Wednesday, 10 July 2019

The World Teacher

That toe you stub accidentally on purpose; that cup you drop in a moment of unconscious clumsiness – and miraculously catch in mid-air. That gulp you instinctively make when someone addresses you and subtly and quite casually – or all-too-directly – expresses a deep truth you thought well-hidden. That moment of hair-raising joy when you dare to connect – through written or spoken words and word-play; music; poetry; film; dance; art – a thousand and one arts, crafts and sciences; that “chance” meeting and kiss of lips, that tender union; that resonance and synchronicity; archetype; symbol; subtle alchemical fragrance of something distantly remembered; that coming to your senses – awake and alive; inspiration; inner-tuition; whisper, nudge, sign or affirmation; perfection embracing imperfection; unity in diversity; that king or queen – nay, goddess – in a shabby grey cloak, carrying a beggar's bowl; that face behind the face behind the mask.

That moment of hair-raising joy when you dare to connect – through communion with Mother Nature; that longing; or that serene, soulful, eternal silence and clarity; that receptivity, acceptance and admission, and loving gratitude and reciprocation. That meeting through physical contact or psychic, with a person – whether an earthbound misfit or – joy of joys! – homeward bound mystic, whether near, remote, or even supposedly fictional. That social media post you briefly scan – yet register, perhaps unconsciously or perhaps with increasing awareness – as you casually or rapidly scroll through reams of text and images and memes in your web browser, with one eye on the ever-ticking clock – looking for the proverbial needle in a haystack, that hidden gem that makes it worth your while. Yes – even in cyberspace as well as in this virtual reality; as above, so below; as within, so without.

In a way – in its own inimitable and mysterious style – the world, your oyster, is telling you something, if you care to listen. Sometimes as a still-small voice; if needs be with a lively bugle call or – as a last resort – as a host of angels bearing mighty trumpets. And you are telling yourself something that in a sense you already know – but in a new light. Behold a world of quality beyond “I” and “Thou” – never mind the utter, mechanistic separation of “I” and “It”. A world that softly sings, and rings with Freedom, “Welcome”, Remembrance and “Peace”.

This is the mysterious realm of magic and co-creation unveiled and revealed – in beauty, in warts and all. Real magic, mark you: long-lost to but a few like you and largely forgotten, along with so much of our ancient heritage, and now miraculously rediscovered. This is your very own, individually-tailored, finely-tuned course in Reality – from the Heartlands, amidst and in spite of deception and illusion – a direct communication in the Here and Now, of which everyday life itself is School, Teaching, Teacher and Taught. It may take time ("and pomegranates") to free yourself from the unseen snares of the death-dark underworld of the unconscious, and arrive here, but there's no rush – as ever, you're just in time – nor is there a need for recrimination, nor to fret over particulars. All that matters is that you have made it to the ever-open door and caught a timely glimpse of the sheer delight that lies beyond. Light upon lights!

Soul food (12 Nov 1990)

In every grain of sand
In the palm of my right hand
In the sleazy brothel bed
In the lowly cattle shed
In the slate-grey cloudy sky
In the frown of the passer-by
Behind the greasepaint smiles
And the drunkard on the tiles
In the salivating dogs of war
In the troubadour's chansons d'amour
Idly eyeing an opportunist fly
Watching life passing me by
In the heated climax of lust
In patience and in trust
Reading between the lines
Listening to my own whines
In a children's fairytale
In the morning junk mail
In the two-bit comic's joke
Meeting common or garden folk

– Here's food enough for every fool
Who ever set out to find
What it was they were looking for,
Or what there is to find.

~ A.N. Other, The Ramblings of a Madman in Search of a Soul.

Image: The King's Day Free Market (Dutch: Koningsdag Vrijmarkt) in the city of Groningen.
Image author: Donald Trung Quoc Don (Chữ Hán: 徵國單).
Image source: Wikimedia Commons.
Image licence: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0).

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