Monday, April 27, 2009

Where Malaysia is headed (Part 8)

Reclaiming your sovereign power as an individual is the greatest gift you can offer your nation and your planet. Only when you cease being a mere statistic and become whole and real (or royal) as a person do you begin to add value to your community.

Every ignoble and discordant act you might possibly commit that classifies you as less than an exemplary citizen is prompted by either fear or greed or both.

Fear of the stick and greed for the carrot is how you and your ancestors have been subject to external control for countless generations. This time-tested management approach can only work if your level of consciousness is approximately that of a beast of burden. It has little or no effect on those who can think independently and originally.

How, you may ask, does one achieve independence and originality of thought after decades of conditioning via our parents, our schools and universities - indeed, our entire cultural matrix which serves to format our minds so we can't help but identify with a specific race, religion, football club or political party?

KNOW THYSELF: this admonition inscribed in gold on the portico of the Apollo Temple at Delphi has existed for perhaps 25 centuries and has been variously attributed to Pythagoras (right), Socrates, Solon and Heraclitus. Some authorities say the inscription ought to read: "Know Thyself - and thou shalt know all the mysteries of the gods and of the universe."

In any case, Gnothi Seauton or Know Thyself is central to the teachings of the Hermetic philosophers whose tutelar spirit, Hermes Trismegistos, was revered as the incarnation of Thoth, Egyptian god of scribes, and Hermes, messenger of the Olympian pantheon. Thoth and Hermes form the axis of the Western esoteric tradition and the mystery schools they established have much in common with the Eastern esoteric schools initiated by Gautama Buddha, Patanjali and, later, Padmasambhava.

They essentially teach that the path to liberation is very narrow and admits only awakened individuals, not the sleeping masses. What this implies is that you can only arrive at a true understanding of the divine by becoming a fully conscious human - in other words, a Buddha.

You can't do it by subscribing to a religious doctrine or
prepackaged belief system - no matter how devout or pious you appear to be to others - or believe yourself to be. Being generally law-abiding, driving on the "correct" side of the road, and strictly adhering to a set of prescribed observances doesn't make you a fully conscious human being.

Whether you're a church-going Christian, sutra-chanting Buddhist, bhajan-singing Hindu or Koran-reciting Muslim, you're unlikely to break free of your cultural and social formatting unless you turn your attention inwards, towards your own core being where you can reconnect with your Essential Self - which is what makes you unique as well as universal as an incarnate soul.

In the 13th century the famous Sufi poetMowlana Jalaluddin Rumi (left), kept these esoteric teachings alive in his works, effectively bridging the Eastern and Western mystery traditions. And yet, Rumi is more popular in the West than in the Middle East or Malaysia where Islam predominates. Why?

Most orthodox religions frown on and often vigorously persecute the mystical cults within their midst. Public behavior can be monitored and regulated by external authority but not private investigations of the numinous and the transcendental.

That's why these ancient practices are branded as "deviant" and those caught are subject to harsh punishment - the way "heretics" were severely tortured before being burnt alive at the stake by the Spanish Inquisition (which, incredibly, lasted from 1478-1834). It's revealing that in this day and age even harmless, peaceable cults like Ayah Pin's Sky Kingdom in Terengganu or Li Hongzhi's Falun Gong in China have been viciously attacked by governments insecure about the power they exert over people's private beliefs.

Ayah Pin and the Sky Kingdom he anchored for a while in Terengganu

But how relevant are these mystical notions in the frenzied hurly-burly of the post-industrial age?

For those who feel trapped in the 3D Matrix of endless production and consumption, the way out is really the way in. It's more a process of unlearning old programs rather than learning new techniques or disciplines. Each program you manage to manually override, bypass or uninstall is one impediment less to your own enlightenment and liberation from the soul-destroying, will-sapping treadmill of business-as-usual.

Now that ancient esoteric wisdom and cutting-edge science appear to be converging, we have the benefit of a whole new range of conceptual tools in the form of more precise terminologies with which to remodel our perceptions of reality.

Terence McKenna ranks among the most eloquent of spokesmen for the emerging vision of a world radically transformed by the alchemical union of science and mysticism. Described as a "writer, philosopher, psychonaut and ethnobotanist" by Wikipedia, McKenna dedicated his life to researching plant-based entheogens, sensory and neurological exciters like psilocybin and ayahuasca - and achieved a consummate understanding of the intimate links between art and shamanism.

Allow me to quote at length from Terence McKenna as he discusses his classic work, The Archaic Revival: Speculations on Psychedelic Mushrooms, the Amazon, Virtual Reality, UFOs, Evolution, Shamanism, the Rebirth of the Goddess, and the End of History

"...what we need is a new myth, what we need is a new true story that tells us where we're going in the universe and that true story is that the ego is a product of pathology, and when psilocybin is regularly part of the human experience the ego is suppressed and the suppression of the ego means the defeat of the dominators, the materialists, the product peddlers. Psychedelics return us to the inner worth of the self, to the importance of the feeling of immediate experience - and nobody can sell that to you and nobody can buy it from you, so the dominator culture is not interested in the felt presence of immediate experience, but that's what holds the community together.

And as we break out of the silly myths of science and the infantile obsessions of the marketplace, what we discover through the psychedelic experience is that in the body, IN THE BODY, there are Niagaras of beauty, alien beauty, alien dimensions that are part of the self, the richest part of life. I think of going to the grave without having a psychedelic experience like going to the grave without ever having sex. It means that you never figured out what it is all about. The mystery is in the body and the way the body works itself into nature. What the Archaic Revival means is shamanism, ecstasy, orgiastic sexuality, and the defeat of the three enemies of the people. And the three enemies of the people are hegemony, monogamy and monotony!

And if you get them on the run you have the dominators sweating, folks, because that means you're getting it all reconnected, and getting it all reconnected means putting aside the idea of separateness and self-definition through thing-fetish. Getting it all connected means tapping into the Gaian mind, and the Gaian mind is what we're calling the psychedelic experience. It's an experience of the living fact of the entelechy of the planet. And without that experience we wander in a desert of bogus ideologies. But with that experience the compass of the self can be set, and that's the idea; figuring out how to reset the compass of the self through community, through ecstatic dance, through psychedelics, sexuality, intelligence, INTELLIGENCE. This is what we have to have to make the forward escape into hyperspace.
Now you may be wondering what all this trippy stuff has got to do with the way ahead for Malaysia...

Well, the universe is an interconnected, interdependent network of dynamic interactions. Our identities are not at all static. They evolve as we mature. Even as we attempt to define ourselves as individuals, we are being defined - or confined - by our immediate environment, our familial and societal ties, our national ideologies, and everchanging geopolitical scenarios.

Terence McKenna's personal obsession with "escape into hyperspace" is just his way of investigating possible escape routes from the entropic 3D Matrix.

McKenna's switched-on way of thinking illustrates the unpredictable non-linearity of evolutionary solutions. Our so-called future may resemble nothing of our so-called past - indeed, it rarely ever does!

Many of us are in the habit of driving towards the future while gazing into the rearview mirror of the past. This might explain why humans rarely notice until it's way too late the 20-wheeler truck coming straight at them from the opposite direction. Isn't that reason enough to start acquiring 360-degree peripheral vision?

Where Malaysia is headed (Part 9)


backStreetGluttons said...

Part 8 is getting really heavy into your metaohysical mystical extra sensory world of the 8th dimension , we hope the 9th will just do pinky and co in

navin said...

Antares, how do you unlearn these old paradigms so entrenched in EVERYONE? the biggest hurdle is the fear and the resentment one will face initially. even if its a gradual process of re-thinking, there will be resistance every step of the way. family, societal groups and the media will be freely voicing their opinions and shooting down misconceptions, especially in a conservative setting like the one we have right here in Malaysia.
do you need to go outside yourself to find your inner soul? how do you mitigate that initial fear?

Anonymous said...

disconnect to reconnect?
sounds easy but damn susah to do leh...
how does one rid themselves of fear?
i am still trying to work that one out.
help? please?

newd acid said...

i am space out!!!

Starmandala said...

BSG - Hahahahahahaha! I already removed Pink Lips & Rosie Manson in Parts 1 & 2 of this series of freestyle "lectures" :-) True, they continue to appear at public functions as if nothing happened... but, having dealt compassionately with them in my own mind, they no longer feature in MY reality. That's how it's done, folks. Everything that bugs you in the external environmnent is linked to some fear or belief ingrained in your own subconscious. Pluck it out & neutralize it... and it will no longer impinge on your sense of well-being.

Navin - You're afraid to hurt your parents' feelings, that's all. They have such high expectations of you & have showered you with their love & projected all their aspirations on you & now your own parents have become Umno/BN to you. Are you going to wait till both are dead before reclaiming your own destiny?
This is how the status quo tightens its grip on the collective unconsciousness - by making you feel grateful for everything it has done for you since you were born! Like Umno/BN your parents have fed & clothed & housed you & sent you to school... so how can you now turn your back on them? The fear of "making a serious mistake" is what stops many of us from acting on our own impulses. It's like losing your virginity. Once you've taken that first step, it just gets easier & more pleasurable! Go ahead, puncture that useless membrane (can't be a he-man till you lose that psychological hymen! :-)

Anon @ 11:31AM - Same answer I gave Navin applies :-) I believe our primal fear circuits were implanted in us through a tiny gland called the amygdala located where the brain connects with the spine. I have consciously performed psychic surgery on myself by reaching in & disabling the amygdala (which some call the reptilian brain, but it's actually a fear implant that serves to neutralize our original primary response of JOY)...

Newd Acid - Very good! The whole point of my essay :-)

Anonymous said...

You know Antares, I am in a freefall, not knowing what is at the bottom or if there is a bottom at all. I am enjoying this experience. Yet along the way, those who do not comprehend, holds out branches for me to grab, thinking that they will save me. So far, I have ignored them and will continue to do so, whilst enjoying this free fall.

Shalom Admiral Tojo

casper c said...

If there is something to learn with this latest posting; let go the EGO folks. You might want to google "Freud" and start getting your feet wet for a psychoanalytic pov.

I'm beginning to see the dots connect, McKeena must have been friends with L Ron Hubbard, one of several forerunners who went on to found the Church of Scientology - another school of thought, church, cult that the orthodoxy would like to eliminate - problem is, no one has decided whose problem it is.

Gotta go for now, will pick it up later in the evening.

Starmandala said...

Admiral Tojo - Levity counteracts gravity, so keep laughing... and when you hit the bottom, make sure the thwack resounds throughout eternity! See you there, bro :-)

Casper - There are healthy & unhealthy egos. What's the difference? Healthy egos are quick to applaud greatness wherever they encounter it, knowing that one person's achievements enriches everybody. Unhealthy egos invariably feel threatened & instinctively resort to sabotage, sarcasm & snideness.