Every period has its bias, its particular prejudice and its psychic ailment. An epoch is like an individual; it has its own limitations of conscious outlook, and therefore requires a compensatory adjustment. ~Carl Jung, Modern Man in Search of a Soul
Balance is the magic word. It opens doors. Not only figurative passageways but it opens actual, physical doors. Take a car just submerged in water for example. The pressure imbalance holds the doors tightly shut. For the opening to materialize, the pressure must equalize. Once equilibrium is complete, life can resume and possibilities can flourish. The human intellect seeks this balance as well. We trap ourselves and create unnecessary problems if we give too much importance to a particular viewpoint. Time and time again we realize our speculations and agreed upon truths were imperfect and were unable to hold up against impartial scrutiny and behaving like the fools we are, we swing our theories and facts completely in the opposite direction. We overcompensate for our inaccuracies. As we do this, we catapult ourselves further away from truth. Today we completely disregard archaic wisdom in favor of scientific materialism and end up almost as blind as our ancestors. Our ancestors placed overwhelming emphasis on the supernatural. We do the same today with science and technology. Science squashed the supernatural, and in many ways we benefited from that. However, the choice to depend wholly on science is marked by serious flaws. Science only studies and diagnoses the physical heart, and it neglects the intangible, the heart and soul of humanity. How can the intangible heart be salvaged? How can the meaning of life be resurrected? We live in times of strife and human indecency while under the supreme authority of science. By overemphasizing matter, we’ve been hit with a spiritual crisis.
The world pays no mind to what we think makes us happy. Do we even dare to say what makes us happy? Are our thoughts even ours, or were they surreptitiously planted by ministers of propaganda? This might sound far-fetched, but fools scoff at being shown who they really are. That’s how ignorance reinforces itself. Ignorance behaves like a parasite that obstinately stays alive no matter the deadly strain put on the host. Ignorance turns us into empty vessels too. As hollow and vulnerable beasts, we allow our base desires to dictate our words, our choices, and our likes and dislikes. We need to watch out as this can be exploited. Armed with this information, knowledgeable men mold our desires to a form they deem appropriate. What’s more worrisome is that they could, at their discretion, even implant new desires, new desires as in new opportunities to exploit. That’s why it’s more important than ever to master the self. Our world disseminates half truths and outright lies. The same world jams honest transmissions expressing pure truth. As long as we’re slaves to our desires, whether sexual, social, financial, digestive, or psychological, we’re apt and ready tools for powerful men of industry. Only when we once more value virginity, restraint, and temperance will we earn our emancipation from this fallen world.
There’s no running away from garbage. Not even the modern aristocrat is safe. The waste we discard, bury, and burn finds its way back to us and eventually, we even find it in our bodies. Don’t we see the beauty of this justice? Karma teaches us the value of discipline. If you don’t clean your mess, the mess will infiltrate your entire being. The mess will swell the body, mind, and soul until all three burst into tiny floating particles. Unfortunately, we’ve neglected the mess for too long. It casts a long shadow. It is daunting, but fleeing is not a viable option. Stop eschewing our responsibility. We know we cannot indefinitely create products that become obsolete moments later. We know infinite growth was a lie that motivated us to work harder for the promise of a better tomorrow. We poison the environment, but I’m not saying the Earth isn’t resilient. I am saying this: Watch our contributions to the world. As long as we’re in this mess of a society, we don’t have to stoke the flames and torture ourselves further. If not us, someone else will pay for any damage done. Let’s mature beyond our fanaticism and militant environmentalism. Stop trying in vain to save the planet. Let’s concentrate on clearing away our own portion of the mess. The rivers run on this planet like the blood in our veins, and we treat them both with the same lack of respect.
Light, as it penetrates our lenses, makes our sight possible. Keeping this in mind, let’s be honest with ourselves. Let’s truly see the world as it is. We can observe the light flickering, warping, and waning. What happened? Did a thief capture the light? Or was there always some sacred cow blocking it? Government may have subdued the violent, impulsive beast in most humans but even in the midst of an abundance of information, the human intellect is reverting to a state of proud, corrosive ignorance. Maybe the degeneration exists for a valid reason. Maybe it’s an accommodation for an oncoming dark age. We do have our own preferred methods to shape the world to our liking. Indeed, society desperately needs reorganization. Today, humans inflate their egos with toxic lies and engorge their bodies with toxic junk. The human mind is deteriorating. Our potential to self educate has never been greater. Though instead of expanding their minds, many humans react to unfamiliar ideas, new perspectives with vitriol and ad hominem attacks. This behavior is symptomatic of broken lenses and faltering light. We’ve made progress, but we still have much ground to cover to improve the human condition. What have you and I done lately? What have we done to restore the light and repair our lenses?
Beware of choice. Due to its nature, we’ve all played Caesar and crossed the Rubicon. Sometimes there’s no rolling back our decisions, no undoing our actions. We can carve out a path that cannot be unmade, and this might cause tremendous regret. Regret motivates us to fix the situation. Though it’s insane trying to mend broken glass with our hands. The glass shards cut, our frenetic hands bleed, and the glass cannot be unshattered. Our familiar days will fade in memory. The ramifications alone compel us to make sure we’ve chosen right, to make certain we’ve broken the glass for good reasons. As the glass cannot be pieced together, we must accept the consequences no matter how dire and sorrowful and prepare ourselves for the next series of choices. Even declining the offer to choose is a choice. Even committing to the safest choice can spawn a whole host of troubles. Not all choices can redesign, rebuild, or demolish our life as we know it but as we press on, be warned. The doors from our past may become permanently sealed shut.
Authentic love is selflessness; it is also mindfulness. A true act of love demonstrates loyalty, honesty, and integrity. It is not our drug. It is not our shopping list nor our parachute as we fall further out of grace. The more selfish we become, the further we fall. If others cannot meet our stringent demands, are they really to blame? Once our happiness depends on others complying with our wishes, we corrupt love. We sabotage it by ensnaring it and owning it like a pet. This universal feeling is not here for our amusement. What matters is not our end of the bargain, our precious minerals we extract from the mine of relationships. What matters is our compassion. Life offers us a critical choice, which tests our character. No one can make the choice for us. Will the world attest that our hearts are good?
Most of us seal our sight in darkness. The depravity is there, but can we see it? Can we really see? Are we ready to see the desert? If we’re ready, we’d cut the stitches from our eyelids. We’d no longer lose ourselves in pathetic skirmishes for status and possessions. As we recalibrate for a moment, we’d see the wasteland sprawled out before us. We’d instantly know the desert. The desert is spiritual death. It is the void lacking moral sustenance, and the swallowing spiral of cheap, fleeting pleasure. It is the grim aftermath of ignorance, materialism, and needless suffering. There is nothing to drink here. There is nothing to eat but before we lament, we must remind ourselves of the truth. We’ve created this barren, God forsaken land. No one forced us. No one did this for us. It was us who did not inhabit fertile plots of land. We neglected to till the soil within our souls and as in the literal desert, the truth shines so intensely we crave the shade under the canopy. This is the truth that scorches and tortures. In order to learn our lesson, we must stoically endure. Karma unleashes consequences in return for our poor choices. Unabashedly, we allow our poison to spread into others’ lives. Our collective depravity can tear at society, and it is our government’s infamous revolving door that leads it to ruin.
To be truly alive is to turn toward death without cowering. This means locking eyes with the abyss without fleeing. For sense’s sake, where do we think we’re going to go? There’s no secret escape hatch. There’s no bright exit sign. There’s France, Egypt, Tibet—these places might invigorate us. Foreign countries can impart the culture we’re so eager to experience but in the end, does it ever satisfy? So pretentious are we when we immerse ourselves into unfamiliar environments. As I’ve mentioned before, there is only one God, one story, one place to be. There’s nothing new here. The inviting, exotic lands only fully captivate the ignorant. The pretentious traveler answers the song of the beckoning sirens. You answer that call, and you’ll find yourself wandering in the desert.