the fable/horror story of death and then what? Next blog: No Beginning…
New Stupid Catchphrase: Drop the Crappy Attitude for Happy Gratitude or Mulch the Crappy Attitude to Grow Happy Gratitude (All feel free to groan at once)