Purgatory

There is a city
Where
Everything must
Always stay
The same.
When the buildings
Decay
And collapse,
They rebuild them
In exactly the
Same fashion.
Nothing ever
Changes
And everything
Stays in
Stasis.
They must
Relive
The same day
Over and over
Again
For all of
Eternity.
They think
This is romantic,
I think this
Is ghastly.
I never want
To go to this
Place ever
Again.
Some would
Call it
Purgatory.
I would call
It
Hell.
I hope it burns
To the ground.
Then the
People who
Live in eternal
Torment
Will
Finally be
Free.

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Saoirse

We sit beside the fire side,
Purifying flames,
Surround us and fill our eyes.
Our ancestors survived famine
and oppression.
They strove for more.
Centuries of
rebellions and uprisings,
To escape the shackles of
Bondage, through sedition.
Some misled, died
In the mud strewn hell
Of Flanders.
Some walked through the
Mountains, the rain
And the storm,
To get to the roadside
To fight for the cause of
Liberty.
They died, but the cause
Will go on.
Some built the railways,
Some built New York,
Others, worked in shipyards
And the mines,
Descending and ascending
From the Gateway of Death,
Each day.
Ireland’s soul lives in her
Valiant daughters who
Through their sacrifice
And tears, supported
These
Small, but noble victories.
From the west coast of Ireland,
To the majestic north sea.
With each day that passes,
We get closer to the moment,
We can put our indelible
Mark on the world,
And turn away
From the fire side,
And witness
The rising of the moon.

Gordon of Eden

Part of a continuing series: stream of consciousness writing, part 3.

Aum, aum, aum. We stand before the mighty tree on the cosmic altar. Alternate cerebral reality of the divine insurmountable divinity. Blessed moon goddess of the eternal. We meditate before the altar. Tomorrow is the rising of the moon. Aum, aum, aum. Put your hands over your ears and you can hear the music of the universe.
– I once walked through a gallery and heard the music of the spheres, I said. I’m not joking.
Aum, aum, aum. We move through the chakras. We beckon to a higher level of conciousness. She stands and pauses for thought as she considers what next to say. Out of character for her. She smiles the biggest smile and says:
– We should take salvia.
Aum, aum, aum.
– We can reach higher conciousness without the psychotropics.
I tell her about my experience of kundalini yoga and my theory of the chakras. The lower chakras are the earthly ones, the sensory ones. The higher ones as the snake uncoils relate to an awakening of consciousness and I tell her about the snake in the Gordon of Eden. Aum, aum, aum.
– But if you want to do the salvia, we’ll do the salvia. I took the salvia once and had a great awakening. I reflect on it.
– We can’t chase the experience all of the time, we must have monastic discipline and kill our desires
– Just this once, she says.
– Okay, lotus take the salvia.
All of time and space transcends and unfolds. The temporal boundaries of reality uncoil like the mighty cobra. I see the rust above the window ledge. All is clear, all is bright. We wander along the great Silk Roads, we walk for 490 days and then enter the great chamber of the holy underworld. We walk through the labrynthine corridors down the swirly whirly staircase where we are greeted by a mighty sphinx.
– Good day, sphinx, I say, dia duit.
The big sphinx is silent and gives me a stony silence. Aum, aum, aum.
We walk past the big sphinx through a cacophony of music. It is the works of Rachmaninoff. The stony labyrinth has excellent acoustics. We continue walking down the steps until we reach a lift which will take us back to the upper tier. We take the lift and the music in the lift is now Chopin’s Nocturne. Up, up, up we go.
– Chopin is portentous, she says.
– I do quite like his Nocturnes, says I.
Up, up, up. We get to the well lit balcony on the great terrace. We are before the cosmic gates.
– This reminds me of The Neverending Story, she says. Will we meet the princess?
– I hope not, I’m a republican, I say.
The blonde haired woman stands before us surrounded by her shimmering nimbus of golden holy and divine light. She has many faces and many forms. She looks at us and then turns around and looks back out into the eternal. We are high above the world, and we can see all of its roundness and all of the clouds and it is very nice, I think to myself. All is holy, all is bright.
– We can see all of eternity from up here, she says.
– Isn’t it nice, I say.

Varanasi

Following on from yesterday’s theme:

Around the head of the bed are shining illuminous colourful orbs of light, the shakuhachi music fills my ears. The ghosts are singing at the door and the angels are at my head. Uncomfortable vicissitude of feeling. Unfamiliar sense of the illuminous. Negligible neon Tokyo nights. Wrestling with the indivisible. All is temporal and we are in orbit around one another ready to crash towards the visceral surface of ones other. It cannot be stopped now. Temporal vicissitude of the illuminous. Diamond mountain with gold embers above the still lake. Shining gold beacons upon the lotus leaves. Solitude surpassed into temporal becoming of the virtuous vicissitude. The indivisible illuminous. Anam Cara of the atom carry through into the unfounded nature of visible betwixt being. The voidious vacuum is filled with the nature of the surpassing of the temporal separation. The collision of atoms. Boom boom boom. Large Hadron Collider of the infinitesimal feeling. We are down the Ganges side and take the boat to the old abandoned cinema with the art and the paintings. We are here now and suddenly it has been repaired since my last visit. Temporarily temporary fixes but we can look at the paintings of the abstract artists. We have made it to the far shore surpassing all obstacles between us. There is no us, just the oneness of being. All that is temporal and divisible is now eternal and fulfilled. We are in the orbit high high above the clouds of separation through the atmosphere of tumultuous inconvenience we will quickly bypass and crash into one another. All that is temporary all that is eternal and we discuss the nature of our being, our becoming. All the gravity is surpassable but only in due time in due course now is not the time to insurmount the gravity of our situation. The images flow freely into my mind. Colourful squares of bright red and black light. I hold onto this image longer than I am used to. It is like a Mondrian. A red and black Mondrian.

I am ready to return to the fulness of being. I am pulling through the transcendental cosmic moment. My experiences of these last few days have been profound. It is when we see the divine and the godhead in all things that although we can never understand, we can have full acceptance of the essence of being. We are in timeless virtue of the divine. In full providence of the total essence. The totem reaches to us and we both grab it and hold onto it in full rejection of the external outliers. A painted white and red mask upon the shores of Varanasi.

Through space and time,
We go at Whitsun tide
To see the Earthly sublime
On the Ganges side

The fires and the butter lamps light up the river. Conciousness is acquiescing to the sublime essence. Ineluctable modality of the visibility, said Joyce. I hear your modulations through space and time, an infinite rhythm only I can hear, calling to me in totality. I am ready to take your hand I say. I am ready to take yours, she says. I tell her about the musical I am writing. I am writing it for her, for her only. It is a music only I can hear. There are no instruments yet invented that can play your song, but I will invent them so that I can listen to your music for all of eternity. The music of the spheres says I love you. It cannot be rationalised or reasons, there is no scale or tone, it comes to me in a music that can only be heard on a subatomic level. No musician or scientist yet has the tools to impart this profound music of being that only I can here. I know you can here it too I say. Yes I can, she says. I know there is a place that only we shall go. I can’t wait, she says. The day, the moment is fast coming, fast approaching. There is no going back now. There is a course of events in motion that will set us on the path to one another fully and in totality.

Irremutable

Some stream of consciousness writing. This is something I do, these days.

Derikuyu Derikuyu. I walked into the underground chasms of my mind made from the soft volcanic rock, through the many chambers and down to the lower levels. I had made a painting of her in the style of Dante Gabrielle Rosetti. The painting was all I had at this moment. I was alone in the chamber beneath the burgeoning metropolis. It was designed so that the winter solstice could shine through the many levels and light up the floor. Burgeoning gold paradise of the soul. From the thermo-nuclear furnace came beauty and divinity. I knew I would see her soon. That we would overcome the usurpers. I looked at the other paintings in the chamber. Ones created and not yet created. Visceral radiance of the divine.Transmutation of the visible viable connection. Transmutavisible transcending light shines around me. I continued to transverse through the many chambers of the cave. Man made upon nature. I looked at the sculptures, the marble and bronze statues. Metaphors for creation. Sculptures of others are sculpted in our own essence. The concentric circles upon circles shone upon me from an unknown light source. Here was safe from the infidels. Secret safe space beneath the metropolis. The cold air hit me and brought me back into the moment. I saw the lotus floating upon the water. I walked over to the beach, and looked at the calm waters. Crystals reached high up to the voluminous ceiling of the cave. High mighty crystals both peaceful and imposing. A delicate balance for sure for sure. When I had met her we had in an instant moment drifted far from the shore. The world collapsed and faded out of view and there was only me and her, her and I. A thermo-nuclear reaction of the soul. The heavens shone and lit up within me. We were in space, in perfect temporal balance and alignment. The world did not exist anymore and there was only me and her, her and I. Alchemical virtue of the irremutable. Irremutable: adjective. That change is required so that everything should stay the same and in perfect alignment. A natural law that was irrefutable.

Blessed angel of the caves
Divine moon goddess of the night,
The light ember eternally paves
a path, that we should find the light.

Inconstancy of the way, fuelled by opium dreams. Pretentious transliterations of the eternal order of the viable. Irremutable. Irremutable. High and mighty ceiling beckoning to me that I should resurface to the metropolis to engage with the intangible accelerations of the world earth. I entered another room. I looked across the paintings. The curation was all important in telling a story and in how easy it was to decipher the symbolism. There were many bad curators. The aesthetics taking precedence over the Vitruvian. Firmitas, utilitas and venustas. The music bled in. Beyond the water, I walked for a while longer and reached the diamond mountain. It reached into eternity. It was here I took my rest and thought about leaving the shore. Despite my injuries from the journey, I was happy and content that I would see her later and we could discuss the irremutable and irrefutable and make sense with one another of the gravitational waves. I knew that she would be coming down the diamond mountain very shortly so that we could ascend it again together to reach the headiest heights of eternity amongst the great majestic heavens. I could already see us together walking amongst the pillars of creation, to plant our flag amidst the mightiest foundations of the cosmic cosmos. I was excited by my excitement and filled with a heady intoxicating joy far beyond the pallet of anything I had ever experienced before. We would reach Babel by noon and then be back home in time for tea. In physical cosmology there is the theory of the multiverse. I was looking forward to her exploring my universe, and myself exploring hers. Then reconciling them into the theological, cosmological vision of the divine. Imperative vision of the transcendent beauty, bequeathed by my impassibile peripheral, deep within the caves there is the majestic ferocity of the soul, already vastly alit by your tangential being. Excited excitement is awake within me.

God’s Real Name was God

As I write this, I’m in bed watching a documentary called ‘The Trials of Henry Kissinger.’ This is based on the book of the same name by Christopher Hitchens. The proposition being that it is a case for a prosecution, charging Kissinger with crimes against humanity: The result of a man’s worldview being shaped by a desire for power, moulded through the destruction of innocent life rather than through acts of creation. Preceding this, I had watched a talk with Hitchens, which was mostly notable for his comments on the human condition in relation to religion, namely that man has a desire to be ‘told what to do.’ However, as Blake said, there are some who do wish to shake off the ‘mind forged manacles.’

As I walked down by the riverside
One evening in the spring
Heard a long gone song
From days gone by
Blown in on the great North wind
Though there is no lonesome corncrake’s cry
Of sorrow and delight
You can hear the cars
And the shouts from bars
And the laughter and the fights
May the ghosts that howled
Round the house at night
Never keep you from your sleep
May they all sleep tight
Down in hell tonight
Or wherever they may be

From this, I consider six paintings I had been looking at earlier in the day:

More than any other form of human expression, art is the barometer that lays bare a period’s view of reality, of life, of man. A work of art reflects its creator’s fundamental ideas and value-judgments, held consciously or subconsciously. Since most artists are not independent theoreticians, but absorb their basic ideas from the prevaling consensus (or some faction within it), their work becomes a microcosm embodying and helping to spread further the kinds of beliefs advocated by that consensus.

‘The Spiritual form of Nelson Guiding Leviathan.’ Man as a tyrannical warmonger in the biblical style. This one strikes me as being absurdly ironic. The destroyer as a saint. One could imagine a more modern inversion of this with someone like Kissinger. Incidentally, Leviathan appears in the Book of Job in the Old Testament. Job is an investigation of divine justice, which we will get to, momentarily.

‘Satan Smiting Job with Sore Boils.’ This is an interesting painting. God is the creator of all things. God is the creator of Satan. Thus, there can no good or evil, as all is the creation of God, and all of God’s creation is good. There is an interesting passage in the New Testament. One also, that the cynic in me finds highly amusing. Paul to the Romans 11:32. ‘God has imprisoned all in disobedience, so that he may have mercy on all.’ The concept of Hell, doesn’t appear in the Old Testament, it only appears in the New Testament. If there is to be a Hell, it can only be an extension of God’s creation and be entirely, mercifully of God’s own design. We move to the design image when we can begin to see God in all things. Further to this, Balzac said, Man is neither good nor bad; he is born with instincts and capabilities; society, far from depraving him, asserts and improves him, makes him better; but self-interest also develops his evil tendencies. Out of this, man created organised religion, which is a complete system for the repression of these very tendencies. It is also the most powerful element of social order. Curiously, therefore, from our view, Christianity can be considered both the best and worst thing to happen to the West. For example, Christianity created modern nationalities, and it is through Christianity that they are preserved. All the Gods have died of their temporality. So what will happen when these shackles of organised religion and the social order it brings are shaken off? History has shown, man will just create new ones in their place. This might be considered unfortunate. History is, or ought to be, what it was; while romance ought to be the ‘better world.’ For everything to stay the same, everything must change.

It was very big to think about everything and everywhere. Only God could do that. He tried to think what a big thought that must be; but he could only think of God. God was God’s name just as his name was Stephen. Dieu was the French for God and that was God’s name too; and when anyone prayed to God and said Dieu then God knew at once that it was a French person that was praying. But, though there were different names for God in all the different languages in the world and God understood what all the people who prayed said in their different languages, still God remained always the same God and God’s real name was God.

This is the inversion of the theme. Where woman is god and is responsible for all of creation and its manifestations. This one has its roots in the Garden of Eden, where the original sin was human consciousness. Woman as the giver of life is therefore responsible for the creation of consciousness. From reading the Old Testament, what I have taken from it is that Genesis symbolically represents the birth of human consciousness. Specifically, the tree and the apple represent the foundation of the central nervous system – further to this, consciousness and the ability to abstract is what separates man from nature, and that is the sin in the Garden of Eden. The separation of humans from nature via consciousness. We can try and impose order over nature with words and symbols but it isn’t possible to do so. Thus, ironically, it is our hunger for knowledge and desire to understand that causes us to lose touch with the essence. Incidentally this is also why I have an abiding interest in Taoism, because Taoism gives the reason why that it is. God is ineffable. It is impossible for any human to understand and know the divine source. We can only use symbols as a way to allow us a glimpse of the true essence of the divine. Hence in Taoism, once you refer to the Tao as Tao, it ceases to be the real Tao as words are purely man made constructs and symbols, thus they can never capture the true essence of a thing.

Here is more of my favourite theme: ‘The Promise’ and ‘The Sleeping Fool’ by Cecil Collins. Here we see the artist beneath the tree of life, the dawning of consciousness and the act of creation. Or, again, man as god or as the creator, through his art.

Here we have ‘Landscape of the Threshold’ by Cecil Collins. This one interested me as in this painting, the Holy Trinity act as a barrier to reaching the divine Godhead. Of course, despite the apparent protestations of the trinity here, the Godhead is always present. Heaven wheels above you, displaying to you her eternal glories, and still your eyes are on the ground. The Trinity appears across most world religions and philosophies. For example, in Taoism, the trinity comes in the form of the three treasures or, the three jewels which are compassion, frugality and humility. In Tibetan Buddhism there are three refuge formulations, the Outer, Inner, and Secret forms of the Three Jewels. The ‘Outer’ form is the ‘Triple Gem,’ the ‘Inner’ is the Three Roots and the ‘Secret’ form is the ‘Three Bodies’ or trikaya of a Buddha.

for sunshine after storm

“I would say that he has a rather limited and uncreative way of looking at the situation. You want to know if I understand that this is a mental hospital? Yes, I understand that. But, then how can I say that you are Don Octavio and I am a guest at your villa? Correct?” – Don Juan DeMarco

A few months ago I experienced something unusual. I was tense. I couldn’t think clearly. I couldn’t grasp my thoughts. A fog had descended over my brain. I couldn’t visualise or access the parts of my brain where all the interesting stuff was. 

I love reading and literature. I could read something but I couldn’t access the memory drive or whatever the technical term is for that, where I hold all the allusions and reference points to my previous experiences and all of the other shit I’ve read in my life to form a picture or an opinion or expand on, or even understand what the writer was trying to say (intentionally or otherwise). It was an incredibly frustrating experience.

I was stressed out from long hours. I was physically and mentally jaded. My brain and body had effectively hit the ‘safe mode’ á la Windows 98. All my body and mind was interested in was the basic functions of survival and protecting myself to stay alive. An ancient, hard wired evolutionary response.

Your body is designed for two primary functions: reproduce and survive. When you’re faced with stressful situations, the only parts of your brain you can access are the ones which perform the basic functions of keeping you alive. If you’re about to be lunch for a sabre tooth tiger, your mind couldn’t give a shit about the nuances of James Joyce’s Ulysses, only the threat at hand and keeping you alive. 

It actually took me a while, to regain my sense of self. I don’t like feeling jaded or having my mind clouded over. I enjoy the sensory aspects of living. How pretentious as fuck does that sound? I started trying to increase blood-flow to my brain and break the shackles of the stultifying fog.

I started looking for outlets and later it was by chance I became interested in playing guitar again. I don’t profess to be even a proficient guitar player. I’m working on it. However I became fascinated by the possibilities of the instrument and the creative process. I eventually started to think outside of the box again and started looking beyond the conventional idea of the instrument. If you’re playing an electric guitar, essentially, the guitar is actually the platform and your instrument is the amp. I started messing around with various effects pedals, which are actually addictive. I started looking beyond the guitar in the conventional sense of playing chords and became interested and intrigued in the various multi-faceted possibilities. Utilising the various quirks of the equipment to create interesting sounds, rather than spending hours tediously practising ‘Stairway to Heaven,’ to make it sound like it does on Led Zep 4, I thought it was more interesting just messing and playing around. Creating my own sound. I didn’t care. The stress was gone. This is freedom.

I had internalised the greatest lesson from James Joyce’s work, the creative process is essentially for your own amusement. Art brings stillness and fulfilment. It doesn’t mean shit if people like, appreciate or even understand what you’re doing, it isn’t a means to an end. You do not create for visceral reponse. It is an outpouring of spiritual repose.

Language and Death in Montreal 

After arriving in Montreal I decided to go to Irish language classes. I’m referring to the native language of Ireland which is ‘gaeilge.’ Not how to speak English slang in an Irish accent, “Tell yer man to stop givin’ out. Great craic like so it is. Get a caravan for me ma in periwinkle blue. Watch the dags.” Irish is a protected European language and one I’m actually fairly proficient in, as I spent a lot of time with my West Cork family growing up and also spent time in the gaeltacht areas where Irish is in everyday usage. My foray into Irish language classes was more to do with finding likeminded people. Whilst not a dying language gaelige is somewhat endangered, limited mostly to the declining gaeltacht areas mainly on the west coast of the island.

As it happens, I would have been better served taking lessons in Québécois. As it happens Québécois French is similar to French, in the same way Irish gaeilge is similar to Scottish gaelic. They’re effectively of the same genus, but it’s like comparing a German Shepherd to a Husky. They may look similar but the differences can be profound. In essence, languages like animals can be broken up into categories and sub-categories. A man and women may not appear similar, but they’re extremely similar when compared to a monkey. A man and a monkey are nigh on identical when compared to a dog, but a man and a dog are more closely aligned when compared to a shark.

French is a romance language and shares characteristics with other central European Romance languages which have evolved from Latin such as: Italian, Spanish, Catalan and Portuguese.

English is Germanic, as is Dutch and by result of colonialism Afrikaan, Swedish, Norwegian, Dane.

Irish shares characteristics with Celtic languages such as French gallic, Welsh, Scottish and the natively deceased Manx language. You can however find some commonalities with English if you know where to look (just showing off).

I find whereas French is quite formal, Québécois is much more idiomatic and certainly takes quite a bit getting used to as a result. Infact the idioms make it more difficult than speaking say, Spanish and then going to Catalonia. As at least the format of the languages in how they’re spoken are basically the same.

I find language a pretty fascinating topic. It’s interesting how much of an impact language has on how you think. This is why languages like Irish and others further afield were suppressed by English colonialists. It wasn’t simply a case of convenience, but an act of cultural defenestration enacted against natives. Including changing names/surnames. My own family name in Irish is Laighin, from Laigin. The Laigin were a population group of early Ireland. The name is actually an ethnonym denoting a distinct ethnic group. The Laigin also give name to the province of Leinster, which in Irish is actually Cúige Laighean (pronounced cooga layan) Literally, ‘Fifth of the Laigin.’ The Laigin are by virtue are also highly prevalent in the early cycles of Irish mythology, some of the oldest recorded on the planet.

The rebirth of my interest in the Irish language in the last few years was to do with reading stories and poems in their original form which as is often the case, do not carry over well when translated into another language. Again, Irish poetry and literature are amongst some of the earliest recorded. Thus, it is not simply a language that is endangered, it is a massive amount of cultural and literary history too. This is why I strongly believe in participation in the language and have such an interest in its perseveration.

There was debate during the Irish revival at the turn of the last century about its continued usage which I believe is quite pertinent, however not for the reasons set out. The great Irish writer James Joyce briefly studied Irish under Padraig Pearse the leader of the Easter Rising. However, Joyce who would go on ironically to be perhaps the greatest proponent of the English language of all time, found the Gaelic League’s revival of the language to be essentially ‘backward.’ I think he was essentially correct. There is and certainly in the case of the Gaelic League was very much a prevalent conservative instinct. Although I do believe it was well intentioned, I believe the same conservative instinct is prevalent in the well-intentioned people who are trying to preserve and save the language to this day. For a language to survive it must be allowed to evolve and grow. We’ve seen this with the English language which is almost distinctly unrecognisable from the time of Shakespeare. I recently watched Macbeth starring Michael Fassbender, anyone unfamiliar with the play may have felt like they were by virtue thrown into watching a foreign film. Evolution is healthy for language.

Joyce as he demonstrated with his later works was anything but backward looking with regards to language. Ulysses and particularly Finnegans Wake are imbued with linguistic inventiveness, playfulness and creativity. Joyce in Finnegans Wake in essence opted to invent his own language which was based around puns, English, Irish, Greek, Latin and drunken rambling. Far from being frustrating and unreadable, these are the works of someone having a laugh. My experience in Montreal furthers my conviction, that rather than being an frustrating exercise in unraveling idiomatic French or wishing for more formal syntax, it is beautiful to see a language thriving. Irish language enthusiasts and revivalists would do well to learn from theses examples. It is best not to be conservative when it comes to the rules of a language. A language lives and dies by its efficiency and ease of usage. Then the languages possibilities which aren’t finite may again wake [terrible, don’t care].

Double N.

I had walked along the Liffey. Upto Grafton Street. Before the Guinness would be flowing. Unknowing of the judgment that would fall later that spring evening. I recall vividly the tricolours flying. The crowds of people. I turned off unknowingly into Davey Byrnes pub.

Be still as you are beautiful,
Be silent as the rose;
Through miles of starlit countryside
Unspoken worship flows

The Shelbourne Hotel. Dublin. Five stars. St. Stephens Green. A building of historical significance. Never far from the most pivotal and defining moments in Irish society. Across the busy foyer. A Friday in May. There she was. I limped across. 5’9. Heels. A leather jacket. Black pencil skirt. Flowing blonde hair. Beaming smile. Her eyes were the same colour as the glistening spring sky of blue. Like an epiphany to all my foolish blood. On that gleaming marble floor, fleeting.