Friday, August 20, 2010

To Plainness Honour's Bound

"Now Cinderella, don't you go to sleep - it's such a bitter form of refuge.
Why don't you know the Kingdom's under siege, and everybody needs you?"

"What is real? How do you define real?"

Is "real" simply electrical signals interpreted by our brains, as THE MATRIX suggests?  

I do not know.  I do know that  when I am angry, tired, happy, stressed, or perfectly at ease, my eating and activity habits change as a result.  I feel different, I sense different sensations, electrical signals are created, sent, and interpreted throughout my body.  I know that when, for example, I have a headache resulting from a negative emotion, I reach for caffeine or water, or I fall asleep.  I know that these purely physical reactions are mere remedies, they only help ease the symptoms.  If I want to rid myself of these negative sensations, I would destroy the source of the negativity.  The remedies are deceptions, lies - they lead one to believe that the problem is solved, but it is only hidden.  I equate what is "real" with what is "true", what is "truth", what is the source, as opposed to what is the symptom, the sensation, the interpretation, the electrical signal, the purely physical.

What is real, is beyond human grasp.

Good and Evil.  Every action is either one or the other.  Good and Evil.  The contrast sounds cut and dry, and rather obvious.  It sounds extremely objective.  But life and everything in it is a very subjective test.  Actions are not judged to be Good or Evil by their outcome.  It is determined by the intent of the person.  If the intent is pure, selfless, and ultimately humble, it is not Evil.  I believe that in the end, decisions exist to help transform the people who make them.  Any lasting state that is external, has already been created internally. 

There are times when I feel alone, stranded, helpless, empty, frustrated, trapped, and restless.  There are many times when I blame my weakness on the people closest to me.  There are times when I am thankful for them more than almost everything else.  They are my world, They are my protection from what is beyond them.   Then I hear the pattern-snares of a person's life, I see tears, I see pain, I feel a numbness in me, I become aware of a fatal ignorance I am diseased with, I am gifted with.  I interpret these electrical signals.  I wonder what is real.  If these are merely the symptoms, can I handle knowing the illness itself?  I wonder if I should.

And in everything, I ask: at what price?

At what price am I willing to hope?  What is the price of opening up to people?  At what price am I willing to question?  At what price am I willing to live what I believe?  At what price am I willing to live free?   What is the real price of alcoholism?  How much am I willing to sacrifice on a date, in a friendship?  Where is the damage of a suicide incurred, is the pain worth the price? 

"Think'st thou that duty shall have dread to speak,
When power to flattery bows? To plainness honour's bound,
When majesty stoops to folly. Reverse thy doom;

My life I never held but as a pawn
To wage against thy enemies; nor fear to lose it

Time shall unfold what plaited cunning hides:
Who cover faults, at last shame them derides."
King Lear, by W. Shakespeare

"And the decades disappear
Like sinking ships but we persevere.
God gives us hope. But we still fear what we don't know.
Now Cinderella, don't you go to sleep - it's such a bitter form of refuge.
Why, dont' you know the Kingdom's under siege, and everybody needs you?"
~ "Dustland Fairytale", by The Killers

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