of Kindness, Love & Grace
Like You Wouldn't Believe
Call For A Cease Fire In The Ancient Forest Wars
On Bruce Cockburn's "Trouble With Normal"
(Fin-de-Siècle . . . )
Naked into the Millennium
Can you imagine Going Stark Naked into the New Millennium? Youll never read about that program in the Oregonian! We could call it Embracing the Great Equalizer! No Rank! No Privilege! No Seniority! No Inside Information! No Transfer of Accumulated Wealth! No Waiting Hand and Foot on the Ascended Masters (while waiting secretly to slip into their sandals)!
So how would we pull off such a Transformative Striptease? I dont think the choreography for dances this provocative is openly or willingly published. Were talking about dropping the pants on values and procedures held dear by even the most radical of organizations. No leaders. No agenda. No assigning the dirty, boring jobs to the lowly Rank & File.
Its not a matter of simply replacing something inadequate with something indisputably indispensable. Were talking about a Total Paradigm Shift where trite comparisons, party rhetoric, and the obsolete measurements of success are relegated to the ragbag. You wont find this stuff taught in schools or discussed at City sanctioned Neighborhood Meetings. Nor laid out as a twelve-step program on the inside of a matchbook cover. The New Millennium isnt something were heading towards or something thats coming towards us. It wont descend automatically at the stroke of midnight. We ARE either IT, or we ARE NOT.
What keeps us from becoming IT is our addiction to the tight patterns of habitual response. Ones that cause us to interpret reality as black and white. Good and Evil. Saved and the Damned. To be freed from such patterns, they first must be seen. Once seen, they possess a natural tendency to dissolve themselves. This is a good thing. Trying to dissolve them by pure will power alone or by force of moral rectitude has a tendency to solidify the patterns even more. I might go as far as to say its impossible to dissolve them any other way.
In the experience of Outright Intensity, the relationship between seemingly opposite energies can be felt. In that experience, killing is seen as the destruction of the artificial categories overlaid on essential Oneness.
This experience of Outright Intensity can be your lifeline. If you, instead, fill you head with rules, teachings, diagrams of escape, the names and numbers of people in charge, youll be up the creek without a paddle. Or more accurately, swallowed Whole by a Raging Tempest that wont even notice youre there. Place your faith in Reincarnation (a poor mans version of another chance) or Membership in the Heavenly Elect (a rich mans version of the ONLY chance) and youll lose sight of the greatest asset you haveyour impending Death! You are mortal. See it. Feel it. Get over it. Do that and be relieved of the biggest handle for manipulation. Be deaf to Nike ads. Blind to the Evening News. No more fears of Eternal Damnation. No more fantasies of finding Enduring Fame on the Movie Screen, the Battlefield, or as Chairman of Board. You are free at last. Free to sail out with the rest of us. Bon Voyage!
William P. Benz is an Artist, Writer, and Poet living in North Portland, Oregon. He Specializes in the Design of Information Filters, the Surfacing of Mental Models, and the Creative Reintegration of Defective WorldViews. For more info, visit his NEW WEB Space at http://www.aracnet.com/~wpbenz. Or send email him: